Abortion activists continue to panic about the possibility of a world in which abortion is illegal. Contradictory factions have emerged among anti-Life activists, and both are wrong. One faction is sticking to the strategies that convinced much of the American public to fall for the abortion lie four decades ago, and another is pushing a new lie that abortion is an “empowering” social good.
Leading up to the legalization of elective abortion, the abortion lobby had a carefully orchestrated plan to convince the media that abortion was “necessary.” As Dr. Bernard Nathanson, former abortionist and co-founder of the radical abortion group NARAL, explained,
We [abortion activists]aroused enough sympathy to sell our program of permissive abortion by fabricating the number of illegal abortions done annually in the U.S. The actual figure was approaching 100,000 but the figure we gave to the media repeatedly was 1,000,000. Repeating the big lie often enough convinces the public. The number of women dying from illegal abortions was around 200 – 250 annually. The figure constantly fed to the media was 10,000. These false figures took root in the consciousness of Americans convincing many that we needed to crack the abortion law.
These made up numbers planted the idea in much of the American public that thousands of women were dying in “back alley” abortions and led the public to believe that women will seek elective abortion whether or not the life-ending procedure is legal.
A now debunked abortion study claiming that “self-induced” abortions were endangering Texas women was used to strike down provisions of House Bill 2, the Texas Pro-Life Omnibus Bill from 2013. The “study” was a veiled attempt to update the claims that women will continue to seek elective abortions whether or not they are legal, and illegal abortions are dangerous for women.
As Nathanson testified after becoming Pro-Life, the number of illegal abortions was known to be much, much smaller than abortion activists told the public, and abortion activists knew that legalizing abortions would lead to a drastic increase in the number of abortions. Nathanson noted that since the legalization of elective abortion, the annual number of abortions in the United States increased by 1500%. The correlation between legalizing elective abortion and an increase in the number of abortions is confirmed by an extensive list of studies compiled by Secular Pro-Life. The fact remains that fewer women will resort to ending the life of their preborn child when abortion is restricted or illegal.
The idea that thousands of women will die in illegal abortions if elective abortion is illegal is untrue. Women die in legal elective abortions, and every abortion takes the life of at least one human being, the preborn child. Fewer women would seek elective abortion if there were not a legal industry of predatory abortion businesses. Yet, some in the abortion lobby continue to make these claims. This is not about protecting women; abortion activists are motivated solely by the desire to keep legal the killing of the preborn.
There is a new brand of abortion activist taking a different approach to the advancement of Pro-Life laws, and these activists are equally dangerous. While the old guard of the abortion lobby continues to fearmonger about the supposed dangers to women if abortion were to become illegal, a new wave of anti-Life activists thinks that women want “back alley” abortions because they are “empowering.”
A recent article posted on the anti-Life site The Daily Beast is entitled “What Back Alley? These Women Say DIY Abortion Can be Empowering.” That’s right, “DIY,” as in do-it-yourself abortions are the latest trend among abortion activists. With the increased availability of lethal abortion drugs sold over the internet, abortion activists are encouraging women to commit “self-managed” abortions without the oversight of any medical professional.
Pushing at-home abortions is not new. Several years ago, a Texas abortion activist wrote breathlessly about explaining to her friends, over boxed wine and fancy cheese, how to end the life of a preborn child using abortion pills at home.
What is new is that professional abortion industry groups are joining the push for “DIY” abortions and the abortion lobby is demanding dangerous telemedicine that puts women at risk. The safety of medication abortions is not known because most states do not require that abortionists report complications that occur from an abortion.
What we do know is that a medication abortion caries many risks for women and ends the life of a preborn child. Although the abortion industry claims to “empower” women, there is nothing empowering about bleeding for weeks without care following a lethal procedure. Women do not have greater “autonomy” if they receive life-ending abortion pills without any information about the development of their preborn baby and the risks those pills entail. No matter how abortion activists try to describe at-home abortions, they are demonstrably not in the best interest of women.
The abortion lobby simultaneously claims that Pro-Life laws must be overturned because “self-managed” abortions will occur and are dangerous for women and that “self-managed” abortions are the future of “abortion care” and “empowering” for women. Both are deeply flawed attempts to maintain the state-sanctioned killing of one class of human beings, the preborn. Women do not need abortion, and the Pro-Life movement must counter abortion activists’ continued attempts to claim that they do.