By Randall K. O’Bannon, Ph.D. NRL Director of Education & Research
If you thought the Corona virus pandemic offered us all the opportunity to consider the sanctity of all human life, you’d expect to find yourself in good company. And for the most part, you would be right.
But pro-abortion activists in Ireland seem to agree with former Obama White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel who once cynically observed, “You never let a serious crisis go to waste.”
These activists believe the current crisis presents a great opportunity to push for sales of abortion pills from the internet to be delivered to women’s home by mail.
An article in Wednesday’s online edition of Marie Claire UK carries the headline, “Irish women call for over-the-internet abortions amidst coronavirus travel ban.”
Now, of course, right off the bat, we should point out that this isn’t really all Irish women or even Irish women in general. This insistence comes from activists who have been a part of recent efforts to bring abortion to the Emerald Isle.
Abortion was legalized in Ireland as the result of a national referendum in 2018. Abortion was decriminalized by Parliament in Northern Ireland in 2019.
As bad as that may have been, it was not enough for many of these activists.
Because of the Corona virus, travel has been limited to conditions where it is deemed essential. While one might assume that would cover situations like the transport of food or medicines, these activists argue that it should also involve women traveling to have abortions or the delivery of abortion pills from out of the country.
While no longer criminal in Northern Ireland since last year, a legal mechanism authorizing delivery of abortion (in terms of doctors officially performing abortion and prescribing abortion pills) in Northern Ireland was not due to be set up by Parliament until the end March of this year.
That meant, in the meantime, women in Northern Ireland seeking abortions travel to other areas of the United Kingdom where abortion practices were already set up. However, that was upended by the European Union’s thirty day travel ban announced on March 17.
Abortions in Northern Ireland are currently only legal up to 12 weeks. Given that time limit, Cathie Shiels, co-convenor for Abortion Rights Campaign, tells Marie Claire, “We are concerned that a 30 day travel ban will have long lasting consequences for people on this island who have, until now, been able to rely on travelling to Great Britain to access services denied to them here.”
Emma Campbell, co-covenor of Alliance for Choice Belfast, thinks this somehow makes the ability of women in Northern Ireland to go to the mainland for an abortion “essential travel.”
Campbell tells Marie Claire, “We would urge abortion providers to recognise the risk to life and health that those with the virus are facing, and work with them to ensure the best standard of care.”
There is no mention of any viral outbreak among pregnant women and abortion clearly is no treatment for Covid-19. The purported “health” value of intentionally taking another human life thus is unclear.
What it does do, as far as activists are concerned, is provide the opportunity for them to argue for “telemedicine” or webcam abortions. As NRL News Today has explained, in this arrangement, a woman never sees the abortionist in person. An abortion-minded woman does her medical interview over an internet video link and either picks them up at a satellite facility or has the pills sent to her by mail.
The mail delivery option would supposedly keep her from being exposed to the virus by traveling outside of her home or visiting a medical facility.
It would, however, mean a woman undergoing a painful, bloody, potentially dangerous abortion by herself at a time when emergency medical help is stretched thin and perhaps unavailable. Women undergoing chemical abortions have bled to death or died from infections. Others have died when undetected ectopic pregnancies ruptured.
There have been thousands of “adverse events” recorded in the U.S. alone. In all their supposed concern for the Corona virus, these advocates give no consideration of the very real health risks associated with the chemical abortion method they want women to face all alone.
With governments asking patients to delay or cancel any non-essential procedures or surgeries (even dental appointments), it strains credulity to have activists argue that elective abortion is somehow “essential” medicine.
Please don’t use this pandemic as an excuse to put any more lives at risk.