Something profoundly cold and inhumane has entered Irish politics under the guise of ‘freedom’ and ‘choice’

By Dave Andrusko

The vise continues to close tighter around the throats of unborn children in Ireland. Once among the most protective countries in the world, the Republic of Ireland seems bent on mimicking the worst pro-abortion policies found anywhere.

Consider the Slippery Slope firmly wedged into this headline in the Irish Times: “Abortion campaigners hail ‘historic day’ but eye changes: Activists celebrate but urge full decriminalisation and removal of three-day wait period.”

The “Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy Bill” 2018 awaits only the formality of the signature of President Michael D. Higgins, having overwhelmingly passed the Dáil and Seanad, the two houses of Parliament.

Last week lawmakers shot down pro-life amendment after amendment. To pro-abortionists that was a given. What they wanted was to win approval of their full agenda. Not only abortion legal through 12 weeks and far beyond in many cases; not only paid for by the government; not only legal when the baby has a disability or is capable of experiencing horrific pain, but also abortion for any reason or no reason as far into pregnancy as a woman wants.

“We had hoped for a number of amendments that did not get through,” veteran pro-abortion campaigner Ailbhe Smyth told the Times. “But an important marker has been put down. There are issues that the Dáil and Seanad will likely be coming back to, maybe even sooner than we would think.”

When the bill passed the Seanad last week, Secretary for Health Simon Harris said, “This is a genuinely historic moment.” He went onto thank his parliamentary colleagues for “their cooperation, their thoughtful contributions and for the long hours everyone has put in to see it through.” Harris also thanked the pro-abortionists “who fought for 35 years to change a nation, to change hearts and minds.”

The Irish Pro-Life Campaign explained what happened last week.

Any lingering hopes that the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, might have been persuaded to acknowledge the reality of the unborn child were crushed under an avalanche of evasion and denial.

His allies in the Seanad have thus enabled him to enact legislation that is catastrophic in its reach and chilling in its intent.

The Seanad leg of the debate lasted only four days with a marathon 12 hours of discussion on Tuesday December 11th.

Despite provocation and personalised attacks, Senators Rónán Mullen and Briain Ó’ Domhnaill were steadfast and heroic in their presentation of the case for humane amendments to a Bill that obliterates the right of babies to be born and the right of their mothers to know them. …

They did so knowing that this represented the last opportunity our legislators had to limit the extreme nature of the Bill and to insert some kind of proportionate and reasonable protections for the unborn child; for example, the right to pain relief before termination.

On the first day of the Seanad debate, December 10, 2018, clear indications were given that no reason, no impulse toward genuine compassion and no amount of pleading was going to pierce the abortion logic that the Minister and his allies put forth with such unyielding force.

The first to speak was Senator Lynn Ruane, who sought to further extend the grounds on which abortions may be obtained, namely socio-economic grounds. This would be the constant theme of the pro-choice amendments over the course of the Seanad debate, because for the pro-choice Senators who sought amendments, even this barbaric the Bill did not go far enough.

Instead they asked; why should we wait three days before ending a human life? Why should we offer a woman the opportunity to hear a foetal heartbeat? Why must we seek the informed consent of the woman to avoid abortion regret? Why should we notify a parent when a minor has an abortion and why oh why should we even consider pain relief for the unborn child about to have its tiny life ended?

All of these issues and more were derided and misrepresented as attempts to limit access and ‘shame women.’

The message was clear from the outset; abortion is liberation. Abortion is progressive. Abortion is ‘pro-woman.’ …

Something profoundly cold and inhumane has entered Irish politics under the guise of ‘freedom’ and ‘choice’. A real darkening of sensitivity has taken place. Empathy it now seems is a political liability.

The Pro-Life Campaign assured pro-lifers across the world they would absolutely not lose heart.

We extend our compassion not just to the unborn and the rights of mothers. We extend it to all those blinded by the pervasive and triumphalist logic of abortion ‘rights’ and a system that ignores the reality of the unborn child and whose only message to women in crisis is to end the life of their children in the womb. …

Our work continues but it is different. Join us and we will walk to that new dawn together.