Letter: Father's fight against abortion

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The Independent Online
Sir: Abortion is a thorny subject; but I was stung your report (23 May) about the Kellys from Inverkeithing, Fife. Patricia Wynn Davies states that "an interpretation in favour of fathers would be tantamount to treating pregnant women as mere receptacles for child-bearing". Would not an interpretation in favour of the wife be tantamount to treating fathers as sperm donors?

So much is expected of the New Man - that he be involved in the pregnancy, in labour, in the birthing process, in the nurturing of the new baby - is it unreasonable to expect that he might want a degree of involvement in the death sentence too? Wouldn't we brand this particular father an uncaring monster if he simply stood aside and said, "Yes, let it die"? I sympathise with the powerlessness he must feel.

I am a happy mother who would hate to live in a country where abortion was not available to women in need - but I cannot justify the use of abortion as a means of birth control. Mrs Kelly insists that no one can force her to have a child. Did anyone force her to conceive it?


Barton-le-Clay, Bedfordshire