Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Abortion is not a compassionate response to fatal disability says SPUC Northern Ireland

SPUC Northern Ireland has responded to the case of 'Sarah', a woman who contacted the BBC to say that the law on abortion in Northern Ireland had forced her to travel to England to abort a child diagnosed with anencephaly

Liam Gibson, SPUC Northern Ireland's development officer, commented:
"Abortion is not a compassionate response to the diagnosis of fatal disability. Babies with fatal disabilities are no less human than other children and share the same right to life as all other human beings. The law in Northern Ireland respects that right, while the British Abortion Act has led to the situation where it is lawful to kill a disabled child up to birth.

Some people may believe that an abortion in case of fatal disability helps women carrying such babies but in fact this is not true. The evidence demonstrates that women who abort their babies for such reasons experience serious psychological suffering. One study in the Netherlands found that, four months after their abortions, 46 per cent of women showed pathological levels of post-traumatic stress disorder.

The tragic nature of this case highlights the desperate need for perinatal hospice care in Northern Ireland. Women with access to perinatal hospice care have a much better prospect of coming to terms with their grief. A perinatal hospice gives parents of babies with a fatal diagnosis the chance to be parents. To hold their child, care for them and share whatever time they have no matter how short. Those experiences help parents cope with their grief in a way that is simply impossible with abortion.

Last year MLAs were given the opportunity to hear about the benefits of perinatal hospice care from Dr Bryon Calhoun, a world class expert in this field. It is time that the health department looked at ways to provide greater support and care for women and their unborn babies in these difficult and tragic circumstances."
Cliona Johnson, an Irish woman, has recounted movingly her experience of choosing to give birth to an ancephalic child in this YouTube video.

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Must-read pro-life news-stories, Wed 9 Oct

Top stories:

SPUC criticises new reason for non-prosecution of sex-selective abortion
SPUC has criticised the new reason put forward today for the non-prosecution of sex-selective abortion. SPUC was responding to the statement issued by Keir Starmer, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for England & Wales. Paul Tully, SPUC's general secretary, commented: "Keir Starmer, the DPP, has now contradicted the earlier announcement by Jenny Hopkins of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) which said that the decision not to prosecute was reached on the basis of the CPS public interest test. Now the DPP has said that it is essentially for lack of evidence that they are not going to proceed with any prosecution. The issue has clearly embarrassed the prosecuting authority. That embarrassment arises ultimately because the Department of Health under successive Secretaries of State not only refuses to ensure that doctors implement the grounds in the Abortion Act - providing abortions only when the grounds are met - but actually encourages doctors to offer abortion to any woman who says she wants one." [SPUC, 7 October]
Related stories:
Blind Dutch woman granted euthanasia
A blind Dutch woman has been granted her request for euthanasia in The Netherlands. The Daily Mail newspaper reported that: "Medics have killed a woman by lethal injection because she could not cope with becoming blind. In one of the first cases of euthanasia for a disability, the 70-year-old was deemed by doctors to be ‘suffering unbearably’. Anthony Ozimic of SPUC told the Mail: "It is medical negligence of a high order for the doctors in this case to have gone along with her suicidal ideas, rather than find effective means of managing whatever psychological issues may have been causing her to consider suicide. The Netherlands is a wealthy country which can  support people with blindness. Wherever euthanasia or assisted suicide has been allowed, so-called 'exceptional circumstances' are quickly becoming the norm and the criteria for death are expanding. Millions of people around the world are blind, yet these doctors in their callous arrogance have deemed that at least some blind people should be killed rather than treated. This is what is in store for the UK if Lord Falconer and Margo Macdonald get their bills through parliament." [Mail, 8 October]

Other stories:

Abortion and pregnancy
  • Remarkable new 3D images of unborn children [Mail, 8 October]
  • Marie Stopes International head-hunts top salesman to repeat its abortion business successes [SPUC youth blog, 8 October]
  • Babies born to smoking mums 'have smaller brains and are more anxious and moody than other children', suggests study [Mail, 7 October]
  • Pro-life Catholic vigils this month in Maidstone and Stratford [John Smeaton, 4 October]
Embryology
Euthanasia
  • European rights court to rule on assisted suicide [Expatica, 8 October]
  • Hans Kung, renowned dissident theologian, considering suicide for Parkinson’s [LifeSiteNews.com, 3 October] Anthony Ozimic of SPUC commented: "It is one of the tragedies of modern Church history that Hans Kung did not become a great defender of life as his fellow peritusat the Second Vatican Council, Joseph Ratzinger. Unlike Kung, Ratzinger saw that the Western cultural revolution which started in the late 1960s was an anarchic rebellion against the principles which safeguard civilisation. Voluntary self-destruction is also a form of rebellion against such principles. However, it is not too late for Kung to see the light of the Gospel of Life, as the testimony of many repentant former abortionists will attest."
  • St Thérèse and the victory over assisted suicide [John Smeaton, 3 October]
Population
Sexual ethics
General
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Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Blind Dutch woman granted euthanasia: SPUC's Anthony Ozimic comments for Daily Mail

A euthanasia kit
The Daily Mail and other news-outlets have reported that a blind Dutch woman has been granted her request for euthanasia in The Netherlands. From the report by Simon Caldwell:
"Medics have killed a woman by lethal injection because she could not cope with becoming blind.

In one of the first cases of euthanasia for a disability, the 70-year-old was deemed by doctors to be ‘suffering unbearably’.

They granted her wish to die after she had previously tried to commit suicide several times."
...
"The unnamed woman had been born with poor eyesight which had deteriorated into blindness as she entered old age.

She had lived alone since her husband died.

Health specialist Lia Bruin told a Dutch newspaper that the case was ‘exceptional’.

‘She was, for example, obsessed by cleanliness and could not stand being unable to see spots on her clothes,’ Bruin said."
Anthony Ozimic told the Mail:
"It is medical negligence of a high order for the doctors in this case to have gone along with her suicidal ideas, rather than find effective means of managing whatever psychological issues may have been causing her to consider suicide. The Netherlands is a wealthy country which can  support people with blindness. Wherever euthanasia or assisted suicide has been allowed, so-called 'exceptional circumstances' are quickly becoming the norm and the criteria for death are expanding. Millions of people around the world are blind, yet these doctors in their callous arrogance have deemed that at least some blind people should be killed rather than treated. This is what is in store for the UK if Lord Falconer and Margo Macdonald get their bills through parliament."
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Monday, 7 October 2013

SPUC criticises new reason for non-prosecution of sex-selective abortion

Keir Starmer, DPP
SPUC has criticised the new reason put forward today for the non-prosecution of sex-selective abortion. SPUC was responding to the statement issued today by Keir Starmer, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) for England & Wales http://www.cps.gov.uk/news/latest_news/dpp_abortion_case_fuller_reasons/

Paul Tully, SPUC's general secretary, told the media:
"Keir Starmer, the DPP, has now contradicted the earlier announcement by Jenny Hopkins of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) which said that the decision not to prosecute was reached on the basis of the CPS public interest test http://www.cps.gov.uk/news/latest_news/cps_statement_abortion_related_case/

Now the DPP has said that it is essentially for lack of evidence that they are not going to proceed with any prosecution:
'again it is obvious from this analysis that even on this narrow basis the evidence is not strong and prospects of conviction would not be high.'
The issue has clearly embarrassed the prosecuting authority. That embarrassment arises ultimately because the Department of Health under successive Secretaries of State not only refuses to ensure that doctors implement the grounds in the Abortion Act - providing abortions only when the grounds are met - but actually encourages doctors to offer abortion to any woman who says she wants one."
Comments on this blog? Email them to johnsmeaton@spuc.org.uk
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