Marie Stopes’ ‘professionalism’

It’s worth reading yesterday’s Parliamentary debate on late term abortions here, * if you have not already done so. Nadine Dorries will undoubtedly and some would say deservedly, get it in the neck from all sides with regards to her point of view.

What is very clear is that Nadine is not what we would traditionally describe as pro-life as she supports quick and easy early abortion. Furthermore she professes to have no issue with Marie Stopes, praising them in fulsome terms for caring about the health of the woman, for being ‘professional’ and ‘non-advocacy driven’, when questioned about their presence in Northern Ireland.

That’s something that I would take issue with, my personal experience of Marie Stopes is not a positive one. I don’t think a friend of mine would agree with that assessment either. She aborted a much-wanted child on the grounds of foetal abnormality. Marie Stopes gave her a very bleak one-sided analysis of the baby’s prognosis which affected her decision. Had she known then, what she knows now about the condition and the huge amount of support available then she would have made an entirely different choice. Furthermore they botched the procedure itself, when she rang them up shortly afterwards bleeding and in agony they told her that what she was experiencing was normal. It was only when she collapsed in agony some months later and was admitted to A&E that she discovered that she had significant cervical scarring that required corrective surgery which could leave her infertile. Fortunately she has gone on to have another beautiful child, but no thanks to Marie Stopes. Significantly, because these complications occurred after leaving their premises, they do not count towards the official statistics that abortion providers compile regarding complications resulting from surgery. Another of her criticisms is that the staff at Marie Stopes were rude, cold, clinical and perfunctory and lacking in all compassion.

In terms of  Marie Stopes’ operation in Belfast, what is clear is that they are operating on the very boundaries of the law – the Northern Ireland Committee for Justice are currently investigating and require assurances that the clinic will work within the existing legal framework, which actually prohibits abortion in the vast majority of circumstances.

Professional and non-advocacy driven? Here they are admitting to performing illegal abortions around the world.

Of equal concern is Marie Stopes’ involvement in India, delivering ‘Population Health Services’, where forced abortion and illegal abortion on the grounds of gender is rife. According to the film-makers of itsagirlmovie, the film I saw hosted by Lord Alton in Parliament earlier this week, doctors are never prosecuted for providing illegal ultrasounds to ascertain the gender of a baby, nor for providing the illegal gender-selective abortions. Men are not prosecuted for crimes of violence against their wives, such as beating them because they have failed to provide a son, or for violently coercing them into an abortion. Dr Mutu Khurana is still fighting for justice, 7 years after her husband pushed her down the stairs when she was 7 months pregnant with her twin girls after refusing to abort them. The doctor who surreptiously performed the illegal ultrasound has yet to be prosecuted and Dr Khurana has faced death threats for pursuing her case. She reported how one medic threatened to rape her if she would not agree to keep her silence. This is not a problem restricted to the poorer strata of society either. Reggie LittleJohn, founder of Women without Frontiers, described how even educated and rich families still resort to female foeticide. The reason being that the more money a family has, the more that has to be given away via the dowry system, laws against which are not enforced. One has to wonder, what Marie Stopes is doing, funded by the UK government in terms of the UN development fund and the UK Department for International development, operating in a country where respect for women and their rights is non-existent. Far from being non-agenda driven, they are complicit in furthering gendercide, even if, as they would claim, it is unwitting.

Serious questions also have to be asked as to what on earth Marie Stopes thinks it is doing operating in China, again funded by the UK Department for International Development, partnering Chinese population and family planning commissions. China is one of the countries where the greatest abuse of womens’ rights occurs. We heard from women who had been rounded up by the family planning police and given forced abortions. One woman told of how she hid behind the door, heart thumping as the police, who act upon tip-offs given by paid informants, raided her home. The police did not find her, however due to having committed the crime of having three children, her and her husband were forced to leave their village, splitting up their children amongst relatives and now work in one of China’s notorious factories to send enough money for their keep. They now see their children once a year. Reggie Littlejohn also told of how workers in Chinese factories are routinely forced to have a monthly strip-search by their supervisors in order to prove they are not pregnant. If they refuse they are taken to hospital for a check and if they refuse such a check they are fired. Any women found to be pregnant are forced to abort.

Regardless of one’s views of Nadine Dorries’ campaign to reduce the limit, one has to admire her passion and unyielding determination to end the cruelty of late-term abortion. The problem is, that if we are going to correctly  frame abortion in term’s of womens’ rights then we cannot praise an organisation that does so much to blight the lives of women and their babies around the globe. Marie Stopes, like BPAS, are ideological,  advocacy-driven, operate on the margins of the law and are complicit in the devaluation and destruction of women worldwide. If they truly cared, they would not operate in these areas where gendercide is such a problem, let alone collude with governments who are driving the agenda.

The only qualification for calling Marie Stopes professional is the way they abort unborn babies with such ruthless efficiency. Their presence in any country is an enormous blow for women’s rights. I’d like to see the next debate discuss why taxpayers should fund such atrocities.

* NB It’s also worth looking at the remarks of Diane Abbot who claims that it is “not right to talk about coerced abortion”, obviously a head in sand approach is best. Fiona Bruce, vice-chair of the all-party Parliamentary pro-life committee has called for an enquiry into foetal pain as well as an examination as to the effects of late-term abortion upon women. That seems to me to be an entirely sensible approach to this issue.

6 thoughts on “Marie Stopes’ ‘professionalism’

  1. With respect, this has to be one of the silliest and most objectionable pieces I have read from a pro-life point of view for a long time.

    You say early on: “What is very clear is that Nadine is not what we would traditionally describe as pro-life as she supports quick and easy early abortion.” What sort of silly sentence is that? So, maybe it isn’t a ‘traditional’ description, but it is perhaps a “modern” or “alternative” description of being pro-life? Isn’t it about time to wake up and smell the coffee and recognise that the words “pro-life” and “Nadine Dorries” do not belong in the same sentence except to say that Nadine Dorries is NOT pro-life!

    As I recall there are about 200,000 abortions in the UK each year. Nadine Dorries supports 90% – 180,000 – of them. She said in the debate:

    “I am pro-choice, and I believe that, up until 12 weeks, that should be the case. I am delighted that more than 90% of abortions in this country take place before 12 weeks.”

    You then move on beyond silliness and say something that is extremely objectionable: “Regardless of one’s views of Nadine Dorries’ campaign to reduce the limit, one has to admire her passion and unyielding determination to end the cruelty of late-term abortion.”

    Why you should find her so admirable is a mystery to me. Not only is she willing to take responsibility for the deaths of 90% of the unborn children in this country, but she wants to change the law so that MORE children can be killed in Northern Ireland. And you describe this as “regardless” as though it is of no account! That somebody can claim to be pro-life and yet dismiss the plight of these unborn children so casually – “regardless”! – is deplorable.

    Moreover, Nadine Dorries’ “unyielding determination to end the cruelty of late-term abortion” does not apply too to disabled unborn children for whom she has no “passion and unyielding determination.”

    She said in yesterday’s debate: “I want to make it clear that my proposal to reduce the upper limit does not include babies with foetal abnormalities or, sadly, disabilities.”

    Nadine Dorries’ views on abortion and her suggestions for changing the law should be rejected for what they are – pro-abortion and unacceptable.

    1. With respect, the post is more about Marie Stopes than Nadine Dorries.

      I do not condone her point of view, neither do I wish to write off babies at any stage in development nor disabled children, however a lot of pro choice activists not only read my blog, but insist that she is pro-life. It is clear that she is not.

      I think you are being pedantic and rather hyperbolic. I admire Nadine’s determination whilst disagreeing with her views. She is subject to all kinds of harassment and abuse as a result of her views on abortion and hence I don’t feel the need to personally attack.

      When it comes to the issue of disabled babies, I have it on good authority that Nadine is troubled by our current laws. I guess her feeling is that she’s trying to fight one battle at a time and obviously for her, 20 weeks is her key/main focus. It isn’t a strategy I endorse but if a cut in limits is all that was on the table, then it could be voted for in good conscience, provides one was clear that all abortion was unacceptable. The problem is that it may risk entrenching and inherently supporting abortion.

      Actually what I was aiming to do was highlight the error of praising Marie Stopes. I do admire someone who has the courage of their convictions and who will put themselves on the line repeatedly to fight a perceived injustice, no matter how misguided. I would save your vitriol for Marie Stopes, who are the objectionable ones here, rather than someone on your own side.

  2. Just from looking at the very short time lapse between my posting and your replying, it is clear that you prefer to speak/write without reflecting on the serious objections I made, so there is no point my making further points.

    Perhaps this signifies a more general need for you to reflect on these serious issues before putting into print some very badly thought out opinions?

    1. Your points seem to be pedantic in nature, you object to my use of the word traditional in that you think I am implying that Nadine is pro-life. You also wish to imply that I am writing off the unborn by expressing admiration for her genuine passion and commitment to her cause.

      Both points are incorrect, off the mark and don’t engage with the meat of my post, namely Marie Stopes, so yes, I do suggest that you stop wasting everyone’s time with pointless and incorrect pedantry.

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