FULL disclosure: I have never had occasion to seek an abortion, nor have I ever disputed the right of women to have control over their own bodies and fertility.

So the arrival of a group of Texan evangelical anti-abortionists led by a chap who will never be pregnant, is a gross interference in somebody else’s business in my book.

Enough havoc has already been caused back in the US of A where “religious” right-wingers, with the help of Donald Trump’s right-wing Supreme Court appointees, have overturned a 40-year-old legal ruling which gave all women the right to a safe, legal termination.

Thanks to overturning Roe v Wade, a whole phalanx of states which have had oven-ready anti-abortion legislation on the back burner these many decades rushed to put on their statute books laws which sometimes outlaw abortions in all cases including rape or incest.

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These zealots are disinterested in the fact that some terminations are essential to save the lives of the mothers.

It seems the rights of the unborn trump those of adult women.

The Texans are using 40 days of prayer outside healthcare providers in Scotland to protest at the intention to provide buffer zones preventing women seeking all manner of reproductive advice from being screamed at.

They represent the views of one particular faith strand, but, in truth, almost all major religions have an unsavoury history of coercion and control where women’s rights are concerned.

Right now some very brave young women – some still at high school – are confronting an Iranian administration which even decrees what women will wear and how they will wear it. You will search the Koran in vain for passages which enshrine this particular form of misogyny, these “holy rules” have been distilled through the prejudices of the patriarchy and rendered unrecognisable from the original intent.

Just as they have in Afghanistan where the Taliban have once again put the female population firmly back in a box, unwilling to let them attend secondary education or seek careers of their choice. It is a monstrous betrayal not just of the women and girls concerned, but also of the worthless promises the Taliban made when they resumed office.

Meanwhile in Saudi Arabia, to whom we still cheerfully sell arms and with whom we maintain cosy diplomatic relations, the women who began a campaign to drive their own cars, and go out of their own homes minus a male relative, were jailed for their insolence in querying male dominance.

No amount of “sportswashing” or cosmetic additions to public entertainment alters the fact that this regime, like so many in the Middle East, unblushingly subjugates its womenfolk. (Not even to mention having a sideline in murdering and dismembering the odd journalist.) Happily the Hindu custom of widows being compelled to throw themselves on their husband’s funeral pyre has long gone, but as late at 1987 some men were arrested having drugged an 18-year-old women who refused to die this way and threw her on the flames.

What remains widespread is the practice of killing female babies as they are still considered of less value than male children.

That is a judgement which carries into adult life, as the appalling gang rapes of recent years demonstrate.

In fact, throughout the Indian subcontinent it’s still not unusual for the victim of a sexual assault to be deemed the guilty party and her assailants to evade justice.

We are not subject to such drastic prejudice here, or in Europe generally, but, as the Helena Kennedy report into misogyny detailed, there is a widespread lack of respect towards women and girls; from the use of inappropriate language and behaviour to a general assumption of male superiority.

What was startling about the debates in the wake of the Sara Everard, Bibaa Henry and Nicole Smallman murders – one killed while walking home, the latter two while spending time in a public park – was the number of men who pronounced themselves shocked that women are routinely frightened to use their own streets after dark.

Men who had sisters, wives, girlfriends and, obviously, mothers, but had no reason to consider that their greater strength might be considered a threat since they themselves would never contemplate assaulting lone women.

And while our religious leaders hardly carry the same terror as Iran’s so-called morality police, there’s often been a history of female suppression dressed up as necessary adherence to faith-based pronouncements.

Who could forget the horrendous tale of the young Indian woman who died in Galway in 2012, because a consultant suggested it would be illegal to interfere with symptoms of imminent miscarriage when a foetal heartbeat could still be detected.

It may be that tragedy fed into Eire’s later referendum which outlawed the legal amendment in question by a whopping two to one margin – a quite astonishing result for a country which had for so long been in thrall to the priesthood, and from where 170,000 women every year travelled to England in search of a legal termination.

IT took an inordinate amount of time for the Church of Scotland to ordain a woman as a minister, and there had previously been pushback against female elders. It was 2004 before it staggered to the conclusion that no heavenly thunderbolts would accompany the arrival of the first female Moderator.

The English Anglicans, who have long enjoyed a ridiculous level of interest in the sex lives of their adherents, were hardly in the vanguard of female advancement, having not ordained a woman bishop until 2014.

Wherever you look, all the world’s major religions seem to carry the same misogynistic gene, happy to bless the sandwich makers and bakers, ever dilatory to award any meaningful status.

Since we comprise more than 50 per cent of the population it’s fair to ask why we women have allowed ourselves to travel second class along most of life’s pathways. Yet almost all the professions came very late to the astonishing thought that women might be as bright and as competent as their male counterparts.

And, in fairness, some professions now boast a preponderance of female students. However, since many of them go on to marry and have children, they run straight into another roadblock to advancement.

For, as we all know, pregnancies have nothing whatsoever to do with the menfolk in their lives.

Conceptions may not be exactly immaculate, but the male half of the tangoing twosome will not find his place on the advancement ladder in any way inconvenienced.

The arrival of paternity leave seemed a belated admission that a baby should bond with both parents, and that men who took no time off could miss out on some very special experiences. Dispiritingly, there was a limited take-up of this leave, many men fretting that too long an absence from the rat race might find some other rat squatting at their desk.

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There are, we know now, many instances of men choosing to stay at home whilst their higher-earning wives continue to work. This takes a certain level of maturity all round, and involves different sorts of sacrifices.

But, bottom line, what is at issue here is choice. I have absolutely no problem with people deciding that for them an abortion is completely beyond their moral pale. I have every kind of problem with their attempting to bully other women into endorsing that view.

The Texans will come here and pray their “40 days for life”. They will certainly not be around to pick up the pieces when a woman with too many kids has another, or a rape victim carries home the result of that crime.

They will then go back home to a state which holds the record for capital punishment, and where gun crime is endemic. There is only room it seems, for the sanctity of some lives.