My friend Greg Burke, the Rome correspondent for Fox News, had a great piece on Live Shots the other day.
Andrea Bocelli: Doctor Told Mom To Abort Me
June 9, 2010 – 7:21 AM | by: Greg Burke
Singer Andrea Bocelli, one of the best-known Italians in the world, has publicly thanked his mother for not aborting him.
In a YouTube video posted by an American pro-life group, Bocelli was playing the piano in a charity performance for Haiti. He told the story about how a young pregnant woman went into the hospital with appendicitis.
Bocelli said doctors put ice on her stomach, and later suggested she have an abortion, since they believed the baby would be born with some disability.
“But the young brave wife decided not to abort, and the child was born,” the singer recounted, sitting at the piano. “That woman was my mother, and I was the child.”
Bocelli, who has sold more than 70 million records, was born partially blind, with congenital glaucoma. When he was still a boy he lost his sight completely.
“Maybe I’m partisan, but I can say that it was the right choice,” the singer said. “I hope this could encourage any mothers who sometimes find themselves in difficult situations, in those moments when life is complicated, but want to save the life of their baby.”
Despite the strong influence of the Catholic Church in Italy, there’s very little debate about abortion in the country, and it’s hardly even an issue in political campaigns.
Bocelli was born in 1958, and abortion was not legalized in Italy until 20 years later, leading some Italian bloggers today to charge that the singer was making the story up.