Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Abortion: The Cardinal Speaks

Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor and his fellow Cardinal Keith O'Brien have marked the fortieth anniversary of the Abortion Act by writing an open letter to women considering having an abortion urging them to thiink again. Brilliant. You're in perhaps one of the most difficult situations of your life, facing a tough choice, and you get a truckload of god-bothering guilt piled on too. (On the other hand, it might be a simple choice for you, and the god-bothering might not bother you at all - good luck to yer, girl.)

Interviewed on Radio Five Live yesterday, Cardinal O'Connor repeatedly argued that women should have time to think about what to do and don't rush into their decision. I'm guessing he will be oppposing cuts in time limits then - which, after all, would mean you have to make a decision more quickly.

The interviewer then put it to the Cardinal - if, after due time for consideration, she decided to have a termination, would he support her? Well, no. He considers abortion morally wrong, so couldn't ever support it. Great - have all the time you like to consider your decision, but make sure you decide what the Catholic Church wants you to decide.

Of course, I could consider that telling people to believe in oppressive orders from an imaginary god is morally wrong, not to mention intellectually bankrupt and laughably irrational. But I don't advocate that the law ban you from doing it, Cardinal Murphy. I just hope that counter-mobilisation will isolate you and your bigoted views.

Meanwhile, the good news is that a majority - albeit a slender one - believe that it should be easier for women to access abortion.

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