Christians furious over TV abortion ad

Christians furious over TV abortion ad May 24, 2010

THE UK’s first TV ad campaign for abortion services airs tonight on Channel 4 at 10.10pm – and the fundies are besides themselves with rage.
Ahead of the screening of the Marie Stopes International (MSI) ad, the Christian Institute garnered a fine crop of foam-flecked comments from furious religious opponents.
Said Anthony Ozimic, a spokesman for Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC):

Abortion ads will trivialise abortion. It is an insult to the hundreds of women hurt by abortion every day. Such ads are offensive and will mislead viewers about the reality of abortion.

Michaela Aston, from the “pro-life” charity Life, wailed:

To allow abortion providers to advertise on TV, as though they were no different from car companies or detergent manufacturers, is grotesque. By suggesting that abortion is yet another consumer choice, it trivialises human life and completely contravenes the spirit of the 1967 Abortion Act, which was supposed to allow for a small number of legal abortions in a limited number of hard cases, but has been twisted and distorted to allow for mass abortion on demand.

Even Vivianne Pattison, chairman of the failed radio and television watchdog Mediawatch UK, scrambled onto the bandwagon, lamely declaring:

We are not a pro-life group but we do have issues with this because women with an unplanned pregnancy are in a vulnerable position.

And Norman Wells, Director of the Family Education Trust, said:

Every abortion involves a personal tragedy for a mother and a child which will have lasting consequences whether immediately felt or not.

The ProLife Alliance, which claims that the advert breaks broadcasting guidelines, said:

The purpose of an abortion commercial is clearly to ‘sell’ abortion. This is hardly conducive to making the ‘informed sexual health choices’ which Marie Stopes claims to provide.

But Marie Stopes Marketing Director, Julie Douglas, hit back, saying:

This ad is all about providing information so women have the confidence to know who they can call to reach people who will be non-judgmental.

The advert will not be screened in Northern Ireland, as abortion is illegal in the province.

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  • I like this. It’s subtle. It doesn’t come right out and say, “Hey, need an abortion? Come on down to Abortions R Us”.
    Really, if this commercial aired in the U.S., …wait a minute….we’re not open-minded enough here. Never mind.

  • Al

    I look forward to watching it tonight, see what the fundies are bleating about this time.

  • PJC

    Anything that will drive the fundies bonkers is okay with me.

  • William Harwood

    How dare TV stations in America carry ads for Democrats, since such ads take the position that the Party of Progress is superior to the Party of No.
    How dare TV stations in Texas carry ads for a science-based school curriculum, since those ads imply that separation of church and state is guaranteed by the First Amendment.
    How dare TV stations carry ads for hospitals, since those institutions take the position that such alternatives-to-medicine as homeopaths and naturopaths are incompetent humbugs.
    How dare TV stations carry ads for aspirin, since such ads imply that Christian Scientists and others who reject life-saving medicine are, let us be polite and say misinformed.
    How dare Canadian TV stations carry ads for American beer, since those ads imply that the foreign product is superior to Canadian beer.
    How dare TV stations carry documentaries that claim the earth is round, since those programs belittle the Flat Earth Society.
    How dare … Are the right-to-birthers, who don’t give a shit what happens to a baby AFTER it is born, starting to see the parallels?

  • Har Davids

    I wouldn’t recommend abortion to anyone as an easy way of a pregnancy, but sometimes it’s the best way out. There’re plenty of born, unwanted children in this world, why can’t those bigots show some compassion for them? It’s so easy, and cheap, to scream about something that doesn’t even look like a human being yet.

  • Stonyground

    I actually agree with the religiots who say that abortion is a bad thing but I am pragmatic enough to know that if they got their way and had it banned it would still happen anyway and the consequences would be terrible because many proceedures would be carried out by unqualified persons.
    The way to reduce abortions is to avoid unwanted pregnancies in the first place. Although no form of contraception is 100% reliable, we can now come pretty close. Now let me think, what is the one thing that is getting in the way of every single sexually active person having knowledge about and access to contraception? Oh yes, it is the religiots and their totally screwed up attitude towards human sexuality.

  • More whining from the fetus fetishists. I like the ad not only because it’s good (subtle yet effective) but because it pisses off the wingnuts.

  • Ryan

    ah hypocrisy…especially here in the USA, conservative fundies have no problems supporting to send grown men into a war zone for absolutely no reason….and they still have the balls to call themselves “pro-life”
    At least some of the more sensible news outlets here are starting to call them “anti-abortion”

  • Barry Duke

    @ Al: Why wait? Click in the pic and watch it now. (Sorry if it’s not clear that the image links to YouTube)

  • JohnMWhite

    The main argument I have seen against the commercial, at least the one from those a little more sophisticated than the ones with their knee-jerk bleating about “think of the babies!”, is that it is inappropriate to have a commercial discussing such a serious subject next to wacky adverts for car insurance and Tesco. The line of thinking, echoed by Life in the quote above, is that you’re not supposed to talk about serious issues in an advertising spot, and to do so trivialises and commercialises abortion automatically. I suppose they have never heard of Public Service Announcements and never seen an advert for the Samaritans or Save The Children, then…
    Consciously or not, their irrational arguments against this ad simply betrays that they really fear information being presented to women – because the women might then dare to use it. Control, ultimately, is their aim, and for them to complain that a TV advertisement subtly and gently suggesting there are options and people to talk to if you end up unexpectedly pregnant is somehow taking advantage of women in a vulnerable state is pretty sickeningly hypocritical from the people who stand outside abortion clinics screaming at them and waving placards when they try to enter a medical facility for an extremely personal procedure.
    Sorry if this appears twice, I seem to be having some trouble with the form.

  • Broadsword

    When the religiots sing and pray in public, I look at them with a mixture of amusement and disgust. Imagine the embarrassment if you were related to one of those? I can’t see what they’re getting so worked up about. Once again a contributor to the LOLgod website has put my thoughts in a nutshell:
    http://lolgod.blogspot.com/2010/05/this-is-not-difficult-concept.html

  • Anonymous

    You know, ads like this run in the US a lot. The difference is, they’re run by deceptive fundamentalist Christian groups who bait and switch you in an effort to discourage your abortion. The substance of the ad is the same; only difference is the contact info at the bottom.
    Here’s Jezebel’s take
    http://jezebel.com/5546233/the-abortion-ad-youd-never-see-on-american-tv

  • William Harwood

    I again invite any interested persons (no exceptions) to send me a letter or postcard providing a name and address to which I can mail a complimentary data CD containing my books as PDF files. Provided the post office will still deliver the CD to you, you do not have to use your real name. I do not see how anyone who declines this offer can justify posting nitpicking objections to my comments that I have already anwered in great detail in my books. The address is:
    Dr William Harwood
    3920 50 Avenue, apt 303B
    Red Deer, AB
    T4N 3Z1
    Canada.

  • Janstince

    Broadsword – I saw one of those guys, in Las Vegas, of all places. My soon-to-be fiancée and I were there for having some fun, seeing some shows, dropping some money at the tables, and having sex out of wedlock. I nearly went up to him to point out that he was in Sin City, the new Sodim and Gomorrah, and he should take his dark age ideals somewhere else so that people could have a good time without his constant bleating. My lady pulled me away, afraid I’d get in a fight with the guy as he was in a wheelchair and it would end up on the news. I still think I shouldve said my peace, but she was probably right, the old loon might’ve taken a swing at me.

  • Broadsword

    @Janstince
    That was a no-win situation matey, best walk away with your dignity intact. Your missus was right on that occasion but I find they can cramp your style sometimes when you have to get really serious.
    I saw that guy later on myself, he’s more to be pitied:
    http://media.photobucket.com/image/wheelchair_drinking/aabrahim73/wheelchair_drinking.jpg

  • NeoWolfe

    Sharp point Broadsword,
    But, every guy wants to go bareback, and no girl really wants to take the pill, the health risks are real.
    Like females of any species, women are driven to reproduce, and derive satisfaction from nurturing their offspring. It is contrary to their nature to abort their pregnancies. Particularly if their belief system condemns it. It gets sticky.
    But, in the eighties it was not uncommon for women to forego birth control, and just get abortions every three months or so. It was actually more cost effective and less health risk. Go figure.
    Bottom line, if a guy doesn’t squirt his swimmers in her vagina, the egg is shed anyway. The fact that egg and swimmer got together doesn’t make the egg holy. Abstinence, condom, pill, or abortion, the result is still the same.
    NeoWolfe

  • Brian Jordan

    Well for a starter, any organisation that’s against abortion but is also against contraception can fuck off. I’d have said preferably into their hand, but they’re probably against that too.

  • Jen

    Ugh.

  • NoName

    ” it trivialises human life ”
    No, that is what Christians have been doing for hundreds and hundreds of years.

  • Urmensch

    William,
    Are you familiar with Scribd which allows you to upload pdf’s. You could make any such material available to all and they can download and save the docs.
    If you already know of it then please ignore this.

  • L.Long

    Lets see….
    islamics running planes into buildings doesn’t trivialize life.
    xtians burning witches doesn’t trivialize life.
    xtians NOT promoting safe sex so thousands in africa can die horrible death doesn’t trivialize life.
    xtians NOT helping women with handicapped kids doesn’t trivialize life.
    But getting rid of a parasite does trivialize life.
    Besides, once healed, plus a few minutes of sweaty exercise and the thing is replaced.
    I am 100% for abortion information just as I am for sex information.
    Religion is NEVER an intelligent way to make a decision; it can only be done with GOOD solid rational information.

  • Pete H

    As the late, great Bill Hicks said:
    “If you’re so pro-life, do me a favour: don’t lock arms and block medical clinics. If you’re so pro-life, lock arms and block cemeteries.”

  • Graham Martin-Royle

    Abortion is horrible! The world would be a much better place if there were no abortions……BUT
    sometimes an abortion is the only option. No-one, I repeat no-one has an abortion without thinking long and hard about it. I’m a man, I’ll never be put in that position but I know that if I were to need one, I would want to know where to get information and advice. That is what this ad is about. Why don’t those who are complaining about it see that? Do they really think it’s like any other ad and it will persuede people to rush out and purchase an abortion?
    And why, considering how long abortions have been legal in the U.K., is abortion NOT LEGAL in Northern Ireland? The last time I looked Northern Ireland was part of the U.K.

  • Marcus

    I think this ad has been sensitively handled. It doesn’t ‘sell’ abortion at all. As usual, the fundies are getting their knickers in a twist on a point of principle rather than looking at the offending article objectively and asking whether or not it might actually benefit women who find themselves in a very real and often very worrying dilemma. I’d bet a pound to a pinch if shite that half of those who are getting so hysterical over this haven’t even watched the ad.

  • barriejohn

    NeoWolfe’s remark reminded me of this!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=47P59ha9k9s

  • Aad Molenkamp

    Why, oh why is it that all these people that are against abortion are people you wouldn’t want to fuck in the first place hey?

  • sailor1031

    Aad: those people want to fuck,in fact they do it more than the rest of us and are outbreeding every other group. They just don’t want to talk about it or even admit that they do it. I think they are all embarassed that their deity makes them reproduce in this disgusting but irresistably pleasurable way. They can’t help themselves it seems but like everything else religious they can carry on the pretence that they don’t…..
    As for the commercial, seems to me like every other commercial on TV – if you don’t like it flip the channel, if you don’t want an abortion don’t have one….

  • DJStuCrew

    Great comments! I’ll only add that we’re on the brink of a world population of 7 Billion people. That’s seven BILLION, with a “B.” Talk about trivializing life! Better to use our resources to care for the children already HERE than wring our hands over the potential new arrivals! You do have to hand it to the religiholics, though; they’ve done a WONDERFUL job of making people think of a developing fetus as a baby! Even pro-abortion people sometimes fall prey to the deception. Yet just as a brick and a board are not yet a house, the tiny bulb of dividing cells in the first trimester is NOT yet a baby. It’s not “unborn” or “pre-born” or ANY born… it is gestating, and MAY come to term. Nature is the biggest abortionist; it is estimated that nearly 3 of every 5 fertilized eggs self-aborts anyway. We humans aren’t even running a CLOSE second! Hey, here’s a thought: religiholics should support gay sex! Because gay sex prevents abortion! Do it for Jesus!!!

  • barriejohn

    Sailor1031: As most contributors to this site know, fundamentalists of all flavours are well-known for their large families, but I knew of quite a few evangelical Christians couples who, later in life, had “unplanned” pregnancies – whoops! This was a source of great embarrassment to them, and great mirth amongst the children in the congregations, as it showed that, whilst inveighing against “the lusts of the flesh”, they were all going at it like rabbits within the confines of their bedrooms!!

  • William Harwood

    Urmensch: I would be delighted to put God, Jesus and the Bible on the web so that anyone could download it free (I am not in it for the money). Unfortunately, I suspect that my publisher would see it as a breach of contract. Giving it to individuals who ask is not the same thing.

  • shargraves

    Hey BarryD – Please pass my address on to Harwood for his Cd. I’ve been after an accurate examination of religious texts for a while.
    Also – bob hutton is intending to post tracts your way Harwood. 67p he told me the postage was!

  • William Harwood

    Shargraves: see the mailing address higher on this page.
    Mail from the godphuqt will either be discarded or returned to sender. It will assuredly NOT be opened.

  • NeoWolfe

    BJohn,
    “The Meaning of Life” was a hilarious movie, but my favorite part was not the guy selling his children for medical research, it was the exploding fat guy in the restaurant, with the puke bucket and everyone diving for cover. I nearly shit myself laughing.
    I often find British humor to be rather campy, but that movie busted a gut.
    NeoWolfe 1

  • barriejohn

    Stephen Green has been jolted into life by this news, unsurprisingly!
    DEATH SQUAD FOR HIRE
    The advertisement is the first of a series planned to run until the end of June. Its target audience is women whose period is late because they have conceived a baby following sexual intercourse. It advises them to call an 0845 number, the Marie Stopes telephone ‘helpline’. The only ‘help’ on offer will be hands ready, at a price, to tear limb from limb the innocent baby growing in the mother’s womb. The bereaved mother will be left with the knowledge that she has killed her child, and without repentance and forgiveness through the saving merits of the Lord Jesus Christ, she will carry that psychological burden until the day of her own death.
    The Bible says God hates the hands that shed innocent blood and that blood defiles the land. Abortion is our modern form of human sacrifice, and Satan derives power from it, especially from the blood of the first-born. But it brings judgment on us all. The judgment falls as a view that human life is expendable. We see it on the streets. It comes home to the families of youths killed for a mobile phone or a ‘disrespectful’ look. How much more will the judgment of God fall on those who are complicit in the murder of their fellow human beings.

    http://www.christianvoice.org.uk/Press/press157.html