Philippa Taylor

Could life issues be a vote decider?

Philippa Taylor was Head of Public Policy at CMF until September 2019 and now works with CARE. She has an MA in Bioethics from St Mary’s University College and a background in policy work on bioethics and family issues.
The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of CMF.

Who to vote for? It is a rare to find one party or one candidate that you think has all the ‘right’ views. Most of us will have to decide what is important to us – sometimes it will be the party, sometimes the candidate or maybe a single issue will make the difference.

Deciding your vote on a single issue might seem quite narrow, but the position a candidate, or a party, takes on ‘life issues’ could actually be incredibly significant. It need not just be about the position a candidate holds on abortion or euthanasia, important as they are. But what does a candidate also think about the care of the lives of the weakest and most vulnerable in society? Will your candidate, or party, fight for the person with a disability, the elderly person needing a good care home, the frightened teenager in an abortion clinic, the young child whose father has just left them, the embryo in a test tube with three genetic parents, the dying, lonely, patient with no sense of hope? What value does a candidate place on these lives? Are they lives worth fighting for and if so, how?

Indeed, concern about ‘life issues’ could extend even wider, perhaps to the desperate lives of those in a downward spiral of debt, those suffering bullying at school or in work, the poverty stricken, the broken families, or the homeless. The list could go on.

The gift of life, at whatever age, is a precious gift and it needs protecting, not because of what a person can do or contribute to society, but because of who we are. How we value, and look after the most vulnerable lives in our society, from womb to tomb, speaks volumes about what we value. So thinking through where a party of candidate stands on life issues is not just a narrow peripheral issue to consider in this election.


This article was originally posted on the CARE Engage17 blog




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