Abortion opposition related to beliefs about fetal pain perception

Media release from the University of Otago
Thursday 13 May 2021

A person’s stance on abortion is linked to their, often inaccurate, belief about when a fetus can feel pain, a University of Otago study has found.

Lead author Emma Harcourt, PhD candidate in Otago’s Centre for Science Communication, says misinformation about abortion and pregnancy is common and potentially harmful.

Continued: https://www.nzdoctor.co.nz/article/abortion-opposition-related-beliefs-about-fetal-pain-perception

USA – The Anti-Abortion Movement Can’t Use This Myth Anymore

Covid-19 may end up inadvertently speeding up abortion progress in America — and exposing conservative hypocrisy along the way.

May 13, 2021
By Jessica Valenti, New York Times

Last month, the Food and Drug Administration announced that people seeking abortion pills during the Covid-19 pandemic will no longer have to visit a doctor’s office to get a prescription. Under the Trump administration, patients were required to receive the first of the medication’s two doses in person, a mandate upheld by the Supreme Court in January. The new policy instead allows for telemedicine consultations and pills sent by mail.

The decision is a practical one for the Covid era: It reduces unnecessary face time in doctor’s offices, which cuts down the potential for exposure. It could also be a huge blow to the anti-abortion movement. Groups like the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have been pushing the Biden administration to make the F.D.A.’s decision permanent. Last week, in a legal filing, the agency announced it was reviewing their restrictions on the medication.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/05/13/opinion/abortion-pill-fda-covid.html

‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Star Unpacks “Traumatizing” Abortion-Themed Episode

Madeline Brewer and showrunner Bruce Miller speak to The Hollywood Reporter about how the pandemic impacted some of their plans and why they are proud of the powerful story told in season four.

MAY 7, 2021

“I’m honored to tell this part of the story,” says Madeline Brewer.

The Handmaid’s Tale star, who has played Handmaid Janine since the beginning of the flagship Hulu drama, can’t quite recall when she found out that her character would be getting a flashback in the fourth season, which returned to streaming on April 28.

Continued: https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/tv/tv-features/handmaids-tale-madeline-brewer-janine-1234948654/

What Facebook Unwittingly Reveals in its Ban of LifeSiteNews for COVID Misinformation

MAY 7, 2021

Facebook’s ban of LifeSiteNews a notoriously
ultraconservative website that regularly spreads disinformation about
abortion—for its COVID violations—puts into sharp relief the tolerance of
misogyny and violence against women on Facebook and in our culture more

While many may have missed this decision in the midst of the controversy over
Facebook’s ban of Trump, the rationale for the ban of LifeSiteNews was the
spreading of “false information about COVID-19 that could contribute to
physical harm,” an action that violates Facebook’s COVID-19 policies. The
website was banned from YouTube in February for similar reasons.

Continued: https://religiondispatches.org/what-facebook-unwittingly-reveals-in-its-ban-of-lifesitenews-for-covid-misinformation/

Linking Voter Suppression and Abortion Restrictions: “If We Lose Voting Rights, We Lose Women’s Rights”

A combination of legal restrictions on voting and abortion, physical violence and intimidation tactics have emerged again during a time of renewed challenges to white male supremacy.


In the first four months of 2021, Republican lawmakers introduced over 360 bills to restrict voting rights and 536 bills to restrict abortion rights. The defeat of Donald Trump, and Biden’s attempts to dismantle Trump’s white supremacist agenda, have inspired a fevered campaign by state-level Republican lawmakers of voter suppression and abortion restrictions. While at first glance these efforts might appear to be unrelated, they are deeply connected, says Smith College professor Loretta Ross.

“The right-wing has an intersectional agenda. Their whole plan is to maintain a white majority by whatever means possible. So that requires them to try to socially engineer white women into having more babies and to restrict voting rights and immigrant rights,” Ross told Ms.

Continued: https://msmagazine.com/2021/05/07/voter-suppression-abortion-restrictions-womens-rights/

Texas anti-abortion legislation paves way for every right-to-lifer to sue abortion doctors

Someone who provides funds for an abortion could also be sued, even if they didn’t know that’s what the money was being used for.

May 6, 2021
By Marina Garrett, advocate for survivors of sexual assault

Texas has spent years attacking access to abortion. After the state exploited the Covid-19 crisis last spring to try to close abortion clinics, it was hard to imagine it could get more extreme.

But the Texas Legislature is poised to do just that, by approving legislation being billed as the first of its kind for the tactics it uses to prevent access to abortion. The measure has already been passed by the state Senate and is set to clear a House procedural vote on Thursday. The reconciled version is expected to get the governor’s approval when it reaches his desk.

Continued: https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/texas-anti-abortion-legislation-paves-way-every-right-lifer-sue-ncna1266396

Down’s syndrome: Abortion case heads to High Court

May 5, 2021

Campaigners are set to have a review of abortion law relating to Down's syndrome heard at the High Court.

Heidi Carter, of Coventry, and Máire
Lea-Wilson from Brentford, west London, are challenging the government over a
clause in the current law which allows abortion for up to birth for a foetus
with Down's syndrome.

Mrs Carter, 25, who has the condition, said the current law is "not

Continued: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-56982646

Italy’s futile abortion laws

Despite legislation, far-right politicians and religious organisations have entrenched ways to deny women their right to an abortion and shame those who do terminate a pregnancy.

By: Alex Čizmić
5 May 2021

There are laws that are enacted to bring about real-life change. There are others that are pushed through simply to give the illusion of progress. The latter seems to be the case in Italy with Law 194/78.

This legislation from 22 May 1978 decriminalises and regulates the procedure for accessing an abortion but, according to a report by the minister of health published in 2019 on the implementation of the law, conscientious objection among gynaecologists reached 68.4% on average with peaks of 100% in certain hospitals.

Continued: https://www.newframe.com/italys-futile-abortion-laws/

Unprecedented Surge in Anti-Abortion Laws Proposed and Passed Across the U.S.


In the first four months of 2021, anti-abortion lawmakers introduced 536 abortion restrictions in 46 states, including 146 abortion bans, according to a report released by the Guttmacher Institute on Friday. They enacted 61 restrictions in 13 states, including eight bans that would go into effect if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade. Governors signed 28 restrictions into law in eight states just last week.

Continued: https://msmagazine.com/2021/05/04/anti-abortion-laws-texas-arizona-arkansas-indiana-west-virginia-kentucky-oklahoma-south-dakota-wyoming/

Trump’s Supreme Court threatens abortion rights for a lifetime to come

When Trump added three anti-abortion conservatives to the Supreme Court, he pretty much guaranteed a roll-back of women’s rights.

May 4, 2021 By Laura Bassett, MSNBC Opinion Columnist

Until now, 2011 was the most brutal year for abortion rights in recent history. In the 12 months after the “red wave” in the 2010 midterm elections, Republicans enacted 92 abortion restrictions across 24 states, kicking off a so-called “war on women” that shut down dozens of abortion clinics across the country and dominated the national political conversation through 2014.

Then Donald Trump happened, and he distracted the nation with his near daily disasters, stunts and scandals. He also added three anti-abortion conservatives to the Supreme Court, one of them replacing feminist icon Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, thus pretty much guaranteeing a rollback of women’s rights.

Continued: https://www.msnbc.com/opinion/trump-s-supreme-court-threatens-abortion-rights-lifetime-come-n1266261