Organisations pushing abortion are attempting to portray those who are concerned about the rights of the unborn child as being ‘anti-women.’ This includes a silly, but oft-repeated, claim that those who wish to protect the unborn child don’t trust women.
Ireland is one of the few countries in the world that provides Constitutional protection for the unborn child. There is now a huge public debate and campaign designed to change Ireland’s laws (which requires a Referendum) so as to allow abortion on demand. The Government has announced the appointment of a Constitutional Convention to consider the matter, and a Referendum now looks inevitable.
Leading the campaign for abortion is Amnesty International (formerly a Human Rights organisation, but now pursuing an agenda with includes legalising prostitution – which would almost certainly increase people trafficking – and abortion) and the Irish Labour Party (who portrayed themselves in the last election as the only party that could deliver legalisation of abortion and were decimated in the polls). They are supported by pro-abortion forces overseas including George Soros (a Hungarian billionaire fund manager who is funding Amnesty International’s abortion campaign) and the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (an abortion provider whose stated goal is to increase its market share of abortion services).
Earlier this year the BPAS launched a campaign to remove all legal restrictions whatsoever against abortion in the UK – thus making it legal to abort a child right up to the moment of birth for any reason whatsoever. Their campaign uses the slogan ‘We Trust Women’ (with the obvious implication that the rest of us don’t trust women.
The problem with this slogan is that nobody would ever dream of using such a poor argument in any other area of life. If you take any group of people as a whole, you might trust them in general, but that does not exempt them from laws that are designed to protect the vulnerable.
I trust mothers to care for their toddlers. The vast majority of women care for their infant children in ways that are selfless and, at times, quite heroic. Yet we still have laws that make it illegal for parents to leave their children unattended in a car on a hot summer’s day. Should we campaign for the repeal of such laws on the basis that we aren’t trusting mothers? Are such laws caused by mother-hating old men? Of course not! We trust parents in general, but we still enact compassionate laws to protect tiny children from the tiny minority of parents who betray that trust.
Similarly, most husbands care for their wives. As a church minister I conduct weddings, and I trust each bridegroom to treat his bride with honour and respect. But I still support laws that make it illegal for a man to rape his wife. Why? Because trust extended to husbands as a general group does not remove society’s responsibility to protect women from husbands who are brutes and bullies.
And so it is with pregnancy. We trust pregnant mothers to care for their unborn child – and the great majority of them do. They don’t increase the market shares of Ryanair or the BPAS by travelling overseas for an abortion. They take every precaution to protect the little life they are carrying, and encourage their husbands or partners to lay their hands on their bump to feel the baby kicking (quite convinced that what is kicking is a little person, and not a ‘clump of cells’). Many pregnant mothers talk and sing to their unborn child, and most abstain from intoxicants that might harm the child.
But we would be foolish in the extreme if we were to assume that such trust means that every pregnant mother will do what is best for their child. Not even the most ardent pro-abortion advocate would truly believe such a claim. Just walk for a few hours in the centre of any Irish town or city and you will see positive proof that a small minority of pregnant mothers will quite deliberately choose to act in ways that are detrimental to the well-being of their child – as evidenced by smoking while obviously pregnant.
In other words, extending trust to a group as a whole does not preclude recognising that a small minority within any group of human beings will act in ways that harm and abuse the weak and the defenceless. And supporting legal protection for the vulnerable does not make us anti-women or betray any lack of trust.
The ‘We Trust Women’ slogan is a dishonest and illogical attempt to marginalise and silence those who have a genuine desire to protect the Human Rights of the vulnerable. It is also used hypocritically to imply that half the population of Ireland have no right to express an opinion on this issue because they happen to be male and ‘only women should decide’ (while simultaneously embracing pro-abortion groups that are led by men and receiving financing from male billionaires).
If Ireland is going to face a Referendum on abortion then Ireland deserves a reasoned debate about abortion. That debate should be open to everyone who cares about Human Rights. Such a debate is not well-served by untruthful soundbites.