The government of Ireland is coming under fire from a top pro-life group, which says it is “dishonest” for governmental leaders to call the new bill on abortions “restrictive” when it opens the door for legalized abortion.
The Pro Life Campaign said the Government’s proposed legislation on abortion published late last night “will allow, for the first time in our history, the direct intentional targeting of the life of the unborn child” and is “a million miles away from good medicine, from the kind of life-saving intervention which everybody supports.”
Commenting on the publication, Caroline Simons of the Pro Life Campaign said:
“The legislation published last night is every bit as dangerous and unjust as the heads of the Bill brought forward last month. Activating the X case by legislation will allow, for the first time in our history, the direct intentional targeting of the life of the unborn child. There is no getting away from this awful reality. It is a million miles away from good medicine, from the kind of life-saving intervention which everybody supports.
“One of the most regrettable features of this debate has been the corruption of language. The Taoiseach and Cabinet Ministers, continue – with no hint of shame – to use words like ‘restrictive’ and ‘life-saving’ to describe their plans.
“But these words are meaningless and empty. The only thing that matters is what the law actually permits and what it permits is abortion on wide-ranging grounds.
“The reality is that two psychiatrists of like mind can sign away an unborn child’s life on grounds that have nothing to do with bona fide medical treatment. There is nothing life-saving, just or restrictive about that. The obstetrician required by law will have no role in certifying the eligibility for such abortions. In reality, it amounts to abortion on request. To state otherwise is dishonest.
“Instead of demonising the pro-life movement as he did in the Dáil yesterday, the Taoiseach should face up to the dangers in his abortion plan and stop misrepresenting what it permits.
“Last weekend’s National Vigil for Life in Merrion Square showed the scale of the opposition that is emerging as the true horror of the Government’s abortion legislation becomes clearer. It showed a pro-life movement mobilising like never before. Nothing the Government does will stop the growth of this movement. The Government may well think the pro-life groundswell will die away in a month or so when they turn their attention to other government business. I can assure them that’s not going to happen. For us, it’s just the beginning.
“The Government’s ignoring the evidence that abortion is not a treatment for suicidal feelings won’t make that evidence go away. Similarly, ignoring the growth of the pro-life movement won’t make it go away either.
“What has emerged in recent months is a young, vibrant, politically savvy and compassionate movement for life. The leaders of the main political parties haven’t even begun to recognise the political significance of the emergence of this new fast growing movement,” Ms Simons said.
Meanwhile, the Life Institute has said that the publication of a Bill permitting abortion on suicide grounds shows that the government “doesn’t give a damn for the evidence” and is “blinded by arrogance and ideology” on the issue.
“An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, has chosen to completely ignore the medical evidence presented at two Oireachtas Committee hearings on abortion,” said Niamh Uí Bhriain of the Life Institute.
“He is simply disregarding the evidence of Obstetricians who say they have serious moral and ethical concerns with ending the life of an unborn baby where a mother says she is suicidal,” she pointed out.
“And he is ignoring the evidence of our leading psychiatrists who not only say that abortion does not treat suicidality, but have told the government that this Bill would help to normalise suicide.”
The actions of the government were “feckless, irresponsible and cold-hearted”, she added, since the Bill allowed for abortion without time limits.
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“Minister James Reilly is anxious to downplay the absence of time limits, but his only alternative is to have doctors prematurely deliver a physically healthy baby, being born to a physically healthy mother. That baby will then suffer all the possible consequences of prematurity including brain damage, blindness, and even death. This is horrific,” said the Life Institute spokeswoman.
Ms Ui Bhriain said that the government was “blinded by arrogance and ideology”.
She also described the results of Irish Times poll as seriously skewed since the question was framed to be “misleading and to prompt a required response.”
“The poll asked if people supported abortion to save the life of a mother, but clearly that’s a leading question, since experts tell us that abortion is never medically necessary,” she said.
You can read the published abortion legislation here.