USA: Banning abortion does not make abortion go away

Banning abortion does not make abortion go away

Robyn Pennacchia
June 30, 2018

Banning abortion does not make abortion go away. Women who have the means to travel, or the desperation to go underground, have always found a way, and their organizing power ultimately made abortion a constitutional right in the United States. Today, women should keep that history in mind as they prepare for the next chapter in this fight.

This week, US Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his plans to retire. Kennedy has long been the Court’s swing vote on issues like abortion. If president Donald Trump is able to appoint an anti-choice judge (which he has vowed to do), the cases that established abortion rights, such as Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood vs. Casey will face immense challenges, and could potentially be overturned as soon as next year. It’s a terrifying and overwhelming prospect.

Continued: https://qz.com/1318779/abortion-activists-are-ready-for-justice-kennedys-retirement/

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Inside the Top-Secret Abortion Underground

Inside the Top-Secret Abortion Underground
Code names, top-secret training, and a movement of women determined to avoid the medical establishment.

Nina Liss-Schultz
Mother Jones, March/April 2018 Issue

On a summer day in 2015, Renata and more than a dozen women, all strangers from different parts of the country, sat in a semicircle on the living-room floor of a house, deep in the rural South. A lean twentysomething with a wide smile and olive skin, Renata was the only nonwhite person in the group. And she felt conspicuous in other ways too—many of the women struck her as kind of “new agey,” and some had been involved in a “crystal energetics” midwifery program. All of them had big red binders full of worksheets and documents related to the topic at hand: how to help women self-induce an abortion. “My initial thought,” she recalls, “is, ‘What the fuck did I get myself into?'”

Renata had come from Arizona to attend the weeklong training. She learned how, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, white male doctors consolidated their professional power in part by sidelining female and often nonwhite midwives and other community healers. She learned which drugs and herbs induce a miscarriage and where to buy the small, plastic, strawlike instrument that is inserted into the uterus and suctions out an unwanted pregnancy. If problems arise, what should one say to avoid scrutiny at the emergency room? In which states is self-induced abortion, and helping women self-induce, a crime?

Continued: https://www.motherjones.com/crime-justice/2018/02/inside-the-top-secret-abortion-underground/

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The secret home abortion movement that started in LA two years before Roe v. Wade

The secret home abortion movement that started in LA two years before Roe v. Wade

by Christopher Greenspon | Off-Ramp®
April 14, 2017

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following story may be disturbing for some people. It includes frank discussion of abortion and somewhat graphic clinical descriptions of abortion procedures.

Norma McCorvey — better known as the "Roe" of Roe v. Wade, which established a woman's right to an abortion in the U.S. — died in February at the age of 69. She was credited with taking abortion out of the back alley, although she switched sides in the last part of her life.

But two years prior to the 1973 Supreme Court decision, a woman from Eagle Rock had made it her mission to take abortion from the back alley to the living room. Her name is Carol Downer and she helped create an underground network of unlicensed women who performed home abortions. She wrote books on female anatomy, went to jail, and ran a women’s health and abortion clinic in Hollywood which burned down in 1985.

Continued at source: Southern California Public Radio: http://www.scpr.org/programs/offramp/2017/04/14/56179/the-secret-home-abortion-movement-started-in-la-tw/

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