DUBLIN, July 4. 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Saturday’s pro-life rally in Dublin was a smash success, with organizers estimating a turnout of more than 7,000 – more than double the attendance at the last Dublin rally in 2009.
Organizers of the All-Ireland Rally for Life said that the huge turnout served as a warning to the majority Fine Gael party that plans by the minority Labour Party to introduce legislation to legalize abortion in Ireland are unacceptable to the majority of Irish people.
The rally was composed of more young people than ever before and included the Bishop of Derry, Séamus Hegarty. Participants began at the Garden of Remembrance in Parnell Park and marched down O’Connell Street, with open-top busses, music and balloons lending a festive atmosphere; the march concluded at Dáil Éireann, where participants heard from former MEP, Dana Rosemary Scallon.
Scallon told the cheering crowd that the Constitution belonged to the people and that the politicians were there to serve the people, not to decide for them, or to allow Europe to foist abortion on them. There were calls of “Dana for President” from the crowd as she spoke, in reference to the upcoming Presidential election in Ireland, due to take place in October.
Other speakers at the rally called on the Prime Minister, Enda Kenny, to keep the promise he made during the last election, when he said that Fine Gael would be “opposed to the legalisation of abortion.”
Niamh Ui Bhriain of the Life Institute told the huge crowd that Labour’s rush to call for abortion legislation following the European Court’s ruling in the ABC case, caused the party’s support to slump in Election 2011.
“Fine Gael have now set up an expert group to look at the European Court judgment, and the pro-life majority are telling them, here and now, that we will not accept a committee that is either stacked against the unborn child, or that ignores the evidence that clearly shows that abortion is never medically necessary,” she said to sustained applause.
Her fellow speaker, Carolyn Johnston, of the pro-life group Youth Defence, said that the people demand “transparency and honesty and we demand that this government listen to the pro-life majority who say Yes to Life and No to abortion.”
“Enda Kenny needs to tell the European Court not to interfere in the right of the sovereign people to decide Ireland’s pro-life laws,” she also told the rally.
Bernadette Smyth, the Director of Precious Life, the co-hosts of the rally, drew loud cheers when she said that Ireland’s protection of life was a light to the world.
Next year’s All-Ireland Rally for Life is scheduled to be held in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on Saturday, July 7, 2012.
A short video of the Rally is available on YouTube here.
For more information and photos of the Dublin Rally visit the Rally for Life website here.