Monday, May 14, 2007

Teenager Is Being Treated 'Like A Witch From Salem'

Anne-Marie Walsh Irish Independent Friday May 9th 2007.

A MOTHER who faced a similar ordeal to Miss D six years ago said the teenager's predicament was like something from 'Salem'.

Deirdre de Barra referred to the US town, famous for its witch hunts in 1692, while commenting on the situation regarding the abortion of foetuses that cannot survive.

She said she resented the fact that she also had to leave Ireland to have an abortion when she discovered she was carrying a foetus that would die within days of birth.

The mother-of-two strongly influenced public opinion in the run up to the 2002 abortion referendum when she went public about her difficult pregnancy in a letter to a newspaper.
Yesterday she said all the political parties had ignored the issue of such pregnancies. "When you think about it, she is being sent away," she said.

"This is a very progressive country and we are listening to election manifestos every day. Not one of the political parties has taken a stand on this."

She said the type of publicity that surrounded Miss D's case was the reason she did not seek any remedy in the Irish courts.

"It's always been the belief that if any measure of abortion was allowed in this country then it would open up the floodgates," she said.

"These things can be very tightly controlled. There are chromosomal abnormalities incompatible with life. There are conditions like that of Miss D's case. It can be very tightly controlled and it's unfortunate that organisations that have vested interests put these arguments forward.

""Political parties take positions on abortion completely ignoring an area like this," she added.

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