Steven Waldman

Steven Waldman


Late Term Abortion — Beyond The Anecdotes

posted by swaldman

Both sides have been throwing out dueling anecdotes to prove that late term abortions are either a) essential to saving the life of the mother b) involve a case of horrible fetal abnormality or c) are for entirely frivilous reasons. Suspecting that perhaps none of these examples quite present an accurate overall picture, I’ve been searching for data — a more systematic way of assessing the situation. Amazingly, given how much debate has surrounded these procedure, the information out there is pretty murky.
As it happens, Kansas, where many late-term abortions take place, does keep statistics.
Here are the results.
In 2008, there were 192 abortions involving fetuses who were more than 22 weeks old and who were deemed viable.
Of those, literally none were aborted to save the life of the mother.


This would seem to be a big blow to pro-choice arguments that most late term abortions preserve the life of the mother.
However, the study also shows that in each one of the 192 cases, doctors (including George Tiller) determined that an abortion was necessary because “The patient would suffer substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function if she were forced to continue the pregnancy.” By Kansas law, late term abortions are only legal if they fit those criteria.
So at first glance, these data would seem to refute the pro-choice claims that it’s often to save the life of the mother but support their claims that it’s avoid serious maternal injury. Perhaps these abortions really were to avoid eptopic pregnancies or situations where women would have permanent organ damage.
Alas, in the abortion world it’s never that simple. The pro-life Attorney General, Phill Kline, a few years ago subpeonad the records as part of a case he was trying to bring against George Tiller. He saw 60 records. Kline told me that every single one of them had a psychiatric rather than physical justification — the “major bodily function” that would be suffering impairment being the brain.
If Kline is right, this at a minimum refutes the idea — spreading on some websites — that the primary reason for late term abortions is either horrible fetal anomoly, saving the life of the mother, or protecting her from egregious physical harm. At least based on the Kansas data, the main reason is the mental health of the mother.
I asked the Kansas Health Department whether they had response to Kline’s claim. They didn’t. So far as I know, no one has denied that basic claim. If someone does, I’ll update it here.
Before I go any further, I want to express awareness of the fact that Tiller is now at a disadvantage in defending himself from these charges, having been assassinated in cold-blood by a pro-life activist.
The idea that most late term abortions in Kansas were to help mothers avoid emotional distress — as opposed to life of the mother or fetus — is important for getting an accurate picture of why they happen.
But does that mean these abortions were illegal? At first blush, emotional distress would not seem to fit the definition of damaging a “major bodily function.” But legally it might. That’s because an earlier Kansas Attorney General had ruled that psychiatric problems could be considered a “major bodily function.” To be within the law, though, they’d have to mental health problems that were “substantial and irreversible.”
This is a point of contention. Tiller claimed they were. Kline recruited Paul McHugh, a respected psyciatry professor, to review the cases — some of which claimed that the “substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function” was psychiatric. He concluded that, from a psychiatric perspective, that was never the case.

“I saw no file that justified abortion on that basis. All the files justified the abortions on the patient’s present state of mind of being distressed and social proposals that this person’s life would be less successful, less developed, less opportune if this child were born, and those are not psychiatric reasons, those are social reasons….
Some of them would be construed as trivial and others would be construed as serious. A trivial one would not being able to go to a rock concert. A more serious one would be to say, “I am going to be worried about the life of this child later on in life.”

Going just by McHugh’s analysis, it does seem that late term abortions were done outside the spirit if not the letter of the law. At a minimum, it gives one a sense of why pro-life activists distrust any abortion restriction that defines “mental health” as a legitimate reason for allowing late abortions.
Again, having been murdered, Tiller is not here to rebut the charge — and I’ve found no reports of him having done so after McHugh made his analysis public.
I’m going to end one area of potential common ground. McHugh says that the women who got abortions fundamentally felt alone and lacking support.
“The mothers were expressing great senses of distress and worry about their future. They were tearful and preoccupied with the idea that only an abortion would help them. They said that they were sad and frightened and they spoke about fears that their future life would be changed. They expressed ideas that they were not being given adequate support, and that they felt that the abortion would help them.”
This is something upon which both sides can agree: Some women are choosing abortion because they feel they have no other choice. Give them another choice — financial support to raise the child, financial and moral support to put it up for adoption — and some might have taken a different path.



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Steven

posted June 15, 2009 at 6:18 pm


Steven,
Thanks for the relatively honest assessment. While I agree with you that the hard data surrounding late-term abortions is murky, there have been several verified cases of late-term Tiller patients who sought his services for fetal anomaly or cases where mother’s physical health was in danger (often, these were pediatric cases, sometimes rape).
Genetic counselors were a main referral source for him, as evidenced by their press release and articles from genetic counselors on the matter. Many (probably 20 or more) former patients (again, verified) spoke on TV, radio, or in print about very troubling and morally-challenging choices– certainly nothing trivial.
It then stands that Mr. Kline’s 60-record sample (0.1% of the alleged 60,000 late-term patients) could not have been a representative or unbiased sample of Dr. Tiller’s patients, assuming the psychiatrist’s assessment was independent and the medical records also included information on the fetus. It would be great to understand the circumstances under which Mr. Kline requested the records, by what criteria the records were selected, what information the records contained, and whether an independent review could be guaranteed. Can you shed any more light?
Thanks,
Steven



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Jennie

posted June 15, 2009 at 8:16 pm


Great article…thanks for presenting the data without clouding it with personal biases, as so many others do when discussing the topic. Most importantly, thank you for bringing up the idea of common ground and alternate choices. Pro-choicers get so caught up in defending abortion rights that they completely neglect to ensure that women actually have choices other than abortion, while many pro-lifers don’t want to put their money where their mouths are when it requires them to pay higher taxes, etc. to support these children. The moral implications of Roe v. Wade are important, but it is more important to make sure that women are supported and don’t feel forced to have abortions when they would rather not.



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pagansister

posted June 15, 2009 at 8:56 pm


If indeed some of the women who went to Dr. Tiller felt alone and having no choice, that in itself is mental distress, thus fitting, IMO inside the Kansas law. No one but the woman and the doctor involved know all the reasons for an abortion…no matter when they occur in a pregnancy. The right of a woman to have a termination should never be withdrawn. Options should be offered, but if after those offers have been refused, the procedure should be carried out.



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Julie

posted June 15, 2009 at 11:20 pm


Former Attorney General Phill Kline is considered to have very questionable ethics.
I believe I previously posted part of the Kansas Supreme Court’s ruling that raked Kline over the goals for not providing requested evidence and other things.
I also read that a Court orded Tiller to provide about 2000 abortion cases files.
Most of Kline’s charges against Tiller were dropped before the court hearing.



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Your Name

posted June 16, 2009 at 6:49 am


It is so disturbing that people would consider stress a reason to abort a fully formed baby. Where are we heading? I guess Peter Singers view of being able to kill someone under 2 is ok if you decide you do not want them?
I know a few of Tillers patients…I have seen his demented pictures of the babies he killed in his parents arms, and I have listened to the damage he did mentally to these people. What about their mental health?
Just because something is legal does not mean it is right…



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Pat R

posted June 16, 2009 at 7:57 am


Very well written article. I only wish to make the statement that the main causes behind the abortion movement, contraception, the drive for homosexual equality, wars etc. serve only one “MAJOR PURPOSE” which is the reduction of World population to approximately 550 million to 1.5 billion people by 2050. This is written into the charter of the UN, etched onto the Georgia Stones etc.
To get rid of people by any means especially the undesirables, Black, Hispanic, and poor Third World people who as they say greatly contribute to the problems of pollution, consume food and are unproductive.
Face it people, open your eyes we are under a type of oppression never seen before and “WILL” get exceedingly worst as the years go by!



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Your Name

posted June 16, 2009 at 8:24 am


What a MIND SET these people have adopted! …SICK ! …I worked in the Obstetric department in 1959 -1960 (this was @ a MILITARY HOSPITAL) First of all, this is not a Catholic issue, as most of the Doctors I worked with were non Catholics – I say this because in our Newspaper – they attempt to play it up as though we Catholics have no Compassion for these poor women. All of these doctors were dedicated to saving life. The chief of STAFF was a MORMAN DOCTOR ( He did study @ GEORGETOWN) and was considered one of the BEST. He trained each one of us Nurses to safely deliver a BABY, and we were told that he wanted to be present @ all the deliveries – no matter what time of day or night. Note that this was back in 1960. We are now fighting a culture of Death, and planned Parenthood is in CONTROL (another MONEY making SYNDICATE). I know of what I am talking about, because in our area, I was present @ a planned parenthood presentation to the Teens in our town. These were young teens who were sexually active, and planned parenthoods agenda was to show them how to use contraceptives. As a nurse @ the end of their presentation, I mentioned to this poorly trained presenter that she did not tell these youngsters the dangers involved with all of these devices and continued to do so. I told her that i wouldn’t want any of my children listening to her GARBAGE. She then defensively stated that they were reaching the children who were already sexually active – and once sexually active – there was no other way! I told her that I disagreed with her, that these children would never be able to relate in a healthy relationship, as pre-marital sex makes the female feel used, and not appreciated as a person in her own right. Read up on Margaret Sanger, and read up on the WOMEN who are Backing Planned Parenthood – They are all ANGRY WOMEN, who have been USED by MEN…And when ANGER gets out of Control, it becomes HATRED – and thus – a person becomes MENTALLY ILL. Our Country is Saturated with SEX, PORNOGRAPHY, SEX TRADE, etc, etc. We have no Meaning to life, and OUR PRECIOUS YOUTH are committing SUICIDE – And GOD is ALL but DEAD. We need to say our Prayers, and WAKE UP AMERICA!



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Your Name

posted June 16, 2009 at 8:58 am


Hello
There should be no 3rd term abortions. It is stated that not one of the 3rd term abortions performed by Dr Tiller were performed to save the life of the Mother. If a third term abortion was the only thing that could save the life of the Mother, then it should be offered- otherwise it shouldn’t be done.
Joseph J. Wagner



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Connie

posted June 16, 2009 at 9:20 am


Steve, you do know that ectopic pregnancies are resolved, one way or another, well before the 22nd week?



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Panthera

posted June 16, 2009 at 9:23 am


Hmm, this Dr. Paul McHugh appears to have some very firm views on homosexuality and transexuality that are not in alignment with any of the accrediting or oversight bodies governing psychology, psychiatric medicine and nursing nor general medicine in the US and the rest of Western Culture. His views on abortion and women seeking them are, certainly not what one might describe as reflecting the opinion of those of his peers who actually practice obstetrics.
To put it simply, Steven, you might want to take a bit closer look at this, gentleman’s publications and statements.
He is neither unbiased nor neutral in this discussion, rather the opposite.
There now. I can moderate my tone. Paul McHugh’s work speaks for itself. I needn’t raise my voice.



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Thomas

posted June 16, 2009 at 9:37 am


Has it occurred to anyone how that Tiller was “assassinated” in a church–which is often compared to a womb, the church being the spiritual mother of believers?



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Panthera

posted June 16, 2009 at 10:00 am


Thomas
The conservative Christians have repeatedly stated that they don’t consider his church Christian because the welcomed him. To them, this wasn’t murder it was righteous behavior. According to them, God lets conservative Christians murder anyone they want, after all – they’re doing it in His name.



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Love of the Mother

posted June 16, 2009 at 10:08 am


I know of a young girl, only in her late teens. She’s bright, beautiful and full of life. She was a “secular child”, sweet, good natured, kind, but without any particular faith. She represents so many in today’s world. She got caught up in the party scene, and was pregnant.
The girl visited the doctor, obtained medication to abort, was sent home and told that she would expel “the tissue” within a matter of hours.
Later on in hours, she went to the bathroom, and felt something pass from body. When she looked into the commode, there, only a few inches long, was her tiny, tiny baby, flailing it’s arms and legs. She screamed.
Her mother came running into the room just in time to see her grandchild as it swirled in the porcelain, and disappeared down the drain.
Time has past, how is the young mother doing? She smiles… a lot…not with her eyes, just with her mouth. She works diligently at her profession, and lives nearly in seclusion. Although she is still quite young, she is frequently ill, mostly with “mysterious” illnesses either neurological, or related to the immune system. What is her illness, I fear it’s a “sickness unto death” – despair. She feels alone, and full of grief.
She has no idea that I know. How I wish she knew that she can talk to a priest, no matter her faith, or she can contact Rachel’s Vineyard.
How many millions of women suffer in silence?
Have you noticed how many popular styles there are today in women’s clothing that look just like maternity clothes?
Have you heard about the new life-like dolls that are being sold for women – you fill them with warm water and so that it feels like warm human skin, thus, women can “play mom.” I heard a radio call-in show where women were saying they have no children, and how much they love these dolls
I go out walking frequently in my neighborhood, and often see a young woman also out walking; she pushes a baby stroller, with a dog in it.
With every abortion there are two victims, the mother and the child.
Women are told, if it’s legal, it must be moral.
They are told the child is just “tissue” or a tumor.
The young mother I know flees the room if the subject of faith is even mentioned.
She has no idea that healing is available — that she could confess her sins and her soul would be made white as snow. Nor does she know that her child is still living, in the arms of God.
If you are reading this, please pray.



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Your Name

posted June 16, 2009 at 10:10 am


immoral society = deranged minds = legalized criminal acts
The nurse who made the first comment is absolutely right. God is dead and therefore love is dead, thus the murder of the innocent evolves without conscience as well as corruption of youth. The grave errors of our current culture will eventually be realized as darkness and chaos grows even more by day. Prayer and reptentance is the only salvation of a Godless,self-destructing society.



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Your Name

posted June 16, 2009 at 10:44 am


For what it’s worth, my wife has given birth to 5 children and had several miscarriages. In that course of that time she was under the care of several obstetricians. All of them said that the mother’s life is never in danger, only the babies life is in peril. It’s impossible for any to happen to the mother with todays technology. If anything should happen to the mother then it is due to malfunction of the hospital staff.



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Kathy

posted June 16, 2009 at 11:29 am


Its too bad that the millions of dollars spent providing abortions couldn’t be spent providing a woman in a difficult situation those services mentioned in the article, assistance in raising the child, moral suppport in deciding to put the child up for adoption, etc. Planned Parenthood does none of these things. They are in the business of providing abortions, and are in fact, the largest provider of abortions in the country. On the other hand, groups who find abortion abhorrent, the Catholic Church, chief among them, do provide these very same servies, without taxpayer funding or cost to the mother. Let’s get one thing straight here. Abortion is big business, and a big moneymaker for those who provide them. There is not moral guideline for those people who provide abortions. They are driven by “the love of money”, which as scripture tells us, is the root of all evil. We are reaping now what we have sown. A society which does not value the most innocent and helpless among them, but rather destroys them, has no future but to destroy itself from within. We have flown in the face of the Creator, and permitted the most vile and immoral behavior to become accepted as the norm. We have destroyed the very heart of our nation. We probably have no hope of recovering our dignity as a society, since we have sunk so low in our hedonistic, selfish and depraved little lives. May God have mercy on this nation, since His mercy is all that is left to us to hope in.



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pagansister

posted June 16, 2009 at 12:28 pm


Tear jerker of a story there, Love of the Mother, didn’t change my mind, but really good story. I know that some women regret their decision, (the ones I know never have) that sometimes happens…but really? arms of the fetus waving about in the toilet> Come on! You expect me to believe that?
Have said many times…it is no one’s business but the woman involved and her doctor when an abortion is considered or performed. The “rightous” have their point of view, and others have theirs. If indeed the legality was taken away, does anyone really think there would be no more terminations? They would just be performed underground by butchers, or by the women themselves…both horrible circumstances. So help as much as you can to prevent a pregnancy by teaching about birth control, STD prevention etc., but when that doesn’t work…offer alternatives, but never wish for the prevention of legal, safe, clean abortions when deemed necessary by the woman. Never an easy decision, sometimes a necessary one.



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pagansister

posted June 16, 2009 at 12:31 pm


You mentioned you and your wife have 5 kids…great for you, as I’m sure they were planned and wanted and you can feed and clothe them. That is not always the case…thus birth control, and the sometimes need for a termination when all else fails.



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bobtb

posted June 16, 2009 at 1:00 pm


Steven, the argument you are making basically amounts to saying that mental illness is not “real” illness, but something of lesser importance, whose treatment is not essential to a person’s medical care. Mental health advocates have been fighting this perception for decades, and have only recently began making legislative strides to address institutional shortcomings in how mental illness is treated.
I would suggest that you educate yourself on the importance of mental health, and why it merits equal standing with “medical” health as we understand it. I would also suggest retracting this piece, as the line of argument is built on a fallacy, and does no favors for your credibility in the abortion debate.



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Ken

posted June 16, 2009 at 1:13 pm


Well said Kathy!
Now, after 50 million abortions since Roe v. Wade, fully 1 in 6 citizens are missing – and all of them from the youthful generation. We can’t survive that loss. I believe it’s already too late. Abortion is the primary cause of death in this nation.
What blinds some people to the reality of this horror? In every era, some group is labeled as “less than human”. Jews were slaughtered, Blacks were enslaved, and now today, the unborn are described as a “blob of tissue”. Here’s an excellent video that disproves that:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RS1ti23SUSw
May God have mercy on us.



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M

posted June 16, 2009 at 1:22 pm


If these mothers are in such emotional distress, do we have any documentation of counseling before and/or after their horrific late-term abortions? Shouldn’t there be some sort of mental health assessment by a qualified person (as opposed to an abortion ob, or one of his employees) before these alleged mental health abortions?
Even so, if someone is suicidal, or suffering another emotional disorder b/c of their baby’s condition, then she needs mental health care, not “abortion care”. Then she needs peer support and other resources to help with care of a baby – or perinatal hospice services. When in mental distress, we do not make good decisions. Who will be responsible for the women who abort, and then continue to experience mental distress, even deeper levels, because they have terminated the life of a much-loved and wanted baby?
Why do we tolerate shoddy healthcare in the name of women’s rights?



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Your Name

posted June 16, 2009 at 2:32 pm


This article, nor any of the pro-life arguments against ‘mental well-being’ as a reason for abortion, denigrates mental health. On the other hand, the pro-lifers (and this article) do not think abortion should be used as a ‘cure-all’ for perceived mental distress. Mental distress is *much* different than mental disorders and/or mental health. Pregnancy complicates some mental disorders and can actually cause irratic and irrational behavior in some women. That doesn’t mean they should be allowed to get away with murder.
I have a beautiful son and another on the way. I have also had 4 miscarriages. None of these beautiful children were planned. Actually, I wasn’t even all that thrilled to be pregnant. However, these children deserve a chance. I was heart-broken over the loss of my babies at 8, 4, 5, and 10 weeks respectivly. Again, it wasn’t b/c I was in love with being pregnant or even wanting to be pregnant. It happened and that was just the way it was. However, these babies were mine & my husband’s children – the product of our love for one another. Throwing them away purposely was never an option – even the last one that could easily have cost me my life.
Abortions after 22 weeks aren’t knee-jerk, fear of being pregnant, etc abortions for the most part. These women have had about 5 months to *do* something and/or get help. Physiological changes that are irreversible have already taken place by this time. Not to mention that even pro-choice statistics indicate that late-term abortions are more dangerous for the mother than early-term ones. In other words, this isn’t necessarily about what’s best for the mother over-all, its about what’s best right now.
The pro-lifers offer assistance (financially, emotionally, mentally, physically, and spiritually). Many times these pro-life options are denigrated by the pro-choicers, but the pro-choicers don’t offer any viable altertatives. The pro-life options are less funded and advertized than the pro-choice options. In large part because there is *no* income to a pro-life clinic/home whereas the pro-choice clinics operate on a fee-per-procedure basis (on a sliding scale). So before decrying that there isn’t support out there for these women, think where your tax dollars go – its definitely not to the pro-life options!



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Mr. Beee

posted June 16, 2009 at 3:03 pm


Nice article Steven. However, I would like to add the point that Mr. Tiller’s murderer was not affiliated with any of the more nationally known pro-life groups. Plus he should not be, in any way, regarded as pro-life since his commitment of murder of Dr. Tiller was an anti-life action.
To the person touting birth control: It’s a statistical fact that the rate of abortion and STD’s have consistently increased with the increased use of birth control. It would be logical to conclude that birth control isn’t working.
As far as a woman’s right or the question of one’s opinion versus another’s: Abortion isn’t a right. Secular society gives itself license in making abortion legal. THE TRUTH (not opinion) is that abortion is abhorred in the eyes of God (as Kathy has as also stated). It’s not so much those women who have abortions; because so many are pressured by parents and boyfriends into getting abortions (we’ll leave the amount of culpability of those women to God). It is those that aggressively promote abortion that cause the degradation of society and who will have much to answer for to God in Heaven. Again, this is not borne out of opinion, it IS the truth. So people can follow their own truth and pay the consequences, or they can follow the truth of God. And although following the truth of God can be burdensome to many, (because of human frailty), He will help if you ask. The rewards are beyond our imagination; “eye has not seen, ear has not heard, what God has ready for those who love him.”



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pagansister

posted June 16, 2009 at 3:57 pm


Mr. Beee: One must believe in that “god” to worry about consequences. Not everyone does, and some who do…also have abortions. If indeed abortion is “abhorred” in the eyes of your god, don’t have one. How simple is that? Just advocate reproduction…make women baby factories, the old bare foot and pregnant bit. And for goodness sake….;don’t advocate birth control!!!!! Sorry. That doesn’t cut it for me or for a lot of women, IMO.
Where do you get your facts that the rate of abortions and STD’s have increased due to birth control?? Logical that birth control doesn’t work? Your god would need to really help us if some folks weren’t using birth control! Sex certainly isn’t just for making kids.
And FYI, abortion is a RIGHT for any woman who seeks one…after much contemplation and alternatives offered. Abortion isn’t a cure all, but it is an legal option.
Thanks for the offer to follow “God’s truth” but having been there, done that, I’ll follow my own truth.



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pagansister

posted June 16, 2009 at 3:59 pm


Ken:
Not to worry, this world isn’t UNDER POPULATED.



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Mary

posted June 16, 2009 at 4:46 pm


All of the anecdotes I’ve read and television interviews I’ve listened to on the subject of late term abortion, coming from the pro-choice side, focus only on Dr Tiller doing late term abortions to save the life of the mother, or on babies that were missing a brain, and other horribly drastic medical conditions. Not one of them mentions the kind of late term abortion that is most often done. Why are they afraid to confront the real facts about this subject, and instead choose to focus only on the most despairing of medical cases? It must be because they firmly believe they can never justify late term abortion to the public unless they are dishonest about when and why it really happens.



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Your Name

posted June 16, 2009 at 7:54 pm


It seems logical that having an abortion would lead to mental discomfort at the very least and mental illness at the worst. A human being worthy of the name could not in good conscience live with the knowledge that they were in any way responsible for killing another human being. Most women have been duped into thinking because it is alright according to the “law” there are no repercusions for them. WRONG! Ask many of the women who found out otherwise if you really want the truth. We are heading for a more disasterous future than the economy. Many of you who approve of abortion may someday be fighting for your own lives when euthanasia becomes “lawfull” and you are made to feel guilty for trying to stay alive in your decrepit old age. God Bless!



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aaabbbccc

posted June 16, 2009 at 8:47 pm


Some good information. But given that these are late term abortions. Some questions? When did these women find out they were pregnant? What caused the delay in obtaining an earlier abortion which would have put these women at much less risk due to complications of a simpler procedure? Did Dr. Tiller’s clinic (or those other providing late term abortions) provide fetal tissues for a research need? If we are truly interested in these women, then we need to understand how they got to Dr. Tiller’s clinic and became a late term abortion statistic. Secondly, as Steve suggests we need to help these women find options that do not cause further suffering and harm.



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pagansister

posted June 16, 2009 at 9:04 pm


“Many of you who approve of abortion may someday be fighting for your own lives when euthanasia becomes “lawful” and you are made to feel guilty for staying alive in your decrepit old age”. Your Name
Believe me, I’ll never feel guilty for living to an old age!
And this has to do with a contemplated, hard thought out termination how?
I approve of “choice” which means I find an abortion decision should be made by each woman on her own, with alternatives offered. Do I think it is always the right decision? No, but then again, it isn’t mine to make. Do I find birth control, sex education better? Of course. Do I think women should be condemned for making that decision? No.
BTW, for reasons I do know in my family, the 3 women who found it necessary to terminate their pregnancies had valid reasons. None of them have had a mental breakdown because of the procedure. All 3 did so in the 1st trimester. Having continued the pregnancy would have led to,in one case, a horrilbly deformed child, due to a virus she contracted. So, unless one has had to make the decision, don’t judge those who have had to. All 3 women are fine and healthy and happy.



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zuzu petals

posted June 17, 2009 at 11:15 am


I am pro choice. I am extreemist in that I am absolutist about it.
Human reality can be complex and the issue of rights ALWAYS involves rights of one over another.
I believe that the only rights a fetus has, at any stage, are those conferred upon it by the woman carrying it in her body. Her rights to her body predominate. The alternative is reliquishing control over all fertile women’s bodies to the state or the church.
Persons can be murdered. Fetuses cannot. It is a harsh position, which exceeds most other people’s views on the matter. But always the rights of the living must always predominate over those not yet born.
That being said, I want a world in which abortion is no longer needed.
Where choices like that need not be made. Where sexual expression need never result in unwanted pregnancy. Where no-one considers a child to be fit punishment for sexual behavior.
For that world to come to fruition, women world wide must be educated and liberated so sexual choices are theirs, where family planning is a meaningful concept, where the means to prevent pregnancy OTHER THAN NON-VOLUNTARY ABSTINENCE is universally available.



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Mary

posted June 17, 2009 at 11:02 pm


A polular pro-choice argument is that “it’s her body” “the rights of the living must always predominate over those not yet born.” One hears this over and over, yet I have always found this kind of thinking completely foreign. It’s my body, but if I conceive a child thru my own free act, I bear the responsibility for that being. It is not a matter of “my rights vs its rights” it is a matter of my moral responsibility as a parent, whether I wanted the responsibility or not does not diminish my moral obligation. Anything else is a total abandonment of morality.



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pagansister

posted June 18, 2009 at 3:07 pm


Hello, Mary, it IS her body! Thus she has ultimate control over what happens to it. To you it may be foreign, but to many, it is simple. If you conceive a child thru your own free act, then you usually want to complete a pregnancy. However, there have been conceptions due to rape, and incest that are NOT conceived through a free act. There is no reason that that woman should be forced to bear the result of incest or rape. Thus…it is HER body that was violated, and she can choose not to be reminded of that act every day. There are also “free acts” of conception that turn out to have horribly deformed results…which can now be detected before birth. Those conceptions can die in the womb, or soon after. So, yes it most certainly HER BODY.



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Ken

posted June 20, 2009 at 10:35 pm


Dear Pagan,
An unborn child has its own DNA, it’s own circulation, blood supply and body. It’s NOT the mother’s body. And except for time and nutrition, it is completely independent. Granted, the baby needs to mature within another body, but you argue in favor of killing a human being in exchange for the limited, temporary convenience of another. You confuse the entire quantity of a lifetime with the temporary quality of another. Please check out the website I posted earlier. A picture is worth 1000 words.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RS1ti23SUSw
You mention too, that some in your family have had abortions. They (and you) may be suffering without being able to express it. I recommend this link: http://pfl-rv.org/default.aspx
or standupgirl.com



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pagansister

posted June 21, 2009 at 2:33 pm


Ken, thanks for the offer of the pictures, but I’ve seen those types of pictures before and I do know that no one in the family is suffering over their decisions. I know I’m not, as for the 3 who found it necessary, it was the best choice. I’m certainly for a woman deciding before the end of the 1st trimester, and I most certainly prefer birth control, ie prevention, sex education etc. However, as I mentioned above I still find it a woman’s decision, and HER body. Also as I said above, bearing a child conceived due to rape or incest, not something that should be forced on any woman, nor should a woman be forced to carry a malformed fetus, certain to die at birth or soon sfter, to term. So I disagree with you that I’m arguing in favor of killing a human being in exchange for the limited, temporary convenience of another. I’m most certainly not confused. At 64 I’ve been around long enough to remember before Roe V. Wade, and the consequences of “self-induced” abortions and those of butchers. Never want to go back to that time. Would be nice if there was never a need for a woman to have an abortion but life doesn’t work that way.



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Mary

posted June 23, 2009 at 8:09 pm


A former abortion practitioner says that late term abortions are never medically necessary. Dr. Mary Davenport says:”The very fact that the baby of an ill mother is viable raises the question of why, indeed, it is necessary to perform an abortion to end the pregnancy. With any serious maternal health problem, termination of pregnancy can be accomplished by inducing labor or performing a cesarean section, saving both mother and baby.”
But then, the child would be alive. And, it seems those who have abortions want the child to die.



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pagansister

posted June 23, 2009 at 10:01 pm


NEVER a need for late term abortions? One woman doctor says this, Mary, and you feel it covers every possible situation? I don’t think so.



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Ken

posted June 24, 2009 at 2:02 am


Dear Pagan,
In mentioning rape, incest and malformed babies, you are talking about a very small percentage of abortion cases. Do we agree then that the other 95%+ should not be performed, or do you bring up the hard cases as a guise to justify abortion for any reason?
Pro-life folks aren’t interested in controlling anyone’s body – their focus is on saving the life of an innocent person. Unfortunately, the consequence of that does impact the mom for some months. But some women seem to think we’re anti-freedom or anti-woman. Not so.
Years ago, other groups were considered “less than human” and their lives were ended at the hands of a stronger group. Blacks were mistreated as slaves. Jews suffered through the holocaust. The unborn happen to be the issue of our time – but even more in need of a defender, as they are defenseless. Science continues to show that babies can survive outside of the womb at an ever earlier age. Yet many are aborted at older gestational ages. Just because they reside inside of their moms, they are treated like unliving property that can be readily dismembered or burnt and disposed.
Pagan, you may not feel that your choices have consequences – but they do. Even some pagans believe that what comes around goes around. Make choices that are good! Chose Life!



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Young and Young

posted September 22, 2010 at 5:36 pm


I’m sure that there are many people who use the “to avoid injury to the mother,” claim as a good excuse for having an abortion. But I personally know people whose lives were in serious jeopardy. This is a complex subject and you can’t look at it from a group perspective.



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chris cody

posted December 17, 2010 at 8:42 pm


I just wanted anyone’s opinion on if I was in the wrong here, and what any of you guys would have done in this situation. So my wife is quite liberal and I’m more on the conservative side, and she’s about 3 months pregnant. She can’t work right now, so I’ve been forced to support her as of late. The thing is that about a week ago she started asking me if she could borrow $400, and being pretty secretive about the reason why. I soon found out that $400 was the average cost of a back alley abortion, which is ridiculous considering that she knows how vehemently pro-life I am. After refusing to give her the money and the countless hours of arguing that ensued, I ended up making a comment about how if she wanted to do something liberal with $400, she should take advantage of Obummer’s “<a href=" “>http://www.satelliteinternet.com/satellite-internet-recovery-act“> satellite internet recovery act,” so that “instead of murdering our kid, he can have satellite internet at a smashing price!” (I linked it so you can actually see it’s about $400 in taxpayer money that our President chose to waste on this s**t, aren’t I so funny hah). The messed up part is that she went and told her dad, who happens to be just as liberal as her, and who also happens to own the house that we’re renting. To make a long story short, my tenancy has been “suspended” from his house (I’m now staying at my buddy’s place until this thing blows over) and he gave her the money to get the abortion. I haven’t talked to her in almost a week, so it’s pretty safe to say that she has already gone through with it. So my question is, do you think I was being inappropriate for mocking my wife and father in law’s political ideologies, or do you think I’m being unfairly persecuted because of my relative conservatism, and the Obummer joke I made has little to nothing to do with this? I’m thinking the latter.



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Tobler Law

posted February 24, 2011 at 6:20 pm


I think unless the abortion is because of rape or life threatening to the mother I don’t think abortion should be legal.



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