(Days 26 and 25 are together as we were away :))
25 days to go….to Ireland’s referendum on whether or not to repeal the pro-life 8th amendment, which gives equal right to life to mother and child to the Irish constitution, or retain it.
MASS APPEAL: Everyday we promote Sr. Briege McKenna’s appeal for Masses to be said either privately or publicly in your parish for Ireland, in reparation, for conversions and that the 8th amendment to the Irish constitution would be saved. For links to online organisations that arrange Masses through the missions go to the home page : http://www.massandfastforireland.com
WE CAN’T BELIEVE THEY DON’T WANT TO MENTION ABORTION TO SIX MONTHS
WHY IS THE PRO LIFE SIDE PLAYING THE PRO CHOICE GAME DOOR TO DOOR?
This is not intended to be offensive or controversial for its own sake but please bear with us….
Originally, the Irish government reported that unrestricted medical abortions would be allowed lead by GP s up to 12 weeks. Then after 12 weeks for mental and physical health risk subject to two nominated doctors’ agreement with no upper limit to include life limiting or so-called fatal foetal conditions, so in the last trimester of pregnancy. At that point there were two sets of ‘health care’ (as they insist on calling it) conditions. To 12 weeks no questions asked and 12-40 weeks / full term subject to the said doctors’ judgment.
Then we discussed how the Irish government, after a 10 point drop in opinion polls for the repeal campaign, announced that they were going to introduce a 24 week upper limit on abortions. Thereafter as the baby would be viable, they would not abort but would deliver the baby. This was to clarify and reassure the population that from 24 weeks, babies would not be left to die or subjected to feticide (death by lethal injection).
At that point it emerged that there would be a three tier system in place: the same as originally proposed, but a cap on killing at 24 weeks. So unrestricted no questions asked medical abortions which would be GP lead until 12 weeks, abortions on mental and physical health grounds to 24 weeks as decided by two nominated doctors, (no doubt nominated to be pro-choice) and finally abortions in the final trimester only in three circumstances: (a): if the mother’s life was at risk ( which was always done under the existing medical council guidelines (b): her health was at severe risk (this would cover mental and physical risks) and (c): for life-limiting conditions / or fatal foetal abnormalities as they insist on calling them. This despite groups like ‘One Day More’, who delivered their seriously ill babies as close to term as possible, asking the Irish government not to use the term fatal foetal abnormalities, as it’s not medically or scientifically based and is inaccurate with some babies dying after birth or survive to this day.
Because of the U.K.’s history of botched abortions in at least one of the NHS trusts, whereby babies born alive from abortions, usually with Down Syndrome were left to die and not transferred to the neonatal intensive care unit, the pro-choice camp have been emphasising that if babies here are aborted after 24 weeks, they will receive care. Remember these are the people who do compassionate health care.
There are a few ways of interpreting this:
The fact that it took them a month to come up with the 24 week ban gives an indication that they were letting the no upper limit / full term abortion idea float to see how it’d fly. Possibly they always knew that after 24 weeks, however up for a woman’s right to choose they may be, others in hospitals would balk / draw the line at not providing care to a live delivered baby that could potentially survive and so they were always going to permit these babies to receive care. They then announce it to show how conservative they can be, as a concession and again to show compassion and how reasonable they are: if you’ve a chance of making it outside the womb, we’ll give you that fighting chance.
Something we cannot get our heads around to date however, is how the pro choice and pro life sides both seem to be focusing their campaigns on the 12 week limit for unrestricted medical abortions.
We can understand on the pro choice side, why this would be in their interest: after all, the pro choice side announced limitations where before there were none to emphasise by the way, how reasonable they are. They are eager to fudge the fact that a liberal abortion regime is at the door up to 24 weeks on the mental / physical health ground and according to what they were originally proposing: on severe risk to maternal health grounds even in the last trimester (whether or not they always intended to care for viable babies).
However we don’t at all understand why the pro-life position has been focusing so much on the 12 week limit especially going door to door with an argument that the proposals could be liberalised at a later stage. Or that the proposal to have abortions mid-trimester, are as we have heard it, on ‘vague’ mental / physical health grounds.
It appears to be the case that the focus on the 12 week limit is to emphasise that these are healthy babies with healthy mothers. Public take note, these are not the hard or extreme cases that many of you would allow abortion for. Now we understand that one has to be strategic and it’s fair enough to point out how developed these babies are, that in the majority of cases they are normal, how they are not a risk to their mother’s health or life, but are considered fair game for execution. This is all fact. In a sense this is appealing to the public, consider the plight of these babies mostly healthy. This referendum therefore is not about the extreme / hard cases really. It is the government proposals in fact which are extreme and go so much further. So the argument appears to go….
But while it’s valid to discuss how far the baby has developed to 12 weeks: all its internal organs are developed, it responds to touch by week 11, etc., this also just serves to emphasise that the upper limit proposed is just to 12 weeks if that’s where most conversations at the doors stop.
What is the rationale for this argument we’ve heard repeatedly, that abortion could be liberalised at a later stage? Yes it’s true, politicans could opt to abort to birth again and harmonise laws here with the U.K where unrestricted decriminalisation of abortion in all cases, unfortunately is now on the cards. “Politicians will have a blank cheque for all future changes to abortion laws” is the argument at the doors here in at least some cases. It’s not that this is not true. It is true. The Irish government will receive a blank cheque to do whatever the hell they want. Literally.
But we already know they are going to extend it from 12 to 24 weeks minimum to include the mental health risk ground which is the social abortion ground in the UK and other countries. Remember this is ground C on the abortion form in the UK where almost 9 million abortions have taken place since 1967. 98% of those 9 million odd abortions were done under ground C. The mental health risk ground is the catch all ground for abortion on demand everywhere. If a baby is unwanted in any jurisdiction where abortion is on demand, all a counsellor / nurse / medic has to do, is state that there is emotional inability to cope and tick the mental health risk box. That’s it.
Incidentally the two doctor stipulation in the UK has effectively long been dispensed with. The Dept of Health and professional bodies all agree a doctor is not required to see a woman pre abortion. A nurse / counsellor can deal with the preliminaries and the doctor’s only role is to sign the abortion form, stating where they performed the abortion. There’s even a box to tick on whether they did or did not see the patient. The second signature can come from a doctor off site at another clinic. Zero patient contact is required legally despite the law stating that two doctors must agree having formed an opinion in good faith that she meets the requirements under the act. What a serious farce the two doctor model is across the Irish Sea. Why would we be any different?
So we in Mass and Fast for Ireland are concerned that a truly massive elephant in the room is being missed and that the pro choice side cannot believe their luck. A large section of the pro life canvass is focusing on the 12 weeks limit and risk of future liberalisation by the government at the doors. Why give the public the impression going door to door that 12 weeks is where it’s at when the government / repeal side have made it clear they’ll shoot for 24 weeks upper limit minimum with hand-picked doctors and their interpretation of the very useful all-embracing mental health ground? Surely the conversation should specifically state there is a 24 week limit proposed and a clearly stated intention to copy our neighbours use of the mental health ground for mid-late trimester abortion on demand and how utterly farcical the two doctor model has worked out abroad.
Thank God one of the pro life groups is running the billboard campaign depicted:
I had NO idea….they want to legalise abortion to 6 months.
That’s kind of ironic considering those met at the doors may still have no idea based on the format as described but a publicity blitz on this will build on what’s already been done and expose how radically further the proposals really go.
Please all canvassers: limiting the conversation to 12 weeks only with a reference to vague possible future liberalisation is underplaying it with all due respect and with the wolf at the door.
Please canvassers include the following from now on:
Please any pro life organisations not blitzing these points, consider escalating them now:
(1): The government propose abortion to 6 months on mental / physical health risk grounds according to the say so of two nominated doctors.
(2): The mental health ground in the UK is social abortion, (ground C), accounting for 98% of nearly 9 million abortions.
(3): The two doctor model in the UK, has slipped to no legal requirement to see a woman prior to an abortion. (If necessary mention the box ticking that the doctor did / didn’t see the woman). A nurse sees her beforehand. The Doctor aborts and signs the form.
If you get a chance add in:
(4): Down’s syndrome babies are aborted mid-trimester in other countries under the mental health ground even though no ground officially exists for disability abortions like Ireland.
No ground +no specific ban+mental health risk= Down Syndrome abortions mid-trimester. (9/10 Down’s babies in Germany diagnosed mid-trimester on pre natal screening are aborted this way. Up to half of Down’s babies in the UK were aborted on the mental health risk ground as abortionists didn’t fill in the disability ground but Down Syndrome genetic registries did).
Below is Dr. Peter Boylan’s ongoing crusade to permit carnage in Irish hospitals and get repeal over the line with the reassurance that babies on the cusp of viability will be delivered and limits.