The Future Of Abortion

-Submitted by David Drumm (Nal), Guest Blogger

kermit gosnell & clinicIf the forced-pregnancy crowd continues to win its war on legal abortion, the future of abortion will be personified by Dr. Kermit Gosnell, pictured at left with his “clinic” in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The grand jury’s report on the Gosnell Women’s Medical Services clinic (pdf) is available for those who have the stomach for “a house of horrors.” Gosnell is on trial for 7 counts of first-degree murder regarding the deaths of seven babies, and one count of third-degree murder for the death of a female patient. Many conservatives pundits think there should be greater media coverage. Be careful what you wish for.

Gosnell’s clientele were poor women, predominately of color, who couldn’t afford a legitimate abortion provider since Medicaid doesn’t cover most abortions. Poor people receiving substandard medical care, since when is this the focus of the media?

Some of Gosnell’s survivors intended to go to the Planned Parenthood clinic, a few miles away, but were scared away by the protesters at the Planned Parenthood clinic. The protesters were at the location where abortion was being performed at a high level of medical competence, while there were no protesters at Gosnell’s “clinic.” Maybe the media could ask the anti-abortion protesters why they didn’t picket at Gosnell’s “clinic?” Maybe the media could ask the forced-pregnancy crowd if unrestrained access to safe abortion facilities decreases the likelihood of future Gosnells.

Maybe the media could ask the forced-pregnancy crowd if denying hospital privileges to abortion providers increases the danger to their patients’ health.

The era of safe medical abortions is coming to an end. The demand for abortions has been and will always be there, and it is reasonable to foresee more Gosnells as the result, in addition to attempts at self-induced abortions.

One small glimmer of hope is the ruling by Judge Edward R. Korman, United States district judge serving on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Recently J. Korman ruled in the case of Tummino v. Hamburg, a case involving Kathleen Sebelius’ (Secretary of Health and Human plan bServices) overruling the FDA and denying over-the-counter (OTC) access to Plan B. In a well-reasoned and detailed ruling, J. Korman found “the Secretary’s action was politically motivated, scientifically unjustified, and contrary to agency precedent” in addition to being “arbitrary, capricious, and unreasonable.” J. Korman reversed the FDA decision and remanded. The Obama administration has yet to decide if it will waste millions of taxpayer dollars on a meritless appeal.

Plan B One-Step, at OTC prices and availability, will, if taken within 72 hours, reduce the chance of pregnancy by 89 percent. This will be a severe setback for the forced-pregnancy crowd. There will be no pharmacist with “religious objections” to interfere with the sale. The forced-pregnancy crowd will claim that Plan B is an abortifacient. This lie was noted by J. Korman who referenced a GAO report that Plan B:

interferes with prefertilization events. It reduces the number of sperm cells in the uterine cavity, immobilizes sperm, and impedes further passage of sperm cells into the uterine cavity. In addition, [Pan B] has the capacity to delay or prevent ovulation from occurring.

The forced-pregnancy crowd will claim that Plan B is not safe. However, J. Korman wrote that Plan B has no “known serious or long-term side effects, though they may have some mild short-term side effects, such as nausea, fatigue, and headache.” Plan B gives women the same control over reproduction that the condom does for men.

H/T: Sarah Posner, Scott Lemieux, Kate Michelman, PZ Myers, Jonathan H. Adler, NPR.

82 thoughts on “The Future Of Abortion”

  1. U.S. Drops Bid to Limit Sales of Morning-After Pill

    WASHINGTON — The Obama administration has decided to stop trying to block over-the-counter availability of the best-known morning-after contraceptive pill for all women and girls, a move fraught with political repercussions for President Obama.

    The government’s decision means that any woman or girl will soon be able to walk into a drugstore and buy the pill, Plan B One-Step, without a prescription.

  2. And judge is not being political?

    By way, has the jury reached a verdict in the Gosnell case?

  3. Judge Refuses to Drop His Order Allowing Morning-After Pill for All Ages

    On Friday, he denied the request by government lawyers to suspend his ruling while they appeal. In the process, he lashed out again at Ms. Sebelius in unusually harsh terms, questioning her credibility and integrity.

    “If a stay is granted, it will allow the bad-faith, politically motivated decision of Secretary Sebelius, who lacks any medical or scientific expertise, to prevail — thus justifiably undermining the public’s confidence in the drug approval process,” Judge Korman wrote.

  4. RWL:

    Abortion is a very hard subject. On the one hand you have the mothers rights and on the other hand you have (potential) human life.

    I dont envy anyone having to make that choice.

  5. Mike S & Nal,

    My status as a ‘Liberal Christian'(as I was labeled) gets me into trouble with my not-so-Liberal Christians: In other words, I am 100% for any type of contraceptive in order prevent pregnancy, and 100% for the abortion pill (i.e. RU-486).

    However, I am against ‘late term’ abortions (for me ‘late term’ means when a woman is 3-4 months along, and wants to end the pregnancy). As I stated earlier (I am no health science expert) I thought that there was another way of having the 3-4 month old baby/fetus to survive, if mom doesn’t want to carry the child any more.

    I am between a rock and a hard place: I don’t want to force a woman to carry a child she doesnt want to carry. On the other hand, I dont want to end the 3-4 month old baby/fetus’ life, as well.

    1. RWL,

      My comment was not addressed at you, or Bron for that matter. My problem is with those who wish to impose their religious beliefs on others, particularly women.

      1. People who think death is an answer are religious. They teach that Hell is a place not saying it is Gods glory. They wanted the demise of Jesus and Lazarus too. There should not be a law against not one for. Hearts need to have a healthy respect for life. Each person living for God seeing God in others will have a life beyond this life however long that life lives. That life should at least have a chance at living without people thinking the life is expendable. Don’t have people thinking life is expendable war, jailing and death penalty will end too.

  6. RWL,

    The same regulations that prevent 15 year olds from overdosing on Tylenol. Plan B is safer than Tylenol.

  7. Nal,

    Interesting! My concerns, since they are trying to lower the age for emergency contraceptive pills for 15 year olds, is overdose? Are or will regulations be in place to prevent overdose or abuse?

  8. RWL,

    From an FDA report (pdf):

    The most common adverse events (>10%) in the clinical trial for women receiving Plan B One-Step included heavier menstrual bleeding (30.9%), nausea
    (13.7%), lower abdominal pain (13.3%), fatigue (13.3%), and headache (10.3%). Table 1 lists those adverse events that were reported in > 4% of Plan B OneStep users.

    1. Nal,

      Your FDA link puts this in perspective. The side effects mentioned are certainly acceptable and normal if you think about. The objections to the drug are made scary by abortion opponents, who will lie and distort everything possible to ensure that women carry even a rape to term. The leaders of the anti-abortion movement are misogynistic fanatics, but cleverly couch their message in a way that people think it is acceptable for government to control women’s bodies. That control is the purpose and the essence of the anti-abortion movement.

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