First off, I believe an apology is in order as I have been pretty awol in recent weeks. I’ve just been pretty busy between college, work, and campaigning for what is a very important cause.
But now I am BACK! And ready to stay.
Now, on to my most recent rant. As I mentioned above, one of the things that has been keeping me busy has been campaign work for our upcoming referendum in Ireland. Incase you havent heard about it, the referendum follows the 8th amendment in our constitution and whether or not we want to keep it, or, repeal and enable our government to develop a new one. This amendment states as follows:
‘The states 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.’
Now, that is quite a mouthful, but, in simple terms it means that the life of the mother is equal to that of the life of the unborn.
Personally, I want to repeal it. I have many different issues with this law, and so do many others as well.
In Ireland, abortion is illegal. The key thing to note here is that that does not mean they do not happen. They still happen but they are unsafe, dangerous and put a woman in this country at risk to a 14 year prison sentence.
Here, if you have cancer and need chemotherapy, you can be refused treatment if you are pregnant. If you have epilepsy and need medication to stop you from having a seizure that could potentially kill you, you once again may not be able to take it if pregnant. From the moment of conception, women lose their bodily autonomy and become nothing more than an incubator. Women have died in this country as a result of being denied medical help.
In the cases of fatal fetal abnormality, women in Ireland would need to leave the country for a termination, rather than continuing on with a foetus that may not develop healthily. They are simply problems exported by their own people, to be dealt with elsewhere.
Women, in Ireland, who may not be able to afford to travel for this traumatic experience, homeless women, asylum seekers,.. the list goes on. These women may be in an abusive relationship, may be in debt, may have cancer, but that doesn’t matter here. Nothing matters, as long as a baby is born out of it. It may not live. But that doesn’t matter here, because this amendment says it doesn’t.
I am campaigning for a yes vote in this referendum. I am canvassing, helping in information stalls, for those women who have had to go through this, and to stop others having to in the future.
If this does go ahead, abortion will not be used as a form of contraception. No one will just wake up one morning a decide to get one. I imagine they are a painful experience, both mentally and physically. They will only be available for the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, with a 72 hour waiting period. After that they will only be in exceptionally circumstances, which would likely be circumstances such as FFA.
This is not a black and white issue. It needs to be understood that there is so many different circumstance for someone to go through that. I found a good page to read is In Her Shoes, on Facebook. On this page, people send in their own personal experiences, which help to provide people with a more personal viewpoint.
Women are more than just an incubator. We are people. We are as much people as anyone else. So please, can we start to be treated like one.