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Creating a Natural Society for The Unborn Child

 
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dai



Joined: 09 Feb 2007
Posts: 2636

PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2016 9:02 pm    Post subject: Creating a Natural Society for The Unborn Child Reply with quote

The Republicans are all for Liberty_& The Feminists for Equality_For The Unborn Children we provide_& so we're on these women's side_For ever - until Maternity.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Jones_(author) - parents : Ramon & Ada M. ( née Blessing ) Jones - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/From_Here_to_Eternity_(novel)


The Republicans are all for Liberty_
& The Feminists for Equality_
For The Unborn Children we provide_
& so we're on these women's side_
For ever - until Maternity. From here - unto Maternity.

dai repwblic - Dai Saw - David B Lawrence - the author asserts his moral right - not to sue for copyright !


I am starting this here to separate some thoughts out from the arguments over Savita - http://repwblic.informe.com/viewtopic.php?p=3235#3235 - and Ella - http://repwblic.informe.com/viewtopic.php?t=1284&start=40

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My first thoughts are these ... all politics should be about future circumstances : we can not change the past - not even restore it, because it is always imaginary - Conservativism is yet another form of Notionalism.

... the authentic position for Republicans is future oriented : can we create a society fit for children to be born into ? If we can not provide for children as yet unborn then we should ensure that they are not born.

This however is not a stance unreservedly in favour of abortion : The Unborn Child although yet not even conceived has rights that we should be protecting and all the more so because The Unborn Child is as yet the most vulnerable member of our society. The whole point of Republicanism is that everybody should extend their protection and be advocates for those who can not speak for themselves - and this means not just The Unborn Child of our own species but for The Life of All ( including The Democrats ! )

Therefore we should not licence abortion freely, without any conditions being attached : The Unborn Child should not be killed for the sake of our convenience because otherwise we licence the killing of children because they are subject to the prejudices of people who discriminate against the poor, the disabled, the female and other such instances of " The Other."

The present abortion laws of most countries reflect the values of The Democrats in The World and those who they serve - in essence, they are determined by the ideological values of Liberalism and the interests of The Aristocrats, presently pretending to be " Capitalists." They are designed to support the continuation of our present political-economic systems which are denying the socio-biological facts of not only our human species but also other species and are but an index of the methods being used which will in due course destroy most of The Life of The Planet in the pursuit of an illusory wealth registered at best in heaps of useless metals and at worst in a series of electrical impulses whose notional values can be destroyed either by the whims of speculators or simple electrical failures.

The Will To Kill is founded upon not valuing Life, but recognising this does not lead to the outright rejection of abortion : The Right to Life is more than the right to be born - it is The Unborn Child's Right to Life after birth, and that is where Republicans must part with those who object to abortion yet make no provision for The Unborn Child's Right to Life i.e. that they demand of the parents that they comply with their wishes that they do not kill their children without recognising, indeed whilst also subscribing to, the political-economic systems which compel parents to kill their children. Only once there is a genuine choice available for parents to choose to proceed with a pregnancy because The Unborn Child has had The Right to Life secured for it by the rest of society can they be challenged for wishing to kill their child on moral and ethical grounds : otherwise their choice is an economic one and therefore the fault lies with those who have imposed it upon them. The object of Republicanism is to secure more life for all, both quantitatively and qualitatively, and that logically demands either the perfection of an absolutist Pacifist stance or the pragmatism of a compromised Pacificator stance - but in either instance, the practice of abortion must be seen in terms of the licencing of violence against the most vulnerable in our society, indeed to be waging war against the poor : The United Kingdom is demanding the extermination of the children of the poor in both Wales and other countries as if we were a plague of vermin.

A deluded argument ? Paranoid ? Without any basis ? No - it is just supposedly a more humane means of population control when used in combination with immigration than this was ... but if you have not personally witnessed the consequences of abortion let me assure you that it is worse than this, far worse than handing out gifts of blankets soaked in small-pox etc

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Famine_(Ireland)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legacy_of_the_Great_Irish_Famine

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abortion

http://www.abortionfacts.com/reardon/the-after-effects-of-abortion - SORRY : BUT I CAN NOT FIND A BETTER ONE AT SUCH SHORT NOTICE

I DO NOT THINK THAT THIS COVERS THAT - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abortion_debate
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dai



Joined: 09 Feb 2007
Posts: 2636

PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2016 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is of course all very well to debate theoretical frameworks as to how such things are to be understood, and from some personal experience, but often people are thrown into the issues without ever having considered them before and with but a few days to think about them whilst being extremely distressed to boot and under pressure from other people ( especially in the family, much worse than a bunch of people praying on the other side of the street who object to abortion or demand it either.) By happenstance, there is a BBC Radio 4 programme on the following morning about the situation in Northern Ireland where the continuation of the 1861 Act is being challenged.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b074xq1z - Deciding a Woman's Right To Choose

Northern Ireland is a place apart from the rest of the United Kingdom when it comes to the rights of women who don't want to continue with pregnancy.

Unlike England, Scotland and Wales, the 1967 Abortion Act does not apply. Abortion in Northern Ireland is illegal, except if there is a threat to a woman's life or health. The law is intended to be assisted by guidelines but these have been the subject of decades long debate and uncertainty and the publication of new guidance for medical staff has only recently been announced.

Since 1967 it's estimated that thousands of women have traveled to England for an abortion, including those who doctors have advised are pregnant with babies that are unlikely to survive.

In a historic judgement in 2015, which is being appealed, the High Court in Belfast found that the lack of the right to an abortion in these and other circumstances contravenes the European Convention on Human Rights.

In March 2016 the Northern Ireland Assembly voted against changing the law to allow abortion in cases of so-called fatal foetal abnormality but the number of votes in favour was taken by some to suggest that stances might be shifting.

Audrey Carville meets two women who both received devastating news about their pregnancies but took different decisions about how best to cope with the consequences, in an effort to illuminate the complexity and anguish at the heart of Northern Ireland's continuing abortion debate.


( By the way - some bits that we wrote on the other thread -

http://repwblic.informe.com/viewtopic.php?t=1135 - Savita Died For Ireland

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Savita_Halappanavar

Marianne

PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2014 10:21 am Post subject: Savita Died For Ireland Reply with quote
Ireland really had to go independent. Considering how the British had treated them, it would have been ridiculous had the irish stayed in the UK. But it was a bit previous to sing about 'slavery fled.'

It had taken Britain many centuries to destroy the old culture of Ireland which was reflected in the Brehon laws, but there was no vestige of it left by the early twentieth century. The Gaeltacht where Irish was spoken was a shrinking area. So what could Ireland do to show how different it was from Britain? Tragically it was to cling with misguided zeal to the Catholic Church, come hell or high water.

A glimpse at the Brehon laws will make you pinch yourself to make sure you're not dreaming. Could Ireland really have had female judges and law makers and professors in the early middle ages?

And it's even revealing that it was grounds for divorce if a married woman had an abortion without her husband's knowledge. It implies that it was the secrecy that was the problem, not abortion itself, and incidentally, divorce was a frequent and straightforward event.

It was entirely due to James Connolly that the independence proclamation from the Dublin GPO addressed 'Irishmen and Irishwomen' instead of just the former. He had been influenced by Maud Gonne and other women freedom fighters.

But it was Eamon de Valera's vision of what Ireland should be that would prevail. The constitution spoke of women's special place within the home. A married woman could not work outside the home without her husband's permission until the early 1970s, and I think she might have had problems getting a bank account too.

Ireland was the closest that any European country came to a theocracy in the twentieth century. I've heard people say they had hardly any food. Their parents kept most of it for when the priests came round. Priests were a privileged caste. If a priest made a show of buying a ticket on a bus or in a cinema, the gesture would be waved away with the words, ''Oh, go on on with you, Father!''

Someone told me one of the first things he learned at school was that bishops and priests had balls, and the best policy was to kick them in the groin if they pressed unwanted advances on him. There was no point in complaining to other adults. His father just would not believe that priests were capable of bad behaviour. But his sister had been withdrawn from convent school, after their parents were presented with physical evidence that she had been tortured by nuns.

In the Catholic state, there could be no nude artists' models. A book with anything remotely risqué in the title would not get through customs. As late as the eighties, readers from Ireland would write to magazines printed in the UK, asking if you could use a bit of cling film as a condom.

But we now know that priests weren't stinting themselves. If they tired of choir boys, they could go round the industrial schools or the Magdalene laundries where girls were imprisoned for pregnancy, becoming a rape victim or even being pretty and therefore a source of temptation. These women were used as slave labour. It shows how much the state was involved, that if an inmate escaped, the gardai would go after her and bring her back.

We now know that boys in industrial schools sometimes had all their teeth extracted without anaesthetic for no reason. According to the writer of 'The God Squad' he was sentenced to an industrial school as a baby because his parents had committed suicide.

Ireland had been holier than Rome. Not only would it not accept divorce. It would not accept an annulment signed by the Pope.

My friend Anne Kerin purposely travelled back to Ireland in the 1990s to vote for divorce in the second referendum on the subject. The majority of voters were for divorce, and this might have been a watershed.

But it was the Ryan Report that destroyed the cosy image of Catholic Ireland. It was so devastating that people were saying 'it was our 9/11.' Rather than fawning on priests, people would spit in their faces in the street.

In my view, more could be done. It seems to me that if the Irish state will not try the surviving nuns and priests who enslaved women in Magdalene laundries, they should be extradited to the Hague to face trial for crimes against humanity. But this will never happen.

No one can doubt that adults and children of both sexes have had their rights trampled on by the Catholic state. But women were especially oppressed.

Perhaps, this is because they were ineligible to be priests and therefore lacked status or potential status. But more importantly, it was because the church and state monitored and interfered in their reproductive function with no respect at all for their privacy or autonomy.

Christabel Beilenberg who had lived in Germany during the Third Reich, came to live in Ireland after the war. She was a little disturbed by the folky events and the government propaganda. It was not as unlike Nazism as she would have liked.

Al Jazeera has exposed the practice of symphysiotomy in hospitals in Catholic Ireland, something that typically happened without the patient's consent. It was a grim and agonising alternative to caesarean section. It involved sawing through the bone and cartilage of a woman having a difficult birth.

Her pelvis was then opened like a door to lift the baby out. It wasn't even good news for the baby which sometimes had its skull punctured and died.

Women who have suffered this often live with chronic pain, urinary incontinence and reduced mobility. So why did it happen? A C-section reduces future fertility. But Catholic doctors in Catholic hospitals thought that nine or ten children was the ideal family size.

According to Al Jazeera, symphysiotomy is as bad as FGM. Although hospitals claim that they have not practised it since the 80s, Al Jazeera was able to confirm a case in 2005, and believe it may have happened as late as 2013.

So-called ethics or morality committees would monitor women in hospital to see if they had become pregnant. They would withdraw any medication or hope of surgery from such a woman if there was the remotest chance that it would interfere with the continuance of the pregnancy.

This must often have meant that the woman died before the baby could be born anyway. But this did not matter. A mid twentieth century pope said that every pregnancy must continue, even if it is known in advance that it will lead to the deaths of both the woman and the foetus.

So only a dreamer would expect an Irish hospital to give her an abortion. Did not Mother Teresa -the most distinguished lady to visit Ireland since Our Lady materialised in Knock - say that Ireland should never permit an abortion?

Irish editions of UK magazines even blanked or snipped out advertised abortion services. Abortion was illegal through ordinary legislation. Foetal life was given additional and special sanctity under the constitution following a referendum in 1983.

But it was no secret that Irish women customarily travelled to the UK for abortions. If you saw a woman of child bearing age on the Irish ferry who looked particularly miserable, lonely and preoccupied, you assumed she was an abortion tourist. Nothing was done to stop it.

So in 1992 a 14 year old rape victim was brought from Ireland to the UK by her parents for this purpose. DNA testing was in its infancy. Her father phoned the gardai to ask if they should preserve the amniotic fluid. His idea was that this would contain paternal DNA, and could be used to nail the rapist.

Little did he know that his call would be used to nail his daughter instead. They were ordered back to Ireland as the foetus had a right to life under the constitution. The girl would be interned until it was born.

They did return but the girl was in a suicidal state, saying she would never be able to love the baby or look it in the face. If someone had protested that 14 is not a very good age to give birth anyway, as the mother's pelvis would be too narrow and immature to let the baby out easily, the doctors would have got out their saws.

This girl was in such a state that a counsellor did not think it safe to leave her alone in his waiting room for five minutes in case she topped herself, something she had determined to do. So began the case of 'Miss X versus the Irish Constitution.'

You could not move in Dublin for the demonstration with slogans like 'Let her go. She is innocent.' But in the UK, SPUC insinuated that she was not a rape victim but a slag who had been having underage sex. She had, but not voluntarily.

The verdict was that she could have an abortion as the suicide risk was very real and posed a risk to her life. Catholic opinion was disgusted. An hysterical female only had to threaten suicide to be let off her responsibility to be fruitful and multiply. I thought, 'What more do you want, blood?'

...

One problem is that a true Catholic believer will often suffer cognitive dissonance, believing that abortion is always wrong but not wanting to be cruel. So Catholics, even doctors, will often say that it is not true that a pregnancy can ever threaten a woman's life. In my opinion, a doctor who believes this should not be allowed to work in gynecology.

Savita Halappanavar came from India to work as a dentist in Ireland. She was a healthy young woman of 31 who was happy to find herself pregnant. But not far into the pregnancy, she was threatened with miscarriage and admitted herself to a hospital in Galway.

It was obvious that it would not be possible to salvage the pregnancy. Savita was now suffering form septicaemia but the doctors would not remove the foetus while it still had a heartbeat. Savita said she was not a Catholic. Pictures show her wearing the Hindu tikal. She was told, ''This is a Catholic country.'' Unforgivably, the staff would not even give her anti- biotics.

It was a pity she had not driven to Ulster or just stayed at home. The doctors kept her imprisoned in the hospital for the few days they took to murder her by neglect.This was probably far from an isolated case, but while Irish people might have been programmed to put up with it, Savita's husband -I mean widower- kicked up a fuss as did her parents back in India. Soon ,demonstrators took to the streets of Delhi. For one mad moment, I wondered if India would declare war on Ireland.

Pro-Savita and pro-abortion rallies were held in Dublin too. But the Jesuits say 'Give me a child for seven years and I will give you the man'. Geoffrey Robertson says we should see that for what it is, brain washing.

So there were sickening and distressing comments on the internet calling the doctors heroes, and complaining that the 'baby killers' were using a tragic death which had nothing to do with refusal of abortion, to further their evil agenda. They didn't think it was at all relevant that the doctors had not even salvaged a live baby, and it would not have been possible.

Some contributors also gave Savita a lot of posthumous racist abuse as well. This was upsetting.

...

( Marianne seemed to mostly knocking the contradictions within Catholicism in that thread, thus touching on abortion, and it is a good read.)

...

I believe abortion was made illegal in the UK in 1803, and this was reiterated in the Crimes Against the Person Act 1861. Whatever the rationale was, the law did not agree with David Davies that it amounted to murder.

The common law definition of murder refers to killing a 'reasonable creature ... 'in rerum natura.' It's a long time since I learnt Latin, but I think it means a person that has an independent existence, one that has been born.

It also seems to refer only to a person who has been fully born. If a depraved person strangled a baby that had not been fully expelled from its mother's body, this would technically not be murder.

To cover this somewhat unlikely scenario, the 'Child Destruction Act' was brought in in the late 1920s. It also covered the killing of a child 'capable of being born alive.'

During his long career of murdering and dismembering girls and women, the execrable Fred West removed babies that were just about ready to be born from the bodies of his girlfriends. He did this at least twice.

A footnote in a book on his activities says that he was not charged in relation to anything he did to the babies, because it did not constitute an offence in British law. The lawyers seemed to take the view that David Steel's Abortion Act had rendered the Child Destruction Act a dead letter.

...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_West ... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosemary_West

...

Her 17 year old boyfriend, Ryan Mayes had a 'friend' Carl Whant whom he thoughtfully used to drive around everywhere. When we are teenagers and schoolchildren, we often have friends who are not much like friends at all. They go around with us but are jealous and spiteful.

That was what Carl Whant was like. He was also high on hard drugs. It was he who was the murderer. He had been motivated partly by jealousy of Ryan Mayes. He had taken from him everything he had, his girlfriend, his hopes of fatherhood, his home, his possessions, even the dog.

It's absolutely true that a false friend is worse than an open enemy. In one sense, Ryan's plight was even worse than Nikitta's. Her suffering was over. His continued. And it had come on him at an age when many people are still at school.

Some people love their children even before they're born, and Ryan was obviously one of them. Among the tributes to Nikitta was his loving note to Kelsey-May, signed 'Daddy.'

When Carl Whant came to court, the lawyers took a different view than those involved in the Fred West case. He was charged with child destruction. Perhaps this was partly because aiming a knife at a heavily pregnant woman's abdomen shows specific malice towards the baby.

Also as Nikitta was eight months pregnant, had Kelsey-May been born at that point, she would have been capable of living. The lawyers' interpretation seems to have been that the act covered a child capable of being imminently born alive. Maybe before the David Steel Act, it meant a child capable of being born alive at some future date.

I'm a bit surprised that the lawyers chose to revive this dusty bit of legislation. But I'm sure they were right to do it. Ryan Mayes already saw the baby as a person that he cared about. It was giving her some dignity, and this might have provided some crumbs of comfort to this terribly wronged young man.

It's not very consistent that the law granted rights to a human foetus in this case, and doesn't in others. But the law never is consistent.

I think each case has to be judged on its own merits. It was an unusual decision, but given all the circumstances, I think it was justified.

...

Many of us are so anxious to protect women's reproductive rights that we hesitate to concede any ground at all. We don't want to accept that there could ever be anything about abortion that need concern us.

This is not quite true. A conceptus is nothing like a person although it has the potential to become a person. A foetus near full term is just like a real baby.

There has to be a time limit. I'm not qualified to say when it should be.

A late abortion is certainly undesirable from every point of view. Even Richard Dawkins conceded, on this very point, that 'all suffering is deplorable.'

Yet it would also be inhumane to have an extremely narrow window of opportunity for abortion. Young ingénues and abuse victims who are in denial, are the very people who are most likely to let things drag on because they can't believe what is happening to them.

When an abortion occurs within the legal framework but at a comparatively advanced stage, it might be best to pump a powerful anaesthetic into the foetus in advance, through the abdominal wall.

It's sad if not tragic that this should ever be necessary. But life's a bitch. Sometimes we have to make hard decisions. And we will have to live with our decisions.

We may feel bad about them later. But at least we were allowed to make them. It's not as bad as the feeling of helplessness and frustration we would have if we were living in Nicaragua.

...

Anti-abortionists seem to think that if abortion is illegal, it will not happen. This is not true. It will happen illegally and secretly. Up to the late 60s, a few women died each year as a result of having unsafe illegal abortions.

No doubt many would think it served them right for doing such an evil things. But those politicians who were not sadists realised that something had to be done to protect them.

What was particularly noxious was that rich and middle class women could afford to bribe doctors to do it in a safe and painless way. It was working class girls and the clueless who were at risk.

Just as members of the Communist party couldn't even hear about Stalin's atrocities, anti-abortionists are unaware of the awful consequences of what they are advocating. It's not that the information is not available. But there's none so deaf as those who will not hear.

Of course, the unavailability of legal abortion will put some people off. This will lead to the birth of children who would otherwise not have seen the light of day.

This is not always a good thing. In Victorian times, an unplanned pregnancy was often allowed to go to term in a listless sort of way. But then, the baby would have a very short life.

Dickens commented sarcastically in 'Oliver Twist' that the coroner just did not notice the balls of dirt that had been stuffed up its nose or that it had been smothered. Disraeli remarked in his novel 'Sybil' that infanticide was practised as legally and frequently on the banks of the Thames as it was on the banks of the Ganges.

...

The economists Donohue and Levitt claim that legal abortion is associated with a decline in violence and crime. They see a sharp falling off in crime since 'Roe versus Wade' legalised abortion in the USA in 1973.

It is difficult to judge if the two things are connected. But their idea that children whose mothers don't want them are more likely to become criminals, is not without merit.

We could probably all come up with anecdotal evidence to support it. Somebody who had been in prison for a violent offence, told me that his parents had never hidden it from him that they had never wanted him. They referred to him as 'our little mistake.'

Apparently, Saddam Hussein's mother had intended to abort him, but was dissuaded by a midwife. It reminds me of the adage, 'Never ask a barber if you need a haircut.'

Elaine Morgan sad, 'Every child has the right not to be born to a mother who doesn't want him.' The sentimentality that Catholics and some other people have for foetal life doesn't extend to concern for the child once it is born.

...

When I was in St Mary's Street yesterday, a group of religious activists were picketing an abortion clinic. These were home grown trouble makers. I'm afraid this country's getting as bad as America.

A counter demonstration picketed the picket. A young woman demonstrator explained to me what was happening.

The religionists harassed the women and girls who used the clinic and also threatened the staff. She had herself been physically assaulted on a number of occasions.

The picketers held up bloody images of what they purported to be aborted embryos. They shouted at the patients and tried to film them so they could add the images to an online rogues' gallery.

The woman told me the counter picket was trying to persuade Peter Vaughn, the Police Commissioner for Cardiff to fulfil his responsibilities by removing the trouble makers from the scene. She said the counter demonstrators believed in freedom of speech when it was responsibly and sensitively expressed.
...

I signed the petition for the entrance to the abortion clinic to be cleared of the obstructing fanatics. I urge everyone to do so.

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http://repwblic.informe.com/viewtopic.php?t=1135&start=20

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dai

Hi Marianne - I am glad to hear that Enda Kenny re-hashed that famous quote by John (ap) Adams, second president of The United States of America - “A government of laws, and not of men.” ( Novanglus Essays, No. 7.) - and there are several collections of his quotations : this looks useful - and it contains some of his scathing quotations on both Religion and Democracy ...

http://www.john-adams-heritage.com/quotes/

“Let us dare to read, think, speak and write.”

– John Adams, A Dissertation on the Canon and Feudal Law, 1765.

... way above you were discussing that demonstration by Christians in St Mary Street : I have passed their vigil frequently and whilst I do not share their views I approve of their conduct - but the counter-demonstration is becoming disorderly and the last time that I walked past the prayer vigil ( which is a fairly timid affair of half a dozen people holding a banner who stand by the bus stop at the corner of Wharton Street ) they had surrounded those demonstrating for the rights of the unborn child holding cardboard placards and obscuring the prayer vigil and being moderately vocal - and I mean that they were standing within touching distance and I deemed them to be less demonstrating their own point of view than aiming to prevent the others demonstrating their point of view. About thirty yards later I decided to turn around and put that point of view to the pro-abortion or rather anti-pro-life demonstrators, which I did so by introducing the point with the fact that I sympathise with their views but that our own freedom to demonstrate rests upon ensuring that those that hold views that we disagree with have the same freedom to demonstrate.

The woman that I addressed this remark to - a fairly passionate person, which I do not count as a fault - had an accent which suggested that her native language is Spanish or Portugeuse - i.e. possibly came from a place where there is more antagonism to the authority of a more powerful Catholic church. I stayed for an answer to my quietly and briefly given advice that they should stand apart from the pro-life demonstrators but she failed to get the point : I suppose that I gave a shrug and walked away, but as an occasional steward on demonstrations I would take it to be my responsibility to separate the two groups if I had been in charge. I definitely feel that the sense of threat there was not coming from those demonstrating for the rights of the unborn child but from those who have come along to disrupt their demonstration rather than to demonstrate their support for the rights of the mother.

As you know, my own position is somewhere in between : society has to protect the rights of the unborn child and we ought to do so by ensuring that young women are not opting for abortion for economic reasons - but we have allowed the corporations to not only subject our natural biology to an un-natural economic system but even to profit from having impoverished young people by driving them onto low pay in anti-social conditions etc by selling them contraceptives and abortions, and also to profit from those same people reaching middle age when their natural fertility is in decline by selling them un-natural fertility. In a sense, both groups of protesters represent different sides of the same bad coin : but even if we could re-shape the economic system to serve The People in Wales there would still be women resorting to abortion so to drive this practice back into illegality and women back into the hands of the unregulated and dangerous back-street abortionist or - even worse - attempts to harm themselves in their attempt to escape their problems.

When John Adams talked of daring to read, think, speak and write I do not think that he had in mind the fear of being intimidated by others but rather the fear of what doing these things might lead us to : acts of imagination ?

Let us hope that the younger hotter heads amongst the pro-women's rights demonstrators do not discredit their cause by going any further than harassment, which is technically a public order offence already anyway - and I hope that the pro-babies' rights demonstrators have not been guilty of the same, although I am not aware of them standing near any abortion clinic's door : is it somewhere across the road from where they have been demonstrating ?

...

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Marianne

Well, I can't say you're wrong about the counter demonstration having a threatening aspect as I wasn't there at the time. I can't say I took a good look at the logistical set up. The person I spoke to seemed quite calm and sane.

She supported the right of the religionists to freedom of speech or said she did. Her point was that this was not the right place for it as it was potentially very distressing for the patients trying to use what is after all a legal service, and some were already in a fragile state.

...

It is obviously sad if a woman has to abort a pregnancy merely through economic necessity when she might otherwise be happy to have a child. A lot of women in this situation do have mixed feelings.

Perhaps it would be less likely to happen if we all had a citizen's payment of £100 a week on top of any other income as some MP wanted. It's not going to happen under David Cameron.

But there are sometimes medical reasons where abortion is essential to save the woman's life as with Savita. I'm not saying this is a frequent occurrence. But it shows a moral blindness that doctors in the Galway Hospital decided to sacrifice the mother's life for the sake of it, even though they knew that the foetus could never be saved.

...

It's not good when it's at an advanced stage, but at an early stage, American legislators have taken the view that it's not anyone else's business. The decision in Roe v Wade hinged on the importance of respect for privacy.

That's not an aspect we consider particularly important in this country. But if we did, we might consider that it was very bad of demonstrators to intrude on other people at a difficult time in their lives. Of course, obstructing the entrance or any public gangway is an arrestable offence although no one seems to have been arrested.

It seems to me that a human foetus has an equivocal identity. At least after a certain gestational age it is much like a real baby and probably has sensations etc. But it is also part of its mother's body.

Most of us will accept that circumstances affect the morality of an action. But I fear that religionists don't usually make nuanced judgements.
So an extreme Catholic or even Anglican will object to using embryonic cells in stem cell research, something that could cure Parkinson's Disease, and so many other progressive conditions.

...

The picketers at the abortion clinic have no idea what the circumstances of the individual patients are. And I doubt that they care.

I don't think they have a right to force their religion down other people's throats in these circumstances. It's not like a manic street preacher you can just walk past.

...

Something I forgot to mention above is innocence. We saw a debate similar to the abortion debate in the case of the conjoined twins Jodie and Mary. Mary had a parasitic existence on Jodie.

If they were not separated, Mary would kill Jodie. If they were separated, Mary would die instantly. My law lecturer thought the judges made the wrong decision in allowing separation to go ahead. He thought they had murdered Mary.

During the pre-judgement debate, I was so upset by a 'Nazi doctor' who had said Mary was not a human being that I made the mistake of supporting the no separation side.

When the court delivered the judgement of Solomon -cut the child in two- I said emotionally to Dafydd ap Geler Thomas on the phone that it was a very bleak day that a British court had sentenced a baby to death.

Dafydd said, ''Would you have preferred it if they'd sentenced Jodie to death?''

One judge said that Mary was not committing an unlawful act in slowly killing Jodie, but it didn't have to be an unlawful act. If a six year old boy was having a shooting spree in a playground, felling all and sundry, that would not be an unlawful act as he would be below the age of criminal responsibility. But it would still be justified to shoot him dead.

Dafydd commented, ''No, that's bollocks. If a six year old boy was having a shooting spree, he would have 'mens rea' [a guilty mind]. Mary had no 'mens rea.' It's just better to save one of them than to let them both die.''

The only difference between this and the abortion palaver is that as Mary had been born she had the status of a person in law so it was arguably murder to separate them. A foetus does not have the status of a person in law and it would not be considered murder to kill it. But in some circumstances it could be seen as 'child destruction.'

Some would argue that one reason why a foetus should not be destroyed is that it is innocent. Even if it is posing a risk to its mother's life or wellbeing, it doesn't know that.

It's not doing it on purpose. It has no 'mens rea'.

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dai

mmm ... Marianne ... those demonstrations in St Mary Street - pro-life v pro-abortion - are getting larger : I passed by as they were ending and there were three police leaving the scene whereas earlier today there were two ( standing on the opposite side of the street.) The two groups have apparently stopped ... well, who was jostling who ? The pro-abortion group have been jostling the pro-life group as far as I can tell and certainly they have been making more noise ... on the other hand this morning there were just two women on duty in the pro-abortion demonstration and I do like their style of demonstrating : colourful and creative whereas the pro-life group are going for dignified silent vigils ... I had a chat with these two young women and invited them to take a look at what you have been writing Marianne and to give their account of the situation here. Later their group had a banner over them declaring abortionrightscardiff.org.uk and one man from the pro-life group was talking to them so I stopped to listen to how their conversation went. He was a credit to his cause but they were not to theirs and as he went on his way I caught up with him to ask him some questions too. Perhaps they could argue it out on a thread here on Repwblic ... ? ... I feel that the pro-abortion group are making exagerated claims about the pro-life group's behaviour but then again I have not been there to witness what has happened ... but then again I deploy my own choices of labels ... but then again surely you and I exagerate humorously ?

...

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Marianne

Yeah, OK. I took on what I was told by the pro-choice group as fact without having seen the evidence to back it up. On the other hand, the people I spoke to seemed measured and dignified and intelligent.

For instance, the woman who told me that she had been assaulted, immediately qualified her remark by saying it had not been a serious assault. She didn't sound hysterical.

I haven't spoken to the other lot but have hear them singing. The last time I spoke to a young guy outside the clinic, he said that his colleagues were on their way to take their petition with over 1,000 signatures to the police commissioner. I have to assume he didn't take action.

...

I fear it may look as if I am confusing theology with reality, and am not taking into account philosophical/humanitarian reasons to be upset about abortion which are unconnected to Catholicism and other religions of dubious merit. No doubt, these reasons do exist.

Having said that, if you take an intransigent and literalist stance against abortion regardless of context, you will end up with the sacrifice of the lives of innocent women like Savita. If you say it's ok to have an abortion to save your own life, but not for trivial, selfish reasons, it's going to make patients lie.

People tell me that the slippery slope argument is a fallacy. But to me, it seems that if we are harsh and intrusive on the subject, it will be the beginning of a slippery slope which will lead to tragedies like that of Savita's death here in the UK.

But isn't there something troubling about abortion at least at late term? Yes.

But this is an intractable problem. It's not nice to think about, but banning it altogether will cause even more suffering by driving it underground.

It really is a subject where there is no good solution. It's a choice between evils. I hasten to add that I wouldn't speak in such grave terms about a very early abortion.

...

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dai

mmm ... I more or less have the same position as you Marianne and perhaps I have confused the issue of abortion with the issue of the behaviour of those advocating it - or rather defending it ... To put it in crude terms, before the advent of public toilets it was a common place that people pissed and crapped on the streets, in alleyways and doorways etc without any concerns for public health : public toilets were finally advocated on the basis of public decency - in particular that women were suspected of seeking somebody else's assistance in some dark back alley because of the hooks and eyes involved in not being able to make it down to the shops and back in unmanageably tight corsets ... it hardly mattered anyway because the streets were plastered with horseshit, dogshit and copies of The Western Mail - the latter, then as now, in particular really stank but it was in fact far easier to remove back then. Unlike the Trinity Mirror Group however, human abortion is a natural part of human life and should not be proscribed by law : the Republican conception of law is that it is primarily advisory, so the question is " What to advise ? " ... I am now advising myself that I have not kept an eye on the clock and I am going to be late for a meeting, so I am just going to have to abort this, my e-mission for this evening ...

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marianne

Oh well, the pro- advocates were OK to me so I won't slag them off. I've never seen them behaving badly. You can only speak as you find.

...

And when the celebrations are over, if there is a Savita shrine near your home, consider laying a single rose and remember Savita, Ireland's secular saint.

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dai

... Medical terminations had previously been performed at the University Hospital when life-threatening complications had clearly arisen in pregnancy, including cases a year previous to Halappanavar's death, as it is Irish law to save the life of the woman in such cases. ... Microbiologist Dr James Clair stated that the "main problem is being missed" in the case, and the real issue was that the septicemia was caused by extended-spectrum beta-lactamase positive gram negative bacteria (ESBL), which "are now spreading rapidly within the Irish population" and are resistant to many known antibiotic treatments ...

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marianne

I'm certainly not saying Savita was a saint in the sense of being exceptionally sweet tempered and well behaved. How would I know whether she was or not? I didn't know her. As a matter of fact, some of the saints the Church has seen fit to canonise have not been very saintly as most of us would understand the term.

What I mean is that, quite inadvertently, she set in train a scandal that led to a shake up in Irish law and medical practice which will make things easier for women in Ireland in the future. I could use the term martyr but that is a word that has largely negative connotations post 9/11.

PostPosted: Tue Mar 29, 2016 10:47 pm Post subject: answer Reply with quote
For most of its existence, the Catholic Church has indeed not privileged the life of a human foetus over that of its mother. In fact it had once been quite the opposite even in the case of Tertullian, a misogynist Father of the Church, as I discuss in the second post under this thread.

But this has changed in recent historical times. I have a feeling it may have been Pope Paul vi and Pius xii who were responsible for the change of front. A little research could clear this up but I'm reluctant to undertake it as the subject is so distasteful.

I hate to throw this accusation about but, while I appreciate some journalists and medicos have put the story round that this death was not connected to refusal of abortion, it looks like it was an exercise in at best self deception, and at worst, deliberate lying.

I know my adoptive mother made a few attempts to have her own children before admitting defeat. She was once in a case identical to Savita's in the 50s. Abortion was then illegal in the UK, but in this case the foetus was not viable, so the doctors removed it.

In most cases, a foetus that can't live, will be expelled naturally but this does not always happen. In Savita's case, the doctors allowed the foetus to poison its mother's blood by faffing around. I can quite understand that they don't want to accept responsibility. I'm afraid doctors do cover up for each other.

The doctors would not remove the foetus while it still had a heartbeat but its mother also had a heartbeat!

I'm certainly not saying Savita was a saint in the sense of being exceptionally sweet tempered and well behaved. How would I know whether she was or not? I didn't know her. As a matter of fact, some of the saints the Church has seen fit to canonise have not been very saintly as most of us would understand the term.

What I mean is that, quite inadvertently, she set in train a scandal that led to a shake up in Irish law and medical practice which will make things easier for women in Ireland in the future. I could use the term martyr but that is a word that has largely negative connotations post 9/11.

Nor am I saying she was a willing martyr. Perhaps I'm just trying to look on the bright side so that this cruel death need not be seen as 'senseless' or 'needless' as some put it. Of course, it should not have been necessary for anyone to be a martyr.

I have been a bit worried that Savita's friends or relatives might see this site and be offended. One could argue that there is something sick about seeing anyone's death as a sacrifice, that it is never appropriate to say 'for our tomorrow, they gave their today.'

Of course it would be better if she was still alive. But as this is not the case, it's a comfort to think that her death was not entirely in vain.

...
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dai



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PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2016 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

note left on - http://repwblic.informe.com/viewtopic.php?p=3240#3240

Dear Marianne,

I have been taking parts of what you have written in this thread - which is more about Catholicism I think rather than abortion - and put them into this -

http://repwblic.informe.com/viewtopic.php?p=3239#3239 - Creating a Natural Society for The Unborn Child

- I wondered if you could contribute to the idea of giving children lives after their births as the real problem, not the absolutist Manichean argument about life v death i.e. debating whether babies are to be either born or aborted ?

What I see in the idea of " The Unborn Child " argument is the merit ( now ended by technology ) that prior to birth the baby is essentially sex-less, non-gendered : this is a way of posing the question as to what kind of a life that Republicans intend to provide for a future individual i.e. a way of challenging sexism and racism and other disabilities created by prejudices.

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A hundred years or more ago " The Unborn Child " argument was being made in " The New Republicanism " which led into " The Open Conspiracy " which was been damned by The Democrats of both The Left and The Right for its vision of a Cosmopolitan and scientifically based politics which opposed the emerging system of nation states, objecting in the 1930s to the emergence of both Socialism and Fascism and the oncoming threat of wars which threatened to lay waste to The People in Wales and The World. It began by addressing what was being revealed by new disciplines like Sociology as to the provision of public health measures which demonstrated that in the wealthiest countries of the world, particularly in the USA and the UK, children who survived preventable diseases like tonsillitis and tuberculosis went on to endure lives of chronic poverty and ill health whilst those societies clearly had the means to make simple interventions against such things as rickets which were the direct result of the poor diets which also made them vulnerable to infectious diseases.

The USA and UK a century ago were proudly boasting of their Democratic credentials yet it was already clear to The Republicans in Wales and The World by the 1920s that this political system is merely a front for those vested interests which are not only uninterested in remedying such problems but indeed perceive their interests to be vested in maintaining them as a means to cripple and pre-occupy those they oppressed - in other words, The Aristocracy of the UK had re-clothed its feudal privileges in the languages of Liberal Democracy, and in the USA the Republican Party - having indebted itself in the American Civil War - had been swallowed up by The Aristocracy which had arisen there out of its rapid industrialisation and - through numerous further wars - has developed through imperialism into what is now openly showing its teeth as an emerging Monocracy as these rival dynasties of billionaires contend for the throne of The President of The United States of America.

On the " Savita died for Ireland " thread Marianne re-iterates some of the classic Republican arguments made against Hierocracy which were made when religion had been used as the ideological basis to explain and justify the authority of those who had seized control over society, either to assert the power of the church itself or used to support the assertion of power by those who had seized control of society and plundered the property of the churches including their Hierarchic arguments to assert the authority of Monarchies, Aristocracies and Democracies to declare their own interests to be The Public Interest - hence the concept of ' The Crowned Republic,' and of ' Aristocratic Republics ' like that of Venice. The bigger confusion arose in the United States of America with ' Democratic Republicanism ' in which there was a pre-existing society which was so essentially egalitarian in its northern states that it lent the apprearance that ' Democracy ' and ' Republicanism ' were synonymous because there was not much evidence at its inception that there was any divergence between The Public Interest and the various private interests involved ... excepting for the rather obvious exception to be found in the western territories where ending the life of a brown person was not a crime and in the southern states where ending the life of a black person was merely a property offence against another white person ... and shooting Mexicans was accounted as merely a sport ?

So ... to return to " The Unborn Child " ... which was a Republican argument stolen by those on the extreme right in America and inevitably is now associated with those who are often against contraception, abortion, welfare, healthcare - whose solution to the problems like poverty is likely to be akin to shooting Mexicans - think of The Unkown Child in the womb being akin to The Unknown Soldier in the tomb : as much fuss is now made over the plight of poverty stricken children on our streets as is made over the plight of poverty stricken soldiers on our streets - of course everybody is concerned about them, regrets what has happened to them, and will do nothing about them. If you do not want any children to be born into a worse world then you make it into a better world, if you do not want any adults to be drawn into a world war then you also make it into a better world ... the cause of both are the same, the solution to both is the same : the solution is Republicanism - the promotion of The Public Interest - which opposes the cause of poverty and war - the promotion of Private Interests by such various means such as Hierocracies, Democracies, Aristocracies, Monocracies and any of the other fantastic Ultraistic excuses which are used to deny the necessity of the Altruistic foundations which underpin a fully-functioning political system - those found described in " Pure Republicanism."

Perhaps in the short term we could obtain one of these un-named corpses to inter into a new national monument for Wales - " The Womb of The Unborn Child."

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P.S. ... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Unknown_Warrior

If you think that is too macabre - ' The Tomb of The Unknown Soldier ' is usually taken to contain the body of an anonymous infantryman : the word " infant-ry " is indeed not a coincidence - if you want to think about how dysfunctional Monocracy is, the most incompetent form of politics which pursues its political objectives through violence ( i.e. essentially it is a non-political system because it has no need for facts or arguments and it therefore has no conception of reality, being unable to create and only able to consume in order to destroy, and so its insatiable appetite unbounded by rational thinking will eventually destroy what it feeds upon - not only those other societies surrounding it but its own society.) The word " infantry " reflects the facts that militarism is not merely immoral but cowardly - as we can see in many modern day conflicts where children are abducted and drugged up and are forced into the front line by militarists who put a gun to the backs of their heads, and as Adolf Hitler did when he had run out of adult troops to defend Berlin he employed boys to defend his ' Thousand Year Reich ' whilst he himself ran off to hide in his bunker and only had the courage to practice his preaching by poisoning pretty pet pert pooches.

Here in Wales centuries ago children were certainly not volunteering to serve in the front lines of their Norma-French feudal overlords' armies.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dungeon#Etymology ... ( ' Keep ' is not the proper word for a castle's main tower, where the lord or knight lived : think " Don Juan." ) ... Though it is uncertain, both dungeon and donjon are thought to derive from the Middle Latin word dominio, meaning " lord " or " master."


That is where the word " infantry " comes from - so if you have fantasies about knights in shining armour please remember that those are fantasies, so that when you see a castle in Wales remember that the original Norman-French word for it was ' donjon ' - ' dungeon ' - ' dwnsiwn ' and that the way that they used castles upon those whom they had conquered was not just to control people as serfs to work to death but also as military or rather bandits' headquarters to command them as living corpses to be expended in battle by standing them in the front line armed with what often amounted to nothing more their family's one knife and the stick which they had sharpened it with in the other : the " infantry " were typically teenage boys, surplus to their feudal lords' requirements on the farm but amusing to pitch against each other for sport ... only a few times in the history of Wales did any Welsh army hack its way through or scatter the Welsh " infantry," cutting down the English mercenaries behind them and finally taking out the Fleming cross-bowmen at close quarters in order to get near enough to the ... no ... by that time the Norman knight and his French body guards were already back inside their ' castell ' desperately signalling down the line of ' donjons ' for help - " Send us a bigger army please, but send us the brigade of valets first - we can't go out sacrificing serfs in this war game looking like this : our armour is no longer shining ! "

One thing to think of - in a non-military way - was the politics behind the forcing of lightly armed locals, recently conquered, into the front lines of their battles by these foreign overlords who conquered the Welsh and demanded that they kill ... uncles, cousins, brothers in law ... their own fathers, brothers, sons ... do you get it now ? ... It was a form of sport, akin to the blood-lust to be found in the Roman amphitheatre but worse ... Social status in Feudalism was worked out in terms of who possessed land, whereas in Wales social status was determined by family relationships which interwove and bonded society together into a close knit fabric where it was much more likely that somebody would kill for honour - not for land - and all over Europe and North Africa the necessary military strategy of feudal lords was to rip apart such systems of kinship lest the conquered find common cause and rise up against them. The Norman-French conquest of The English was sudden and devastating and reduced them to the status of livestock on a farm almost overnight, but the conquest of The Welsh was gradual, messy and complicated by the fact that Wales was the route to an economically richer prize - where they then did to The Irish what they had just done to The English, intending to finish off The Welsh later ... once they had finished with The Scottish ... ah - the best laid plans of mice ...

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marianneh



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PostPosted: Thu Apr 14, 2016 10:58 pm    Post subject: uncertainty Reply with quote

In the case of Savita, the foetus could never have lived, so it was a kind of religious fanaticism that caused the death of the mother - unless you accept the argument that it wasn't really refusal of abortion that caused her death - which is most probably a lie. But when a foetus is viable, what can we say about whether it is a good idea to bring it into the world?

Taking the potential child's parents' selfish considerations out of the equation, and just focusing on its own welfare, what can we deduce? I would say very little.

We just don't know what the world will be like as the child is growing up. Something may happen to make the world even more of a miserable and cruel place than it is anyway. But the child might be lucky and remain unaffected. Or it may be unusually resilient.

Or it may have a dog's life and often wish itself out of the world. We just can't tell. As the song says, 'the future's not ours to see.'

A mother who gave birth in 1938 may well have thought, ''Thank God for the Munich Agreement! We will have peace in our time. This child will grow up in a safe if uneventful era.''

A mother who gave birth in a maternity hospital in Manhattan on 10 September 2001 may well have had similar thoughts. It's not good to be an addicted gambler, but everything in life is more or less a gamble.

In moments of depression, I think the world is so awful that it is reckless and unfair to bring a child into it. As abortion can be distressing, it's best to avoid it by using reliable and multiple methods of contraception.

Or maybe it's better to take a vow of celibacy and wear an impenetrable chastity belt so no rapist can subvert our good intentions. We will have to keep the key in a safe. Or should we be spayed at puberty? That would probably be best.

Or have we got it all wrong? Maybe this hypothetical child will have a rich and happy life and would thank us for giving it the opportunity.

I didn't man to be facetious though I'm beginning to sound like it. We're dealing with imponderables here. Or maybe we're dealing with a God who plays dice.

We can make an educated guess about the future. But we can't be sure of anything.

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