måndag 26 maj 2008

The right to choose



When I worked for a London borough in the late 1970s, the union branch, NALGO, had been taken over by a Trotskyite group, the Socialist Workers' Party. Amongst the items on their agenda was the promotion of abortion rights, which they termed "Women's Right to Choose'. Since the union's purpose was to deal with terms and conditions of employment, such a campaign was well outside its remit, and I worked with others, without success, to get the policy overturned. Ultimately, the union branch destroyed itself in a futile and unnecessary strike engineered by the same group of militants, but that is another matter.

How abortion has come to be seen as a progressive cause is incomprehensible except in a world of newspeak where words mean the opposite of what they seem to mean. The photograph, taken just seven weeks after conception, shows that bones are clearly starting to develop. This is not surprising, as anyone who has kept tadpoles will know the speed at which they mature, and it is reasonable to assume that even at this early stage there is a developing nervous system and that the creature is capable of pain. It is, in fact, a human being and is so from birth. On a close look, it can be seen that there never is a blob of jelly.

Freedom to choose means choosing this which is almost unbearable to watch so be warned.

So why has the anti-abortion case made so little headway? One reason, I suspect, is that the running has been made by the so-called Religious Right, who are not known for taking a view on things like cluster bombs, nuclear weapons, economic injustice and all the other issues about which the Catholic Church has much of value to say, but which those people are inclined to selectively ignore, with the result that they are simply discredited whatever they talk about.

Illustration and video provided by the Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform

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