The Iona Blog

Thousands turn-out for a slightly frustrating evening with Jordan Peterson and Sam Harris

By David Quinn

On Saturday night almost 10,000 people turned up at the 3Arena to hear a philosophical discussion between Jordan Peterson and Sam Harris. Harris is a sort of American version of Richard Dawkins. The discussion was chaired by Douglas Murray, author of ‘The Strange Death of Europe’. To have that number of people at an event...

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Marriage in Ireland compared with other EU countries

In 2013, 2.1 million marriages and 943,000 divorces took place in the European Union. This is the equivalent of 4.1 marriages and 1.9 divorces for every 1,000 persons. How does Ireland compare with the rest of Europe? In the same year, the crude marriage rate (number of marriage per 1,000 persons per annum) for Ireland...

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The existence of God is a matter of reason

By Dr Gaven Kerr

The question of the existence of God is one that is part and parcel of contemporary society’s general interest in religion. All religious traditions consider the issue of some divine being, even those which reject the existence of a divine figure precisely because their religious outlook is formed on the basis of the lack of...

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Do Sex-Ed programmes work on their own terms?

By Patrick Fitzgerald

It might seem a silly question to ask those who constantly call for scientific, objective, evidence-based, school-based sex education programmes, but where is the “evidence” that such programmes actually work? By ‘work’ we mean do they reduce the rate of teenage pregnancy and STIs? As the answer is not immediately self-evident, researchers have poured time,...

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The responsibilities of men faced with an unwanted pregnancy

By David Quinn The Irish people have voted in favour of the right to choose. Under the proposed Irish law, a woman who becomes pregnant will be free to decide whether to proceed with the pregnancy or not, whether to accept the responsibilities of motherhood, or not. But what of the rights and duties of...

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Morally wrong to force GPs to refer for abortion

Minister Simon Harris has confirmed that the abortion legislation will allow general practitioners to abstain from providing abortion pills, but a duty to refer patients to pro-choice doctors will stay.  This is a plain contradiction because duty to refer involves complicity with wrong, to such a degree as to significantly undermine the provision for conscientious...

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Marriage breakdown in Ireland: higher than we think

We often hear that Ireland has a low divorce rate compared to the rest of Europe and particularly to the UK. This is correct, but we can’t afford to be complacent because for every four couples who marry in Ireland each year, roughly one couple go their separate ways. That is probably higher than many...

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Abortion rates increase in the UK, particularly in Northern Ireland

The abortion rate continues to increase in England and also the number of women from Northern Ireland who travel for a termination. Abortion statistics for England and Wales in 2017 were published yesterday. There were 194,668 abortions carried out in 2017, an increase of 2.3% since 2016 (190,406). Of those women, 3,092 had an address...

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Proposed AHR scheme allows gamete donation from close family members

A few months ago, The Iona Institute submitted a document to the Oireachtas Committee on Health regarding the General Scheme of a Bill to regulate Artificial Human Reproduction (AHR).  It is co-written by Dr Joanna Rose, who is herself donor-conceived. Two weeks ago, The Irish Times reported our submission. The report said our submission “claims”...

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Pro-life movement must now take the long view as it has overseas

The pro-choice movement in Ireland won as emphatic a victory on Friday as the pro-life movement did in 1983. What was the response of the pro-choice side to their heavy defeat back then? Was it to go away? It was not. Instead they took the long view and immediately began the work of repealing the...

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