USA – Abortion ‘reversal’: the latest sham from anti-choice activists trying to end women’s rights

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USA – Abortion ‘reversal’: the latest sham from anti-choice activists trying to end women’s rights

by International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion
Aug 18, 2017

For years, the US anti-abortion movement has promoted various falsehoods, e.g. that women regret their abortions. Now, some of them are claiming that an unproven treatment can counter the effect of mifepristone, the first pill used in the two-drug regimen of medical abortion, thereby giving women a “second chance” to keep their baby. Despite the hype, there is no evidence that flooding the body with progesterone – a hormone pregnant patients already have a lot of – increases the chance of continuing the pregnancy. In fact, in the extremely rare case that a patient changes their mind before taking the second pill, watchful waiting and inaction appears to be just as effective.

Use of medical abortion pills has steadily risen in the US, now representing almost half of all abortions. Medical abortion has the potential to radically transform the way patients access and experience abortion by moving it out of a clinic and more directly into the hands of the user. It also challenges the anti-abortion movement’s long-standing strategy of demonizing clinicians who do surgical abortions and the instruments they use.

In an independent clinic in North Carolina, a woman who counsels 20-40 patients a week on medical abortion, said that over the past five years since she has been working at the clinic, she has seen only one patient express remorse immediately after swallowing the mifepristone pill. She and the clinic staff helped the young woman to vomit the medication and counselled her on what to do if she began to abort. They did hear from the woman again: one week later when she came back to the clinic for a surgical abortion.

This article  was written in response to an article in the New York Times about so-called abortion pill reversal. The NY Times article is a long, detailed history of the changes in anti-abortion tactics in the USA over a long period of time, opening with the story of a very religious woman who got pregnant with someone who was not the partner she wanted, sought an abortion though it was against her beliefs, and after taking mifepristone, decided it was a mistake. Through a web search she came across an anti-abortion group who oppose the use of medical abortion pills and claimed the effect can be cancelled out by taking progesterone. This claim is based on the experience of only four women whose pregnancies might well have continued anyway. But that has not stopped several anti-abortion state legislatures in the US from passing laws requiring that women be told that “reversal” is possible.

Women who take the mifepristone pill, regret the decision and seek “reversal” are in fact very few and far between. But the anti-abortion view, as explained by Mary Ziegler, a law professor at Florida State University, is that peddling “reversal” is worth it “even if the laws are eventually struck down or the protocol turns out to be ineffective. Just raising the question of uncertainty and regret affects the abortion pill’s reputation. You’re changing… what people think about this kind of abortion. You can do that regardless of what the research ultimately shows.’’

In other words, if you tell people the same lie often enough, they may believe you.

SOURCES: The Guardian, by Renee Bracey Sherman, Daniel Grossman, 2 August 2017 ; New York Times, by Ruth Graham, 18 July 2017 ; VISUAL

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Source: International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion: http://www.safeabortionwomensright.org/usa-abortion-reversal-the-latest-sham-from-anti-choice/

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US: Abortion ‘reversal’: the latest sham from anti-choice activists trying to end women’s rights

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Abortion 'reversal': the latest sham from anti-choice activists trying to end women's rights

Talking about abortion reversal, which is not evidence-based, could sow more confusion – exactly the intended effect by anti-abortion forces

Renee Bracey Sherman and Daniel Grossman
Wednesday 2 August 2017

For years, the anti-abortion movement has popularized the myth that patients regret their abortion, or are somehow coerced into having the procedure before they are ready. This falsehood forms the foundation for many restrictive laws that states have enacted in recent years, including requirements to make an extra visit to the clinic before the procedure, or wait up to 72 hours after receiving counseling before the abortion can be performed.

The latest tactic to advance this argument is the so-called abortion reversal – an unproven treatment that supposedly counters the effect of mifepristone, the first pill used in the two-drug regimen of medication abortion. “Reversal” advocates claim this therapy can give patients a “second chance” to keep their baby.

Continued at source: The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/aug/02/abortion-pill-reversal-anti-choice-activism

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U.S.: Two Years Later, What Has Come of David Daleiden’s Accusation That Planned Parenthood ‘Sells Baby Parts’?

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Two Years Later, What Has Come of David Daleiden’s Accusation That Planned Parenthood ‘Sells Baby Parts’?

Jul 19, 2017, 12:24pm Imani Gandy & Jessica Mason Pieklo

It has been two years this week since the anti-choice activist David Daleiden and his front group, the Center for Medical Progress (CMP), first burst onto the scene to accuse Planned Parenthood affiliates of illegally profiting from fetal tissue donations—or as Daleiden put it, “baby parts.”

The allegations were, and are, absurd. In fact, they are so absurd—and Daleiden’s conduct in editing and releasing the videos is so egregious—that amidst a flurry of lawsuits, a federal court just ordered him in contempt of court and handed him a bill for more than $130,000.

Continued at source: Rewire: https://rewire.news/ablc/2017/07/19/two-years-later-come-david-daleidens-accusation-planned-parenthood-sells-baby-parts/

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Life and death in Texas: abortion frontline of America – video

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Life and death in Texas: abortion frontline of America – video

Monday 17 July 2017
Leah Green, Tom Silverstone, Richard Sprenger and Jess Gormley, theguardian.com

New Texan anti-abortion laws are putting women’s lives at risk, according to pro-choice campaigners. But pro-life activists claim they are protecting women from an out-of-control abortion industry. Leah Green visits the state as the battle over women’s bodies intensifies

Source: The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2017/jul/17/life-death-texas-abortion-frontline-america-video

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UK: Charlie Gard and the pro-life lobbyists

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Charlie Gard and the pro-life lobbyists

The US right has elbowed its way to a British baby’s bedside and it has a troubling agenda

Janice Turner
July 12 2017

In February the group Abort67 set up a Facebook live-stream opposite the BPAS abortion clinic in Hastings. Any woman going inside that day, past the protesters waving placards showing magnified photos of bloody foetuses, risked being exposed on social media.

At another BPAS (British Pregnancy Advisory Service) clinic, a woman was called by her violent partner who opposed the abortion. He had given both their mobile numbers to the Good Counsel Network, which regularly protested outside. When the protesters saw her going in alone, they let him know and later texted her, demanding she cancel the abortion.

Continued at source: The Times: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/charlie-gard-and-the-pro-life-lobbyists-svsfhtvxv

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U.S.: Catholic bishops’ agenda hurts families

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Catholic bishops' agenda hurts families

Jon O'Brien
June 20, 2017

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is kicking off its annual Fortnight for Freedom in Baltimore tomorrow in a celebratory mood. Every year, the bishops present this event as an effort to defend religious liberty. But we’ve seen over five years its real intent: to galvanize the Catholic hierarchy around an agenda to discriminate against and impose their beliefs on Catholics and non-Catholics alike. And their persistence has paid off, despite very little support or attention from everyday Catholics.

Why? Because they found a benefactor unlike any other. President Trump has rewarded the bishops handily for their loyalty during the elections...

Continued at source: Baltimore Sun: http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/oped/bs-ed-op-0621-bishops-fortnight-20170619-story.html

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U.S.: Alternative Science and Human Reproduction

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Alternative Science and Human Reproduction

R. Alta Charo, J.D.
June 14, 2017
DOI: 10.1056/NEJMp1707107

Human reproduction has become the victim of alternative science, rife with alternative definitions of well-understood medical conditions and characterized by rejection of the scientific method as the standard for generating and evaluating evidence. Alternative science begins with alternative facts of the sort propounded by the Trump administration and its appointees, including Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Tom Price, who has claimed that “there’s not one” woman who can’t afford birth control on her own (despite the high up-front cost of the most reliable contraceptives). Alternative science is similarly embraced by recent executive-branch appointees Valerie Huber, Teresa Manning, Charmaine Yoest, and Katy Talento.

Continued at source: New England Journal of Medicine: http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1707107#t=article

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U.S.: How Anti-Abortion Zealots Pose as Medical Professionals to Trick Pregnant Women

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How Anti-Abortion Zealots Pose as Medical Professionals to Trick Pregnant Women

Callie Beusman
May 30 2017

Anti-abortion groups are opening fake clinics near actual reproductive health care providers across the country in an attempt to shame and scare women into staying pregnant.

On an overcast Saturday morning in late May, several protesters had gathered outside of Hartford GYN Center, an abortion clinic in Connecticut. Many of them were clutching rosaries, and some bore signs decorated with images of beatific infants, with the implication that similar infants were in immediate danger of being murdered. They were, by their own description, facing down "the Evil One;" later in the day, a protester would tell me that an acquaintance of hers had once seen the devil himself crouched atop a different clinic and mistaken it for a gargoyle.

Continued at source: Broadly/VICE: https://broadly.vice.com/en_us/article/how-anti-abortion-zealots-pose-as-medical-professionals-to-trick-pregnant-women

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Chilean Senators try to alter the text of the abortion bill for and against safe abortion

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Chilean Senators try to alter the text of the abortion bill for and against safe abortion
by International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion
April 19, 2017

A news report on 1 April revealed that several anti-abortion Senators have sought to modify the ground of risk of the woman’s life, to say that “all legitimate medical practice to save the life of the mother that, as a result, ends the life of the fetus is not abortion”. However, although they claim that this rewording is “with nuances of grammar, but similar in its intention”, in fact this is an anti-abortion substitute for making abortion legal if there is a risk to the woman’s life. This is the language of the Dublin Declaration on Maternal Healthcare of 2012, which states unequivocally that abortion is never medically necessary, even to save the life of a pregnant woman. It is a kind of double-speak that led to the death of Savita Halappanavar in Ireland, where the Declaration was published just before her death. Abortion rights advocates should oppose it, if they are not doing so already.

The Government, for its part, reintroduced a number of grounds that had been rejected in the Chamber of Deputies; among them, the right to decide on abortion at the age of 14 years and the elimination of the requirement to report any woman who has an abortion to the police, which is currently required of clinicians.

The deadline for Senators to propose any further changes has passed. The next step in the process began on 4 April, in the Senate Health Committee, chaired by Senator PPD Guido Girardi, the new President of the Commission. He assured the Committee that they will hold no more hearings, and that now was the time to legislate and that they were going to discuss all the grounds. In total, there were 120 amendments to the bill, which they began to review during the week of 10 April.

In line with the Government’s views, Senator and presidential candidate Alejandro Guillier is supporting permitting abortion in cases of rape up to 18 weeks of pregnancy and restrictions on the exercise of conscientious objection, requiring prior written notification, a rationale and the approval of the director of the health facility concerned.

Other changes proposed by anti-abortion Senator Andres Zaldivar are to lower the “intensity” of the criminal prosecution of women having abortion, i.e. reducing but not eliminating prison sentences, as a “more humane approach to the problem”. This point has generated one of the largest debates in the DC party and with independent senators, who are opposed to women who have abortions ending up in jail. He has also proposed that if a fetal anomaly has been diagnosed, the pregnancy should not be aborted but the hospital should wait and “induce labour” at 22 weeks in order to deliver a live but very premature baby that will need intensive treatment to stay alive, as has been imposed in several cases, e.g. Paraguay, on young girls. This is not abortion, but it is international anti-abortion ideology and language.

In contrast, a number of pro-choice Senators have proposed to extend the grounds of risk to the woman’s life by adding the concept of “serious harm to health” as well as life. Senator Girardi was going to add that this can apply to the “present or future” but it seems he has not done so. Another proposal has been to extend the types of fetal anomaly incompatible with life to “congenital malformation, genetic alteration or acquired pathology”.

These proposals, representing the different sides on this issue, are a sign that support for this bill’s intention to permit abortion in limited circumstances is far from being secured.

SOURCE: EMOL, 1 April 2017 ; biobiochile, 5 April 2017 ; PHOTO, Agencia UNO ;

Thanks to Lidia Casas Becerra for checking this text, 18 April 2017

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Source: International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion: http://www.safeabortionwomensright.org/chilean-senators-try-to-alter-the-text-of-the-abortion-bill-for-and-against-safe-abortion/

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Miss-Information

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Miss-Information
2017 ISSUE 1, Conscience
Abortion abortion access UK
Increased scrutiny reveals the deceptions and aggressions of antiabortion activists in the UK

By Clare Murphy / Posted Apr 19, 2017

In ‘Debating Abortion on Campus,’ published in the 2016(3) issue of Conscience, Jon O’Brien eloquently made the case for why prochoice advocates should not shy away from debate, documenting the censorship of the antichoice opposition that has crept onto campuses across the United Kingdom and the United States. “In a healthy society, people aren’t afraid to discuss things. We must never be afraid of the battle of ideas,” he wrote. Indeed. So why should women accessing abortion services be an exception, shielded from the ideas and opinions of protesters on the street outside? Should they, as the respected US lawyer and social critic Wendy Kaminer has argued, have to accept that “feeling intimidated, being confronted and ‘stressed’ by people who oppose abortion rights, is sometimes the price of free speech”?

Continued at source: Conscience: http://consciencemag.org/2017/04/19/miss-information/

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