Ireland’s Life-Saving Pro-Life Ethos

By Dave Andrusko

Tens of thousands gathered at the National Vigil For Life in Merrion Square, Dublin, to stand against the introduction of abortion legislation in Ireland in 2013.  (Pro Life Campaign)

Tens of thousands gathered at the National Vigil For Life in Merrion Square, Dublin, to stand against the introduction of abortion legislation in Ireland in 2013. (Pro Life Campaign)

I can’t imagine how it got by the censors, but Cora Sherlock, deputy chairperson of the Irish Pro Life Campaign, managed to get an op-ed published in the European edition of Newsweek.

No doubt she got her 15 minutes because of the full-bore pro-abortion assault on Ireland, about which NRL News Today has reported many times. The beachhead for such groups as Amnesty International [!] is Ireland’s Eighth Amendment.

They believe that if they can “Repeal the eighth,” everything else will fall. “The 8th Amendment (Article 40.3.3.) to the Irish Constitution is the original Life Equality Amendment,” Sherlock writes. “It protects the equal right to life of unborn children and their mothers.”

What I particularly like about her op-ed is that Sherlock, who is extremely articulate, simply demolishes the foundations–aka myths –that undergird the attack.

For example, that you look hard enough you will find a right to abortion under human rights laws. Sherlock writes

This is untrue, and the fact that this argument is proposed by groups like Amnesty International in their campaign in favor of abortion is surprising. There is no such thing as a right to abortion in international human rights law. (There is a right to life; it is acknowledged in Article 3 of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, something proponents of abortion conveniently ignore.)

Then there is the snobbery argument, which we pro-life Americans are only too well aware of.

The second claim involves an attempt to portray Ireland as some kind of international backwater due to its concern to protect innocent human life. But Ireland is a progressive, young and extremely well-educated country.

More to the point, it’s not like the people of Ireland are storming the barricades of the Eighth Amendment to tear it down. Sherlock observes

Far from being embarrassed by our pro-life Constitution, Irish people embrace it. Abortion campaigners know this. Recently, a leading pro-choice politician (and Government Minister), Aodhan O’Riordan, admitted as much when he said that if a referendum were to be held on repealing the 8th Amendment it would almost certainly be defeated.

And then there’s this:

Perhaps it is the final claim, however, which is the most damaging—the continual insistence that Ireland’s protection of unborn humans jeopardizes the lives and health of Irish women. This erroneous claim has the effect of making people think Ireland is an unsafe place to be pregnant. The truth of the matter is that Ireland is a country that has consistently ranked among the safest in the world for pregnant women. We have a lower maternal mortality rate than a whole host of countries with liberal abortion regimes.

Three strikes and you’re out. Well, it ought to be, but pro-abortionists never rest.

Final thought. Employing their most earnest face, pro-abortionists will always, always, always tell you if you just open the door a little bit–if you “reform” the laws or wipe out constitutional protections–there’ll be some changes here and there but nothing drastic.

Which make Sherlock’s most devastating rebuttal when she answers her own question: “Would Ireland be a kinder, more compassionate society if we repealed the 8th Amendment? Not if we go by the experience of other countries where human life at its earliest stage is deemed less than worthless.”

She lays out chapter and verse what follows as night follows day; PPFA types scavenging the bodies of aborted baby in search of the unholy grail–intact baby body parts; sex-selection abortions–gendercide; search and destroy missions where 60%to 90%+ of all babies prenatally diagnosed with Down syndrome are aborted; and the ghastly, hideous dichotomy where one premature baby will receive aggressive medical intervention while another unborn baby of the same age at the same hospital down the hall will be aborted.

Sherlock’s conclusion is masterful:

Every society can do better for women and families facing unplanned or difficult pregnancies, and Ireland is no different in this regard. But the radical discrimination that lies at the heart of abortion serves no one. The 8th Amendment, the original life equality amendment, has shaped Ireland into a truly life-affirming society where no one group of human beings has the right to determine that others are “less human.”

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