February 7, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – It was a Planned Parenthood lawyer, Julie Kay, who described Ireland as “the jewel in the crown” of the pro-life movement. Little wonder then, that the international abortion industry, understanding the global significance of Ireland’s ban on abortion, are pouring their vast resources into plans to see abortion legalised here.
For the Irish affiliates to Planned Parenthood, 2012 also has a special significance. This year is the twentieth anniversary of the “X” case, sometimes called Ireland’s Roe v. Wade, where a rape victim’s case was used to challenge Ireland’s pro-life laws.
Exploiting rape victims was a tried and tested formula, and it had brought about legalised abortion in a great many jurisdictions. For Ireland’s abortion campaigners, and their international allies, the case was not about protecting rape victims, but about a desire to have Catholic Ireland as just another notch on their belt.
Twenty years ago it seemed that they had succeeded. The Irish Supreme Court turned the intention of the pro-life amendment which had been inserted into Ireland’s constitution on its head. Its ruling in “X” could have legalised abortion on demand, since the grounds the Court accepted as a test – the threat of suicide – are so subjective as to be wide open to abuse.
Now, or so the abortion industry thought, all they needed was for the government to legislate. The then Taoiseach (Prime Minister) certainly told the Dáíl (Parliament) that legislation could be forthcoming. But, despite the near-apoplectic hysteria of the media, and the savaging of Ireland’s pro-life laws by powerful international organisations, the momentum for that legislation stalled.
It stalled because it was made evident to the government – and to every successive government since – that legalising abortion was opposed by the majority of the people. Ignoring the people, then, would have serious political consequences, and nothing matters more to politicians than keeping their seats. The pro-life movement got organised, Youth Defence brought it new energy and a new focus, there were enormous pro-life marches rejecting the X case ruling, and the majority of people rallied in favour of protecting unborn children.
Keeping the public informed, aware and engaged has been the major focus of pro-life activities in Ireland. Focusing on the humanity of the child, the reality of abortion and the enormous damage caused by abortion to women, has meant that for most Irish people, legalised abortion is just a step too far.
Pro-abortion campaigners have also been badly exposed at times – even if the parochial Irish media do their utmost to cover up such revelations. Five years after “X” came the “C” case, where a young girl had been brutally raped and then taken into care to protect her from the man who had assaulted her. The Health Board insisted that C had threatened suicide if she was denied an abortion, and, cheered on by campaigners purporting to be acting for the rape victim, brought the girl to Britain where her unborn child was killed. But three years ago the rape victim spoke out, revealing that she had never threatened suicide, and that she had not even been told that her baby was to be aborted. It was a shocking and heartbreaking testimony which should have led to an inquiry, but since it didn’t suit the abortion agenda it was largely ignored.
However, the pro-life amendment was left badly damaged by the Supreme Court ruling in X, and threats to Ireland’s pro-life laws have intensified enormously in the past few years in particular. The abortion network has realised it will not get public support for abortion-on-demand and is now focusing on cracking open the door so that the floodgates can follow.
Planned Parenthood has brought a raft of cases against Ireland to the European and the EU courts; we’ve had international bodies like Human Rights Watch attack our pro-life stance; recently the UN was used to demand that Ireland legalises abortion; and US billionaire, Chuck Feeney, sponsored a major push for abortion in 2011. We can see a concerted campaign which hopes to culminate in foisting abortion on Ireland in the year of the twentieth anniversary of the X case.
They will concentrate on insisting that abortion is a “life-saving” medical treatment, despite all the evidence to the contrary. In fact, the United Nations has now repeatedly shown that Ireland, without recourse to abortion, is the safest place in the world for a mother to have a baby. But the truth doesn’t matter much to abortion campaigners, who hope to drown out the facts by dint of sheer volume and noisy scaremongering.
This week the Irish media are full of angry articles from these leading pro-aborts, bewailing the lack of political action and demanding legalised abortion. The government has set up an “expert group” to look at the issue, but that is already under criticism because several of those appointed have been previously involved in abortion advocacy or in a push for embryo research. In fact, a lawyer who worked on the X case has been included on the panel, hardly an indicator of independence.
2012 will be a battle for hearts and minds, and to protect mothers and babies from legalised exploitation and destruction. For twenty years Ireland denied Abortion Inc. the legal authority to open abortion clinics in this country. It is my fervent hope that we will do so for as long as it takes until abortion ends.
Niamh Ui Bhriain is the head of Ireland’s Life Institute, the country’s leading research and lobby organization focused on life and family issues.