Selling a book and pressed for time

Screen Shot 2015-09-17 at 09.16.20

Picture by Giovanni Arteaga

I was listening  this morning to Róisín Ingle of the Irish Times on BBC Raidio Uladh/Radio Ulster. She was talking to Karen Patterson about the fact  – mentioned yesterday by Perkin – that she’d had an abortion.  Róisín appeared to indicate that she’d become pregnant after a one-night stand and that her mother supported her in her choice to have an abortion. Karen asked her about the question of choice for the foetus/baby, and for that matter the father. Róisín either didn’t hear that question or misinterpreted it, because she went on talking about a woman’s right to control of her own body. She also mentioned that more on this could be read in her new book which is now on sale, and I’m afraid although Róisín gave the title, I’ve forgotten it. After the interview, Noel Thompson mentioned something about someone from Pro-Life coming on later.

True to his promise, a woman came on  air around 8.45 am. Her name was Cora Sherlock, and she talked about the number of women who’d had abortions and now regretted it. She said that  there is a group of such women who  offer solidarity to women who have similar regrets. Cora’s point was that the voice of such people doesn’t suit the public narrative and is largely silenced. She wanted to go on to talk about the unborn baby but Noel had to cut her short – “not because of principle but because of time”.

Regardless of your view on the rights and wrongs of abortion, it’s clear that Róisín Ingle was keen to sell her book on the back of the abortion she’d had. It was also clear that the point of view represented by Cora Sherlock is one that receives short shrift/no shrift in the media – certainly I didn’t know such a group existed until she said so. Just after 8.00 a.m. is prime-time radio listening; 8.45 a.m., on the other hand, is where’s-me-feckin’-coat time. You may believe, if you’re a supporter of the right to abortion, that it’s a good thing that those benighted people who are opposed to abortion are pushed back to 8.45 a m and given as little of the oxygen of publicity as possible. But you can’t deny that the media generally, and in this morning’s case Raidio Uladh, don’t present the case for and against abortion in  a balanced way.

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22 Responses to Selling a book and pressed for time

  1. sherdy September 17, 2015 at 8:54 am #

    So Roisin Ingle had an abortion and decided to write a book about her experience.
    She will now make money out of the killing of her unborn child.
    No one will be able to write about the experience of that unfortunate child.
    I wonder how Roisin will enjoy spending her profits!
    I am not against abortion, but the idea of making money as a result of it just seems a bit distasteful.

  2. Bridget Cairns September 17, 2015 at 8:55 am #

    what angers me is this trend to turn what used to be “private and personal” happenings in one’s life into a commercial entity in todays world, in order to sell what I am sure will be a forgettable moanfest.

  3. George September 17, 2015 at 8:59 am #

    What – you’ve never heard of the “Pro Life” campaigners or the tactics they employ Jude? Have you been living under a rock or something? Take a walk down Great Victoria Street to the Marie Stopes Clinic any day. You will see them all there intimidating young vulnerable girls and inflicting their unsolicited and judgemental views based on their own religious beliefs. Or Google “Precious Life” or “Bernadette Smyth”. These are not exactly a bunch of shrinking violets cut off from the oxygen of publicity.

    • Jude Collins September 17, 2015 at 9:56 am #

      I don’t think I suggested ‘they’ were shrinking violets, George. And is there a distinction between judgemental views and other views? And is one only allowed to express one’s views when they have been solicited? And is something based on religious beliefs therefore unworthy of expression? A lot of questions there, George. As to the oxygen of publicity: I’m referring to the air time those opposed to abortion get as distinct from those who favour it. I don’t believe the balance is equal and I don’t believe the attitude to both groups is equal by those who interview or address the subject. Of course it all comes down to whether there ‘s a human being in there. If there isn’t, then it’s ridiculous and offensive to offer judgement on those who abort – it’s simply a cluster of tissues, and getting rid of it would be no more significant than blowing your nose or having a dump. On the other hand if there is a human being in there, then the agitation of pro-lifers is pretty understandable. Wouldn’t you say?

      • George September 17, 2015 at 1:23 pm #

        Many questions indeed Jude. Let me try to answer a couple.

        Yes, I do think there is a difference between “judgemental views” and other views. Judgemental views, in the context that I am referring to here, are expounded by those who want to impose their moral code on others who don’t share that code. “I’m right, you’re wrong, you must accept my view”

        That is where the judgement part comes in and I have no time for those kind of views because they demonstrate intolerance and implied superiority. They cannot conceive that another viewpoint may have merit. If there’s one thing I am intolerant of, it’s intolerance.

        By contrast, those girls who want an abortion are not saying to the Pro-Life supporters that they also must have abortions if they get pregnant. There is no Yin and Yang here – no equal and opposite viewpoints – just one side judging the other.

        And you ask “is something based on religious beliefs therefore unworthy of expression?” Well, that depends on context and where it is expressed. In a church – fine – express away ’till your heart’s content.

        But, for example, is it right that my daughter’s primary school teacher, a member of an evangelical church, teaches creationism and rubbishes evolution and Big Bang theory? I would say, that in that context – “No”, that view, based on religious belief, is not worthy of expression. Again, it reeks of “I’m right, you’re wrong”. I utterly support the right of that teacher to hold that view but don’t express it to my daughter please.

        Same thing, to my mind, with those who are standing outside a clinic berating young vulnerable women who are in trouble telling them that they are going to burn in hell and that they are murderers. They are expounding that view based on their own particular religious moral code and I don’t think they should in that context.

        Whatever your views on the rights or wrongs of abortion (and I am no particular advocate of it), it is no wonder that some news editors might have an in-built bias to the predicament the girls find themselves in compared to those who might appear to be attacking them.

        • Jude Collins September 17, 2015 at 3:33 pm #

          Wooah, George – you’re really into this one. Ok.The ““I’m right, you’re wrong, you must accept my view” – -have you noticed any of the posters on this site pulling back and saying ‘Oh, I see what you mean, I withdraw the points I was making”? It’s my experience in 99% of arguments – and I’m as guilty as anyone, I concede – people stand their ground and don’t change a whit. That’s how people are, it seems.I’d disagree with you that religious people should express religious views only within the confines of a church – in fact, for truly religious people, their religion pervades every aspect of their life. If your child’s teacher is teaching only creationism and rubbishing scientific evidence, I’d be agin that for sure. But if she wants to include creationism in the possibilities, I don’t know that I’d want to gag her. Now the clinic: if what you say is true, that the protestors are ” berating young vulnerable women who are in trouble telling them that they are going to burn in hell and that they are murderers” – I’d be completely opposed to that. Is that really what they do? I haven’t been down to check it out – maybe I should. I have a suspicion – but only that – that perhaps it’s not quite so fire+ brimstone as that. I think since the law allows women to visit the clinic and/or have abortions, they should be free to do so. Equally, if some people believe abortions are murder, they’re entitled to protest, although as I say not in the way you’ve mentioned. (Sort of side track for a mo: why are posters of aborted babies seen as very ‘distasteful’? If having an abortion is a serious matter – and it seems (illogically to me) that everyone does – wouldn’t it make sense to show the nature of what is under dispute? ….Got side=tracked there. I think your last paragraph is essentially saying ‘Yes, the press are right to be on the side of the pro-choice people’. Mmmm.

    • Ryan September 17, 2015 at 10:22 pm #

      To say that every Pro-Life person is against abortion due to their religious beliefs is absolute nonsense. There is no atheists against abortion, is that what your saying??

      My mother is a strong Catholic, not in a traditional sense though. For example she supports gay marriage, non-married couples being in a relationship, divorce, etc But she’s devout in her opposition to abortion, yes her religious beliefs play a part but I think its just common decency that shes against murdering a child. That may be hard for some people to understand, in that situation I’d advise them to seriously look at their moral compass if they think killing children is okay just because the mother wants to. And no, a child being inside the womb is no different to child outside, its still a child.

      If a young person wants to commit suicide, would you say that’s okay? hey, its their body and life, who are you to say they cant?

      You see the highly dangerous territory we’re getting involved in here? Abortion, assisted suicide, etc are all topics that effect our society, we all play a part in that society rather we like it or not.

  4. Iolar September 17, 2015 at 9:43 am #

    It is all a question of priorities if you are busy editor. There are some issues that are in the public interest, dunking biscuits in your favourite hot beverage is just one recent example. As I should not engage in advertising, the wealth of information remains on the relevant I Player.

  5. billy September 17, 2015 at 11:41 am #

    for and against shouldnt come in to it,all these religious types dictating what people can and cant do with their own bodies and minds,if somebody wants an abortion big deal,maybe we need direct rule for ten yrs or so to pull this place into 2015 regarding these outdated laws,gay marriage,sex workers,abortion ect to name a few.

  6. Perkin Warbeck September 17, 2015 at 12:38 pm #

    The noble art of self-defence would have taken a big hit, Esteemed Blogmeister, if another Ingle lady (and mother of fifteen) had taken a different option to the contemporary Ingle lady who is currently hitting the headlines and the hoopla trail.

    The Ingle family is a renowned Ringsend family which has accomplished much in the roped ring. Jimmy Ingle, for instance, was the first amateur Irish boxer to become a European Champion. He won the flyweight title on Shakespeare’s birthday, 1939, in the newly opened National Stadium (aka Punchestown) on the South Circular Road in Dublin.

    His younger brother, Brendan, who was born in 1940, made his mark in managerial circles in the Sock Exhange. Among the alumni of his storied gym in Sheffield were Herol ‘Bomber’ Graham and Prince Naseem Hamed, both of whom were the finest exemplars of a style of boxing which became known as ‘Ingle’s Angles’.

    This style was (and still is) characterised by a wide stance which was optimised to provde leverage for punching.Thus, did the unorthodox defensive positions leave the hands free for powerful punches from an unusual variiety of often unusual angles.

    Brendan Ingle is as renowned for his wit outside the ring as the width of stance his pugilistic protetges adopted inside the ring. On the walls of his gym is framed the following notice: ‘Boxing can seriously damage your health BUT teaches self-discipline and gets you fit. Smoking, drugs and drinking JUST seriously damage your health’.

    On one almost famous occasion a waggonload of dabblers in the Sock Exhange (amongst whom were B. Ingle and his then reigning champ) fourwheeled into Government Buildings on Upper Merrion Street, Dublin 2. In recognition of the latest in a long list of Irish boxing achievements.

    it was clear that B. Ingle was somewhat nonplussed by the somewhat less than enthusiastic lobster-eyed looks of the resident bureaucratic mandarins of the permanent government. Dismal Scientists, one and all, not accustomed to the sight of flash exponents of the Sweet Science of Budd Schulberg.

    More used as they were to the more welcome sight of flash exponents of the Stock Exchange whose sporting interests leaned more towards the oval ball rather than the square ring. The type who would wallow with glee over the spectacle of eyegouging in the Aviva Stadium but would tsk tsk and tshake their heads in horror at a cut eye in the National Stadium.

    Sidling surreptitiously over to the nonplussed Banisteoir Brendan, Perkie’s inner ringsider made a whispered suggestion to the effect that perhaps it had something to do with his boxer’s sobriquet: Herol Bomber Graham. To which the jocular reply was:

    -Youse all have only ten seconds and ten days to vacate the premises.

    (This visit predated both the geiger counter-punch to the Cetlic Tiger and the Peace Process which witnessed the Cead Mile Failte to the same Govt Bldings of such short-fused pacifists and Putin-look alike, B. Hutchinson.)

    Speaking of Shakepeare (see above, under Jimmy Ingle) , the current Ingle person in the public eye would seem not to have inherited the family gene which emphasised above all else the core philosophy of self-defence, the roped ring, being no place for the defenceless.

    Certainly if one is to ringside-judge her interminable reiteration of her own take on the Ingle Jingle which could have been filched from the repertoire of Edith Piaf:

    -I had not nor do I have now, any regrets. Not a single, solitary regret.

    The new,improved DruidShakespeare version, not being to hand, Esteemed Blogmeister, one, alas, has no alternative but to quote the uncouth and unlettered yeoman from Statford-on-Avon:

    -The lady doth protest too much, methinks..

  7. giordanobruno September 17, 2015 at 4:32 pm #

    Is this the same radio ulster that still has a religious thought for the day? My impression is the conservative (and religious) makeup of much of their listening base would ensure they present such matters fairly neutrally.
    Have you researched it or are you basing this on one interview?
    Also the print media here, Newsletter, Irish News, Telegraph, again would have a readership many of whom would probably have unfavourable views on abortion.
    I can’t believe the Newsletter would be weighting its coverage in favour of abortion.
    Any figures?
    The same goes for the media in the South. Or are you being partitionist in this viewpoint?

    • Belfastdan September 18, 2015 at 12:31 pm #


      If you have read the Irish News lately irrespective of the views of the readership I think you will find that the majority of their regular columnists would take a “pro choice” view.

      • Jude Collins September 18, 2015 at 2:05 pm #

        Don’t be encouraging him to read unhealthy literature…

      • giordanobruno September 18, 2015 at 3:52 pm #

        Interesting. I won’t dispute you on that but it would be nice to see some facts and figures to back it up.
        And the other media outlets? Do you think the Newsletter is pro abortion?

  8. Gearoid September 17, 2015 at 6:24 pm #

    All rights start from the premise that all people are entitled to life, including the unborn, and all other rights proceed from that. The pro-abortion lobby, mantra-like, speak about the “right to choose” as if it was an absolute right recognized by the world at large. But this perverted notion of rights is trumped by the rights of the unborn who cannot speak or themselves and require advocates to take up their case.

  9. Ryan September 17, 2015 at 10:02 pm #

    Abortion is a crime against humanity. Its also what I call: “The Murder of the next Generation”. Of course the media have a dog in this fight, an agenda in other words. Just like the media have an agenda in many other areas too, such as the economy, mass immigration into Europe, etc. So don’t expect the media to play fair with the people who don’t conform to the agenda of their masters.

    The argument put forward in support of abortion, the only argument really, is that its a “Woman’s Right to Choose”. What of the right of the Father? More importantly, what of the right of the child to life?

    What about the effects abortion has on society? Whether we like it or not we all live together in a society and abortion effects that society. Take Germany, Germany if it continues down the path of low birth rates (one of the lowest in the world, way below replacement level) wont be Germany in 50 years time, it’ll be more like an offshoot of Turkey. What has this to do with abortion? because abortion plays a large part in low birth rates in Germany. Yes, other factors play a part too, the destruction of the traditional family unit amongst Germans, women taking a career over a family, lack of promoting having a family, etc but all this will cause Germany to cease to exist. The EU as a whole is facing the same problems and abortion plays a part in all this. Ireland, one of the last countries to ban abortion (and long may it continue) has the highest birth rate in the EU….that’s evidence that abortion effects birth rates on a significant scale.

    I support fully that women should receive all the help and support they need if they are pregnant and financial and emotional help in raising a child, especially if they are single parent.

    Just like what Japan is currently considering, its time for the EU as a whole to outlaw abortion. Ireland should never allow abortion to be legal. I don’t know about others but I regard children is a positive for our society and the more the better.

  10. BaldyBapTheBarber September 18, 2015 at 9:21 am #

    If only wombs had windows…

    • Jude Collins September 18, 2015 at 11:21 am #

      Under other circumstances I’d describe that as a killer line, Baldybap…

  11. Mary Jo September 19, 2015 at 9:10 am #

    As any mother can tell you, there is a point, at about 6 weeks, where a fetus goes from being an organic blob to being a child. Male thinkers from Aristotle right down to Aquinas were aware of the difference, even if they had their dates a bit confused. In primitive societies women availed of herbal abortifacients during the earlier stage of an undersired pregnancy without incurring the wrath of their societies.
    While women are entitled to control of their bodies, after 16 weeks of pregnancy, two bodies are involved. Much as I would like to see a middle way that permits legal abortion up to 16 weeks but no later, I cannot see it happening without legal challenges that would undo the protection of the undborn child.
    Meanwhile, I’ll go on voting no.

    • giordanobruno September 19, 2015 at 12:17 pm #

      Mary Jo
      No-one wants to see late trem abortions happening. I can’t see any way society can force women to carry through a pregnancy against their will and no-one has yet explained tome how it would be done, chemical straightjacket, physical straightjacket,prison..?
      The most humane solution is to reduce such situations as close to zero as we can, through better access to contraception, sex education, and when necessary,ready access to abortion in the early stages.

  12. Mary Jo September 19, 2015 at 9:12 am #

    Correction: 16 weeks, not 6.

  13. Jim Lynch September 21, 2015 at 3:08 pm #

    BaldyBap The Barber;

    “If only wombs had windows…”

    A womb with a view!

    I know the above is a joke, but maybe if people could see the life inside the womb, they would change their minds about so called choice!