The Iona Blog

Pure in Heart owed a big apology

By David Quinn

Health Minister Simon Harris has flagged up the possibility several times that the State might provide contraception for free as a way of tackling the number of unwanted pregnancies. He asked a working group to report back on the matter and it has done just that. Unfortunately for him, it has cast serious doubt on...

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Atheists must stop smuggling Christian beliefs into their arguments

By David Quinn

Time to weigh in briefly once again on the debate I have been having with Michael Nugent of Atheist Ireland about the nature of morality. I have tried to keep the debate tight and single-issue, but Michael has basically released a swarm of insects at me which would take from here until the world’s end...

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Does Leo Varadkar toast his conscience first, or the State?

Leo Varadkar quoted the newly canonised John Henry Newman in the Dáil this week during a debate about future relations between Church and State. He was responding to Brendan Howlin, leader of the Labour party, and the Taoiseach quoted the famous line from Newman that he would drink to his conscience first, and the Pope...

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Katie Ascough and anti-Catholicism at UCD

By David Quinn

Katie Ascough, if you remember, was the head of the Students’ Union at UCD who was booted out of her job essentially because of her pro-life views and following a very nasty campaign of vilification. The authorities at UCD could have activated their anti-bullying policy and told everyone to tone it down, but they stood...

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UCD’s big failure to honour its founder

On Sunday Cardinal John Henry Newman will be declared a saint by Pope Francis in Rome. Newman established the Catholic University of Ireland, which later became University College Dublin. Despite this, UCD initially decided not to send any official representative to the ceremony. “Although John Henry is the founding rector of our antecedent, the Catholic...

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Unplanned: a pro-life movie that doesn’t demonise abortion supporters

I went along to see the pro-life movie ‘Unplanned’ yesterday. It began showing in Irish cinemas last week and the run has now been extended into a second week due to public demand, which is good news. It is certainly a film anyone who is pro-life ought to try and see, and maybe bring along...

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Radical feminism’s annihilation of women

By David Quinn

Journalist, author, and former feminist campaigner, Mary Kenny gave a very interesting talk last week at an Iona Institute event. Her topic was feminism and motherhood, but more specifically Simone de Beauvoir and motherhood. Mary laid out de Beauvoir’s attack on motherhood, but listening to her talk, it occurred to me that de Beauvoir was...

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Stopping the euthanasia juggernaut

By David Quinn

On Tuesday I took part in a debate about euthanasia in UCD at the invitation of the Law Society. The evening was further evidence that arguments based on ‘choice’ have almost overwhelming power in the present culture. I was teamed up with Peter D Williams of Right to Life UK, and Jason Conroy who is...

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Another atheist fails to justify objective morality

David Quinn of the Iona Institute, and Mike Nugent of Atheist Ireland, have been debating the relationship between morality and religion in the last few weeks. The challenge for atheists is to give a convincing, non-utilitarian answer to the question of why we should treat everyone equally, if we are simply the product of evolution....

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An important voice in favour of fathers speaks out

The French parliament is debating a new law which will extend assisted reproduction to single women and lesbian couples as well. What is interesting is the fact that no less a body than the National Academy of Medicine has objected to the proposed reform on the ground that will be permit the deliberate creation of...

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