Abortion: Yay, Or Nay?
Debate Rounds (5)
Round One - Acceptance Speech, and your knowledge on abortion.
Round Two - Opening Argument.
Round Three - Response Debates
Round Four - "Why it is wrong/right/ok" Debate.
Round Five - Closing Debate, Notes/Suggestions to the instigator/contender.
1. Do not harass either debater, or any voters.
2. Do not scream at the one you think is wrong and praise the who you think is right.
3. Do not insult anyone, or anything.
4. Feel free to point out incorrect facts, but do not insult the other debater for them.
5. Please provide explanations and use proper grammar and spelling.
6. Please do not act like a child or swear.
7. Please do not whine if you lose or scream, "UNFAIR!".
8. Please be a good sport and don't brag in the other's face.
9. Please do not say why your right, bribe, or promote yourself to the voters in any way.
My place in this is being against abortion, and to explain why I think it's wrong. Yours is to explain why you are for abortion, and why you think it's perfectly fine.
Abortion is when a pregnancy is ended so that it doesn't result in the birth of a child. Sometimes it is called 'termination of pregnancy'.
BPAS cares for women with an unplanned or unwanted pregnancy. We treat thousands of women who've decided that abortion is the right choice for them, and give advice and counselling to women who don't know what to do next.
There are two types of abortion treatment, 'Medical' and 'Surgical' abortion:
1. Medical abortion: The abortion pill
Some women feel that a medical abortion is a more natural process. There are two types of medical abortion
Abortion pill (also known as early medical abortion) up to 10 weeks
Involves taking medication to cause an early miscarriage (women experience cramping, pain and heavy bleeding).
2 visits to the clinic may be needed (which may be on the same day or up to 3 days apart). Check the details when you book.
No surgery or anaesthetic.
More information on the abortion pill.
Abortion pill from 10 weeks up to 24 weeks
Involves taking medication to cause the womb to contract and push out the pregnancy.
2 visits to the clinic are needed.
Sometimes an overnight stay is needed on the 2nd visit " check when you book.
More information on the abortion pill between 10 and 24 weeks.
2. Surgical abortion
Surgical abortion involves a quick, minor operation. There are two types of surgical abortion:
Vacuum aspiration up to 15 weeks
Removes the pregnancy by gentle suction.
Up to 14 weeks of pregnancy this can be done while you are awake (with local anaesthetic). The quicker recovery time for this option means you can leave the clinic unattended and drive sooner.
Up to 15 weeks it can be done while you are asleep (general anaesthetic) or sedated (relaxed and sleepy).
One visit to the clinic and you go home the same day.
More information about vacuum aspiration abortion - awake, asleep, and with sedation
Dilatation and evacuation between 15 and 24 weeks
Carried out while you are asleep (under general).
The pregnancy is removed using narrow forceps passed through the neck of the womb and some gentle suction.
One visit to the clinic and you go home the same day.
1) It compounds tragedy.
Sometimes the circumstances surrounding a pregnancy are tragic. Perhaps the woman was raped. Maybe the baby has been diagnosed with a defect. Or the woman"s health might be at risk. However, one tragedy is not answered with another. We do not erase a rape by killing a child. We do not cure a baby by taking his life. And we do not avoid all health issues by avoiding the reality of another human being.
Women who have been raped must be compassionately cared for. But compassionate care does not include executing a woman"s child. Parents facing a difficult prenatal diagnosis must be given real facts and directed to others with helpful experiences. They must not be forced into a quick choice for abortion or urged to take the life of their child instead of giving her a chance to defy the odds. Women with high-risk pregnancies must be treated by real medical professionals. But treatment does not include intentionally killing a child. (If a child dies during the course of treating the woman " i.e., during chemotherapy for cancer, removal of an ectopic pregnancy, etc. " this is not an abortion.)
2) It takes innocent lives.
Science could not be more clear. Unborn human beings are living, separate, and unique. From the moment of fertilization " better known as conception " a new human life is in existence. Ending this life is not ending "potential." It is ending a life. We would do well to understand the modern science that reveals the humanity of the unborn. (Here is a scientific report, quotes from textbooks, photos, and a video.)
3) It violates civil rights.
Civil rights are violated when people are deprived of their basic rights in a discriminatory fashion. Unborn children are deprived of life " the most basic right of all " simply based on their location (their mother"s womb) and their developmental status. This is discriminatory, inhuman, and cruel.
4) It punishes innocent people.
A child does not deserve to die for the crimes of his father. A five-year-old cannot be killed because his father is a rapist. A five-month-old unborn child should not be allowed to be killed for the same reason.
A child does not deserve to die because her mother and/or her father were irresponsible. A child is completely innocent. A child did not decide that his parents would have sex or that they would use ineffective contraception. An unborn child is always innocent and should never be punished.
5) It can harm women.
Real-life stories demonstrate again and again that abortion harms women. Harm comes in a variety of forms " mental, emotional, relational, and physical " and in some cases, women"s lives are lost through abortion. They can also experience the loss of their fertility or an increase in miscarriages after an abortion. To find out more, check out this study, this paper, this compilation of stories, these experiences, and these stories.
6) It is damaging to relationships and families.
Any time a family member dies, the rest of the family is affected. And this is true of abortion. A real, living, irreplaceable child has been killed, and the parents and siblings are damaged. Fathers attempting to stop abortions should read this article. Siblings who need a place to express their pain should go here. And for more information on how abortion damages relationships, read this and this. Many women who abort just to convince their guy to stay with them find that they are left alone anyway, shortly after the abortion. Abortion is never the answer to a successful and loving relationship.
7) It never goes away.
No matter how hard we try, we can never erase what abortion does. Abortion takes " it kills " an innocent human being. Time does not erase murder or ease the reality of what it is. Abortion is a cruel tragedy, but it is also a choice that should never be made. Such a choice stays with us forever.
Click "like" if you are PRO-LIFE!
For anyone who has already participated in abortion, while there is no way to change your past, there is a way to heal from it. Check with your local pregnancy resource center for post-abortion recovery programs. You can also look into Rachel"s Vineyard or Ramah International. Also, check out this sermon by Mark Driscoll, in which he discusses how "Jesus died so murder could be forgiven." Recovery, hope, and healing are always available.
8) It creates new problems.
Some people believe that having an abortion and ending a child"s life will solve their problems. And in the immediate present, it may appear that the problems have been erased. Perhaps college becomes an easier option, maybe parents never find out that their daughter was pregnant, or possibly an affair remains undiscovered. But in reality, abortion only hides problems " it doesn"t solve them. Many women finish college while still giving life to their babies. Many parents are far more accepting and loving than their daughters believed possible. And the truth is better than a lie, when a lie would cost an innocent person"s life. In the end, that"s what this is really about: our problems are not solved through killing an innocent person. Just because it"s legal doesn"t make it right. And just because it"s often a hidden choice doesn"t mean it won"t stay with you forever.
Parents often experience great pressure without being told of the great gift they"ve been given"
9) It avoids responsibility.
Abortion is sometimes used as an easy cover-up for a one-night stand or a solution to a relationship gone bad. However, when two adults make the choice to participate in an activity known to create babies, these adults must accept responsibility. Contraception can fail. The best planning can fall apart. But responsibility should not be avoided at the cost of an innocent child"s life.
Responsible people have to make hard choices sometimes. Timing may seem bad, and circumstances might be difficult. But this does not justify killing an innocent person. Choosing to raise a child is responsible. Choosing adoption for a child is responsible. But choosing abortion and denying life to a child who already exists is irresponsibly " and irreparably " wrong.
10) It"s not empowering or liberating for women.
As a woman who considers herself a feminist, I find it appalling that abortion is classified as part of "women"s rights." It is not my "right" to kill my child. I should not be the only person who has the power to order my child"s execution at the hand of an abortion doctor. Letting my child suffer a death in which her spine is sucked into a tube or her limbs are torn apart or her heart is stopped through poison is not empowering or liberating. These choices ought not to be choices at all. They are cruel tragedies for all involved, and they should not be permitted in a civilized nation. Women do not receive freedom through the blood of their children.
All women should understand exactly what abortion is.
Katha Pollitt"s Pro: Reclaiming Abortion Rights is a deeply felt and well-researched book which argues that abortion, despite what any of its opponents might claim, is a palpable social good. Progressives, Pollitt says, can and must treat abortion as an unequivocal positive rather than a "necessary evil"; there is no ethical, humane way to limit abortion rights. The fact that Pollitt needs to make this argument in 2014, however, seems to indicate that pro-choicers have long been a little too nice for our own good.
Which is something Pollitt herself points out, many times. There are the obvious truisms about abortion ideally being "safe, legal, and rare," sure. Pollitt also cites Roger Rosenblatt's formulation of "permit but discourage," which makes it sound like reproductive autonomy is a form of social faux pas, like taking the last slice of pizza at the pizza party. Not criminal, sure, but are you sure you need it?
But the language of apology for abortion has seeped ever deeper into our language:
Anywhere you look or listen, you find pro-choicers falling over themselves to use words like "thorny," "vexed," "complex" and "difficult." How often have you heard abortion described as '"he hardest decision," or "the most painful choice" a woman ever makes, as if every single woman who gets pregnant by accident seriously considers having a baby, only a few weeks earlier the furthest thing from her mind, and for very good reason?
The end of the line, Pollitt says, is the sort of ridiculous decision made by Planned Parenthood in 2013 to move away from the term "pro-choice," which "was itself a bit of a euphemism: Choose what?" We can hardly be expected to defend abortion effectively if we can't even call the procedure by name.
Pollitt convincingly outlines the many reasons that abortion is not only necessary but good for society: "always a choice," as she writes, "and often a deeply moral decision."
First, and most obviously, if you have a uterus, your life depends on being able to control what goes on inside of it; giving birth necessarily represents a drastic lifestyle change and heavy financial responsibility, which lasts anywhere from nine months to the rest of your natural-born life. Therefore, in order to effectively plan a life and career, you must have some guarantee that you will never be forced to take on the risk or cost of childbirth unless you choose to do so. Birth control and abortion are the only ways to provide such a guarantee. If we are to have leaders and geniuses with uteruses, we must provide them with the reproductive freedom necessary to go to school and build careers.
Pregnancy is also a health risk: Women and girls can and do die from childbirth and pregnancy. There are plenty of other health risks, common and uncommon, that attend upon pregnancy. Michelle Lee, whose story Pollitt cites in her book, required a heart transplant, which she could not receive while she stayed pregnant. Yet doctors at Louisiana State Medical Center denied her the necessary abortion, and therefore also the transplant, because the hospital rules stated that the risk of death from her pregnancy had to be greater than 50 percent before they could abort.
Abortion saves lives, and even if your life is not directly or immediately endangered by your pregnancy, I don"t have the right to force you to risk life and limb, or go through drastic and painful physical experiences like labor, simply because I prefer that you stay pregnant.
And, finally, abortion prevents suffering"not only the emotional, physical and financial suffering of parents, but that of infants. Some fetal defects, such as bilateral renal agenesis (lack of both kidneys) or anencephaly (lack of an upper brain and skull) are simply not survivable. We"re not talking disabilities, we"re talking death sentences: If the pregnancy is brought to term, the child will die, usually within hours or days of birth.
Any reasonable person would presumably agree that it"s senseless and inhumane to force a family that is already losing a pregnancy to endure the longest and most painful version of that loss, or to condemn a child to unavoidable, lethal suffering, simply so that strangers can have the satisfaction of knowing it died outside the womb. Yet not only do anti-abortion advocates encourage women to carry non-viable fetuses to term, Pollitt unearths a horrifying story of a 17-year-old in Peru who was denied an abortion by Peruvian law, and who was therefore forced to give birth to, and breastfeed, an anencephalic child who lived for four days.
This, along with tales of women who entered sepsis or died because they could not receive abortions while they were miscarrying, constitutes the dark end of the road for anti-abortion arguments: The culture of "life" that anti-choice movements want actually brings tragedy and death by failing to recognize reality.
Pollitt"s arguments for abortion are convincing and thorough. The amount of time she spends logically deconstructing the "Biblical" arguments against reproductive choice alone is commendable. (And funny: "The Old Testament is a very long book, full of bans and pronouncements and detailed instructions about daily life"what to wear, what not to eat, how to harvest your crops. It condemns many activities. " But there is no mention of abortion.")
She also outlines, in depressing detail, the impact of the misinformation promulgated by the anti-abortion lobby, convincing huge numbers of women that abortion causes cancer, or depression, or suicide. Yet many of those women seek out abortions anyway. Indeed, Pollitt argues, the fact that women are willing to have abortions that they believe might kill them (or, in pre-Roe v. Wade times, to have illegal abortions that did kill and drastically injure them) only demonstrates how urgent and necessary abortion is.
And yet none of this is likely to convince dyed-in-the-wool abortion opponents. Dismantling fetal "personhood" with logical or scientific (or even Biblical) arguments does nothing to convince those who believe a fertilized egg is a human being, because those beliefs have never been founded on logic or science. They"re emotional. You can"t argue emotions.
But you don"t necessarily have to respect them, either"particularly not when they require you to behave in ways that cause harm.
Pollitt"s most piercing argument is that progressives have given too much ground on this issue, to their own detriment: "For years," she writes, "a robust school of progressive thinking called women who were alarmed about the future of reproductive rights naive. The Republican Party isn"t serious about restricting abortion, they claimed, politicians just talk like that to keep the base motivated."
This isn't ancient history; Thomas Frank's What's the Matter with Kansas?, one of the books she cites as having argued this, appeared in 2004 and was a bestseller throughout that decade. We argued that abortion opponents weren't really serious right up until the time that we found ourselves fighting not only for legal abortion, but for the continued legality of birth control.
In other words, trying to be compassionate, to give anti-choicers the benefit of the doubt, has only resulted in progressives failing to make their own case. We"re dealing, Pollitt says, with "40 years of apologetic rhetoric, 40 years of searching for arguments that will support legal abortion while never, ever implying that it is an easy decision or a good thing," and this has only gotten us stuck "making the same limited, defensive arguments again and again."
Progressives have apologized for being right. But we don"t have to. Abortion saves lives, improves lives, and makes for a stronger society. The facts are decisively on our side.
Most profoundly, Pollitt"s book is a call for us all to reclaim and speak out about the truths we know. Personally, I like abortion. I've never needed one. I'm still glad to have the option. I'm glad for the people I've known who got pregnant at the wrong time, with the wrong people, and didn't have their lives ruined by it.
If Pollitt gets her way, more of us might feel free to admit that, hey: We like abortion.
Abortion is also a woman's choice. If she doesn't want her baby, then she doesn't HAVE to have it. Adoption might be better, but still. It's their choice.
The main concern of the "Pro-Choicers" is not the guarded protection of the life in the womb. Instead, the main concern is the "rights" of the mother over and against the rights of the child growing in her. The child, who cannot exercise its own will, is killed. And, in order to make the killing more palatable, the baby is called a "fetus" or "non-viable" or "not yet human," etc. This eases the conscience. But, for those who say the baby isn't 'viable,' have you ever seen a sonogram of an abortion? You can see the 'non-viable fetus' retracting from the instruments of death and seeking self preservation. It wants to live. Some would respond by saying that even a rodent wants to live. But what is in the womb of the mother is human.
The Bible says for people to protect the weak and down-trodden. But with abortionists, the rights of the baby are sacrificed for the rights of the mother--and the father doesn't even have any rights. The mother cries out that the life in her is part of her body and that she has the right to do with her body as she wills.
True love does not seeks its own but is other-centered. It gives. "For God so loved the world he GAVE his only begotten son . . . " (John 3:16). Abortion is the ultimate in selfishness. It puts the mother's convenience and desires above the life of her own baby. To kill the baby in the womb means to consider oneself more important than anyone else.
Even in nature, as far as I understand, animals don't kill what is in their own wombs. People are the only ones who kill their young while still unborn. In this society of "self esteem," "personal accomplishments," and "empowerment," true love is losing out and death is winning.
However, there is hope in Jesus. If you've had an abortion, you can be forgiven by the Lord. All you need to do is confess it to the Lord Jesus and ask Him to forgive you. That is what I did years ago when the girl I lived with became pregnant and had an abortion. I was guilty. As a man, the inner turmoil and guilt I felt was horrible. I can't imagine what it would be like for a woman. Nevertheless, the Lord has graciously forgiven me and her. I say this only in the hopes that others would come to find the sweet forgiveness found in Jesus.
Nevertheless, the unbeliever is not convicted by the Words of God. So, I've presented what I consider a logical argument against abortion.
A rational Case against Abortion
What is growing in the womb of the woman is alive.
Even one-celled creatures are alive.
What is growing in the woman is more than a one-celled creature.
The nature of the life is human.
It is the product of human DNA, therefore, it's nature is human.
Because it is human in nature if left to live, it will result in a human baby.
Humans are humans not because they have a feet, hands, walk vertically, and speak, etc. They are humans because of their nature.
A person born without arms and legs is still human.
A person who cannot speak is still human.
A person in a coma, helpless, unaware, unmoving, is human.
What is growing in the womb does not have the nature of an animal, a bird, or a fish. It has human nature.
To abort the life, which is human in nature, is to kill that which is human in nature.
Therefore, abortion is killing a life which is human by nature.
Where, then, does the mother get the right to kill the human within her.
The life in the womb is not human because it is not fully developed.
This disregards the fact that the nature of the life is human. It has human DNA and is alive. How can its nature not be human if it is alive and has human DNA?
This asserts a false premise that someone is not human until he/she is fully developed.
What constitutes full development? One hour before birth or one hour after? Is there really a difference?
Then when did the natures change? When did the non-human nature develop into a human nature?
At what point does it become human and by what criteria do you make this judgment?
If you cannot decide when, then you are risking killing a person.
The human tissue produced in the woman is the property of the one who produces it.
But if what is growing in the womb is a person, it cannot be owned.
Is the life in the womb property like a cat or a dog that can be owned?
Then when does the child stop being the property of the mother? At birth? At one year old? Two? Ten? Twenty?
It is animals who are owned, not people--unless you want to reintroduce slavery.
If the tissue is not human but just an organ like the stomach, it belongs to the one in whom it dwells.
But, the stomach is meant to be a stomach. The life in the womb is meant to be a person. They are different by design and nature.
They are different in nature because the stomach does not have the ability to become a human.
But a human has the ability to produce a stomach.
Therefore, being human encompasses its own body but is not defined by it.
The life in the womb is really part of the woman, and the woman has the right to do as she wills with her body.
If it is part of the woman, then does the woman have 4 arms, 4 legs, and 2 heads? Is that what a human is?
It is part of the woman only in the sense that the life is living and growing inside the mother.
Her body is feeding the life. Her body is separate from the life.
The life growing in the womb can even have a different blood type than the mother. It is, therefore, an independent life with human DNA.
Not so. The Law says the woman (and man) do not have the right to take illegal drugs into their bodies.
The reason is that it supports illegal drug trafficking and . . .
It harms others who the user seeks to support his/her habit as well as the harm that can come to another because of the actions of the one under the influence of drugs.
In abortion, no one is hurt since the fetus is not a person.
This is simply begging the question. You assume it isn't human even though it is alive and has human DNA and then pass judgment that it is not a person.
The fetus is alive, and death injures it.
The fetus has the nature of a human and is injured by killing it by scraping, ripping, and/or sucking its brains out as late term abortions are sometimes done.
Then that means the mother has no feelings about the life that has been removed from her womb--that wonderful place that only a woman in her nature has.
Does this really leave the woman uninjured? Countless women are psychologically harmed when they kill the child in their womb.
Rape is a condition that justifies abortion.
Rape is horrible. But why should the child pay for the sins (wrong doing) of another? The baby is innocent of the offense, and his life need not be taken because of the act of another.
If what is in the womb is human, then killing it because of the act of another would be wrong.
To restrict a woman's right to choose is to deny her rights as a woman.
This is a self-centered reason. It ignores:
That the life in the womb is human in nature.
That the woman has a responsibility to protect and guard life.
That it puts the woman's personal interests and comfort above the value of life of the baby.
That it is not denying a woman's rights anymore than she does not have the right to murder, steal, or lie.
Rights come with responsibilities. Choosing to kill another is a great responsibility that needs to be taken seriously. This is why we have trials.
However, in the womb no trial is necessary--just the desire of the mother.
There are too many people in the world.
Since when does the value of human life depend upon how many people there are? Besides, if the number of people is the issue, maybe they should start getting rid of the sick and old. Maybe they should get rid of those who aren't intelligent or good looking. Where will it stop?
A question for those who believe in abortion and that the life in the womb is not human. Is it okay, to take a fertilized egg between a man and a woman and place it in the womb of a dog?
If you say no, then why? If it is not human, then it doesn't matter, right?
If you say no because it will become a human, then you admit that it has human nature and is alive. If it is human in nature and alive, then you do not have the right to abort it.
If you say it is alright, why is okay?
Pressure is growing to repeal or change the abortion laws. Ministers, doctors, legislators, and population experts are all joining the repeal effort. We are likely to see the laws fall in just, a few years. But we as women must raise broader social questions, stressing our right to voluntary pregnancy and the need for collective responsibility for children. The blatant racism in the medical profession that forces sterilization on ADC mothers who seek hospital abortions yet approves four times as many abortions for private patients than for ward patients must end.
Our fight puts us in direct confrontation with the AMA, the singly most powerful institution in the health field. Its policies and its wealthy lobby has enormous influence over legislation, while it maintains tight control over the policies of every hospital, medical school, and clinic in the country. The AMA refused to come out in favor of repeal of all laws restricting abortion, a blatant contradiction to the AMA"s own policy statement which says that government must not interfere in the relationship between patient and physician. By making this exception for abortion legislation the AMA is revealing that it is not concerned with the welfare of the women patients of childbearing age, but is concerned instead with its own image in a society burdened by an irrational taboo on abortion, a legitimate and safe contraceptive method. By its choice the AMA is imposing upon women its own male oriented conception of what women are supposed to be: breeders first, total human beings second. Toward fulfilling their responsibility to the female half of the population of this country at the very least the AMA must officially favor repeal of all laws restricting abortion, as the obstetricians and gynecologist- have already voted upon as a group. All hospital abortion boards must be abolished and additional facilities provided for the present and ever growing demand for inexpensive, if not, free, medically safe abortions.
One of woman"s most basic freedoms is her right to control her own body and to determine if she bears a child. Only she can determine whether she has enough emotional, physical, and economic resources at a given time to bear and rear a child. An unwanted pregnancy is a lonely ordeal, and the consequences are immeasurable in terms of personal suffering. Only the pregnant woman can understand the guilt, fear, and anxiety of being caught between society"s morals and her own needs and desires. But far more painful, and destructive than an unwanted pregnancy is an unwanted child.
Yet at present the decision to bear a child or have an abortion is taken out of her hands by lawmakers and pressure groups that have only the slightest notion of the problems involved. Doctors, psychiatrists, social workers, and clergymen impose their advice on her, based on their sexist stereotypes of her psychological and biological makeup, adding to that their personal religious beliefs about the status of the fetus as a human being. The legislators in New York managed to overcome their stereotypes and religious biases in framing the recently passed law that makes abortion a decision between the woman and her doctor. Twenty-four weeks was named as the cut-off point for a legal abortion because only after this period an abortion becomes a premature delivery of an infant that with proper care can survive outside of the mother. But before 24 weeks the fetus is part of the mother and should not be considered as a separate human being with rights that contradict the desires of the mother.
Even in the case of the New York law, men decided what rights women can exercise. And the fact still remains that these institutions that retain the fight to determine the laws surrounding childrearing refuse to take responsibility for the well being of the children born under their laws. It is wrong that this society does not recognize children as the social wealth of everyone, instead of as the private property of their parents.
THE SAINT AND THE WHORE
Our society glorifies motherhood (if performed properly within the framework of middle class marriage, sanctified by the church and duly licensed by the county clerk). The married mother is a saint. She finds her ultimate fulfillment and achieves her biological destiny in motherhood. Childbirth is her most creative act. It is proof of her femininity. The married mother is a contented brooding factory and a devoted servant of her husband and children. She expresses her individuality through the things she buys for her home and family -" furnishings, food, clothes, and appliances. If a married woman does not want children, she is considered anywhere from cold and unfeminine to desperately in need of psychiatric help. If she indicates she wants an abortion, doctors and social workers will try to help her adjust to her pregnancy. They think of pregnant women as "expectant mothers."
Yet statistics indicate that about one out of four married women terminates at least one pregnancy in abortion. In recent years approximately one of every five births in the U.S. was unwanted, and those births account for 35"45% of the population growth, according to Dr., Westoff of Princeton.
Just as the married woman is glorified as a wife and a mother, the unmarried women is glamorized as a sex object. She is taught that she achieves identity and fulfillment by pleasing and catching a man. To accomplish this, she is told to buy everything from Folger"s Coffee to strawberry flavored douche. But if she becomes pregnant then she is labeled a whore. Our society views pregnancy as a punishment for "immoral" or "careless" sexual activity of the unmarried woman. Society sets the trap and then condemns the pregnant woman for failing into it. It forces her to have the child, but refuses to take any responsibility for the child when it is born. Welfare laws are punitive, and child care facilities are nonexistent. The same society that condemns the unwed mother has virtually no concept of the unwed father. It glorifies motherhood within marriage, yet labels the unwed child "illegitimate." There is no such thing as an illegitimate child. No child should be branded for life by a totally unnecessary stigma that implies that his or her existence as a human being is not fully recognized by society.
Abortion becomes the only realistic alternative for many women, married and unmarried, who are caught in society"s trap. Some of these women simply don"t want a child; others may want the child but are forced by economic need or threatened by social stigma to seek an abortion. In a humane society no woman would be forced either to have a child or to terminate a pregnancy against her will.
ABORTION: A MARKETABLE COMMODITY
Because abortions are illegal, they are exorbitantly expensive. Equal opportunity under our law means that well-connected middle class women can usually get hush-hush D&Cs in hospitals or can afford to fly to England, or to buy a safe abortions on the black market. Even therapeutic abortions can be bought, if the woman can stand the humiliation of pleading her own mental unfitness before a self-righteous board of doctors and psychiatrists. More than five times as many whites as non-whites are granted therapeutic abortions in New York City, a statistic which is inverse in relationship to the need.
Poor and black women, on the other hand, bear unwanted children or face unsafe backalley or self"induced abortions. In New York City, 80% of the women who die from illegal abortions are black or brown. There were almost 10,000 deaths from abortion, more than 4,000 of these from self-induced abortion. Those acts of desperation account for one"half of the deaths associated with pregnancy. In countries where abortion is legal the death rate is one in 80,000, or one-fourth the death rate from full-term pregnancy. Gynecologists who shake their heads when a desperate pregnant woman asks for help will shake their fists in righteous indignation at the "back alley butcher."
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