USA – How Politics And Bureaucracy Halted The Promise Of The Abortion Pill

Twenty years after medication abortion was approved in the U.S., patients are still jumping through hoops to access it.

By Melissa Jeltsen, HuffPost US
09/28/2020

Twenty years ago today, the Food and Drug Administration approved mifepristone, a drug used to terminate early pregnancies that held the promise of revolutionizing abortion care in the U.S.

Colloquially called the abortion pill, mifepristone is taken in combination with another drug, misoprostol, and allows patients under 10 weeks pregnant to have an abortion in the privacy of their home, instead of inside an abortion clinic. Reproductive rights activists lobbying for the drug envisioned a future where women could have the pills prescribed by their primary physician and dispensed at their local pharmacy, transforming abortion into just another part of normal health care.

Continued: https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/abortion-pill-mifepristone_n_5f720134c5b64e0666608a12?ri18n=true


USA – Amanda Shires on Why She Wrote a Song About Abortion

“The Problem,” a collaboration with Jason Isbell, imagines a couple having an honest, difficult conversation

By JON FREEMAN
September 28, 2020

Amanda Shires and Jason Isbell depict a couple having an honest, difficult conversation about abortion in the new song “The Problem.” The track’s release coincides with International Safe Abortion Day and proceeds from its sales will go to the Yellowhammer Fund, a reproductive justice organization based in Alabama.

Shires wrote the song a few years ago and originally imagined it as a conversation between several women, but revamped it to feature her collaborator and husband. The timing of “The Problem” and the fact that it’s benefiting the Yellowhammer Fund are both important, as draconian, punitive abortion laws have been enacted in Alabama and neighboring states in the last year.

Continued: https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-country/amanda-shires-the-problem-abortion-laws-1067398/


USA – The History of Medication Abortion Approval is More Relevant Than Ever

9/28/2020
by MARIE BASS

The approval of medication abortion care—20 years ago on Monday—was supposed to usher in a new era of abortion access in this country, to lessen the political and cultural stigma of abortion, to end the vitriol, quiet the noise, and give women an important new option to end an early pregnancy. This vision has yet to be realized.

Instead, with the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and the vacancy on the Supreme Court, the constitutional right to abortion is under greater threat than ever before.

Continued: https://msmagazine.com/2020/09/28/the-history-of-medication-abortion-approval-is-more-relevant-than-ever/


20 years later, the FDA must lift restrictions on medication abortion care

BY REPS. DIANA DEGETTE (D-COLO.), BARBARA LEE (D-CALIF.), JAN SCHAKOWSKY (D-ILL.) AND AYANNA PRESSLEY (D-MASS.), OPINION CONTRIBUTORS
09/28/20

Over the years, there have been numerous challenges in the way the United States has approached reproductive health. We rely on our public health institutions to make decisions using the best data to get the best outcomes. Twenty years ago, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved mifepristone, the pill for medication abortion with numerous restrictions on who could prescribe the medication, where it could be taken and where it could be dispensed.

Now, 20 years later, medication abortion care has been used by more than 4 million women and has proven to be a safe and effective option to end an early pregnancy. Mifepristone has long had the potential to transform health care access — yet, the same restrictions the FDA first placed on medication abortion needlessly remain in place to this day. This must change.

Continued: https://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/healthcare/518609-20-years-later-the-fda-must-lift-restrictions-on-medication


How the pandemic has affected abortion rules around the world

By Miriam Berger
September 26, 2020

Argentina’s president was expected to propose a landmark law to decriminalize abortion, setting a new standard for Latin America. Then the coronavirus pandemic hit. The release date was delayed, indefinitely.

Ruth Zurbriggen, a reproductive rights activist with the group Socorristas en Red, felt “pain and rage.” But the group’s work continued — efforts, she said, made even more pressing as the pandemic took center stage.

Continued: https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2020/09/26/coronavirus-pandemic-global-abortion-access-reproductive-health


Trump walks abortion tightrope on SCOTUS pick

He needs to both nod to anti-abortion groups, while not turning off the moderate religious voters and Republicans who support legal abortion.

By MERIDITH MCGRAW and NANCY COOK
09/25/2020

In 2016, President Donald Trump vowed to appoint Supreme Court justices who would “automatically” overturn Roe v. Wade. Now, the White House is insisting there is no such abortion litmus test for Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s replacement. The change in tone reflects the tightrope Trump is currently walking on abortion with conservatives — and especially religious conservatives — ahead of the November election. Trump needs to both nod to concerns of powerful religious groups that have spent years trying to overturn Roe, the 1973 Supreme Court decision that cemented legal abortion, while not turning off the sizable faction of more moderate religious voters and Republicans who support legal abortion.

Continued: https://www.politico.com/news/2020/09/25/trump-supreme-court-abortion-421443


What Americans Really Think About Abortion

It’s the issue that most epitomizes our ‘us’ versus ‘them’ political culture, but actually talking to people yields much more nuance

By Tricia C. Bruce
Sept. 25, 2020

Americans’ attitudes on abortion have remained relatively steady for decades, or so the polls say. Roughly half of Americans identify as “pro-choice,” half as “pro-life”; roughly half see abortion as “morally acceptable,” half as “morally wrong.” Most believe that abortion should be legal in some or all cases—or, framed another way, most support some kind of legal restrictions on abortion.

This division and stability over time make the issue of abortion look different from other social issues such as same-sex marriage, approval for which has been climbing for decades. The rift among Americans over abortion persists in ways that seem to epitomize the polarizing climate of U.S. culture and politics, of “us” versus “them,” as we’ll be reminded in heated discussion of Roe v. Wade in the confirmation battle for a new Supreme Court justice in the weeks ahead.

Continued: https://www.wsj.com/articles/what-americans-really-think-about-abortion-11601042639


USA – Finding an Abortion Clinic Just Got a Lot Easier

9/25/2020
by ISABELLA DALLY-STEELE

Mallory McPherson-Wehan remembers sitting on her friend’s living room floor, scouring the internet for abortion clinics. Her friend, a senior in high school at the time, had found out earlier that day that she was pregnant and made the decision to abort; the only question that remained was where she would go to do so.

“We had no option other than Google,” McPherson-Wehan, who is a volunteer at the DC Abortion Fund told Ms. So Google, they did.

Continued: https://msmagazine.com/2020/09/25/finding-an-abortion-clinic-just-got-a-lot-easier/


The FDA approved the abortion pill 20 years ago. It’s time to make it available via telehealth

By USHMA D. UPADHYAY
SEPTEMBER 24, 2020

Twenty years ago this month, the Food and Drug Administration approved a medication destined to become known as the abortion pill. Mifepristone, then called RU486, was going to change everything about abortion — it would expand access and remove the stigma.

I remember devouring the news because this little pill was going to give women reproductive autonomy and let them control if and when they have children. At the time, I was just starting my Ph.D. in public health. The news inspired and exhilarated me, and I knew that the abortion pill is what I wanted to focus my career on.

Continued: https://www.statnews.com/2020/09/24/make-abortion-pill-available-via-telehealth/


USA – A Movement Grows Outside of East Charlotte Abortion Clinic

The 'New Feminist' defenders

Ryan Pitkin
September 24, 2020

The video begins with a 19-year-old woman relaxing in a lawn chair outside of A Preferred Women’s Health Center, an abortion clinic on Latrobe Drive in east Charlotte where tensions between anti-abortion activists and pro-choice clinic defenders have risen in recent years.

In the video, the 19-year-old clinic defender nonchalantly reads the lyrics to the song “WAP,” which stands for Wet Ass Pussy. She’s talking calmly, but just loud enough to drown out Philip “Flip” Benham, a known religious extremist who has spent nearly 20 years protesting and harassing patients at the east Charlotte clinic. While Benham is usually the loudest man on Latrobe Drive, he looks bewildered by the woman’s confident reading of Cardi B and Meg Thee Stallion’s gospel. He continues to read a Bible passage aloud just feet away from her. Continued: https://qcnerve.com/new-defenders-charlotte-abortion-clinic/