The Iona Blog

A Tale of Two Bills

By David Mullins   The first Bill in our Tale claims to seek long overdue and radical reform of a centuries old system that some say is permeated with archaic and oppressive practices. This same system has denied countless people fair access while favoring the wealthy or least those with more means than most and despite...

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The Christian contribution to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights” So begins the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris 70 years ago, on 10th December 1948. The idea of dignity, which is the basis of any human right, has a long history that...

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Religious persecution continues to rise in the world

The “Religious Freedom in the World 2018” report, newly launched by Aid to the Church in Need, lists grave violations of religious freedom in 38 countries and the situation is clearly worsening. This report assesses the religious situation of 196 countries in the world, looking at legislation, incidents of note, and at a projection of...

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‘Big Picture’ fails to give full picture about women in Ireland

By Margaret Hickey

Last week’s RTE programme about the gender gap in Ireland claimed to offer ‘the big picture’ about the reality of Irish women’s lives today. It certainly failed to do that. The women selected were atypical in terms of their chosen professions and life situations. The scrolling flow of statistics across the screen also failed to...

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Further evidence the Government overestimate day-care demand

The Government is funnelling significant funding to creche facilities, with the hope that more mothers will enter the workforce. The policy ignores the fact that many parents don’t want to put their children into day-care and it also ignores a new study which shows that subsidising day-care might not have much impact on parental choices....

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Punishing doctors for following their consciences

By David Mullins

The Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Bill 2018 is set to return to the Dáil for Report Stage debate next week. We can be almost certain that before, during and after this debate, the onslaught of deliberate misrepresentations around the 16 ‘pro-life’ amendments will continue apace. Much of the commentary surrounding those amendments has...

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How we are turning politics into religion (again)

By David Quinn

Despite the wish of some atheists, the religious instinct of human beings is basically ineradicable. When it doesn’t find a direct religious outlet, it will find other outlets, such as politics. By ‘the religious instinct’ I mean the wish to find meaning and purpose in life, something bigger than ourselves, transcendence, a belief in a...

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Health Minister refuses to back even pre-abortion ultrasounds

By David Mullins

Last week the Oireachtas Select Committee on Health met to discuss over 180 amendments to the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Bill 2018. One of the amendments centred on inserting a requirement on the part of the medical practitioner to perform an ultrasound of the pregnant women and subsequently offering her the choice of...

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A shameful refusal to legislate for the respectful disposal of aborted babies

Minister Simon Harris and the Health Committee have rejected an amendment to the abortion Bill that would have allowed for a dignified disposal of the bodily remains of aborted foetuses. The rationale of the amendment is to assure that human remains are not treated as clinical waste and sent (for example) to an incinerator, as...

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Simon Harris deluded about the nature of his own abortion law

Does Simon Harris properly understand the abortion law he is championing? The evidence mounts that he does not. For example, at the hearings of the Health Committee yesterday he rejected an amendment to his law that would explicitly ban abortion on grounds such as sex or disability. As reported in the Examiner, he believes the...

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