USA – They Called Her “the Che Guevara of Abortion Reformers”

They Called Her “the Che Guevara of Abortion Reformers”
A decade before Roe, Pat Maginnis’ radical activism—and righteous rage—changed the abortion debate forever.

By Lili Loofbourow
Dec 04, 2018

There was nothing remarkable about the small woman carrying a box of leaflets—certainly nothing to justify the clutch of reporters waiting for her across from San Francisco’s Federal Building on a July morning in 1966. Still, there they were. She arrived at exactly 9 a.m., greeted them, and began distributing fliers to anyone who passed. There were two of them: One was a yellow slip of paper titled “Classes in Abortion,” listing topics like female anatomy, foreign abortion specialists, and police questioning. The other—which she gave only to the assembled journalists and the five women who signed up for her class that Wednesday evening—described two techniques for DIY abortions. “I am attempting to show women an alternative to knitting needles, coat hangers, and household cleaning agents,” she told the reporters, adding that she had notified San Francisco police of her whereabouts and plans.

Continued: https://slate.com/human-interest/2018/12/pat-maginnis-abortion-rights-pro-choice-activist.html?fbclid=IwAR3BPV4zD2olxZfKz946KlEQNmkUyN1x5kbV8IV_os8B-CScIShArXir_ag

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Abortion in New Zealand and How We Got Here

Abortion in New Zealand and How We Got Here
Untangling the criminal history of abortions in New Zealand shows our laws have long been out of step with society.

by Laetitia Laubscher
Nov 27 2018

Abortion is legal in New Zealand but to get one most women have to lie.

In the year to June 2017, New Zealanders had 13,285 abortions, about one-fifth of all known pregnancies that year. The overwhelming majority were obtained through the circuitous, ambiguously legal method that exists in New Zealand—a system criticised by the United Nations for being an arbitrary, discriminatory mess.

Continued: https://www.vice.com/en_ca/article/wj3jmx/abortion-in-new-zealand-and-how-we-got-here

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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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Malawi: Gynaecologist Sheds Light On Abortion Law Reform in Malawi

Malawi: Gynaecologist Sheds Light On Abortion Law Reform in Malawi

By Dr Chisali Mhango
May 7, 2018

Renowned Malawian gynaecologist Dr Chisali Mhango sheds light on abortion law history, misconceptions, fears and law reform process in Malawi.

Abortion is a very common universal phenomenon. Since the beginning of recorded history women the world over have terminated unwanted pregnancies. The first recorded evidence of an induced abortion is found in an Egyptian Papyrus dated 1550 BC. Of 213 million pregnancies that occur each year worldwide, 40% are unplanned, of these half end in abortion, and half of those abortions are unsafe, that is 22 million,

Continued: http://allafrica.com/stories/201805070813.html

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Ireland’s abortion debates through the years

Ireland's abortion debates through the years

Friday, 27 Apr 2018
By David McCullagh

With four weeks to go until Ireland votes on the referendum on the Eighth Amendment on Friday 25 May, David McCullagh looks back on the contentious debates over Ireland's abortion legislation.

1861
Offences Against the Person Act makes it an offence unlawfully to administer poison or to use an instrument on any woman with intent to procure her miscarriage.

1967
British Abortion Act is passed legalising abortion up to 28 weeks’ gestation.

Continued: https://www.rte.ie/news/ireland/2018/0424/956963-abortion-timeline/

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Germany’s ambiguous abortion laws rankle with all sides

Germany’s ambiguous abortion laws rankle with all sides
The country’s vague regulations are stirring tensions with both camps seeking change

Mon, Feb 5, 2018
Derek Scally

It’s almost 20 years ago, but Annika* remembers her abortion clearly. It was 1999, she had just moved from Zürich to Berlin with her two children after the break-up of her marriage.

It was only during the second, hassled month of building a new life in the German capital that she noticed her period hadn’t arrived.

Continued: https://www.irishtimes.com/news/world/europe/germany-s-ambiguous-abortion-laws-rankle-with-all-sides-1.3379731

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Ireland: Ann Lovett 1968 – January 31 1984

Ann Lovett 1968 – January 31 1984
By Donal O'Keeffe
January 31, 2018

34 years ago today, Ann Lovett died after giving birth at a grotto in Granard. Ann’s death changed an Ireland which is still trying to escape the long shadow of the 1980s, writes Donal O’Keeffe.

Granard, Co Longford, is a very picturesque town. It dates back at least to Celtic times and is mentioned in the Táin Bó Cuailgne. Queen Medb and her army stopped in Granard, on their way to take the brown bull of Cooley. So ancient a place is Granard that the original meaning of its name is unclear in Irish. It’s said St Patrick appointed the son of his former master the first bishop of Granard.

Granard is dominated – literally – by the Catholic Church. As you enter from the Edgeworthstown side, you’re immediately aware of the hill looming up on your left, and the grey St Mary’s Church which overlooks the entire main street. At the top of the hill, above the church, is a statue of St Patrick. Below that statue, behind the church, is a Marian shrine. The concreted ground is slick with moss, as a stone Saint Bernadette gazes up with unliving eyes at the statue immortalised by Paula Meehan in her poem ‘The Statue of the Virgin at Granard Speaks‘.

Continued: https://avondhupress.ie/ann-lovett-1968-january-31-1984/

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The Criminalization of Abortion Began as a Business Tactic

The Criminalization of Abortion Began as a Business Tactic
By Erin Blakemore // January 22, 2018

If you opened up the Leavenworth Times, a Kansas newspaper, in the 1850s, you’d see an ad for Sir James Clarke’s Female Pills. These pills, the advertiser bragged, were ideal for bringing on women’s periods—and were “particularly suited to married ladies.”

Then there was Madame Costello, a “female physician” who took out an ad in the New York Herald in the 1840s. She advertised to women “who wish to be treated for obstruction of the monthly period.”

Continued: http://www.history.com/news/the-criminalization-of-abortion-began-as-a-business-tactic

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Ireland: 1861-2017: the divisive history of abortion

1861-2017: the divisive history of abortion

December 14 2017

1861: Abortion is made a criminal offence in Ireland under the Offences Against the Person Act.

1983: Referendum on the Eighth Amendment is passed by a two-to-one margin. The resulting Article 40.3.3 in the Constitution guarantees equal status to the lives of a mother and unborn child.

1991: Ireland signs the EU Maastricht Treaty, but gets guarantee its abortion law will not be affected.

Continued at source: https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/18612017-the-divisive-history-of-abortion-36407136.html

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USA: The Rise and Fall of Hollywood’s Secret Abortionist (Exclusive Book Excerpt)

The Rise and Fall of Hollywood's Secret Abortionist (Exclusive Book Excerpt)
by Stephen G. Bloom
December 04, 2017

Before Roe  v.  Wade, Inez  Burns became wealthy performing abortions for movie stars and the poor. Some thought she was doing a public service. But to future Gov.  Pat Brown, she was a menace.

"This case is going farther than anybody thinks," San Francisco District Attorney Edmund G. (Pat) Brown teased reporters at an October 1945 press conference designed to snare as much publicity as publicity-hungry Brown could summon. Ambitious and enterprising, the 40-year-old was going gangbusters to put Inez Burns, one of California's most politically connected women, behind bars.

There was nothing illegal about knowing everyone who was anyone in California, but there was plenty illegal about exactly how millionaire Inez had joined the state's wealthiest women. For two decades, she had owned and operated the largest and most successful abortion clinic in California. Spick-and-span sterile and hygienic, Inez's clinic looked more like an elegant ladies' tearoom than a facility for terminating pregnancies.

Continued at source: https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/features/rise-fall-hollywoods-secret-abortionist-book-excerpt-1063239

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