Irish voters give abortion arguments in under 60 seconds

Lester Mason
May 25, 2018

Recent opinion polls indicate most people surveyed favor lifting the abortion ban.

The Friday vote will be on whether to repeal the Eighth Amendment Irish constitution, which makes abortion illegal under nearly all circumstances.

I can not vote in the referendum, yet three generations of strong Northern Irish women in my family, including my mother and grandmother, have been oppressed and degraded by the laws in place, north and south. As target after target was surpassed, there was an outpouring of emotion; online, amongst friends and at the London-Irish Abortion Rights Campaign's committee meeting. "South Korea should remove all penalties for women who seek an abortion and their medical providers, and ensure access to safe, legal abortion". They were messages for my 23-year-old self. I came out of work and my dad built a patio at the end of the garden and we would spend the day with her talking to her, telling her Dr Seuss stories and how much we loved her. Cases after 12 weeks would have to be approved by two doctors.

She said she couldn't help me any further, handed me a prescription for folic acid and a counselling card for Cura. I don't know what her feelings were towards me at that moment, but I never saw her again. "It's high time I did something for him", he said.

Looking back, it's insane to think that through the sadness, the stress and the panic, we were the fortunate ones.

"It is an opportunity for us to change our country".

Lucky that we didn't have to travel back the same day.

Musician Jim Corr has emerged as a vocal No voice in Ireland's upcoming referendum on legalising abortion.

The letter said these experiences with the people they serve left the priests with the firm conviction of the wonder of human life that begins at conception.

As a result some women resort to risky methods.

Central to the narrative for the "Yes" camp are stories of women terminating their pregnancies, many traveling overseas alone to do so. She'd developed sepsis after being denied an abortion, even though she was miscarrying.

"South Korea's Constitutional Court should protect women's health and safety by ruling in accordance with global law", Gerntholtz said.

"A "yes" vote is a vote for equality, for dignity, for respect and compassion".

‪Abortion is already a reality in Ireland. Healthcare workers who provide abortions can face up to two years in prison, though there are exceptions in cases of rape or incest if the pregnancy is between blood relatives who cannot marry legally, if continuing the pregnancy is likely to jeopardize the woman's health, or if the woman or her spouse has certain hereditary or communicable diseases.

"But it will not happen at all if the Eighth Amendment is not deleted", he said.


Only six countries in the world, including Malta in the European Union, still refuse abortions to women under any circumstances.

"So there's all that background", says Barry, "when you're looking to disentangle the discussion and debate around abortion in Ireland".

I'm voting "yes" to give the women the choice and to let them have control over their medical decisions.

I'm hoping that people will just say this isn't a compassionate thing to do.

Friday, Irish voters will decide whether to repeal that amendment.

The scenes are reminiscent to when thousands of emigrants travelled home for the gay marriage referendum.

"The conversation that has resulted in me going to the ballot box to vote "Yes" with certainty hasn't been a straightforward one", Deputy Prime Minister Simon Coveney wrote in the Irish Independent newspaper on Thursday.

In what is such an important vote, thousands of Irish citizens living overseas are flying home to cast their vote and make a difference. The 1983 measure protects the right to life of preborn Irish children.

Without it, the unborn child has no rights, as declared by the Supreme Court.

"The right to life in the Constitution will be replaced by the right to end the life of an innocent person".

If the repeal fails, Ireland's abortion laws will stay the same. My mum still feels bound by shame because the law criminalises abortion - she's still fearful of stigma, and even legal consequences. All in the name of saving lives, apparently.

The Eighth Amendment grants Irish mothers an equal "right to life" with embryos and fetuses.

As an unequivocal supporter of the right to abortion for anyone who can become pregnant, it infuriates me to see people shield their misogyny behind bombastic pretensions to morality.

Those away for less than 18 months remain eligible to vote at their former local polling station.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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