USA – When It Comes to Abortion Rights, Civil Disobedience Could Be the Only Option

When It Comes to Abortion Rights, Civil Disobedience Could Be the Only Option
Non-violent protest should be on the table ahead of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation hearing.

Erin Matson
Aug 16, 2018

In this op-ed, Erin Matson, co-founder and co-director of Reproaction, explains why civil disobedience should be on the table when it comes to preserving abortion rights.

For abortion opponents, Brett Kavanaugh is — to borrow the parlance of baseball — somewhat of a closing pitcher. While there have been other justices who would vote to overturn Roe v. Wade and end the federal constitutional right to abortion, Kavanaugh’s decisions on reproductive rights have anti-abortion groups strongly supporting his nomination. For that reason, many have noted that he could be the one to shut it all down. Nominated to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy, who had been a swing vote in favor of protecting abortion, Kavanaugh would turn the court into an enduring five-vote majority — an all-male majority — opposed to abortion rights. Since the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973 that made outright abortion bans unconstitutional, the threat to maintaining that decision in the United States has never been this pronounced. Congress can’t be counted on to save us, as we’ve seen legislators fail us before, letting laws critical to our health lapse. As the nomination hearings begin, we need to keep that in mind. That’s why strategic, non-violent civil disobedience needs to be on the table.

Continued: https://www.teenvogue.com/story/when-it-comes-to-abortion-rights-civil-disobedience-could-be-the-only-option

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England ‘Out of Step on Home Abortion Pills’

England 'Out of Step on Home Abortion Pills'

Nicky Broyd

July 10, 2018

An early medical abortion (EMA), involves taking two drugs (mifepristone and misoprostol) usually 24 to 48 hours apart.

In October 2017 the Scottish Government gave approval for the second drug, misoprostol, to be taken at home and Wales is following suit. Now England is being urged to do the same.

Continued: https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/899098

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Criminalised abortion in UK obstructs reflective choice and best care

Criminalised abortion in UK obstructs reflective choice and best care

BMJ 2018; 362 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.k2928
Published 09 July 2018
Sandy Goldbeck-Wood, Abigail Aiken, David Horwell, Oskari Heikinheimo, Ganesh Acharya, editorial board of BMJ Sexual and Reproductive Health

Theresa May could seize this opportunity for evidence based reform

The recent decisions to liberalise abortion laws in the Republic of Ireland and the Isle of Man1 have put pressure on the British prime minister, Theresa May, to consider decriminalising abortion in the UK. Although she believes “that a woman should be able to access safe, legal abortion,”2 she has not yet acted to initiate amendment of the 1861 Offences Against the Person Act—perhaps in fear of Northern Ireland's anti-abortion Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), on which her minority government depends.

Continued: https://www.bmj.com/content/362/bmj.k2928

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The Guardian view on Northern Ireland and abortion: the mounting demand for change

The Guardian view on Northern Ireland and abortion: the mounting demand for change
Editorial
A judgment from the UK’s supreme court adds to the already overwhelming case for reforming oppressive laws

Thu 7 Jun 2018

The moral case for the reform of Northern Ireland’s harsh abortion laws, which forbid terminations even in the case of rape or fatal foetal abnormalities, has long been clear. But the sweeping victory for reform in the Irish abortion referendum last month made it starker than ever. The logical case is obvious: the restrictions do not prevent but displace abortions, with women travelling across the Irish Sea to end their pregnancies. The political case is equally evident: poll after poll has shown that voters in Northern Ireland believe the law must change. Now the supreme court has laid out the legal case.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jun/07/the-guardian-view-on-northern-ireland-and-abortion-the-mounting-demand-for-change

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The Observer view on the global threat to access to abortion

The Observer view on the global threat to access to abortion
Women’s reproductive rights are under widespread threat, not least in America. This is no time for complacency

Observer editorial
Sun 20 May 2018

During his eight years in the White House, one of the themes President Obama frequently reflected on in speeches was the non-linear nature of social progress. “Progress doesn’t travel in a straight line,” he told Rutgers students in his commencement address in 2016. “It remains uneven and at times for every two steps forward, it feels like we take one step back.”

Those words feel particularly apt in relation to women’s rights. In the last year, the #MeToo movement has seen women globally assert their right to live and work without the threat of sexual assault and harassment. But in the world’s wealthiest democracy, women’s reproductive rights are more imperilled than they have been in 30 years.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/may/20/observer-view-on-abortion-donald-trump-gag-rule

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The Irish Times view on the abortion referendum: The shadow campaign

The Irish Times view on the abortion referendum: The shadow campaign
It is incumbent on all of us to talk with friends and family about what we are seeing online and whether it should be trusted

May 7, 2018

With less than three weeks to go to the referendum on repeal of the Eighth Amendment, concern has been expressed across the political spectrum about the potential impact of unregulated online advertising and of misleading information being disseminated via social media platforms.

Experience elsewhere suggests these digital campaigns are likely to increase in intensity as voting day approaches. Also that it will be impossible to gain a full picture of what is actually happening online before the vote takes place. The nature of targeted digital advertising, particularly on platforms such as Facebook, means certain messages will be restricted to specific demographic groups while remaining invisible to the rest of us.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/editorial/the-irish-times-view-on-the-abortion-referendum-the-shadow-campaign-1.3486827

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Canada: Governments should fund birth control, as they do HIV prevention

Governments should fund birth control, as they do HIV prevention
MARINA ADSHADE and NIKO BELL, VANCOUVER
The Globe and Mail
Published January 7, 2018

Sixty-one per cent of Canadian women have had an unintended pregnancy, notes a study by Canada's Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. Government policy is to blame.

On Jan. 1, the B.C. government joined Ontario and Quebec in offering coverage of a drug that prevents HIV infection for people at high risk. This is a smart move, spending a little money on prevention to save much more on health care down the road. If only the provinces were as clever when it came to providing affordable contraceptives for women; failing to do so costs taxpayers millions of dollars and imposes undue hardship on parents and children.

Continued at source: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/governments-should-fund-birth-control-as-it-does-hiv-prevention/article37521476/

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Eighth Amendment: a watershed on abortion

Eighth Amendment: a watershed on abortion
In drawing up a referendum wording and draft legislation, the Government has more scope than many believed

Dec 14, 2017

One of the peculiarities of the Irish debate on abortion in the early 1980s – a debate that was to culminate, but not find resolution, in the Eighth Amendment to the Constitution – was that it was the anti-abortion side that set the terms. In the United States and mainland Europe, the momentum in those years was generated by pro-choice lobbies, but in Ireland the current moved in the opposite direction. Those who sought a more restrictive regime initially did all the running, and in time, by out-organising their opponents on the ground and skilfully playing politicians off against one another, they succeeded in having a ban on abortion written into the Constitution. Their fear was always that future, more liberal judges or politicians could move ahead of public opinion and pave the way for legal abortion.

Continued at source: https://www.irishtimes.com/opinion/editorial/eighth-amendment-a-watershed-on-abortion-1.3326263

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UK: The Guardian view on 50 years of legal abortion: let’s finish the work

The Guardian view on 50 years of legal abortion: let’s finish the work
Editorial
David Steel’s act was a job half done. Abortion is not a crime, it’s a matter of health

Thursday 26 October 2017

It is 50 years on Friday since David Steel’s abortion act became law. It did not come into force until the following April. In those six months, it is likely that around 70 women died from sepsis or some other cause resulting from illegal abortion: in the previous decade, it claimed at least 150 lives a year, the biggest single cause of maternal mortality. Activists in a campaign that began in the 1930s toasted victory with champagne. But one veteran, who had had an illegal abortion herself, dampened the celebrations. They should be drinking half-glasses, she said, for the job was only half done.

Continued at source: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/oct/26/the-guardian-view-on-50-years-of-legal-abortion-lets-finish-the-work

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USA: Abortion Ideologues Subvert a Woman’s Rights

Abortion Ideologues Subvert a Woman’s Rights
By THE EDITORIAL BOARD
OCT. 20, 2017

Jane Doe is a 17-year-old undocumented immigrant detained in Texas who is 15 weeks pregnant and is seeking an abortion. The Constitution grants her that right, but the Trump administration is determined to subvert it as part of its war on women’s reproductive rights.

Late Friday, a federal appeals court in Washington ruled that the teenager must be allowed to have an abortion, but it gave the federal government until Oct. 31 to find her a sponsor so that the government itself does not have to arrange for the procedure. The ruling came hours after the court heard the case, in which the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement said that if it released her to see a doctor it would “facilitate” an abortion, an action it said would contradict its interest in “promoting child birth and fetal life.” The government argued that barring an abortion doesn’t place an “undue burden” on her rights because she can always go home to get one — to a Central American country that criminalizes abortion and to parents who are abusive.

Continued at source: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/20/opinion/abortion-immigrant-texas.html

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