Eighth Amendment

17.04.18: Minister Harris tweets 130 times on abortion in 4 months and just once on the trolley crisis

Minister Harris tweets

Minister Harris needs to get his priorities straight

The LoveBoth campaign has highlighted the fact that since January, Health Minister Simon Harris has tweeted or retweeted on the Eighth Amendment 130 times* and just once on the trolley crisis. Commenting on these extraordinary figures, LoveBoth spokesperson Geraldine Martin said:

“For the first time, we have heard reports that 2,400 children are suffering on hospital trolleys while they wait for treatment.  It is widely accepted that this is a national crisis.  Yet the Minister for Health is not focussing on healthcare at all but is distracted from his real job as he campaigns for abortion on demand.  A cursory check of his comments since January show that he has commented on the Eighth Amendment 4 times as often as he has commented on hospital trolleys.  Even more significant is the fact that during the same period, he has only tweeted once on the trolley crisis but has tweeted or retweeted pro-repeal items 130 times.

“We are now hearing that Minister Harris intends to spend the next six weeks spearheading the campaign to remove the Eighth Amendment.  The fact that Minister Harris has seen fit to comment around 4 times as often about abortion as he has about trolleys says a lot about where his priorities lie.  His proposal to introduce abortion on demand has nothing to do with healthcare yet he is intending to devote the vast majority of his time to pushing for repeal.  There will be many people who, on hearing this, will wonder why this Minister is focussing so much on abortion on demand instead of getting to grips with the worst hospital trolley crisis this country has ever seen.”

Minister Harris tweets

Abortion matters to men as well

Men's role in abortion

I am 18 years old, and I’ve seen that guys my age don’t really care about abortion because they don’t know what being a father is like or they only see it as an issue for woman to deal with. However, I believe young men like myself should have more of an education on abortion because not only can it do harm to both the mother and the father mentally and physically, but it is also extremely important for men to respect and defend the rights of women. If half the human race does not believe that women’s rights should be respected, how are women expected to respect themselves? Abortion is not only going against the unborn baby, but also that baby’s mother. Therefore men’s role in abortion is very crucial.

I have been reading articles where men find that when their partner goes through the abortion process and they feel strange about what just happened. There is a study where 1000 men were surveyed during the abortion and only 75 men were interviewed after the procedure. 21% of men who remained with their partners during the abortion found it to be a traumatizing experience. It was found that some of the men after the procedure suffered from PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder). Because of this there have been many cases where trouble arises in the relationship and the couple will attend therapy or the relationship between the two comes to a complete end.

Not everything is so sad. There are beautiful stories where couples thought of abortion but decided not to go through with and instead lived a happy life with their child.  The song “There goes my life” by Kenny Chesney is about how a young couple are expecting a baby and consider abortion but they keep the baby and live a wonderful life together.

 

In the lines,

All he could think about was I’m too young for this

Got my whole life ahead.

He is saying that all his plans for the future are gone and that he won’t be able to handle having a kid at his age.

In the lines,

A couple years of up all night and a few thousand diapers later

That mistake he thought he made covers up the refrigerator

Oh yeah, he loves that little girl.

Kenny is saying that the mistake he thought he made was the best thing in his world. He loves the little baby girl and doesn’t regret a thing.

You can listen to the song here: There Goes My Life

By Richard B

This choice was not my own. Her life wasn’t mine to end

8th Amendment crisis pregnancy

On the 1st of April 2013, I found out that I was going to be a mother, and I couldn’t have been more distraught. I was 19, in my second year of college at UL, and had a part time job in Dunnes Stores. I was very happy with how things were in my life. At the time, I thought nothing would change that, not even this pregnancy. When I saw the two pink lines appear on what I was sure would be a negative test, the rug was pulled from under me and I honestly felt like my life was over. For so many nights, I cried myself to sleep, not wanting to touch my stomach, because it’s easier to pretend there isn’t a baby growing inside you when don’t want to keep it.

My first thought was abortion. Anyone who knew me at the time was well aware that I never wanted children, I was not what you would call a maternal young woman and the thoughts of a child crashing into my life in 9 months was something I wasn’t going to allow, and it’s my body my choice right?

Soon after I found out I was pregnant, I looked up the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, what is more commonly known as BPAS, and decided that I would travel to England to end the life of my small baby. Soon after this, I realised my passport had expired and I became frantic. I ordered abortion pills online, but they never arrived.

And then, something incredible happened. I was on work placement in college, and one day in panic I broke down in tears to a colleague. I told her how I had been feeling. I told her of my plans to travel, of the hopelessness I’d been feeling, that I felt my life was over.

What she told me I will never forget. She told me that although she had a family, all of her children were adopted because she was unable to become pregnant naturally. She told me that so many women would give their right arm for what I had growing inside of me right now. She reminded me of the strong young woman I was and that this would not ruin me. At that time, those words of encouragement were all I needed to hear.

Soon after this, I had my first ultrasound scan. When I saw the clear picture of my beautiful baby on the screen, the phrase ‘my body my choice’ was well and truly thrown out the window. On that screen, I saw a fully formed little human kicking and thriving at 12 weeks’ gestation, thirsty for life! I touched the screen and tears ran down my cheeks, she was just as much my baby then as she is now. Her body was not my body, but for 9 beautiful months, I was her home and on the 19th of November 2013, my beautiful daughter, Hollie, was born. As I looked at her, I realised that instead of thinking this would ruin me, instead it was the making of me.

I continued with college and after I had completed my degree, I went on to complete my Masters where I received a first class honours. Becoming a young mother didn’t take my dreams from me, it gave me new ones. It made me more ambitious than ever before.

Every day with my beautiful Hollie is an adventure and she lights up my life in a way that nobody else ever will. Being a young mother means we met a little early, but it also means that I get to love her a little longer.

I never knew on the 19th of November that I would meet my best friend, someone that I would give my right arm to keep now, and it is all because the 8th Amendment gave me time to think. Our 8th Amendment is precious, and so is life. We ought to fight for this right to life amendment and celebrate it before it’s too late.

Mary Kenny