That Gift of Life

Now didn’t we see this one coming? At 20:48 CET, the Times of Malta website carried the news that the Gift of Life movement intended to revive its attempt to entrench the ban on abortion in Malta’s constitution. This comes as a reaction to a non-binding resolution passed by the parliamentary assembly of the Council of Europe calling for the decriminalisation of abortion in all the member states.

Here we go. They will harass Ministers, they will stalk parliamentarians and they will pontificate to the populace and they will not stop until the Constitution of all the people is changed to reflect their will. They will probably be molly-cuddled in this process by a nationalist party always ready to champion the ubercatholic cause while the supposed liberal element of the umbrella party remains in hidden for all to unsee.

Before you yell “child killer” and accuse J’accuse of taking on a pro-abortion stance please note that what I am criticising here is this obnoxious idea of entrenching in the constitution something that is already illegal in this country. If the majority in this country believe abortion should be illegal then so be it. Whether it needs to be entrenched in the constitution is another matter altogether.

There is another important point this time round. The supposed trigger of all this revival of the Gift of LIfe’s dead vigour is a limp measure by a limp institution calling for (humbly requesting or at the most loudly urging) the member states of an international institution to take the decision to decriminalise abortion within their jurisdiction. Let’s not beat around the bush. It’s a resolution that asks States to change their laws but that cannot go further than that. That’s what the words non-binding mean. It’s as effective as a notarial deed signed by an opposition leader binding himself to respect his promises to the electorate.

Yet the Gift of LIfe will soldier on undeterred. They are here to stay. They represent the diehard conservatives of this nation who still deem it fit, right and proper to impose their morals on the rest. How about a referendum miluds?


9 responses to “That Gift of Life

  1. “before you yell child killer”
    I am pro choice and always will be. Someone might say, where does the ‘choice’ of the unborn child figure? Well I will ask back, what choice did those children in Lourdes Home in Gozo have for being ‘dumped’ there? Did they want to be abused? And if nuns and priests are considered ‘above board’ in maltese society, why call someone who makes a decision to abort a criminal? Aren’t those nuns and priests criminals also?

  2. Did anyone say they were not? I only recall references to a prescriptive period being over and therefore no criminal charges can be made (and notwithstanding this the Gozo Bishop not only offered apology but also assistance – there is now talk of possible out of court settlement).

    In any case why does the fact that the nuns would not have been called criminals have any relation to the pro-choice / gift of life case? How does the fact that the kids had no choice in the home justify the introduction of pro-choice legislation?

    Eye for and eye, abortion for abused child…. legislation by vengeance? NO thank you. Not convincing at all.

  3. “they will not stop until the Constitution of all the people is changed to reflect their will”

    Love the way you worded that.

    I have yet to meet a pro-lifer (or a person who’s anti-divorce) who agrees with having a referendum about whether abortion (or divorce) should be legalised or not. These people just want us all to have it their way.

  4. Oh yes compensation….the key word. Brilliant. But if I, as a person who does not don a veil or a habit, would have my name smeared all over the newspapers, be brought to court and probably sentenced to years of improsinment even if I so much as dreamnt about those things that were done to those children. An apology is not enough. Those nuns need to be brought to justice, or at the very least, be ousted from the ‘safe’ walls of their convent.
    And of course there is a realtionship between the pro-life campaign and those children in residential care. These are children born to parents who are not capable of taking care of them, and who have been put under a care order. And these same parents are not prepared to put them up for adoption, because it is not ‘convenient’ for them for many reasons. These children are a burden on the state, not to mention other resources.
    And it is because of the lack of proper legislation, that these things happen, and continue to happen. So what do we do? Sweep the problem underneath the carpet and offer compensation???? I think its an insult. Call me a fundamentalist, but I would make abortion a must for such women who are not capable of taking care of themselves let alone their children.
    That is what we should be campaigning for. A proper legislation to regulate these homes.

  5. And of course to legalise abortion.

  6. Dear Keith, I am pro Divorce. Now I do not want to impose divorce on those who can not benefit from it because of their religious convictions. Yet this does not mean that I can not join the rest of the world in benefiting from the divorce option. I do not see where the referendum issue comes into it. If I only travel by air, should I militate for a referendum on whether we should all travel by sea or by air?

  7. Well, given the recent ruling by the Council of Europe, I am sure that the Gift of Life movement will become more vociferous and more zealous in their work.

    I think the most damaging thing to come out of this would be that the constitution would be used as a political tool.

    The Gift of Life movement would benefit from a couple of basic lectures into what the Constitution is, and what is its purpose.

  8. fabrizioellul

    As you said – ‘they are our diehard conservatives’ they want to impose their morality on everyone – they are, to say the least, a bunch of ‘bullies’

  9. Danny…

    I know that, unlike joining the EU, the introduction of divorce isn’t going to affect the lives of those against it. However, in this country, when so many people don’t agree with (what they consider) a big (hell-threatening) issue, like divorce or abortion or joining the EU, a referendum is necessary for the will of the majority of the people to prevail. Also, let’s not forget this country is led by ex-presidents of Azzjoni Kattolika so anyone who thinks they’ll just introduce divorce one fine day is talking cobblers.

    My point was that pro-lifers shouldn’t mind a referendum, because no one should choose for all 400,000 Maltesers. To me it’s the same as a staunch PN supporter saying we shouldn’t have elections in 2013 because he/she is happy with the current PN government.

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