Discussing the 8th Amendment

Posted on 10. May, 2018, in Christian Values, Church Teachings, Community, Humane Vitae1 Comment

Irish philosopher Dr Patrick Riordan SJ recently gave a talk at the Loyola Institute forum at Trinity College Dublin, entitled ‘Living Humanely: Perspectives from Law, Morality and Science’ on 13 April, 2018. In it he discussed the impact the vote on the 8th amendment could have on these areas.

Dr Riordan emphasised the philosophy of John Locke who argued to “do no harm” in the late 1600s, and sees its significance in today’s debate. He disagrees with American Ronald Dworkin (1931-2013) who said that issues such as abortion ought to be private matters.

Pointing out that it is unprecedented to remove constitutional rights from anyone, he questioned where a yes vote could have possible future unforeseen consequences.

He also said that a language or rights can be divisive and would rather a more nuanced language offering greater scope for medical professionals to deal with difficult cases.

Dr Riordan talks about the “permissive” law on abortion in the UK, as he sees it, looking at sex selection and children with Down’s syndrome. He ultimately feels the need to promote a message of love for all as depicted in the Gospel.

One response to “Discussing the 8th Amendment”

  1. Suzanne Ryder says:

    I found this interview difficult at first but, as it progressed, became very clear to me. I have been discerning on the referendum and this revealing of further lights is helping me to see the necessity of a “no” vote. I was particularly grateful for the clear advice to the judiciary and how legislation might be introduced to evade the dreadful cases that are brought forth on the Yes side of the argument. Many thanks for bringing this viewpoint to my attention.