Originally appeared in Star Werribee Star on .

By XAVIER SMERDON

A WESTERN suburbs politician has been criticised for being “out of step” with his views on abortion.
Victorian Upper House Member for the Western Metropolitan Region, Bernie Finn, who organises the pro-life protest March for the Babies every year, told Star that abortion was not acceptable under any circumstances, including cases of rape.
“In this day and age, no I don’t think there is any acceptable reason for having an abortion,” Mr Finn said.
“In years gone by when they needed to kill the baby to save the mother then it might have been acceptable, but in today’s world I think that’s a very 1950s argument.”
In cases where a woman has been raped, Mr Finn said an abortion was likely to cause more distress.
“I think many rapists and particularly paedophiles use abortion as a defence, they use it as a way to destroy the evidence,” he said.
“I’ve spoken to a number of women who have been raped and then had abortions and they told me that from their point of view having an abortion was like being raped a second time.
“I don’t think abortion is acceptable under any circumstances and I don’t see why we should be killing babies for the crime of the father.”
Asked if he saw how some people could consider expecting a woman that had been raped to give birth to the baby as a cruel thing to do, Mr Finn said: “I think killing a baby is a particularly cruel thing to do, and there is not guarantee that it helps the woman”.
But CEO of Women’s Health West, Dr Robyn Gregory, told Star the vast majority of the population did not support Mr Finn’s views.
“There is no evidence to suggest that having an abortion creates emotional or psychological harm to women,” Dr Gregory said.
“In fact, women that are forced into giving birth against their will experience a higher degree of psychological distress than those that choose to have an abortion.
“I think that this appalling idea that a woman should continue with a pregnancy no matter what the circumstances are is an extremely thoughtless approach to human life.”