11 July 2019
Rt. Hon. Winston Peters MP,
I am writing to you in defence of our precious unborn and their mothers who are under an unprecedented attack.
The State has a serious duty to protect the lives of all members of the human family. The option preferred by the Minister of Justice would remove this protection. It is contended that in upholding your commendable policy opposing the decriminalisation of abortion and acting in the best interests of the unborn and their mothers, NZ First should refrain from supporting this bill through cabinet and oppose the bill at its first and any subsequent readings. Any bill that seeks to make the killing of the defenceless unborn “a reproductive health service” represents an unprecedented attack on the sanctity of life.
Right to Life commends NZ First for its defence of the lives of our precious unborn and their mothers. We are aware that NZ First is the only party in Parliament that has a policy to oppose the decriminalisation of abortion. I recall that at the Family First Conference in Auckland in 2014 when you were interviewed by Bob McCoskrie, you stated that “abortions should be legal, safe and rare”. You were asked if you supported the Green’s policy of decriminalising abortion, you replied “no we don’t”. You then said that you believed that life began at conception and that the child had a right to life.
It is reported in the media that your caucus is committed to supporting a bill through cabinet that would remove the killing of the unborn by abortion from the Crimes Act and make the killing of the unborn “a reproductive choice for women”. It is the wish of the Prime Minister to remove the stigma associated with the killing of the unborn and to make the killing of the child no longer a crime, but a health service.
The sanctity of life of the unborn and its right to life are protected under the Crimes Act section 182 Killing unborn child and section 183 Procuring abortion by any means. It is a serious crime to kill a child in the womb. Every- one who violates these sections is liable to imprisonment for up to 14 years. This legal protection has been there since 1856, we change it at our peril.
The Royal Commission in its report to Parliament in 1977 said, on upholding the status of the unborn child. “The unborn child as one of the weakest, the most vulnerable and most defenceless forms of humanity, should receive protection. From a biological point of view there is no argument as to when life begins. Evidence was given to us by eminent scientists from all over the world. None of them suggested that human life begins at any other time than at conception.” In rejecting the argument that some degree of development should be reached before the unborn child be accorded status, the Commission said, “If some stage of physical or mental development has to be accepted as indicating whether or not human life is in being, so a stage may be reached at the other end of life where a person who has become senile or has lost consciousness may be disposed of.”
The unborn child is the weakest and most defenceless member of the human family and needs special legal protection. Every day in New Zealand nearly thirty-five children in the womb are violently destroyed and their mothers the second victim of abortion, are left with a life time of grief and sorrow. Our women deserve better.
A poll of a 1,000 respondents conducted by Curia Market Research on behalf of Family First in December 2017, revealed that 96% of NZ First voters were opposed to sex selection abortions. That 38% were opposed to abortions being performed after 15 weeks and a further 10 % were opposed to abortions being done at all. 73 % were opposed to abortions and wanted them reduced.
If we as a society deny the humanity of the unborn, then logically we will one day deny the humanity of those who are suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s. The denial of the humanity and right to life of the unborn is a threat to the right to life of every citizen.
The decriminalisation of abortion will;
- Allow for sex selection abortions, which are currently unlawful.
- Allow for abortion up to birth for babies with a disabiliy including Down Syndrome.
- Not protect women seeking an abortion because they are subject to violence and coercion.
In conclusion, Right to Life requests that you withdraw support for the decriminalisation of abortion and that you use your influence to have the current unlawful abortion on demand stopped. Please promote adoption as a loving option.
Thank you for all that you are doing to defend life, protecting women from the violence of abortion and promoting the common good.