Irish Abortion Referendum | The Popjustice Forum
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Irish Abortion Referendum

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by gagapourgaga, Jan 29, 2018.

  1. There isn’t really anywhere to talk about this so I thought I’d make a thread. Thankfully we should have a date for the referendum soon enough, which is really exciting but I’m also dreading the campaign. Its going to be messy. I’m involved in the Repeal campaign and I’m quite optimistic, but you really never know with these things.

    For those who aren’t familiar, lemme explain how we got here. Ireland is having a referendum this year on whether we should repeal the 8th Amendment of our Constitution, which guarantees an equal right to life of the ‘unborn and mother’ (actually a foetus and pregnant woman but anyway). This came about when conservative groups began to push for a constitutional ban on abortion after the Roe v Wade ruling in the US, to make it impossible for the Irish Supreme Court to come to a similar conclusion (More information here). It was passed by referendum in 1983 and the 8th Amendment was inserted into the Constitution.

    In 1992, a 14 year old girl became pregnant after being raped, and became suicidal due to being pregnant. Her parents brought her to England to have an abortion. They asked the police if they should collect tissue from the foetus to be used as evidence in the case against their daughter’s rapist. The police then alerted the Attorney General, who tried to get an injunction to prevent the girl from having a termination. The Supreme Court dismissed the injunction request and affirmed the right to have an abortion where there is a risk to the life of the pregnant woman, including where the risk is due to suicide (More information on the case here and here). In 3 subsequent referendums that year, the Irish people voted in favour of the right to travel to procure an abortion and the right to information on abortion. The referendum proposing to remove suicide as a grounds for abortion was defeated (The same proposal was defeated again in 2002). Despite being directed by the Supreme Court to legislate for abortion in these limited circumstances, parliament took no action and the issue was swept under the carpet.

    This changed in 2012 when a pregnant woman died in hospital from blood poisoning as she miscarried. She had asked for an abortion to save her life but was told that Ireland is a ‘Catholic country’ and it wasn’t an option (More information here). Legislation allowing for abortion where there is a threat to the life of the pregnant woman was introduced in 2013. Savita’s death kickstarted the abortion rights movement we have today. The campaigning and pressure from these groups made it apparent that the issue of the 8th Amendment had to be dealt with. The government has spent years trying to put the issue off for as long as possible, but the parliamentary committee on the 8th Amendment has issued its report and has recommended holding a referendum to repeal the 8th Amendment and to then legislate for unrestricted access to abortion up to 12 weeks.

    The government is expected to announce their decision on the report in the coming days, with a date for the referendum to follow shortly after, most likely in May or June. About 60% of members of parliament have said they are in favour of repeal, which is very encouraging. Opinion polls also show a clear majority of the public in favour of repeal but there is definitely no room for complacency and a lot of work has to be done in the next few months.
     
  2. My local TD had a big speech in the Dail, I think last week, about how he was against repealing the 8th amendment. Safe to say I won’t be voting for him again.
     
    LP and gagapourgaga like this.
  3. The Taoiseach (Prime Minister) has finally come out in favour of repealing the 8th. For context, he is a gay politician who wouldn't even come out in favour of same-sex marriage referendum in Ireland until it was abundantly obvious the Yes side was going to win. The public is supposedly 60% pro repealing the 8th amendment.

    I think it's going to be messy, and hardcore Catholic groups like Iona Institute are going to bombard the public with misinformation. They're already buying domain names that sound like pro choice websites and redirecting them back to their own website. This is a group who held a vigil for a baby they christened Hope, who was born to an asylum seeker who was raped while in custodial care, and who was denied an abortion until it was too late to have one.

    They're currently spreading information in Ireland that repealing the 8th will lead to the abortion of the majority of fetuses found to have Down's Syndrome. Apparently Down's Syndrome is not normally detected until after the proposed 12 week limit.
     
    LP, gagapourgaga, stuaw and 1 other person like this.
  4. That was a really informative and well-written post. Thanks for sharing @gagapourgaga and good luck with your campaigning!
     
    LP, aniraz, gagapourgaga and 5 others like this.
  5. I can't believe there are still countries in this area where abortion is illegal basically. I also find it appalling religion runs a country. I hope all turns out in the end!
     
    gagapourgaga and stuaw like this.
  6. Ireland has made leaps in recent years. It was illegal to be gay until 1993, but there was a same-sex marriage referendum in 2015 with the Yes side getting 66% of the vote. Ireland has a census every 5 years, with the last one being in 2016. There was a 132,220 drop in people identifying as Catholic from 2011. Out of a population of 4.7 million, people identifying as having no religion rose from 204,151 to 481,388. I don't know a single person under 60 who attends church on any sort of regular basis, so I expect these dramatic changes to keep happening.
     
    LP, gagapourgaga, andru and 1 other person like this.
  7. I still remember the disgusting ads and posters against legalizing gay marriage. Should be interesting to see what they come up with for this.
     
    LP, gagapourgaga, Anthology and 2 others like this.
  8. It looks like we finally have a date - Friday 25th May. Lets go girls. This infographic is handy for figuring out if you're registered or how you can register:

    [​IMG]

    If theres anyone here who's unsure about supporting repeal, please feel free to PM me and we can talk about it!
     
    LP, andru, irishlamb and 2 others like this.
  9. I'm currently sitting in a coffee shop off Grafton Street and across from me is a person wearing a anti-abortion 'Love them both, save lives!' t-shirt and now 4 other people have sat around him praising him for his work at todays protest and calling the Repeal supporters 'fools'.

    How lovely to see Irish people still set in their closed minded ways as per usual...
     
    LP, Utopia, andru and 1 other person like this.
  10. Religion really does make abortion such a boulder-up-the-hill struggle since no other worldview would make people think of non-sentient tissue as a "life" that can even be "saved".

    You can present all the facts you want, but some people will always go "but I believe!" and it's then difficult to not become crass and cold with how you discuss it, to where you lose people who were undecided.
     
  11. Yeah the religious crusade was out in force today. I dunno, practically everyone I know and who I’ve spoken to about it has been really positive about repeal apart from a few. But I don’t know if that’s just to do with where I’m from. I do think that since this has all been so drawn out, most people are now really well informed on the matter and can see that repeal is necessary.
     
    andru and papatrick like this.
  12. Also the good sis Louise O’Neill had the tea on the Late Late last night:

     
    LP, phily693, andru and 2 others like this.
  13. I know what you mean, but this is too generalised. We're not all backward currently ddd.
     
    andru and papatrick like this.


  14. Referendum Bill passed, date officially announced, let’s go gurlos.
     
    LP, Aidan, andru and 2 others like this.
  15. This campaign is going to be so so messy and I’ve a terrible feeling that it’s gonna fail.
     
    LP and NuhdeensPassport like this.
  16. It's terrifying how this could very literally go either way.
     
    LP, Bobbyrae and stuaw like this.
  17. Lmao a girl (who I thought was normal) who I went to college with announced on Facebook tonight she’s voting against because she doesn’t want the government to murder babies - sigh. I just unfollowed - like I can’t even.
     
    LP likes this.
  18. A guy I work with is the same, basically. Genuinely thought he’d be all for it, but says who are we to decide if a baby lives or dies and that how do we know when life starts?
    Fucks sake!
     
    James2009 likes this.
  19. If you're talking to someone against repeal, you could try asking them if they're also opposed to the right to travel. I've found that if they're a logical person they should realise that its impossible to stop Irish women from getting abortions, whether abroad or by abortion pills bought online. The current situation doesn't stop abortions, it just stops certain women from getting them, i.e. poor women who can't afford to go to the UK. Irish women will continue to get abortions regardless of the outcome of the vote, but a Yes vote will mean that they can do it safely in their own country. This argument will probably not sway religious people however. There's not much that could change their minds anyway and I think they see women having to travel to get an abortion as some sort of punishment for their sin ddd.
     
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