I am sure you will know about Savita’s story which has evoked the age-old debate here in Ireland about abortion and the rights of women and unborn children. For my non-Irish readers you can find out about it here.
I remember the abortion debate when I was a child and my opinion hasn’t really changed much since then.
I remember having a clear pro-choice reaction.
I think that most people tend to stick with their initial reaction to the subject.
This is not the kind of debate that logic or sentiment can sway.
For most people I have discussed this with, whether or not they are pro-choice or pro-life, they are very clear on what side they are on.
There is something that really bugs me about this recent proposed clarification of legislation.
They are now suggesting that we might clarify that upon the scenario of rape, suicide risk or a life and death situation, then, and only then, is a woman entitled to her right to make a decision on abortion.
Even in these circumstances, however, it is not in her control – she has to convince investigative ‘authorities’ first.
It reminds me of forty years ago when women were forced to give up babies they had out of wedlock – even if they wanted to keep them – just because in those times the majority of society didn’t accept ‘illegitimate’ children.
Recently, I have had the opportunity to offer a little support to an acquaintance while she went through what I can only call an ‘inquest’ received from Gardai after being raped.
The difficulty she had to prove that she had been raped became nearly as big an issue for her as the violation itself.
It turned her off proceeding with the charges and she nearly backed out.
It is still under investigation- months later.
This leads me to question, when this clarification occurs, what is the procedure that a woman has to go through to prove that she was raped in order to receive an abortion?
I can’t even bare to think of the psychiatric invasion when she is at risk of suicide.
Imagine having to prove you are suicidal.
Also, how long will it take to get through the system?
What psychological damage will be inflicted on her as she is poked and prodded by a host of officials just to prove that she has been raped or is suicidal?
I imagine that regardless of these new clarifications in legislation, most women will continue to exert their right of choice by going across the sea where they don’t have to expose their innermost vulnerabilities just to have their personal decision taken respectfully.
The only people that this legislation will help are those who are in similar circumstances to Savita; where the life of the mother is at risk if she continues with the pregnancy.
In this case, it is a physical issue and is tangible, therefore easy to diagnose.
I believe that once a baby is conceived they are a person. I believe we have souls and I believe that these souls pre-exist conception.
Despite this, in regards to another woman choosing to have an abortion, what do I think?
I think it’s none of my effing business.
I also think it’s none of society’s business.
And it’s not even the government’s business.
If applicable, I will acknowledge the father the choice of argument. That makes sense.
Abortion isn’t an easy decision but sometimes it is the right decision for the person making it – and that is nobody’s business but the woman.
To think that in this day and age our society has more of a right than I to decide what I do with my body, embryo and circumstances just sets me fuming.
It’s none of your goddamn business!!
As always, comments and opinions welcome.