Rev. Fr. Frank Brennan S.J. A.O. has made some timely remarks on the imminent Victorian pro-abortion legislation. I was interested to learn that the new laws will be
requiring health professionals with a conscientious objection to abortion to participate in abortion in some circumstances, and requiring doctors with a conscientious objection always to refer a woman seeking an abortion to another doctor known not to have a conscientious objectionThis is interesting, but unsurprising. A right to have one’s own child killed implies a duty of trained abortionists to do so.
Ms Maxine Morand, the Victorian Minister for Women's Affairs, has taken the view that all Charter rights and freedoms of all individuals are irrelevant when it comes to abortion because s.48 provides: 'Nothing in this Charter affects any law applicable to abortion or child destruction'.It is interesting that, of all the possible exceptions that one might have imagined, it is only abortion and “child destruction” (it’s nice to dispense with the euphemisms sometimes) that are singled out. Abortion on demand is clearly one of the most prized victories of the abortionists.
But the most acute observation came from a commenter, one Gavan Breen:
It is good to keep in mind, then, that ‘viability’ is a completely arbitrary criterion. Take away oxygen, water, food and shelter and an adult's life isn't 'viable' either; every creature has its natural habitat. The key question is always: is the fertilised ovum a human body? Embryology tells us that the answer is ‘yes’. And since a human’s living body has a human’s soul, abortion is always wrong.
The dictionary (e.g. the Macquarie) gives several definitions of 'viable'. In all except one, it means capable of living or functioning, which means that if something is not viable there is something wrong with it.
Only when it applies to the foetus is there the additional requirement, that it must be capable of living outside its natural environment. Only in the case of the foetus can the term 'unviable' be used of something that is perfectly normal.
It's not fair; it's like calling me unviable because I couldn't live on Mars. I couldn't live there because I don't belong there; a young foetus can't live in the outside world because it doesn't belong there. There's no suggestion that there's anything wrong with it.
At the least, the words 'viable' and 'unviable' should be used in quotes when they are applied to a normal healthy foetus.