“I Changed My Language And Attitude To Abortion in 1983”


Last night.

On RTÉ One’s Claire Byrne Live.

Nell McCafferty gave her thoughts on the the abortion debate in Ireland.

Last night: The End Of May

15 thoughts on ““I Changed My Language And Attitude To Abortion in 1983”

  1. some old queen

    “we could reduce the rate of crisis pregnancies and dramatically reduce the rate of abortions needed if people used contraception.” Nell McCafferty

    Sometimes someone needs to just spell out the obvious.

          1. some old queen

            Really? Is there any states for that?

            I suppose it’s really a point about personal responsibility and that the abortion question should not be debated in the abstract. Likewise the disability issue. Women may reconsider if they knew the proper supports were in place, which they are not of course.

            But, I really like the fact she told the young wans to wind their neck in.

          2. Increasing_Displacement

            Don’t worry Queen, Cian is an expert on everything despite not being. Every topic on this website, didn’t you know?

          3. Cian


            In 1988 there were 3,839 (UK) abortions and 54,600 live births here. This give a 6.6% abortion rate.
            In 2016 there were 3,265 (UK) abortions and 63,897 live births here. This give a 4.9% abortion rate.

            If you can provide evidence of another 1,300 Irish abortions in 2016 then I’ll accept I’m wrong.

            As for contraception: condoms only became available for general sale in 1992 – so weren’t easily available 30 years ago.

            https://www.ifpa.ie/Hot-Topics/Abortion/Statistics + CSO for births

          4. Increasing_Displacement

            Your figure for 2016 doesn’t include abortion pills, doesn’t include countries other than the UK.

            So really, accounting for the 1600+ abortion pills sent in 3 years from 2010 to 2012 (most likely higher in 2015 to 2017) and adding other countries (just the Netherlands in 2006 shows 461 incidences) where women travelled to for abortions then really there’s no real difference.

            And you comment re condoms, I don’ think that’s the game changer.
            The game changer is the pill especially for younger generations like mine

          5. cian

            I take your point about abortion pills and non-UK abortions. But without specific numbers we can’t tell :-(

            Re: condoms, according to this (rather scary) report https://www.irishtimes.com/news/health/a-third-of-irish-adults-have-used-withdrawal-method-as-contraception-1.3172241
            25% use condoms
            20% use oral pill
            33% use the withdrawal method
            38% don’t use any contraception!

            (granted, this was sponsored by Durex) but it suggests that condoms are more popular today than the pill.

            Condoms were only available with a prescriptions 30 years ago. Hell, it’s only 25 years since Richard Branson was arrested for selling condoms in the Virgin Megastore in Temple Bar!

  2. Elrond Hubbard

    Had to laugh when she complained about language. I’ve lost count of the amount of times she told people to fupp off at public meetings.

  3. newsjustin

    That really is a very interesting and thought-provoking piece by Nell McCafferty. She’s long been very clear that it’s a campaign for abortion, not just a repeal of the 8th. I admire that straightforwardness, though I may disagree with her.

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