More details have emerged of the recent case in Northern Ireland where a woman self-administered an abortion pill, and was prosecuted in the courts, ultimately receiving a suspended sentence.
In a national newspaper today, her housemates have spoken out about the backlash that they have received from people who were angry that they reported to the situation to the authorities in Northern Ireland.
They also talked, in graphic and upsetting detail, about the situation in the house, and how disturbing the abortion was for everyone – not just the woman who self-administered the pill, but also for her housemates who did their best to dissuade her from having the abortion, but were then left in what they described as a “frantic mess” as they could not cope with the fact that the discarded unborn baby had been left in a rubbish bin in the house.
One of the housemates said:
“When my other housemate came home on the Sunday we went and looked in the bag in the bin. There was the baby on a towel. Even now I just have a picture in my mind of it. Even now I feel sick. It has done so much damage to me mentally. It is something I can’t get out of my head. On bin collection day I couldn’t bring myself to put the bin out for collection. I didn’t want to throw a baby away. I didn’t know what to do.”
She also highlighted the fact that, contrary to pro-choice campaigners’ insistence that a baby at this stage of gestation (between 10 and 12 weeks) is a “clump of cells”, he was clearly distinguishable as a small human being:
“The baby had hands, feet, all its facial features, its little nose. I can’t stop thinking that it might have been alive when it was born.”
Despite the fact that pro-choice campaigners have been very eager to talk about this case in the past few days, insisting that it helps their case that the 8th Amendment should be repealed, they have been silent on this latest report. In particular, they have not commented on the fact that the experience of all of the women involved – the woman who self administered the pill and her housemates – shows that the experience of abortion is deeply troubling, both physically and mentally for the woman concerned and for those who are offering her support.
There is a further point to be made about this sad addition to the story. These women were horrified at the thought of throwing out a bin bag that contained the remains of a human being. This is very understandable considering the respect that is shown to deceased people at funerals. But unborn human beings are discarded in bin bags in abortion clinics all over the world. Even worse, their remains are disrespected in other ways. A recent investigation in the UK revealed that the remains of 15,000 aborted babies had been incinerated and used to heat public hospitals.
This lack of concern for the dignity of these human beings who have had their lives unjustly ended is something which should draw the attention of groups like Amnesty International. Sadly, Amnesty has abandoned unborn babies. Instead, their campaign to pressurize the new government in Ireland is ongoing as they hold a daily protest outside the Irish parliament buildings, insisting that plans for a referendum to remove the 8th Amendment (the constitutional ban on abortion in Ireland) must be included in the programme for government. In doing so, they are trying to re-write the results of the recent election, where politicians who had expressed strong support for abortion before the election lost their seats and where election workers reported hearing only from pro-life voters on the issue when they were canvassing for votes.
Amnesty Ireland cannot continue to ignore the negative aspects of abortion, so clearly highlighted in this sad article. Unfortunately, their spokespeople do not have a good record of addressing serious human rights abuses that stem directly from abortion. This is a failure on their part, and something which seriously limits the public’s opportunity to hear both sides of the abortion debate.