Last week Ireland’s parliament debated pro-life amendments to legislation allowing taxpayer-funded elective abortion. During the debate, several pro-abortion politicians revealed how willfully ignorant they are of the consequences of abortion.
When debating legislation that would require medical care be given to babies born alive in botched abortions, TD Kate O’Connell referred to abortion survivors as “alleged survivors of botched abortions” and suggested these devastating stories are made up. She said that people advocating for born-alive infants were “listening to anecdotes, fairy tales, and, I mean essentially, stories that, you know, have dubious sources….”
O’Connell also seemed to take issue with the fact that the stories of abortion survivors come from “other jurisdictions,” but this is facile. Of course the painful personal stories of abortion survivors come from other jurisdictions, because for the past several decades Ireland has recognized the right to life of the preborn child. Children in Ireland have not been born alive in abortions because preborn children have not been killed in elective abortions that could be botched. The cautionary tales of people whose lives were begun in horrific circumstances when they were born alive in a procedure intended to kill them are certainly not something to scoff at.
Melissa Ohden, an abortion survivor, responded to O’Connell’s offensive remarks in a video, saying, “I would ask Deputy Kate O’Connell to apologize, not only to me but to all the abortion survivors out there. You know, this is a common tactic when it comes to the pro-abortion industry, legislators, the media, you know, to somehow say we’re alleged or fake, and it’s an attempt to push an abortion agenda and to silence and shame survivors from ever coming forward.”
In addition to the stories of courageous survivors like Ohden’s, we also have data showing that babies are still being born alive in attempted abortions. The Centers for Disease Control estimates that at least 143 babies died in the United States after abortions between 2003 and 2014 — and that figure, they say, is possibly even higher.
O’Connell is not the only pro-abortion politician to be called out for ignorance and incivility. Last week TD Lisa Chambers dismissed abortion regret as a “makey-uppy thing” that “does not exist.” Ireland’s Health Minister Simon Harris claimed that legalizing elective abortion on-demand does not mean that discriminatory abortions will occur, despite absolutely no stipulations in the law.
The reality is that when the state sanctions the killing of some human beings, there is a great deal of collateral damage that will occur. Ireland does not need to discover this, because many parts of the world have already had legal, elective abortion for decades.