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Rights of unborn ought not be at women’s discretion

At first glance, I thought things were looking up with Victoria White’s article (Irish Examiner, January 7) bearing the title ’It is wrong to deem some babies abortable and others not’.

The opening sentence was even more encouraging. “The circumstances of a baby’s birth should have absolutely nothing to do with its human rights”, she proclaimed, though she didn’t specify what those rights were.

But at least it it implied that the unborn are human, and this humanity is the central plank on which opposition to abortion is based. However, all hopes were in vain.

In spite of all she said, she eventually concluded that all human rights enjoyed by the unborn are entirely at the discretion of women.

In effect, she concluded that all unborn children are equally abortable, even if a minority of pregnancies end in that way.

As it happens, this is also the position taken (though perhaps with different reasoning) by the Labour Party.

That party might have called, as Victoria states, “for the option of abortion in cases of rape, incest or serious sexual assault, when the pregnancy creates a risk to the physical or mental health of the mother’.

This position is, however, just a stepping stone towards abortion becoming the unconditional right of all women, and all pregnancies being abortable.

Rory O’Donovan


Co. Cork

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