Opinion Comment

Friday 20 July 2018

Facile to conflate abortion debate and cancer scandal

Claims of paternalistic and patriarchal culture just runs the risk of a Trump-style backlash by undecided men, writes Jody Corcoran

Two sides: Despite much passionate campaigning, perhaps the grouping that will decide the referendum result is... men. Photo: Fergal Phillips
Two sides: Despite much passionate campaigning, perhaps the grouping that will decide the referendum result is... men. Photo: Fergal Phillips
Jody Corcoran

Jody Corcoran

The question is being asked at a high level behind the scenes in Government as to how the cervical cancer scandal will affect the outcome of the abortion referendum, if at all.

One view is it will help the Yes side in that it supports the argument that trust should be placed in the decisions of women; another is it will help the No side, in that it supports the argument that it makes it more difficult to trust the medical profession.

I am with the argument that it will, or should not necessarily affect the outcome at all, save for this: the cervical cancer scandal is being pitched into the referendum debate as another example of a paternalistic and patriarchal political and medical culture.

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