Critics slam Barnaby Joyce’s controversial anti-abortion speech
arnaby Joyce has landed himself in hot water after he used the birth of his infant son as a reason as to why abortion should not be decriminalised in NSW.
He made the statement to the House on Thursday just before Question Time regarding the bill, which will be discussed in state parliament next week.
If it passes, NSW will become the last state to decriminalise abortion.
Critics were quick to condemn his argument, which involved the second birth of his son Tom.
In politics you have to fight the hard fights not just easy ones. I believe the other side of this debate is not being heard and I have a duty to ventilate it.
This legislation must go to a committee so others can have the same right, to ventilate an alternate view. pic.twitter.com/2BQciRChth
— Barnaby Joyce (@Barnaby_Joyce) 1 August 2019
Joyce’s statement can be seen below.
“On the first of June, Vikki’s and my son Tom took his first breath. This was not the start of his life. The reality is, he was part of this world for some time and was merely passing from one room to another,” the former deputy prime minister said.
“We have, and had, an absolute responsibility to Tom, but we never owned him. He was more than merely a property right. He was a person.
“He attained this indivisible right by being alive long before he was born. Tom had rights even though he was not conscious of them. They should not be removed by a parliament. He committed no crime.
“The hour of birth is an arbitrary point in modern medicine.
“Inside the womb, Tom kicked, punched, grabbed his umbilical cord, felt pain, slept and dreamt. With ultrasound he was most certainly seen in real human form.
“To say he didn’t have the rights of other human life is to say he must be subhuman.
“I don’t believe that any person, any doctor, any parliament, has the power today to declassify another person as less than human, and by so doing removing their fundamental right to be alive.
“In the NSW parliament they are debating whether Tom had no classification of human rights. Whether before his umbilical cord was cut, he was subhuman,” Joyce finished.
After his statement, Labor MPs erupted, shouting at him to “sit down”.
Many on Twitter took issue with Joyce’s statement.
— Nick Squillari (@N_Squillari) 1 August 2019
— Jim Little (@JimLittle1) 1 August 2019
If you don’t have a uterus it’s none of your damn business
— That Dr Sheep Person🌱💧 (@noplaceforsheep) 1 August 2019
However, Joyce stands firm in his opinion saying that he believes that the “other side of this debate is not being heard and I have a duty to ventilate it”.