This situation leads me to the following conclusions: One, the Catholic Church, long influential in Irish politics and absolutely opposed to *any* softening of, or so-called exceptions to, the longstanding total abortion ban in Ireland (or anywhere for that matter) has almost certainly been lobbying to slow down the process of releasing the new guidance needed to clarify the law and policy. As a result, there is still lack of clarity in whether to allow abortions in cases where, for example, a woman has cancer but is not "on her deathbed," or a young girl has tried to or is contemplating suicide because she was impregnated by rape. But there is absolutely no lack of clarity in the Irish Supreme Court's decision that if a woman's life is indeed in imminent danger, as Savita's life so clearly was, she has a constitutional right to said abortion.
Two, the medical staff of the hospital denied Savita an abortion even though she was constitutionally guaranteed one to save her life because this was a Catholic hospital and therefore the (to me) questionable "conscience rights" of the institutional Catholic church, the hospital, its doctors, really, whomever was involved there, superceded the right to life of a living, breathing woman. In other words, the Church and its hospitals hold themselves outside the law. [And, it should be noted, they are pushing to expand so-called conscience provisions in U.S. law all the time, so their power over your life is widening.] In my analysis, then, while the government is indeed responsible for confusion in cases where "risk of death" is not quite clear, in this case there should have been no confusion at all as to what to do. What medical professional watches his or her patient in agony for days on end and does not act? One governed by misogynistic religious ideology.
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