Weathering The Storm...

I am, of course, aware that putting up Ruari's piece on Savita would cause a stir. The broad swipe of feed back I'm receiving is very nervous that the article speculates without facts.

One thing I have learned recently is that the pro-life/ pro-choice debate rages much larger in society than I had known. It is also fraught with politics and alliances. I am not part of any of these alliances or strategies, nor do I intend to become embroiled in the politics of how to fight abortion, though I most firmly stand on the side of the line which is against the forced medical abortion of unborn children. I always have, it's not something I learned, it is something I have always found very straight-forward and easy to understand. In fact, confronted with the reality of abortion, I think most people would find it very difficult to justify- unless you suffer from a complete lack of empathy with the reality of the situation. The only way I can see to accept abortion is to depersonalise the infant, and accentuate one life's value, the more established life, over the other. The supreme leap of relativist logic.

I remember as a young man attending a lecture on abortion which was disrupted by a group of women demonstrating about a woman's right to choose. They were angry, their rage palpable, they screamed and kicked as they were escorted from the lecture hall. Their rage at the mere discussion of two sides of an argument stayed with me to this day as something unreasonable and difficult to understand.

I think Ruari's piece is important. I was struck by the way in which the main stream media, very quickly, brought the 'refused abortion' story with no critical thought. This was it, it was clear that Catholic culture had killed this woman and they were going to crow about it as loudly as they could in order to show how it is right that women should be allowed to kill their unborn children. I think the logic of this struck me first, because, of course, the majority of abortions here in the UK take place for medically necessary reasons don't they?

I am certain that whatever else, there are other perspectives and questions relating to this story, and Ruari's article raises some of those issues.

About Rage

There has been some reaction on Twitter. It's worth reading this conversation in full as I refer to some of the points raised below.

The reaction- rage- though almost incoherent, relies broadly on misunderstanding, as so often is the case. Do you seriously think Ruari was surprised at the flea in the ear reactions? No, of course not. Did Ruari assert that this was a sex-selective abortion? No, he did not. the piece was clearly written in the sort of spirit where Ruari thought he was being open and hoped that people would appreciate that he had asked all the difficult and challenging questions he could think of, in order to ensure that he was getting accurate info.

In fact, he went out of his way to check details and facts, including standard treatment procedures. He had actually indicated to me that he had this information on Sunday. He then spent two days seeking to confirm that the infection was e.coli EBSL, (not the same strain that killed so many in Germany, that one has the ultimate 'poison pill' defence: each bacterium releases severe toxins as it dies under antibiotic assault. The best info he attained is that it wasn't, which s just as well - because standard treatment protocols (broad spectrum antibiotics) would have killed her even sooner. In fact, Ruari, a professional at this who smelled a rat when he first saw the story, checked, rechecked and double checked. He went out of his way to ensure he was not being used as a channel for malicious gossip.

You cannot exclude anything unless you investigate it first. Someone else raised the possibility of sex-selection before Ruari did; it was thus incumbent on Ruari to follow it up in order to eliminate it.

Consider the complaints that the sources prefer to remain anonymous. If they would just read dispassionately what they have said, they would understand why: the attack is vociferous and can be unrelenting. I wouldn't willingly expose myself to that hateful mob if I was a medic!

I trust Ruari, I consider he is a man of integrity interested in the truth. I don't expect that he would make this kind of noise unless he was certain about what he had been told. He is sure that it comes across as authentic; not least, because of corroboration. Until the investigation reports we will not know 100% what happened - and maybe not even then, the world being what it is.

But one has to ask: WHY is it so important to these people that this should be just about abortion, that no other possible consideration should enter into it? What is their agenda?

I thought Ruari had made plain that the concern should actually be about antibiotic-resistant infections but the rage at opposition to their juggernaut is quite breathtaking. And revelatory.

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