Ireland’s Feminists Lost the Abortion Argument in ’83. This Time We Can Win.
By Susan Mckay
May 5, 2018
DUBLIN — In 1983 the Irish people voted to give a fertilized egg the same right to life as the woman who carries it. Feminists tried to stop it. We argued that crisis pregnancies were a reality of women’s lives and that we needed the right to choose how to deal with them. We said that the constitutional amendment on the ballot, which made abortion illegal unless the mother’s life is in danger, would harm women. We marched and chanted “Get your rosaries off our ovaries.” A Catholic bishop pronounced that the most dangerous place for a baby was in a woman’s womb.
We lost, overwhelmingly. But Ireland has changed. On May 25, the Irish people will vote on whether to repeal the Eighth Amendment. This time I think we can win.