There was justifiable outrage across the world last week when Justice Nathalie Lieven made the horrific decision to use the law to force a mentally unwell woman to have an abortion against her will. A decision made all the more macabre and grotesque given that the maternal grandmother was offering to raise the child in the event that mum cannot cope. Just who did Lieven think she was imposing the will of the State over and above the will of this poor family and the right of that child?
Pro-life groups quickly swung into life and petitions sprang up to challenge this inhumanedecision. MP’s were lobbied, voices raised and, drum roll please, it worked. An appeal has now overturned the decision and the baby will live not die. This is great news because every one of us, from conception to the grave, has the right to life. We each have dignity and worth and nobody has a right to take this from us. Especially the State.
Judge Lieven’s nasty decision was troubling on a number of levels. Not only because a life was placed in jeopardy but also because this ruling swung our nation further towards an erroneous modern belief that views the State not the Family as prime educator. Who did Judge Lieven think she was over-ruling the desire of a mother to keep her baby? Big brother? Why was the State here seeking to trump the right of the family in making this decision? Sorry but no amount of hand-wringing language of profound regret, such as she used in announcing her decision, gets Lieven off the hook. By favouring the cold detached will of the State over the loving desire of the mother she was ushering us into a dystopian world of 1984.
We touch on one of the gravest developments of recent years. The creeping intrusion by the State into our private lives. Libertarians and Catholics alike have long understood that the State exists to protect our freedoms only not to guide our behaviour and make our decisions for us. Otherwise the rights of individuals are easily crushed and the very things that protect the individual from the State, like faith and family, come under attack.
It is vitally important then that every time the State behaves like an Orwellian Big Brother we fight back. Noisily and with gusto! Look at how protest helped in this case. The bottom line is that the State has no right to tell us what to believe or how to behave and nor does it have the right to take our children from us. We must fight for our freedom!