#teamnile: Charlotte Abortion Post was Uncalled For, Netizens Bash Fred Nile

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By Athena Yenko | February 24, 2014 3:20 PM EST

Christian Democratic Party MP Fred Nile had been suffering heavy bashing across social media channels, following his controversial post about late Charlotte Dawson's abortion in 1999.

On Sunday, a picture of Ms Dawson was posted on Official Christmas Democratic party Facebook page with the following post:

"Many I am sure are now aware of the tragic ending to Charlotte Dawson. It highlights how depression and self-harm can affect anyone. Left unmentioned in many obituaries, is the poignant story faced by Charlotte in 1999. Charlotte Dawson revealed in her autobiography how she aborted her child with swimmer Scott Miller because he didn't want any distractions in the lead-up to the Sydney Olympics.

 The Facebook post went quoting Ms Dawson's 2012 memoir titled Air Kiss &tell.

 "Everything Scott had done was leading up to this moment and nothing could stand in his way, so it was decided that we would terminate  the child and try again later. Who needed a developing foetus when a gold medal was on offer, eh? Maybe it was hormonal, but I felt the early tinges of what I can now identify as my first experience with depression."

The post went on:

"On the day of the termination, Charlotte says she was in "total turmoil." Her husband accompanied her to the clinic, but "couldn't cope with the atmosphere," so left her alone. After the procedure, Charlotte went home and tried to behave as though nothing had happened, but says something had changed forever.

"I felt a shift," she says. "Maybe it was hormonal, but I felt the early tinges of what I can now identify as my first experience with depression."

A Twitter hastag "#teamnile" was written in one of the corners of the picture.

Concerned netizens found the post uncalled for and disgusting.

PhD student Angela Williams commented on Mr Nile's post but was deleted and was flagged as inappropriate.

Ms Williams then penned an open letter to criticise Mr Nile.

"Since you choose to remove my dissenting comments on your Facebook post I am writing to you here to ask why you think it is appropriate to continue the bullying of Charlotte Dawson after her tragic death," she wrote.

"It shows that your core motivation is to drive forward your agenda, regardless of any harm that may cause her family and loved ones, or the impact it may have on anyone facing the difficult decision to terminate a pregnancy. It also shows your absolute lack of regard for anyone struggling with mental health issues."

Other Facebook users expressed annoyance against Mr Nile's post.

"This is painfully sad. I am Catholic and pro-life, but I definitely don't think it's okay to post this story so soon after Charlotte's death - or even at all. Pointing blame or making excuses is not at all helpful. What is respect and love - hate the sin, love the sinner. I just wish Charlotte had received more during her life," Sofie Boffa commented.

 "She suffered from Depression and you want to make it all about abortion," Julia Bains commented.

"Fred Nile ... For a man who purports to espouse Christian values it is not very Christian of you to post this picture with your view of the world," Facebook user Liz Hewat wrote.

"Now is not the time to highlight her struggles but reflect on the great things she did in her life," Natalie Kosanic commented. 

As for Mr Nile, he said that Ms Dawson's story need to be told.

"Charlotte Dawson's story is a sad tragedy as she, like many, is a victim of depression. Her story needs to be told because, if it could happen to a strong and successful woman  such as Charlotte, it can happen to anyone. May she finally be at peace. Our sympathy and prayers are with her loved ones."

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