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NZ Abortion Law Under Question: Anti-Life Lobby Panics

1 comments | 3:20 pm | top |
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A monumental case is brewing in New Zealand, the biggest development since abortion was legalized in 1977.

Justice Forrest Miller, High Court judge in the June 2008 case of Right to Life NZ v. The Abortion Supervisory Committee, made a statement which put panic into the complacent members of the anti-life lobby in NZ, while pro-life groups rallied at the official recognition of what they had been saying for so long:

There is reason to doubt the lawfulness of many abortions authorised by certifying consultants. Indeed, the [Abortion Supervisory] Committee itself has stated that the law is being used more liberally than Parliament intended... ...The [ASC] has misinterpreted its functions and powers under the abortion law, reasoning incorrectly that Wall v Livingston means it may not review or scrutinise the decisions of certifying consultants.

98.7% of the 18k+ abortions performed in 2007 were justified on the grounds of the mental health of the mother being at risk. It is patently obvious that 98.7% of pregnant women in NZ are not mentally unfit to give birth to their unborn children. The vast majority of this figure actually represents "convenience abortions."

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

It'll be interesting to see how this turns out.

Assuming Justice Miller's decision survives the Court of Appeal, I guess an appeal to the Supreme Court will ensue. If the decision still stands after all rounds of litigation, that will be a good thing insofar as it will likely mean that a few thousand infants' lives are saved over the next few years. But it will also put the ball back in Parliament's court; and unless social attitudes to abortion change dramatically, Parliament will be sorely tempted to pass a new law which definitely establishes abortion on demand.

(Another possibility is that the Abortion Supervisory Committee will continue as it has been, turning a blind eye and pleading excuses (e.g., "lack of funding") if called out on it.)

We await developments, I guess...

1:36 pm, May 06, 2009 

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