Abortion does not decrease suicidal thoughts, Irish health experts agree
DUBLIN, February 18, 2013, (LifeSiteNews.com) – Pro-life groups in Ireland have launched a public information campaign to alert the public to the danger of introducing legislation to allow abortion based on the threat of suicide. Meanwhile, the Committee on Health and Children on abortion and suicide heard unanimous testimony from experts that abortion cannot be considered a legitimate treatment for suicidal ideation among depressed pregnant women.
All of the experts in maternal health care, including obstetricians and psychiatrists, agreed that abortion was not a treatment for suicidal thoughts.
Dr. Sam Coulter Smith of the Rotunda Maternity Hospital told the committee that he had never seen any cases where abortion was “the only solution” for a pregnant woman expressing suicidal intentions. The head of St. Patrick's University Hospital, Ireland's leading psychiatric hospital, said that there is “no evidence either in literature or from the work of St. Patrick's University Hospital that indicates that termination of pregnancy is an effective treatment for any mental health disorder or difficulty.”
Dr. John Sheehan, Consultant Perinatal Psychiatrist at the Rotunda, said he had never seen any clinical situation in which “termination of pregnancy has been the treatment for a suicidal woman.”
“The notion of carrying out an emergency termination is completely obsolete in respect of a person who is extremely suicidal,” he added. It would not be wise in such a situation “to make a decision that is permanent and irrevocable,” he said.
The Irish government is proposing to allow “limited” abortion in cases where the mother is threatening suicide. The government’s move follows decades of pressure from the abortion lobby, which forced a crack in the law with the notorious X Case in 1992. In X vs. the Attorney General, the Supreme Court ruled that the 14 year-old girl should be allowed to abort her child conceived in rape, because she had allegedly threatened suicide if she could not. This was interpreted as granting a right to abortion if the mother’s life is “at risk” because of pregnancy, “including the risk of suicide.”
In 2010, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that the Irish government was obliged to “clarify” under what conditions abortion was allowed. This ruling was taken by abortion lobbyists and some in the coalition government as a pretext for bringing forward abortion legislation late last year.
Niamh Uí Bhriain of the Life Institute said that the governing Fine Gael party could not now ignore the evidence given at hearings which had shown “beyond all doubt” that abortion was not a treatment for suicidal intentions.
“This was the sort of evidence that parliamentary committees rarely hear - universal agreement amongst leading experts that abortion is not a treatment for suicidal depression, “ she said. “How can Fine Gael now try to pull the wool over the public's eyes or ignore the evidence.”
The campaign by the Life Institute highlights evidence that there have been no cases in which a woman had died by suicide in Ireland because abortion was not available.
“That's why this campaign really needs to be huge,” Uí Bhriain said. “It’s putting public pressure on Fine Gael to remove suicide grounds from the legislation.”
“We’re also emphasising that providing clarity for doctors does not permit the government to introduce the direct and intentional killing of the unborn child,” she said.
Dr. Seán Ó Domhnaill, a Consultant Psychiatrist, has said that the connection between abortion and suicide has been entirely manufactured for political purposes. In his own experience, he said, quite the opposite is true. Ó Domhnaill described his first assessment case in his practice, a 19 year-old girl with a major depressive disorder who had taken “a significant overdose in an attempt to end her life.” The girl, he said, had developed the depression following an abortion in the UK.
“She told me that she had been pressured by her parents and her boyfriend into having an abortion. As I attempted to assist her to gain some perspective on her mental state and the likelihood of recovery from a depressive illness brought on by her sense of loss, she asked me, ‘Can you tell me that I haven’t killed my own baby? Can you tell me that I can undo what I have done? Can you tell me how to bring my baby back?’”
The Irish constitution guarantees the right to life of the unborn, saying, “The State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate that right.”
John Bruton, a Irish Prime Minister from 1994 to 1997, wrote in an op ed in the Irish Times last Friday, “The underlying idea behind putting human rights in the Constitution is to ensure that they cannot be easily reduced just because a (possibly temporary) majority in public or parliamentary opinion wants to do that to meet a popular demand.”
“A risk that someone might unilaterally end their life is not equal to a certainty of the ending of another person’s life by the actions of that person or of another,” Bruton continued. “That, in simple terms, is the difficulty with legislation that says that a threat or an idea of suicide is a ground for ending the life of a constitutionally recognised third party, an unborn child.”
“A law that took away a right to life of that unborn child before the right in question could be exercised independently could hardly be interpreted as ‘defending and vindicating’ the same right, as the Constitution requires.”
‘Little miracles’: Mom gives birth to naturally-conceived quintuplets after refusing ‘selective reduction’
AUSTRALIA, February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) -- A 26-year-old Australian mom has given birth to five healthy babies, all conceived naturally, after refusing the doctor’s advice that she must abort three of them in order to give the remaining two a better chance at life.
“After my initial ultrasound I was told I could consider the selection method to give 2 babies the best chance in life,” wrote mom Kim Tucci in a Facebook post last September.
“I watched a YouTube video on the procedure and I cried. I could never do that! Was I selfish for not giving two the chance of 100% survival? All I knew is that I already love them and that every heart beat I heard I connect with them more. For me life starts when a heart starts beating and all I know for sure is that I will do whatever it takes to bring them into this world healthy,” she wrote.
Last Thursday Kim and her husband Vaughn welcomed the five new members into their family — one boy and four girls —increasing the number of their children from 3 to 8. The babies were born at 30 weeks, 10 weeks early, due to insufficient space in Kim’s womb. They weighed on average about 2.5 pounds.
The quintuplets’ story began last March, after Kim and Vaughn had been trying for six months to conceive just one more child for their family. Due to health complications, Kim wondered if she would ever become a mother again.
After what she thought was an extra long cycle, she decided to take a pregnancy test.
“I was feeling tired and a little nauseated and thought I would take a pregnancy test just to get the ‘what if’ out of my head. To my shock and utter excitement it was positive,” she wrote on a Facebook post.
The parents got the shock of their lives when doctors confirmed in an ultrasound examination that there was not one baby, but five.
“After a long wait for the ultrasound we finally went in. The sonographer told me there were multiple gestational sacks, but she could only see a heart beat in two. I was so excited! Twins!”
“I was moved to another machine for a clearer view and had the head doctor come in and double check the findings. She started to count, one, two, three, four, five. Did i hear that correctly? Five? My legs start to shake uncontrollably and all i can do is laugh. The sonographer then told me the term for five is ‘quintuplets,’” Kim wrote.
Even though Kim began to feel stretched to the limit with all those human lives growing inside her, she chose to focus on her babies, and not herself, referring to them as “my five little miracles.”
“It's getting harder as each day passes to push through the pain, every part of my body aches and sleeping is becoming very painful. No amount of pillows are helping support my back and belly. Sometimes I get so upset that I just want to throw my hands up and give in.”
“Sometimes my pelvis becomes so stiff I can barely walk and my hips feel like they are grinding away constantly. I'm finding it hard to eat as I basically have no room left in my stomach, and the way it is positioned it's pushed all the way back with the babies leaning against it.”
“My skin on my belly is so stretched its painful and hot to touch. It literally feels like I have hives! No amount of cream helps relieve the discomfort. I have a lot of stretch marks now. Dealing with such a huge change in my body is hard.”
“Is it all worth it? Yes!!!! I will keep pushing through,” she wrote in one Facebook post days before the babies were born.
The newborns' names are Keith, Ali, Penelope, Tiffany, and Beatrix. They were born at King Edward Memorial Hospital in Subiaco, Western Australia. Mother and babies are reported to be doing well.
UN rights chief tells Catholic countries to legalize abortion over Zika virus: bishops and cardinal react
GENEVA, February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) -- The United Nations, following the lead of international abortion activists, is now urging Latin American countries hit by the mosquito-borne Zika virus to lift restrictions on abortion for pregnant women who have contacted the virus and whose pre-born children may be at risk for birth defects, including having smaller than normal heads.
The UN human rights office said today that it is not enough for South American countries to urge women to postpone pregnancy without also offering them abortion as a final solution.
“How can they ask these women not to become pregnant, but not offer… the possibility to stop their pregnancies?” UN spokeswoman Cecile Pouilly told reporters.
UN human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein said that governments should make available contraception and abortion services.
“Laws and policies that restrict (women’s) access to these services must be urgently reviewed in line with human rights obligations in order to ensure the right to health for all in practice,” he said.
But Brazil’s bishops strongly asserted yesterday that efforts should be made to eradicate the virus, not the people who may be infected by it.
The disease is “no justification whatsoever to promote abortion,” they said in a statement, adding that it is not morally acceptable to promote abortion “in the cases of microcephaly, as, unfortunately, some groups are proposing to the Supreme Federal Court, in a total lack of respect for the gift of life.”
Honduras Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga has also come out strongly against the notion of “therapeutic abortions” as a response to the problem. Unlike Brazil where abortion is legal in the case of rape or health of the mother, abortion remains entirely illegal in Honduras.
“We should never talk about ‘therapeutic’ abortion,” the cardinal said in a homily at a February 3 Mass in Suyap. “Therapeutic abortion doesn’t exist. Therapeutic means curing, and abortion cures nothing. It takes innocent lives,” he said.
While the World Health Organization (WHO) declared an international public health emergency February 1 on account of concerns over the virus, critics have pointed out, however, that not one death as resulted from the virus. Even on WHO’s own website the virus is described in mild terms.
“It causes mild fever and rash. Other symptoms include muscle pain, joint pain, headache, pain behind the eyes and conjunctivitis. Zika virus disease is usually mild, with symptoms lasting only a few days,” the website states. “To date, there have been no reported deaths associated with Zika virus,” it added.
Critics suspect that the crisis is being manipulated to advance an anti-human agenda on the pre-born.
“Is Zika, actually, a hideous virus that threatens to spread uncontrollably across the world creating an army of disabled children with tiny heads and low IQ’s? Or might this be a willful misinterpretation of the scarce data to manipulate public opinion and legislatures?” wrote pro-life critic Mei-Li Garcia earlier this week.
“It becomes very clear that the publicity surrounding this story has a very little to do with medicine and a lot to do with a convenient crisis that is being used by those pushing for the legalization of abortion around the world,” she wrote.
Hillary’s litmus test for Supreme Court picks: They must ‘preserve Roe v. Wade’
DERRY, NH, February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) - Hillary Clinton has a litmus test for Supreme Court nominees - several, in fact. At a Democratic event on Wednesday, Clinton unveiled her criteria in selecting a judge for the nation's highest court.
“I do have a litmus test, I have a bunch of litmus tests," she said.
"We’ve got to make sure to preserve Roe v. Wade, not let it be nibbled away or repealed,” she said.
That echoes her recent call to arms speech before Planned Parenthood last month, when she stated that taxpayers must fund abortion-on-demand in order to uphold the "right" of choice.
“We have to preserve marriage equality,” Clinton said, referring to last summer's Obergefell v. Hodges case, a 5-4 ruling that redefined marriage nationwide. “We have to go further to end discrimination against the LGBT community."
Her views differentiate her from the Republican front runners. Ted Cruz has called the court's marriage ruling "fundamentally illegitimate," and Donald Trump told Fox News Sunday this week that he would "be very strong on putting certain judges on the bench that I think maybe could change things." Marco Rubio has said he won't "concede" the issue to the one-vote majority.
All Republican presidential hopefuls say they are pro-life and will defund Planned Parenthood.
Her husband, Bill Clinton, raised the makeup of the Supreme Court early last month in New Hampshire, saying it receives "almost no attention" as a campaign issue.
On Wednesday, Hillary said "the next president could get as many as three appointments. It’s one of the many reasons why we can’t turn the White House over to the Republicans again.”
Clinton said her judicial appointees must also reverse the Citizens United ruling on campaign finance and oppose a recent decision striking down a portion of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. In 2013's Shelby County v. Holder, justices struck down Section 4(b) of the act, which said that certain states and jurisdictions had to obtain permission from the federal government before changing their voting laws.
At one time, most politicians frowned upon any "litmus test" for judicial nominees, emphasizing the independence of the third branch of government. "I don't believe in litmus tests," Jeb Bush told Chuck Todd last November.
But with the rise of an activist judiciary in the middle of the 20th century, constitutionalists have sought to rein in the power of the bench.