Fire and Brimstone in Fornication Nation: but we’re not laughing about the X case ruling being voted down

By Aisling | April 21 2012 | 88 Comments

It was a speech crafted during the time of Noahs Ark and it resonated with Old Testament fervour.  Displaying a complete lack of knowledge in everything from biology to the mores of the 21st century, right wing Mayo TD Michelle Mulherin had the whole country on its knees with hilarity during the week.

Fornication, she reckons is the main cause of unwanted pregnancy.

Abortion is murder, therefore sin, which is the religious argument, is no more sinful, from a scriptural point of view, than all other sins we don’t legislate against, like greed, hate and fornication. The latter, being fornication, I would say, is probably the single most likely cause of unwanted pregnancies in this country.” she said

Suggested ways to capitalise on the Irish love of fornication. Pic credit @Jimsheridan

To which there was a mass response of WTF? The wits took immediately to Twitter, #fornicationtax instantly began to trend and I’m telling you I haven’t had such a good laugh in ages.   People discovered old biology books agreeing with Mulherins unlikely assertion, while others wondered if fornication was the main cause of pregnacy, what were the others?  Lollipops?  Witchcraft?  Immaculate conceptions?

@Donal O’Keeffe:  Easy for Michelle Mulherin TD to blame unwanted pregnancies on fornication but has she definitively ruled out witchcraft? I didn’t think so.

@MissCatBradly: Fornication is probably the most common cause of unwanted bikini waxes

@ccrichton With all this talk of fornication and Padre Pio’s glove(s) on Liveline I suddenly feel I have time travelled. To the dark ages.

@Jim Sheridan who makes me laugh so much (about everything)  took this opportunity to launch a brand new women’s magazine – Fine Gael Woman - with features on Young Sluts, Unwed Mothers and Loose women.  Plus the article on 17 ways to stone Unmarried Women means that I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy.


But funny and all as it was and stupid as they come, she was sounding off during something very serious – the government debate on the introduction of the X Case legislation.

It’s been TWENTY YEARS since we had that horrible, bitter and divisive referendum.  So it is TWENTY YEARS since we should have had at least limited access to abortion in Ireland.  But we don’t.  And why not?

TDs like Michelle Mulherin.  The Government defeated the Private Members’ Bill, seeking to create a legal framework for abortion in Ireland where a woman’s life was at risk, by 111 votes to 20 the day of her ignorant speech.

111 votes to 20.

You know what?  I can’t tell you how sick to death I am of living in a country where women have to take that horrible, awful and traumatic journey to England to get an abortion.  Even if their lives are at risk.  At last we’re coming out and beginning to talk properly – in the papers (if you haven’t read this article in Irish Times do it now) and the interviews on last nights  Late Late (catch up on the Player).

We need things to change.  We have to see change.

Let me know your views


Life, Feminism, Politics , ,

88 Replies to "Fire and Brimstone in Fornication Nation: but we’re not laughing about the X case ruling being voted down"

  • Squishywishy says:

    I think we’re living in a modern world now and we need to move on. I agree with abortion in Ireland. Not just for women whose lives are in danger but for any woman. It wouldn’t be my choice if i were to fall pregnant but I’m not here to judge women who make that decision. It’s their body, their foetus/baby and their decision. There are too many stories of botched abortions and back alleys. We need to be able to regulated it properly.

  • Exactly, and the word “sin” has no place in government anyway, we need laws for everyone, not only for people who are religious* (the numbers of people saying they have no religion went up 44% in the last census). If you don’t agree with abortion – don’t get one, simple as, people should have the right to choose.

    *Also I know not everyone who is religious is pro life, I’m just saying that I think church and state should be separated.

  • Squishywishy says:

    There seems to be this crazy idea too that if they legalise abortion people will all run out and get one. stupid madness. Some of the crap ya hear said in Ireland would make your blood boil.

  • Aisling Aisling says:

    Exactly. Just give us the choice. Not having abortion in this country doesn’t mean there is no abortion it just means all our abortions happen in England

  • This close minded, bigoted excuse for a TD doesn’t seem to realise that’s it’s not only unmarried women that suffer crisis pregnancies.

    How dare she try to force her religious beliefs on the nation and deny the women of our country the basic rights that are afforded worldwide because of her personal ignorance. It’s an abuse of her governmental power and shouldn’t be allowed.

    Yes people were confused about the actual meaning of ‘fornication’ because it’s an outdated term used by an outdated idiot.

  • Orlando says:

    Absolutely spot on. Forcing women in an already difficult and harrowing situation to make a traumatic journey, away from everything familiar and comfortable, is horrific. It’s this awful, “Not In My Back Yard” attitude of the government: they know people are doing it, but as long as they can say “well we can’t stop them leaving the country” they get to wash their hands of all responsibility.

    People can go on about moral rights til they’re blue in the face, but if you make outlawing abortion a moral issue about the rights of a child, you’re simultaneously denying the moral aberration that forcing a woman to carry and give birth to an unwanted child constitutes. It’s a completely paradoxical argument. I just don’t see how it’s anyone else’s business; I mean, if Enda and co were shacking up in my uterus, they might have a say as to who gets evicted from there, but they’re not and they don’t. End of.

  • Nicola says:

    “If you don’t agree with abortion – don’t get one”

    Wisest words I’ve heard on this issue, Princesswatshername.

    It’s shocking that this is still an issue, it really is.

  • says:

    The lack of openness and education toward birth control, emergency contraception (sure, it’s more available now, but the attitude doesn’t seem to have changed much), abortion, and sex in general – in this day and age – really disappoints me.

  • Roisin says:

    Separation of church and state. Why are religious view still influencing legislation? The time has come for the law and law-makers in this country to join the modern age.

  • Stefanie says:

    I feel it is a disgrace that women have to leave their homes to have an abortion, especially when the mother or baby are at risk. It makes no sense that this problem is not considered completely due too the fact that we live in a catholic dominant country. It should have no relevance to the law. After all society has become much more diverse in relation to religion culture and overall belief. We should all be entitled to make our own decisions and not be forced to travel by a bunch of identical catholic TD’s who are too afraid to put their neck on the line. It’s time for change because this is not acceptable and hope that anyone who saw the Late Late show last night would understand why.

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