‘We’re In Favour Of Debate Once It’s Honest And Open’



Cora Sherlock, deputy chair of the Pro-Life campaign

You’ll recall how the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights has called for Ireland to hold a referendum on abortion.

Further to this, Claire Byrne spoke with Cora Sherlock, of the Pro-Life campaign on Morning Ireland this morning.

Here’s what was said…

Claire Byrne: “We heard earlier today that the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights has recommended that Ireland hold a referendum on abortion and that the Government should clarify what constitutes a real and substantial risk to the life of a woman – that’s under the 2013 Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act. Cora Sherlock is the deputy chair of the Pro-Life campaign. You’re very welcome Cora, thank you for joining us in the studio. You heard what the member of the UN Committee Olivier De Schutter had to say earlier this hour. He says that he wants Ireland to have a debate essentially. What do you think?”

Cora Sherlock: “Well I think we’re all in favour of debate, once it is an honest and open debate, once it takes into account all of the facts and all of the true facts. One thing that I would say about what Professor Olivier said there, I noticed that he didn’t fully answer the questions, as far as I could see, about whether or not abortion is a human right because, as we all know, there is no right to abortion in international human rights law – what there is is a right to life and that’s enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.”

Byrne: “He did talk though about the right of women to make choices, about their pregnancy which he said was very restrictive in Ireland, as far as the UN committee is concerned.”

Sherlock: “Yeah I mean I heard that but I’m not sure how he could consider the law in Ireland, the 2013 Act, to be restricted because that is an act, let’s remember, allows abortion for the full nine months of pregnancy where there is a threat of suicide and that is not based on any medical evidence. So if these recommendations from the UN are coming from the point of view that that is restrictive, then I think that the [UN] committee needs to go back and look at exactly what the 2013 act says because it’s not restrictive in any way and that is a fundamental error.”

Byrne: “But what about discrimination? Discrimination on the grounds that if you have the cash, you can travel to the UK and you can have an abortion. If you don’t you can’t.”

Sherlock: “I think abortion is the ultimate discrimination, it discriminates against the most vulnerable members of our society, the unborn, because what we’re talking about is ending the lives of human beings who haven’t had a chance to speak for themselves yet.”

Byrne: “But it’s a choice for women who have money to go to the UK and do it.”

Sherlock: “Well, you know, I mean I don’t know that we should support a choice to end lives. I mean we all have choices that are limited by society because they impact on other people’s rights and that’s what we’re talking about here. The ultimate way you can impact on someone else’s life is to end it and that’s what we’re talking about with abortion – actually ending a human life that has already begun. One way that I would agree with Professor Olivier, I noticed that he said, at the end of his interview, that he would like a debate to happen in Ireland, where we look at the experience of other countries and I would very much like to see that happen because when you do look to other countries, like the UK, for example, you see that abortion is fully legal, right up to birth where there is a disability diagnosed and that disability can be something like Down syndrome. 92% of all babies diagnosed with Down syndrome are aborted in the UK. We’ve got the horrific human rights abuse in the UK and in other countries where babies are born alive and left to die after so-called botched abortions.”

Byrne: “I know.”

Sherlock: “These are babies who survive the abortion..”

Byrne: “But you can’t reference malpractice, I mean we could talk about that in every element of  maternity care and we..”

Sherlock: “This is not malpractice this..”

Byrne: “You wouldn’t be saying, if an operation wasn’t done properly, then nobody should have access to it.”

Sherlock: “No but this is not the same as an operation to try and save a person’s life. These are botched abortions where the intention to end the baby’s life has not been successful and the baby is left, without medical care, to die on their own. That happened 66 times in one year alone in the UK and, I have to say, I take issue with the fact that the UN Committee and various UN Committees have now told Ireland how they think Ireland should, how the people of Ireland should proceed in the area of abortion while they ignore those kind of human rights abuses. So, talk to us about a debate but look at all of the facts.”

Byrne: “Do you think then that the UN is just a liberal organisation who wants to interfere, is that what you’re saying?”

Sherlock: “What I’m saying is that the people of Ireland inserted the right to life of the unborn in 1983 and I don’t think it’s appropriate for the UN to talk about taking an opportunity to revisit the abortion debate.”

Byrne: “1983 is a long time ago, I mean the women of child-bearing age, in Ireland now, I think it’s about one and half million of them, haven’t had a say on that issue because it happened so long ago.”

Sherlock: “Well, you know, that’s an interesting point that’s put to me by  a lot of people but there’s a couple of things about it. Firstly, the Universal Declaration that I talked about there was inserted in 1948 so it’s that long ago and that talks about the preamble, about protecting the inherent dignity and the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family..”

Byrne: “Do you not think thought the women of today should have  say over their rights when it comes to pregnancy..”

Sherlock: “The point I’d make Claire is that we have to acknowledge the fact that there are many people, tens of thousands of people, probably listening to this programme, some of them who are alive today because of the 8th amendment. We’re contacted in the Pro-Life campaign all the time by people who will contact us after debates like this and say, ‘I had an abortion appointment made in the UK and because it took me two days extra to get there, I changed my mind and my daughter is now alive today.”

Byrne: “Cora we’ll have to leave it there but thank you very much for joining us.

Listen back in full here

Read the UN report in full here

UN committee seeks Irish abortion vote (Kitty Holland, Irish Times)

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132 thoughts on “‘We’re In Favour Of Debate Once It’s Honest And Open’

    1. Drogg

      And as she said ” once it takes into account all of the facts and all of the true facts” Because her and her fascist family love a bit of truth.

      1. donkey_kong

        i’m pro life but I can see both sides – but ultimately the right to life should be paramount.
        I’m not against medical intervention where needed or abortions where the child is never going to survive. But it’s not about that and never is – its; always about abortion on demand which i think is abhorrent. Hard cases are being used as examples by groups whose whole viewpoints is abortion for all. It would be better if they just said that.

        But don’t judge us all by your own narrow viewpoint.

        1. Sharrow

          when people talk about abortion on ‘demand’ what they are misrepresenting abortion before 10 weeks, which is 87% of all abortions using the abortion pills which are safer then being pregnant and safer then giving birth and have been legal in france from 1988,.

          It they were legal here and available on request from GPs then Miss X and Migrant Y could have gotten them to end their pregnancy.

          I mean really the horror of demanding control over my own body cos I don’t want to endure a pregnancy and give birth. Corpses have more bodily integrity when women do.

      2. Bob

        These are the types of quotes that need to be hoarded now so they can be thrown back at her campaign when they start lying to the public on the run up to the actual referendum.

    2. Shanti

      Note that after her making big statements about truth she goes on to lie about the Irish legislation. We have seen this legislation in action, if the foetus has reached the point of viability then the method of abortion used will be birth.

      Yes Cora, we would all like truth. It’s high time you became acquainted with it.

  1. SiJu Cat

    Christ here we go again. Can we just not let women do what they want? Literally my brain is still melted from the referendum. I don’t think I can take any more specious reasoning and shitty arguments from idiots.Literally I want to scream “I wish you were aborted” just to upset them but that’s the hysterics they want.

    1. Punches Pilot


      “Can we just not let women do what they want?

      Its legal to smoke dope in Holland. If you can afford to go to Holland then you can smoke dope here. lets just legalise it so. I think its fair to say that this would be a nonsense argument in favour off.

      An open debate is needed on this. Probably by people who have no bias opinion either way though. In here stinks of pro choice. Hardly unbiased. You cant condemn others for their strongly worded opinions that are loaded with their pro life ideals and then take the complete opposite view and claim open mindedness.

      1. ReproBertie

        Just FYI, bias is either a noun or a verb. It is not an adjective. The word you are looking for is “biased”.

        Normally I wouldn’t bother with the grammar nazi business but your “stinks of pro-choice” comment gets you special treatment.

        1. AG

          Pro Choice means I can decide what I want to do with my body as can any woman…..pro-life means you can must do what they think is right as they think that only their opinion matters. That is not fair and open.

          Pro-choice means everyone’s choice matters and they should be allowed to exercise that.

      2. Kolmo

        Eh, ‘dope’ is decriminalised in Holland, and Portugal too, which has the effect freeing up the judicial system by removing thousands of unnecessary prosecutions, reducing the harm caused by problematic drug use, a more resourced harm-prevention system, police forces not wasting billions of tax payers money processing drug offenses, prisons freed up to allow a more stable population and proper rehabilitation, and stats show the consumption of narcotics among the general population as less than countries still enforcing a prohibition – so yeah, if it works in another nearby jurisdiction – there is no logical reason for it not to work in ours..

      3. Nially

        I don’t think anyone is claiming absolute open-mindedness, though I do think “Women should be able to choose for themselves what happens to their bodies” is a more open-minded stance than “I should be able to choose for women what happens to their bodies”.

        That said, I’m eager to hear these debates that will hypothetically happen between disinterested parties with no real opinions. I’m sure such a hypothetical debate wouldn’t be even slightly meaningless and anodyne. If you’re coming at an issue as important and emotive as abortion rights and pretending to be doing so as a totally unbiased, uninfluenced observer, you’re lying to yourself, and the rest of us.

  2. tony

    The UN, hmm…why listen to an organisation that allows Israel butcher Palestinians? Although some of the kettle heads on here will take support from wherever they can get it. At least Sherlock is consistent.

    1. ReproBertie

      UN – allows Israel butcher Palestinians, wants Ireland to butcher the unborn.

      Where’s the lack of consistency?

      1. tony

        The inconsistency is not with the UN, they are consistently inconsistent. The inconsistency will be with some of the muppets on here who will tug the forelock to the UN spanners because of medieval, shame, Savita blah blah

        1. tucker

          Tony, “…medieval, shame, Savita blah blah’?
          How dare you be so cavalier about that woman’s life.
          Seems to me you care more about the unborn than the living.

          1. tony

            The disgrace was the way that woman was used by the pro-life movement to declare Ireland a medieval hell. Her death, as we subsequently discovered could not have been prevented by a termination, but it didn’t stop people dragging her name up to push their own agenda. It was a low point driven by the Irish Times and cheered on by the obsessive pro-choicers. Its as bad as the pro-lifers using a foetus.

          2. tony

            I was actually referencing the report mark. And I think its bad form to be ascribing things to Rhona that she never said. Here however is a direct quote
            Dr. Sam Coulter-Smith, master of the Rotunda Hospital in Dublin has stated, “This case probably does not have a lot to do with abortion laws”. – Belfast Telegraph

          3. Mark Dennehy

            Tony, you know that Sam Coulter-Smith is not the same person as Rhona Mahony, right? Different genders, different names and they’re masters at different hospitals.

          4. Mark Dennehy

            Also, which report are you citing, because normally when citing, you name the person or thing you’re citing, you don’t describe it approximately. There’s been more than one report into this case by more than one agency.

          5. tony

            I think you are more interested in a fight than the truth. The results of the investigation are there for anyone to see. She did not die from the lack of an abortion, she died of septicemia. Rhona O Mahony never said she died from the lack of an abortion. She has often commented on the need for clarification.

          6. Mark Dennehy

            And the infection took hold because the law surrounding medical abortion is so bad that doctors don’t want to go near it for fear of sanctions, which is exactly what has been said.

          7. tony

            Dr. Hema Divakar, President-elect of the Federation of Obstetric and Gynaecological Societies of India, stated the following regarding her assessment of Dr. Savita’s cause of death:

            “Delay or refusal to terminate the pregnancy does not in itself seem to be the cause of death. Even if the law permitted it, it is not as if her life would have been saved because of termination,” she said.

          8. Shanti

            Savita Hallapanavar had ruptured membranes and a dilated cervix. She had been told that she was having a miscarriage.

            Best medical practice in these circumstances is termination of pregnancy, because the open cervix and ruptured membranes present an avenue for infection from vaginal flora and transferred bacteria from the anus, which will lead to sepsis.

            If the woman wishes to continue the pregnancy it must be explained to her the very serious risk she is undertaking and she must be given intravenous antibiotics and monitored very carefully. Savita was not willing to take that risk.

            Seems like the hospital failed utterly in every way – note how the report mentioned an “undue focus on the foetal heartbeat”, this focus seems to have blinded the staff to their obligation to care for Savita as well as the dying foetus.

            It’s interesting that you claim termination couldn’t have saved her, when termination is the precise course of action dictated by medical best practice, which is based upon evidence of the best course of treatment.

          9. tony

            Im just quoting the experts Shanti. Maybe you are one too, but the report was not disputed as far as I know.

  3. Atticus

    “Sherlock: “What I’m saying is that the people of Ireland inserted the right to life of the unborn in 1983 and I don’t think it’s appropriate for the UN to talk about taking an opportunity to revisit the abortion debate.””

    The people made the choice, so the people can change it.
    The way Sherlock is going on anything that the people vote on is sacrosanct, but only when the decision is one that she agrees with. Best not to revisit it just in case the people have changed their minds.


    “Byrne: “You wouldn’t be saying, if an operation wasn’t done properly, then nobody should have access to it.””

    A triple negative?

    1. Shanti

      More people voted to allow women the right to travel for abortion than ever voted for the 8th amendment.

      8th amendment
      Yes votes: 841,233 (66.9%)
      No votes: 416,136 (33.1%)
      Valid votes 1,257,369 (99.32%)
      Invalid or blank votes 8,625 (0.68%)
      Total votes 1,265,994
      Registered voters and turnout 2,358,651 (53.67%)

      13th amendment – right to travel
      Yes votes: 1,035,308 (62.39%)
      No votes: 624,059 (37.61%)
      Valid votes 1,659,367 (95.71%)
      Invalid or blank votes 74,454 (4.29%)
      Total votes 1,733,821
      Registered voters and turnout 2,542,841 (68.18%)

      So more people voted to allow abortion overseas in 1992 than ever voted for the 8th amendment. And for the record, the results of the 12th and 14th amendments all show a majority less in favour of the 8th amendment.

  4. Drogg

    If i see that youth defence ad thats trying to be cool in the lamest way on youtube again, i might lose my fupping mind.

  5. Starina

    “where there is a threat of suicide and that is not based on any medical evidence”

    So are depression, anxiety and feelings of being suicidal not of medical concern?

    Should she not be concerned about women commiting suicide and damning themselves to the wood of suicides and their unbaptised unborn to purgatory?

    1. ReproBertie

      The argument they trot out is that there is no medical evidence that abortion cures sucidial thoughts. It’s pure semantics but is the best they’ve come up with.

      1. AlisonT

        Would you think it acceptable for a doctor to prescribe an abortion to a depressed person unprompted. If not then you don’t actually believe it is a solution to depression and suicidal thoughts. If abortion is a treatment then it should be prescribed at the doctors initiation.

        1. ReproBertie

          I don’t believe that it’s a solution for depression or suicidal thoughts. Nobody does. That’s not the issue. The issue is where, for example, a pregnant woman maintains that as she is only pregnant because she was raped by the local parish priest if she is forced to see the pregnancy through she will kill herself. In this situation, which has to be reviewed by a number of medical practitioners rather than a bunch of un-involved, interfering, biased internet commentators, a decision can be made that an abortion is acceptable.

        2. Starina

          that’s a false argument — they don’t prescribe abortions for depression, they can advise an abortion in cases where the person is so depressed about their pregnancy that they’re suicidal.

          1. Shanti

            This is yet another misrepresentation by the pro life campaign.

            No one, anywhere, thinks or has suggested that abortion is treatment for suicidal thoughts. Except for the pro life campaign when they erect this straw man argument.

            The reason the provision exists is because in the X Case, the child who was pregnant as a result of rape was threatening to kill herself if forced to continue with the pregnancy. The judges, who clearly had some compassion, realised that the pregnancy was causing this girl so much distress that she was going to end her life, and figured one death was better than two.

            Note, this ruling went to the people, we were asked in a referendum if we wanted to exclude the suicide provision and we voted no.

            We also voted to allow women to travel for abortion and access information on abortion services overseas here.

            Also, there is a kernel of truth within the claim that there’s no evidence to suggest that this is treatment for suicidal thoughts in pregnancy. The misrepresentation occurs because the reason there is no evidence is that most countries will permit women to have the abortion to protect her mental health – meaning she need never become suicidal to begin with. Her situation is never made that desperate by legislation. As it is a rare occurrence, there will never be a large enough dataset to draw adequate conclusion from. So yes, they’re correct about the lack of evidence, but they’re being rather dishonest about the reasons why.

  6. bruce01

    “Well I think we’re all in favour of debate, once it is an honest and open debate”

    “[the 2013 bill] allows abortion for the full nine months of pregnancy where there is a threat of suicide and that is not based on any medical evidence”

    1. Dubloony

      Is her implication that any woman can say she’s feeling a touch suicidal and would like an abortion on demand please?

      If we are to learn about best practice, look at Canada.

      1. Shanti

        Yup.. Wasn’t that poor rape victim who tried to use the legislation to access abortion forced to continue until viability so the foetus could be delivered by c section?
        I mean, they will terminate up to 9months, but birth is technically a method of terminating a pregnancy.

  7. tony

    Simple question, 22 weeks or Never. Being a guy, I bow to the woman choice in this one. But Sherlock is right, let it be an open and honest debate. We have declared in the Yes vote that we are compassionate. This will test us.

      1. Shanti

        You realise that many of the fatal foetal abnormalities are diagnosed around that time, yes?

  8. doncolleone

    what the hell is wrong with a aborting a down syndrome diagnosed embryo, no business of this woman or her cohort of numpties to debate on, stick to believing to yon fairy tales and let the adults deal with it.

  9. bisted

    …I don’t know where I read this today but someone pointed out that no woman of child bearing age has had a chance to vote on this issue…could this be true? 8th Ammendment became law in October 1983.

    1. Drogg

      Sounds right, you would have had to be at least 18 to vote in 1983 and that was 32 years ago and i don’t really think 50 is considered child bearing age even though 50 year olds have given birth.

    2. Atticus

      Claire Byrne mentions it in the transcript above.

      Byrne: “1983 is a long time ago, I mean the women of child-bearing age, in Ireland now, I think it’s about one and half million of them, haven’t had a say on that issue because it happened so long ago.”

      1. bisted

        …thanks…I tried to listen to that interview this morning but I just get angry thinking how a small circle of people have made faux disdain a lucrative family business….still a shocking statistic though.

  10. Clampers Outside!

    Woman who rarely ever tells truth wants an honest and truthful debate…. knee slapping stuff! Her referring to the suicide clause as if it were something open to all women just PROVES her complete and utter disdain for women seeking choice.
    And after opening with a ‘truthful and honesty line’ and to follow that up in the next sentence with that example, based around suicide, just again PROVES she has no intention of being honest in the debate but she will do everything in her power to muddy waters.

    Go fupp yourself you sick twisted religious fundamentalist fascist crackpot with your lies, lies and damned lies, obfuscation of truth and misquoting of research to back up the same.

    I hope she messes up like her Northern Irish counterpart and people will see what a sick little woman she really is.

    RepealThe8th or GFY !

      1. Clampers Outside!

        She does not tell any truths…. she spins to suit her need and to protect ‘her’ beliefs and fupp everybody elses. She’s guided by the Vatican… the biggest spinners of lies ever.

          1. Clampers Outside!

            Borrowing your comment from an earlier post… please do elaborate…

            Just so you’re clear on my position – I’m not anti-religious, I’m anti the institutions of religion…. just like aul Jesus was.

          2. tony

            Fair enough clampers, you’re a bit like myself. I know a lot of very good Christians of all hues. I dont like the way they are tarred with the sins of the leadership of their institutions.

        1. Shanti

          What happened with Miss Y?
          Was she not deemed suicidal and eligible for a termination? Because her baby was born by C Section at the point of viability, meaning “they will abort right up until 9months” is no more than a bare faced lie.

          You are entitled to personal opinions, but facts remain unchanged by opinion.

  11. tony

    And by the way, for all the people who think this is merely a religious argument, its not. Even Christopher Hitchens, the God of Atheism, was against abortion.

        1. Drogg

          Atheism is not a belief system, it is the definition of a lack of belief, i am an atheist but i don’t follow the writings or teachings of Hitchens or Dawkins but that doesn’t make me any less an atheist. The only thing that makes me and atheist is my lack of belief in a religion, deity or spirituality concept. So you saying Hitchens is the God of Atheism is an contradiction in terms.

        2. Clampers Outside!

          For one, you seem to think that Atheism has a leader, it does not. More of a loose group of similarly minded people. Similar in one thought, there is no God, nothing else.

          So whether he was prolife or pro women’s bodily autonomy doesn’t matter a sh*te to Atheism. It’s a bit like me saying to a Christian… oh you you’re religious, you must be looking forward to your 70 virgins in heaven.

          That’d be just stupid now, wouldn’t it.

          1. tony

            the “God of Atheism” was an ironic aside that obviously escaped the pair of you. The point Im outlining is that reducing this to a religious argument is facile. Its much closer to the equality that was celebrated so widely here a few weeks ago. the equal right to life of the mother and her child.

          2. Mark Dennehy

            It’d be really nice Tony if you actually looked up what Hitchen’s thoughts on abortion were, because then you’d learn words like “nuanced” and “complex”.

            For a start, he opposed overturning Roe-v-Wade and heavily criticised the church for their stand on contraception.

            It also might help to point out that calling Hitchens “an atheist” is akin to calling a Ford Focus is “an object”. Technically correct, but as useful as a chocolate toilet seat. Hitchens was an anti-theist and a secular humanist.

            But hey, you just go on thinking that the entire world is this two-sided, black and white affair.

            Would you mind terribly if the rest of us just carry on completely ignoring you until it’s time to vote? It’s just that it’s hard enough tolerating the youth defence morons who think protesting outside family planning clinics is a decent way to behave, without having to listen to the two-faced underhanded lying scum we’re going be hearing on every state media channel over the months this campaign will take, as they try to tell people born in the era of the Ferns Report and the Ryan Report that they should vote to keep the 8th amendment because the Church says it’s the right thing to do.

          3. tony

            Hitchens said he disapproved. he made a fantastically rational argument for it. For someone who wants to ignore me, you’re sure paying me a lot of attention.

    1. nellyb

      ‘Against abortion’ is inclusive of freedom of personal choice. Hitchens made it clear.

      1. tony

        I merely pointed out that he, a respected atheist, opposed abortion. If this turns into a pro/anti religion debate, we are all sunk. Its more complex.

        1. Clampers Outside!

          Especially when the religious hide their drive and motivation and obscure research to convince people, which Cora has a track record of, and is guilty by her own actions in the past.

  12. nellyb

    ““Well, you know, I mean I don’t know ” = by Cora’s own admission: Claire knows that Cora doesn’t and means it.

  13. Annie

    Cora Sherlock, anti-abortion activist but surprise-surprise also an arch-religious conservative but clever enough not to reveal this as the main source of her animus to the merest tinkling with our current abortion legal mess. Instead, this conveyancing solicitor deigns to cast herself in the mantle of obstetric (and constitutional law) expert but Cora and her totally-not-related religious pressure groups are exactly the reason why the people from whom we need to hear more never dare to speak.

    One group are in a unique position to provide guidance in this fraught debate and it is not Cora Sherlock and her ilk but our doctors and obstetricians. In Ireland, however, this profession has tended to abandon this debate, fearful of being labelled as either illiberal or pro-abortion. It is time for the medical profession to risk unpopularity from right and left, and to give society the best advice that they can on the issue of abortion and whether or not the law as it currently stands is clear and/or fetters them in the performance of their duties.

    1. tony

      So what if Cora is religious? That may inform her belief, but Im sure other people will say their sense of liberalism informs theirs? Both are just man/people made belief systems. You should argue on the merits or not of killing an unborn child, not whether someone is religious.

      1. Drogg

        People who don’t follow a religion normally look to science and fact to inform them, not a book about 1 dude thats actually 3 dudes.

        1. tony

          Which is what leads Richard Dawkins to advocate aborting Downs Syndrome babies. Its not as black and white as religious/scientific. Thats quite a Junior Cert approach. Many secularists and atheists and rationalists are pro-life. In fact the rational argument of equal rights of the unborn child are quite compelling.

          1. Drogg

            You do realise that the current birthrate on the planet is killing us all? the growing population of the planet is the biggest contributor to the destruction of our environment and it is in the least affluent parts of the world that families are ever expanding and demanding more and more resources so as unpleasant as it might seem scientifically he is right.

          2. tony

            And the aging population is also a great threat. What should we do then o rational one. Set a maximum age? Seems in line with what you are saying.

          3. Drogg

            I’d much rather go before i am useless to society and become an enfeebled burden on my family.

      2. Cean

        “but Im sure other people will say their sense of liberalism informs theirs”

        Who says that? Honestly?

        If someone is being influenced by their religious belief they shouldn’t have that belief fostered on people who don’t share their religion.

        Same thing happened in the marriage campaign with uber religious types not mentioning religion for their basis of a No but as soon as they lost they went out all guns blazing and calling everyone a bad Catholic (Hi John Murray)

        1. tony

          And if someone is a liberal should the conservative have that point of view “fostered” on them? Thats what democracy is about. “Foisting” the majority’s view on the minority.

          1. Cean

            I wouldn’t talk about democracy about a woman who refuses to entertain the idea of a referendum.

            A religious viewpoint isn’t the same as liberal or conservative either.

      3. Annie

        You appear to deliberately ignore my point. Aside from the fact that Cora is neither doctor nor obstetrician, my point about her (and everyone knows it) religious-based arch social conservatism is that it doesn’t serve anyone particularly well in this debate. The abortion debate here tends to be hijacked by extremists on both sides and in the guise of pressure groups usually devoid of any real medical and obstetric underpinning.

        While we need to confront pro-abortion extremists who would deny the rights and humanity of what is clearly a small unborn child, one with a nervous system, one who moves, responds to sound and who feels pain, we should also confront the (overwhelmingly religious) pro-life pressure group position that a fertilised egg, or an early embryo, which has no nervous system, no consciousness and no awareness is a as full a human being as is a new-born baby, or for that matter a fully formed, second trimester foetus. This position, Cora Sherlock’s position, while it deserves respect, is theological, not medical. It is, as such, possibly a sound basis for canon law, or for religiously defined moral guidance, but not for civil legislation.

        1. tony

          I agree totally about the extreme points of view clouding the debate. As I said, it should be a simple question- abortion for all up to a defined time, or none at all for anyone.
          So you are now just haggling about the number of weeks.

          1. Annie

            “So you are now just haggling about the number of weeks”. What was that you were saying about extremists “clouding” the debate? You don’t appear to get it now, do you? On your bike.

          2. tony

            Get what? Confronting the extremists means calling them out on what they really believe. Its a number on weeks or none. Its abortion or not. There is no room for grey in this debate. Unless you want to paint for me what the grey is? The doctors and obstetricians are not the answer. They disagree as much as anyone else. So looking to medicine to solve a moral issue is like asking them if we should have euthanasia.

          3. ReproBertie

            Nice to see the parameters and boundaries of the “open and honest” debate being set early.

          4. fluffybiscuits

            Well said Annie. The same position arose in the same sex marriage debate. Craftily worded statements that on the surface would seem to echo the worries of a lay person but dig deeper and you reveal the religious extremism underneath.

          5. tony

            For what its worth, I am as upset by anyone by abortion, but it seems a pretty stupid thing to be one hour away from abortion to those who seek it, and have none here. So I believe in the name of hypocrisy, we should have abortion for those who seek it up to 22 weeks. Anything less clear and honest would be skirting the issue.

          6. tony

            Thats not a smart comment. It will come down to the number of weeks. These things get into detail very quickly as the last referendum showed us.

        2. Annie

          “The doctors and obstetricians are not the answer”. And Cora Sherlock is? Incredulous statement which I have no doubt is borne of febrile ideology than anything approximating medical and obstetric reality. You appear to be arguing a case for religiously or (even secularly) inspired moral guidance and/or theologically inspired civil legislation. You cannot at once object to those pointing out pressure groups’ main but often veiled religious animus to abortion under any guise and then, without the merest hint of hypocrisy, claim this very complex legal, medical and ethical question is solely and overwhelmingly a “moral” issue. As I say, on your bike.

          1. tony

            And you’re saying its merely a medical issue whether to terminate a pregnancy? on your own.

          2. tony

            They are both stupid comments, I just didn’t know where to start. When you want my attention, address me intelligently please.

          3. Mark Dennehy

            Tony, how about this: I have a vote in any referendum and I’ll be voting to repeal the 8th no matter what. So your vote to keep it is now nullified.

            So how about you just stop, and don’t bother with the shouting between now and the vote? Just relax and take it easy, because as far as your vote’s concerned, it doesn’t matter anyway. And since you can’t have an abortion yourself, you now officially have no skin in the game at all.

            So just… stop. Give all of us a rest for a few months. We’ve earned it after putting up with the religious right in the last referendum, don’t you think?

          4. tony

            Why would you want to stifle debate, discussion and exploration of the arguments? I only responded today because Cora was set up on here to be slaughtered and I wanted to defend her right to speak. Sometimes its nit just winning, its the banner in which it is won.

        3. rotide

          Jesus Annie, You’d get in a row with anyone.

          You and Tony are completely in agreement on the abortion issue, don’t you see that?

          It’s just your views on people with religious beliefs where you differ and as far as i can see Tony is a lot more liberal about it than you.

      4. dan

        The point that her belief is religious is relevant, no one should be legally obliged to submit to someone else’s subjective, metaphysical beliefs. That goes for Hitchens beliefs too.

        1. Shanti

          The woman’s religious beliefs will naturally play their part in her judgement and that is perfectly fine.

          However.. Her religious beliefs should not have any effect on other people’s lives unless they share those beliefs.

          The thing that bothers me about Cora is that like much of the Pro Life campaign groups, she is quite craftily dishonest. Each lie comes with a small kernel of truth that ignores the fleshy fruit surrounding it which contradicts her opinions. In this sense, she and many of her cohorts are being rather dishonest.

          I can fully appreciate that they feel they are doing the right thing. But like the no side in the marriage referendum – when you have to misrepresent evidence and facts in order to make your argument, then your argument clearly doesn’t hold water.

  14. AG

    Pro Choice means I can decide what I want to do with my body as can any woman…..pro-life means you can must do what they think is right as they think that only their opinion matters. That is not fair and open.

    Pro-choice means everyone’s choice matters and they should be allowed to exercise that.

  15. Malta

    This business of abortion up to 9 months, can anyone confirm if that is (a) legal here, and (b) medically likely to happen?

    (facts, preferably backed up with a linked citation, only please.)

    1. Lorcan Nagle

      A) comes from the lack of a term limit being put into the protection of life during pregnancy bill. So it’s legal in the same way those awful American kids movies will have a line like “There’s nothing in the rules to say a dog can’t play baseball”.

      B) It’s highly unlikely, given the events of the Miss Y case.

  16. edalicious

    Here we go again!! I was enjoying not having to deal with absolute blinkered illogical loons for a while. If you don’t want an abortion, don’t have one. Don’t make raped women carry their rapists children or make parents who want to have a baby carry an unviable foetus for nine months because of your (lets be honest here, it’s more than likely going to be religious) beliefs.

      1. edalicious

        And what about junkies that give birth to unwanted children and raise them in the most horrific neglected environment?

        We can all play the “what if” game but at the end of the day you’re pushing a point of view that forces your beliefs on to everybody else, without actually considering the real world situation, but in the back of your head it’s okay because “if everyone just lived the way I think they should then it wouldn’t be necessary”. It runs along the same lines of thinking as the people who think that homelessness should be made illegal; there’s a serious underlying problem, that is a huge issue directly for a relatively small amount of people but because it’s complicated, you’d much rather not consider the subtleties and complications and just make it so that you don’t have deal with it at all and you can rest easy because now it has been “solved”. Thousands of women a year, from Ireland, ARE getting abortions. Nothing you can say or do is going to change that. What you can change is that those women could be getting the proper counselling, follow up care, etc. that they would get if they could get it done here and not have to be banished from the country like some kind of outcast.

  17. tony

    As I said before, it is none of my business. Just trying to clarify whether edalicious was in favour of abortion just for cases of rape, incest and fatal foetal abnormality, or abortion for those that seek it for unwanted pregnancies for other reasons (which is the majority of abortions).

    1. Clampers Outside!

      Remember where religious basis for thought on abortion is coming from – it was taught to everyone who attended a Catholic school that….

      …wanking was taking a life.
      So, basically, I’ve committed genocide on a near daily basis for most of my life.

      Fruit bats’ sh*t has more substance than the tenets and teachings of most, if not all, religions.

      1. Zarathustra

        Clampers! You’ve just discovered the Meaning of Life, because,
        Every sperm is sacred.
        Every sperm is great.
        If a sperm is wasted,
        God gets quite irate… (Repeat Chorus)

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