A pro-life event held in the city centre last Saturday afternoon was “extremely well received” according to campaigners.
Organised by Pro Life Action Now (PLAN) in response to the ‘March for Choice’ protest taking place in Dublin, the witness event involved pro-life activists mingling throughout the city and distributing literature on abortion.
Olive O’Brien of PLAN Limerick said she was delighted with the reception the event received from members of the public:
“A total of 96 people signed our petition to protect human life during our two-hour presence on Thomas Street. There was some hostility from individuals that made cowardly remarks as they walked by, but overall we were extremely well received and many hearts and minds were reached and changed,” she said.
Cathal McCarthy, who is a prominent member of PLAN Limerick, witnessed some of that hostility first-hand:
“Some guy came marching over to my eldest son and said, ‘you won’t be happy till this country is a Catholic Iran.’ My son responded to him, ‘I’m an atheist,’ and he just turned on his heels and went away.”
When asked what the purpose of the event was, McCarthy responded, “It’s to get people to consider what abortion is. The pro-choice people don’t like talking about what abortion is. Ultimately what we are talking about is human life, and the attitude towards human life. And they don’t want to acknowledge that women can be hurt by abortion, that women can regret their abortion, they don’t want to acknowledge that either.”
The father of three, canvasses regularly for PLAN and believes that the people of Limerick are receptive to their campaign, “We are positively received, people will talk to you, very little hostility, I would say overwhelmingly it’s positive.”
With the referendum on the Eighth Amendment confirmed for next summer, Limerick PLAN will continue to canvas throughout the city and hope to host events like Saturday’s on a regular basis.
When asked if she thought the Irish people would vote to allow abortion to be legalised, O’ Brien said that she was hopeful that the proposition would be rejected.
“The pro-choice campaign seeks to devalue human life and dehumanise the unborn child with phrases like ‘it’s just a clump of cells’ or ‘the foetus is a parasite’ and they propagate such beliefs to further their abortion-on-demand agenda. Thankfully, basic biology puts such notions to bed as pro-choice beliefs are no match for actual scientific facts. Once people realise that it is a human life that we are talking about they tend to re-evaluate their thinking on abortion and this gives me hope that we can save the Eighth and the unborn will continue to enjoy its protection.”
McCarthy echoes those views: “It’s about how we, as a society, value human life, and I think that’s what we’ll be deciding upon when the referendum comes in May or June.”
When questioned on the rights of a woman to decide what to do with their body, he stated: “It’s not just their body we’re talking about, it’s inside their body but it’s not their body, it’s a human life. I bet a lot of those young women haven’t considered what an abortion is, they haven’t thought too much about it in that regard. Up until birth is what the pro-choice people are talking about. No one is forcing women to leave the country and terminate their child, it’s a choice they make, they’re choosing to do that. There’s better options that that and there’s plenty of services there to look after them as well.“