International readers of my blog might wonder what the X case is, and indeed so might some of the younger Irish readers, so allow me to recap. In December 1991, a young girl is raped by a family 'friend' who impregnates her. The pregnancy and rape are reported to the Irish police in January 1992. The family decide to travel to the UK to procure an abortion, and ask the Irish police if they require DNA evidence from the foetus.
So far, the family have done everything right - their daughter has been the victim of a depraved act by a evil sadist. Remember, rape is not a crime of passion, it is a crime of power - In fact, the court judgements call the perpetrator "an evil and depraved man". They are doing everything in their power to protect their daughter, and bring the heinous individual to justice. Surely one would think the Irish state did all in their power to assist ?
No. No they did not, to Ireland's eternal shame - The guards asked the DPP (director of public prosecutions) if such evidence would be helpful. The DPP sought clarification with the attorney general (AG), one Harry Whelelan. He immediately issued an injunction and demanded the family return to Ireland. Why the hell did he do this ? How could someone do so callous after such hardships had already fallen a family ? He did it because of a constitutional amendment passed in 1983 which said quite simply -
- 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.
This amendment essentially gives equal right to a living mother and a ball of cells with the potential to perhaps one day becoming a living being - but the constitutional amendment was much darker than that. Abortion was already a crime in Ireland since 1861 - why propose a constitutional amendment in that case ?
Only one reason - to ensure that abortion NEVER became legal in Ireland. Abortion opponents were afraid the Irish supreme court might one day allow it in certain cases, and forced the clause into the constitution. Yes, you read that correctly - the change was an attempt to strangle any reasonable future examinations of the abortion questions. And that included medical grounds, like ecoptic pregnancies and cancerous ovarian tumours. This was the legal equivalent to "no swapies". If that seems to you like a disgusting assault on reason it is perhaps because it is. It is exactly the same as using "shut up!" to win an argument. The 1983 referendum was bitterly contested, but backed by the Catholic church, it was passed - the results are stark.
In essence, the Yes vote and low voter turn out corresponds to 35.9% of the voting public essentially gagging informed discussion or revision of Irish's heavily Catholic inspired ethical provisions. I wasn't alive in 1983 - but if you were, and if you voted for the change, Shame on you - I have no words for how much your narrow minded bigotry disgusts me. This amendment was intended to silence any discourse on what is a difficult subject, an attempt to sweep human rights under the rug for the sake of religious considerations. Of course, many senior bishops and members of the catholic church rallied the faithful to the polls. This, as we shall see later, is common practice in Ireland referenda.
|A large chunk of the Irish population take reproductive and moral direction from a subset of people who never have sex (at least not with consenting adults) and wear silly hats. . Good move, people of Ireland!|
|Children - Should stop tempting rapists, according to sections of the Irish media...|
|Sure, if we're screwing them on everything else we may as well screw them on their reproductive rights too!|
|Today's supreme court ruling was brought to you today by the letter....|