The sensitive subject of abortion is once again on the national agenda, as a historic Bill to decriminalise it has been filed in parliament by the independent MP Marlene Farrugia. This Bill has been presented in the context that Malta is one of the few countries in the world, being the only European Union Member state to ban abortion.
The decision as to whether this Bill will be discussed in parliament has to be made by the House Business Committee. As can be expected, there were several reactions to this Bill.
Those who subscribe to pro life movements expressed their shock. This is due to the fact that decriminalising something means that there is nothing wrong with it and in the case of abortion, many believe that the termination of pregnancy is immoral. The belief surrounding this Bill, is that it is being used to set up a platform for abortion.
The Leader of Malta’s Green party, Carmel Cacopardo received the news surrounding the Bill well. He highlighted that it is important to have the courage to discuss this sensitive topic, after being avoided for years. According to Carmel Cacopardo, the only way we can move forward is to face the fear surrounding the abortion discussion.
The Chairman of the Labour Party’s television station and Chief Executive Officer of the Valletta Cultural Foundation expressed his disapproval towards abortion. He mentions that all of a sudden there is a rush for progressive ideas, involving the most serious of matters as well.
There are those who argue that the introduction of abortion or lack thereof should be decided via a referendum. Whilst it is a pro-democratic approach, should the decision of whether pregnancies can be terminated be left in the hands of the majority? Unlike other controversial issues such as divorce and the legalisation of cannabis, abortion involves the vulnerable, who cannot make their voices heard. It is precisely because of this, that a large section of society deems abortion unacceptable.
On the other hand, there are those who argue that a woman should solely decide whether to opt for an abortion or not. The belief of this segment is that a woman should not be prejudiced against if she goes for an abortion. This raises a number of question marks, especially in relation to the role men can play if for example, they are against abortion. What say would they have if the female who is pregnant with their child opts for an abortion?
What are your views in relation to abortion? Do you think it should be discussed further? Let us know your views and thoughts in the comments section below.