Ah, Donald Trump.
That household name that can arouse anger and disbelief in a matter of seconds. Scarier still, he’s a man that’s viewed by a lot of people to be the man who can “make America great again”.
This rings a bell; some bloke called Hitler once promised the same thing for Germany.
In one of his most recent sermons he so vicariously delivers, Trump expressed an opinion on women seeking abortions which has caused huge outcry across the world. People, in general, were unable to imagine why women should be “punished” for utilising their right to their own body and aborting a pregnancy.
Yet this exact persecution of women happening on our own doorsteps.
Did you know that, on average, 48 women from Ireland will have travelled to England for an abortion since Trump’s speech?
Did you know that a woman in Ireland can get up to 14 years jail-time if an alleged abortion comes to light?
The law which currently governs abortion in Ireland is the Protection of Life During Pregnancy 2013.
It is as follows:
– It shall be an offence to intentionally destroy unborn human life.
– A person who is guilty of an offence under this section shall be liable on indictment to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 14 years, or both.
– A prosecution for an offence under this section may be brought only by or with the consent of the Director of Public Prosecutions.
The above legislation was proposed by Minister for Health James Reilly on behalf of the Fine Gael-Labour government. He actually upped the jail time from “not exceeding to 2 years” to “not exceeding 14 years.”
As someone in favour of repealing the 8th amendment, I feel confident that a referendum will take place in the near future. I refer to a Newstalk poll from January of this year, which found that 78% of voters were in favour of allowing abortion in cases when the pregnancy arose as a result of rape or incest, 76% when there is a fatal foetal abnormality, 59% when the pregnant woman has suicidal feelings as a result of the pregnancy, and 41% in any circumstances felt necessary by the pregnant woman.
And although this might not necessarily represent official figures, the innumerable women deciding to speak out about their abortion experience so bravely has definitely sparked a long overdue conversation.
Hallelujah, Ireland is emerging from the dark ages once again!
And as a final note, Donald Trump actually revoked his statement about women who aborted pregnancies receiving punishment.
Even Donald Trump found it a bit much.
If you’re interested in learning about how the rest of the world stands in regard to abortion, this interactive map by the Centre for Reproductive Rights is a good point of reference.