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Thread: Referendum on the 8th amendment.

  1. #21
    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    Some "pro-life" advocates argue that legal restriction on women's bodily and reproductive autonomy is justified as they regard a foetus as a life with human rights. However, some of these "pro-life" advocates also say they would permit exceptions and allow abortive treatment in the cases of rape or fatal foetal abnormality, but how do they square this with their simultaneous insistence that the foetus is a life with human rights? Why would the fact that a foetus might have potentially-fatal abnormalities or the fact that it might have been conceived through rape mean that the otherwise asserted human rights all of a sudden evaporate into thin air? By their logic, isn't the foetus in those circumstances still a human with the right to life?

    "Pro-life" advocates also tend to avoid answering just how far they would go to enforce their ban on abortion. Do they support the law merely acting as a means of practically-unenforceable "moral" guidance, would they advocate the idea of fining "guilty" women or would they go as far as threatening women who might wish to procure an abortion with potential criminalisation in order to legally force them to endure and deliver a pregnancy against their wishes? I have yet to see a "pro-life" advocate adequately deal with this question.

  2. #22
    Club Member backstothewall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    Some "pro-life" advocates argue that legal restriction on women's bodily and reproductive autonomy is justified as they regard a foetus as a life with human rights. However, some of these "pro-life" advocates also say they would permit exceptions and allow abortive treatment in the cases of rape or fatal foetal abnormality, but how do they square this with their simultaneous insistence that the foetus is a life with human rights? Why would the fact that a foetus might have potentially-fatal abnormalities or the fact that it might have been conceived through rape mean that the otherwise asserted human rights all of a sudden evaporate into thin air? By their logic, isn't the foetus in those circumstances still a human with the right to life?

    "Pro-life" advocates also tend to avoid answering just how far they would go to enforce their ban on abortion. Do they support the law merely acting as a means of practically-unenforceable "moral" guidance, would they advocate the idea of fining "guilty" women or would they go as far as threatening women who might wish to procure an abortion with potential criminalisation in order to legally force them to endure and deliver a pregnancy against their wishes? I have yet to see a "pro-life" advocate adequately deal with this question.
    I can only speak for myself but I don't see the existence of life as being something that gets turned on at the moment of conception like one might turn on a light. I see it as being rather more complicated than that. It is not a binary state as different things develop at different times. I won't be posting diagrams of foetal development for obvious reasons but you can find them yourself if you are interested in understanding my thinking. What is clearly no more than a ball of cells at 4 weeks is (in my opinion) identifiable as human by 10 weeks.

    Virtually nobody believes in completely unrestricted abortion up to 40 weeks. Therefore almost everybody is granting the foetus rights once a pregnancy reaches a certain defined point. That has to be a arbitrary line in the sand, and unfortunately it can never be a perfect system, but it's the best we have. If this was simple it wouldn't arise such passions on all sides.
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  3. #23
    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by backstothewall View Post
    I can only speak for myself but I don't see the existence of life as being something that gets turned on at the moment of conception like one might turn on a light. I see it as being rather more complicated than that. It is not a binary state as different things develop at different times. I won't be posting diagrams of foetal development for obvious reasons but you can find them yourself if you are interested in understanding my thinking. What is clearly no more than a ball of cells at 4 weeks is (in my opinion) identifiable as human by 10 weeks.

    Virtually nobody believes in completely unrestricted abortion up to 40 weeks. Therefore almost everybody is granting the foetus rights once a pregnancy reaches a certain defined point. That has to be a arbitrary line in the sand, and unfortunately it can never be a perfect system, but it's the best we have. If this was simple it wouldn't arise such passions on all sides.
    Is it primarily a visual thing for you then, so, the more human the foetus might look, the harder you would feel it would be to justify permitting an abortion? Or would you consider other factors too in determining your preferred limit?

    Personally, I would have difficulty with using the law to force a woman to proceed with a pregnancy that she didn't want, but if a legal restriction has to be imposed upon "on demand" abortions, I feel that around the point at which a foetus might develop the capability to perceive pain would be a reasonable cut-off point after which an abortion "on demand" would be prohibited. Of course, that point won't be the same for every foetus and, as you say, it is arbitrary, but that's where I would put a legal limit if I had to. I believe that point would be around 20-24 weeks for an "average" foetus. This also happens to be the point after which the "average" foetus would begin to become viable.

    One would hope that that length of time would provide enough time for a woman who might contemplate having an abortion (for any reason) to have made a decision.

    Where there might be a likely-fatal foetal abnormality or a palpable or serious risk to the health (physical or mental) or life of a pregnant woman, I would expect no time limit. Obviously, determinations in these circumstances would involve consultation with and approval by medical practitioners and/or psychiatrists, if necessary.

    For what it's worth, there are a few countries where there is no time limit stipulated in law; they are Canada, China, Vietnam and North Korea, as far as I know. In Canada, it seems the matter is "regulated" by professional medical guidelines rather than the law. I'd need to study more how the system works there, but I do like that idea as I find the notion of criminalising women who might have abortions distinctly unappealing.

  4. #24
    Club Member backstothewall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    Is it primarily a visual thing for you then, so, the more human the foetus might look, the harder you would feel it would be to justify permitting an abortion? Or would you consider other factors too in determining your preferred limit?

    Personally, I would have difficulty with using the law to force a woman to proceed with a pregnancy that she didn't want, but if a legal restriction has to be imposed upon "on demand" abortions, I feel that around the point at which a foetus might develop the capability to perceive pain would be a reasonable cut-off point after which an abortion "on demand" would be prohibited. Of course, that point won't be the same for every foetus and, as you say, it is arbitrary, but that's where I would put a legal limit if I had to. I believe that point would be around 20-24 weeks for an "average" foetus. This also happens to be the point after which the "average" foetus would begin to become viable.

    One would hope that that length of time would provide enough time for a woman who might contemplate having an abortion (for any reason) to have made a decision.

    Where there might be a likely-fatal foetal abnormality or a palpable or serious risk to the health (physical or mental) or life of a pregnant woman, I would expect no time limit. Obviously, determinations in these circumstances would involve consultation with and approval by medical practitioners and/or psychiatrists, if necessary.

    For what it's worth, there are a few countries where there is no time limit stipulated in law; they are Canada, China, Vietnam and North Korea, as far as I know. In Canada, it seems the matter is "regulated" by professional medical guidelines rather than the law. I'd need to study more how the system works there, but I do like that idea as I find the notion of criminalising women who might have abortions distinctly unappealing.
    I wouldn't say it is a visual thing. It's about the development the the point at which the foetus has become identifiable as human. There will obviously be a visual element to that. For example one of the things that makes a foetus at an earlier stage of development not meet that standard imho is the presence of a tail (the foetal tail is an evolutionary throwback to our ancestor species of primate). That is obviously something that is visible, but it is not that visibility that makes a difference for me. It is not that I can't see a tail anymore that is important to me, it is that there is no tail.

    At 10 weeks the human form is pretty much there. All the parts are more or less formed, and are more or less in the right places.

    Where the health of the mother is in danger I'd certainly be prepared to do something later in a pregnancy. Whilst i consider there to be a human life in the womb, the mother also has a human life that must come first. I said above that I think aborting a health pregnancy at 24 weeks is barbaric. Allowing a woman to die because of absolute restrictions on abortion was at least as barbaric. What happened in Galway should never have happened in a civilised country and must be allowed to happen again.
    Last edited by backstothewall; 10/02/2018 at 7:32 PM.
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    International Prospect osarusan's Avatar
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    If the argument against abortion involves invoking the innocence of the foetus, human rights of the foetus, its status as (or potential to become) a human being, then the exception made in the case of rape always strikes me as inconsistent. It is no less innocent, human, or possessing of fewer rights, because of the circumstances of its conception?

    I can understand the argument behind the exception on a deeper level, as certainly, there is a huge difference between consensual sex and rape, but in terms of the foetus and its possession of the above attributes, I am not sure that it can consistently extend that far.
    Last edited by osarusan; 12/02/2018 at 5:46 PM.

  6. #26
    Reserves harry crumb's Avatar
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    The lack of coherence on the repeal side will see it defeated.

    3 months is a hard sell.

  7. #27
    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    Polls consistently show that a majority of voters (usually around 60 per cent) are in favour of repealing. It's those who wish to retain the eighth amendment who have ground to make up surely. Polls show that less than a third of people wish to retain the amendment.

  8. #28
    International Prospect osarusan's Avatar
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    The Irish supreme court has overruled a high court decision, and found that the unborn has no constitutional rights outside those in the 8th amendment, which seems to have been the only hurdle that would have prevented the referendum taking place.
    The Supreme Court has ruled that the unborn has no rights under the Constitution other than the right to life in the Eighth Amendment, in a landmark case about the extent of the rights of the unborn.

    The State had appealed a High Court finding that the unborn has constitutional rights beyond the right to life.

    [...]

    The High Court found his unborn child had rights under the Constitution beyond the right to life.

    The State appealed the finding.

    It argued the only right the unborn has is the right to be born and all other constitutional rights, including the right to the care and company of a parent, take effect at birth.
    https://www.rte.ie/news/2018/0307/94...hts-of-unborn/

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    Club Member backstothewall's Avatar
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    Date set for May 25th.

    The tone of the debate has started low and is going downhill fast.

  10. #30
    Club Member backstothewall's Avatar
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    How do people feel this is going? It's a week out and I get the feeling all the noise is coming from the 2 extremes and the media. The middle ground seem to have totally disengaged.

    Low turnout likely as a result?

  11. #31
    International Prospect osarusan's Avatar
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    It hasn't intruded in my life much at all - apart from a couple of doorstep campaigners and the posters everywhere.

    Poll this morning in the Examiner reporting Repeal voters as 44%, Retain voters at 32%, with 17% undecided, and 5% not planning to vote.

    That is actually a bigger gap than I'd have expected with just a week to go, although we know his misleading polls can end up being.

  12. #32
    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    I'm good friends with a lot of "Yes" campaigners so have a been a bit more exposed to the campaign than others I suppose. Up to the last few days there was a definite hint of pessimism, but the mood changed a bit after the Google decision, and the Claire Byrne cluster**** had the effect of a rallying cry of sorts.

    Today's poll is very positive reading, as I was fully expecting the Yes lead to be slashed significantly, in line with the reduction in previous polls. If No can't get the Dublin Yes below 60% they're chances of winning drastically go down, and it's 68% according to the poll today. Connacht and Donegal aren't going to save the 8th. But I can't help but feel concerned.

    I think turnout will be high enough, maybe not quite hitting SSM levels. It strikes me as an important enough issue for both sides to overcome any apathy from the campaign. A low turnout might actually be bad for "No" since most polls list the "undecided" brackets as leaning their way, and they may be the most likely to not vote in the end.

    The campaign's been frustrating, but we always knew it was going to be: the No side, with seemingly enormous cashflow, is bombarding everywhere they can with message, and lots of online ads where they can (nearly always my female friends reporting that, with my GF, a staunch "Yes" mystified as to why the algorithm keeps targeting her). They're going to plaster the country in the last few days. "Yes", outside of parts of Dublin City, are very restricted in response.

    The political parties have disengaged hugely from what I can see, with FG officially rowing behind Together For Yes (nowhere near the well-run entity that the SSM campaign was) but really doing nothing, FF the same (albeit their "No" guys seem as likely to not get too involved either) and a brief spurt of posters and campaigning from Labour, Sinn Finn, the hard-left and the Social Democrats tailing off in the last ten days.

    I guess we'll see. I'll be quite annoyed if it's a "No" as, leaving aside the expected misinformation and scare-mongering from that side, "Yes" simply hasn't conducted the campaign as well as it could have been conducted.
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    Capped Player OwlsFan's Avatar
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    As it looks at the moment, 40% of the people will vote NO and yet as far as I am aware no major political party has advocated a no vote. Thus the parties are alienating/annoying/letting down a sizable proportion of their vote and hence the reason neither of FG or FF is spending a lot of visible time or resources promoting the YES vote.

    Personally, I will vote NO because we all know it's 12 weeks now, 16 weeks later and eventually pretty much eventually abortion on demand. I cannot vote for something that ends a human life. The unseen holocaust.

    As for rape babies, it is not their fault that their father his a rapist. I actually know someone who was conceived as a result of a rape. She had 3 children herself and 15 grandchildren.

    It's available in the UK isn't an argument. Mercy killings are available in Switzerland. Should we have that here as well.

    Don't police women's bodies. That's what the posters say. So a woman can kill her (and the father's) child any time up to giving birth if that is followed through to its logical conclusion.

    I was watching a series called NEW INNOCENT on TV3. One of the women's husbands was cheating and she (the wife) tells her friend about that and that she is pregnant to which her friend says "Get rid". Such is the value of that baby's life. Get rid.
    Forget about the performance or entertainment. It's only the result that matters.

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    Slam dunk yes result.
    gap is to wide and the media/government/opposition consensus to all encompassing

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    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    While not a lot of people are aware, the only political party of any notable stature unequivocally campaigning for "No" is what's left of Renua, and I only realised that when I passed through Cllr John Leahy's territory, their current leader, in the arse-end of the Galway/Offaly border area on the way to a funeral. Suffice to say they don't have much of a profile anymore, and rightly so.
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    Quote Originally Posted by OwlsFan View Post
    Mercy killings are available in Switzerland. Should we have that here as well.
    It's off-topic, but I would absolutely support the introduction of assisted suicide (what they have in Switzerland) in Ireland.

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    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    A discussion for a different thread, but I would say there's a bit of crossover in the two issues, regards FFA or the case of "P.P v HSE"
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    Club Member backstothewall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by osarusan View Post
    It's off-topic, but I would absolutely support the introduction of assisted suicide (what they have in Switzerland) in Ireland.
    So would I. But I'm a soft no in this referendum. Or rather I would be if I wasn't disenfranchised.

    The detail on the Irish Times poll says roughly a 3rd of people who indicated they would vote yes are voting that way in spite of being unhappy with the 12 week proposal.

    If that legislation wasn't in the background I'd be a firm yes. The 8th has no business being in the constitution but a yes will be seen by some as being a mandate for that legislation.

    No legislation should have been proposed this side of a referendum.

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    Seasoned Pro NeverFeltBetter's Avatar
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    I think they had to give an outline of what the governments plan would be, otherwise the No argument would make even greater hay out of "We don't know what they're going to do!". That, and they needed to get some of the FG and FF deputies onside by making it clear they weren't proposing abortion "on demand" past three months.

    I also think, in the event of a Yes, they'll be a general election before any abortion legislation is debated in the Dail, so that whole issue will be well hashed out.
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    The Cheeto God Real ale Madrid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OwlsFan View Post
    Personally, I will vote NO because we all know it's 12 weeks now, 16 weeks later and eventually pretty much eventually abortion on demand.
    Pure speculation based on nothing.

    Quote Originally Posted by OwlsFan View Post
    The unseen holocaust.
    Vile.

    Quote Originally Posted by OwlsFan View Post
    As for rape babies, it is not their fault that their father his a rapist. I actually know someone who was conceived as a result of a rape. She had 3 children herself and 15 grandchildren.
    ah the classic 'I know someone" argument - Lets Force all women to carry babies cos I knew someone who was grand like.

    Quote Originally Posted by OwlsFan View Post
    It's available in the UK isn't an argument. Mercy killings are available in Switzerland. Should we have that here as well.
    It's available in most of the civilized world - not just England/Scotland/Wales - I agree we should make up our own mind. Euthanasia can be more humane in some circumstances. Separate issue.


    Quote Originally Posted by OwlsFan View Post

    Don't police women's bodies. That's what the posters say. So a woman can kill her (and the father's) child any time up to giving birth if that is followed through to its logical conclusion.
    Have you read the proposed legislation? A women can kill a child up to birth? No.

    Quote Originally Posted by OwlsFan View Post
    I was watching a series called NEW INNOCENT on TV3. One of the women's husbands was cheating and she (the wife) tells her friend about that and that she is pregnant to which her friend says "Get rid". Such is the value of that baby's life. Get rid.
    Do you make all your judgments in life based on TV3 docs? What are you saying exactly - If you vote YES - are you no better than yer wan on the New Innocent. - Is the issue in any way nuanced at all?

    Edit - sorry the programme you are referring is actually a drama series - so its not even real life. Clearly you are on a wind up.
    Last edited by Real ale Madrid; 17/05/2018 at 3:47 PM.
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