Following Ireland’s decision to repeal the Eighth Amendment of its constitution and liberalize abortion restrictions, there have been many who are seeking to push Northern Ireland, a separate state belonging to the United Kingdom, to follow suit. The pro-abortion movement is full of steam following their momentous victory to delete a crucial part of the Irish constitution that sought to define the life of the unborn as equal to the mother.
Now, as Northern Ireland’s devolved legislative assembly flounders in a political stalemate, there are calls for British Prime Minister Theresa May to get the ball rolling herself. But Northern Ireland’s politicians are not planning to cave to the pressure being exerted from south of the border.
Ian Paisley Jr, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) representative for North Antrim and the son of party founder and minister Dr. Ian Paisley, said of the Northern Irish position on abortion: “The settled will of the people has been to afford protection to the unborn life and protect the life of the mother.”
“NI (Northern Ireland) should not be bullied into accepting abortion on demand,” Paisley added.
“I notice the mad rush by some commentators to try to push NI into a comparison on this as if the law in the ROI was remotely comparable to the laws and processes that govern NI,” he tweeted earlier in the day. “It is sad when the unborn life is to be treated with such casual regard!”
He continued: “The unborn child is the big loser! I would have thought that was obvious!! But not a mention!”
Last year, Paisley issued some stern words to the House of Commons regarding the DUP’s strong position on abortion:
— BBC Parliament (@BBCParliament) July 4, 2017
Paisley’s father, Dr. Ian Paisley, was a leader in the Unionist movement and was the founder of the fiercely pro-life and conservative Church denomination, the “Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster.”
Reverend Ian Brown, the minister of Paisley’s former church, “Martyrs Memorial Free Presbyterian” in Belfast, said that the scenes of celebration in Dublin following the repeal should be highly disturbing to Christians. Those who “celebrated this event with the kind of enthusiasm that is more typical of a pop concert may not even realise the extent of what they have done,” he said, as reported by the Belfast Telegraph.
Brown described the Irish referendum decision as an “inevitable consequence of secularisation.”
“Much of Ireland imagines they have joined the ranks of the liberated as a result of the demolition of its constitutional protection for the unborn,” he said. “It does not seem to care that by the same action it has effectively delivered a death sentence on a significant percentage of its potential population.”
“Actions of this nature are the inevitable consequence of secularisation. As belief in God and awareness of His Word declines, so does resistance to abortion laws. It’s a matter of anthropology: when man believes himself to be a random event instead of a purposeful creation, he will inevitably draw the same conclusion about those both within him and around him. This will then enable him to weigh lives on utilitarian scales and so make distinctions about their respective value.
The result of this referendum is a terrible outcome for everyone. People who have celebrated this event with the kind of enthusiasm that is more typical of a pop concert may not even realise the extent of what they have done; declaring their freedom even as they are delivered into the chains of their own judgment.”
Pro-choice activists gathered outside Belfast City Hall on Monday to appeal for legislative reform to Northern Ireland’s abortion laws. On Thursday, a group of around 20 women is reportedly planning to casually break the law by driving a bus around Northern Ireland distributing abortion pills. Activists have said some will take the tablets in defiance of what they are calling “archaic legislation.”
Downing Street today said that it has no intention of enacting “direct rule” on this issue, and promised not to intervene in a such a highly sensitive ethical issue that is for the people of Northern Ireland to decide.
“The prime minister said on Sunday that the Irish referendum was an impressive show of democracy, which delivered a clear result, and she congratulated the Irish people on the decision,” said a spokesman for Prime Minister Theresa May, as reported by the Guardian. “But it’s important to recognize that the people of Northern Ireland are entitled to their own process, which is run by locally elected politicians.”
“Our focus is restoring a democratically accountable devolved government in Northern Ireland so that locally accountable politicians can make decisions on behalf of the public they represent,” he added.
The highest political figure in Northern Ireland, First Minister and leader of the DUP Arlene Foster, has rejected the notion that the British government should intervene in the abortion debate.
“Friday’s referendum has no impact upon the law in Northern Ireland,” she said, according to the BBC. “The legislation governing abortion is a devolved matter and it is for the Northern Ireland Assembly to debate and decide such issues.”
(H/T: Belfast Telegraph)