The Pronk Pops Show 1258, May 15, 2019, Story 1: Let The People of Each State Decide Whether To Protect Babies In The Womb or Allow Doctors and Women The Choice of Killing Their Babies — Babies In The Womb Have A Moral Right To Life and Due Process — Alabama Bans Abortions — Videos —

Posted on May 18, 2019. Filed under: 2020 Republican Candidates, Abortion, American History, Blogroll, Books, Breaking News, College, Communications, Congress, Constitutional Law, Corruption, Countries, Crime, Culture, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Economics, Education, Elections, Empires, Employment, Eugenics, European History, Freedom of Speech, Government, Government Spending, Health Care, History, House of Representatives, Human, Human Behavior, Killing, Law, Life, Lying, Media, News, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, Progressives, Public Corruption, Radio, Rape, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Regulation, Senate, Success, Surveillance and Spying On American People, United States of America | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

 

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 1258 May 15, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1257 May 14, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1256 May 13, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1255 May 10, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1254 May 9, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1253 May 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1252 May 7, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1251 May 6, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1250 May 3, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1249 May 2, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1248 May 1, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1247 April 30, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1246 April 29, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1245 April 26, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1244 April 25, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1243 April 24, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1242 April 23, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1241 April 18, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1240 April 16, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1239 April 15, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1238 April 11, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1237 April 10, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1236 April 9, 201

Pronk Pops Show 1235 April 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1234 April 5, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1233 April 4, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1232 April 1, 2019 Part 2

Pronk Pops Show 1232 March 29, 2019 Part 1

Pronk Pops Show 1231 March 28, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1230 March 27, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1229 March 26, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1228 March 25, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1227 March 21, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1226 March 20, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1225 March 19, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1224 March 18, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1223 March 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1222 March 7, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1221 March 6, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1220 March 5, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1219 March 4, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1218 March 1, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1217 February 27, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1216 February 26, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1215 February 25, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1214 February 22, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1213 February 21, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1212 February 20, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1211 February 19, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1210 February 18, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1209 February 15, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1208 February 14, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1207 February 13, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1206 February 12, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1205 February 11, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1204 February 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1203 February 7, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1202 February 6, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1201 February 4, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1200 February 1, 2019

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Story 1: Let The People of Each State Decide Whether To Protect Babies In The Womb or Allow Doctors and Women The Choice of Killing Their Babies — Babies In The Womb Have A Moral Right To Life and Due Process — Alabama Bans Abortions — Videos —

He that is kind is free, though he is a slave; he that is evil is a slave, though he be a king.

~Saint Augustine

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

~Edmund Burke

There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.

~Henry David Thoreau

The resolution to avoid an evil is seldom framed till the evil is so far advanced as to make avoidance impossible.

~Thomas Hardy

The Holocaust was the most evil crime ever committed.

~Stephen Ambrose

The sad truth is that most evil is done by people who never make up their minds to be good or evil.”

~Hannah Arendt

 

Abortion

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Alabama governor signs near-total abortion ban into law

The Most Important Question About Abortion

Ben Shapiro Destroys The Abortion Argument

The Silent Scream (Full Length)

What Is Roe V. Wade? | Velshi & Ruhle | MSNBC

Roe v. Wade Summary | quimbee.com

ALAN DERSHOWITZ: Why Supreme Court got Roe v. Wade wrong

Justice Antonin Scalia talks about Roe v. Wade

Justice Scalia On Life Part 2

Clarke Forsythe on Fox News “Special Report” talking about “UNSAFE” Report

Abuse of Discretion: The Inside Story of Roe v. Wade

Based on 20 years of research, including an examination of the papers of eight of the nine Justices who voted in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, Abuse of Discretion is a critical review of the behind-the-scenes deliberations that went into the Supreme Court’s abortion decisions and how the mistakes made by the Justices in 1971-1973 have led to the turmoil we see today in legislation, politics, and public health. Why do the abortion decisions remain so controversial after almost 40 years, despite more than 50,000,000 abortions, numerous presidential elections, and a complete turnover in the Justices? Why did such a sweeping decision — with such important consequences for public health, producing such prolonged political turmoil — come from the Supreme Court in 1973?

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Abuse of Discretion – Book Launch

Tucker: Voters in Alabama decided for their state

“Heartbeat bill” in Georgia would ban abortions after heartbeat detected

Hollywood protest of Georgia’s ‘heartbeat’ law fizzles

Life in the womb (9 months in 4 minutes) HD – Presented to You from PSNX

Pro-choice or pro-life? 39% of Americans don’t pick a side

Is There Ever A Right Time To Have A Baby? | The Seven Ages of Pregnancy (Full Documentary)

Is There A Right Method To Parenting? | Cherry’s Parenting Dilemmas (Full Documentary)

Life Before Birth – In the Womb

7 Amazing Things Unborn Babies Can Do in the Womb

What Actually Happens When You Have An Abortion?

Can we expect a Supreme Court showdown over Alabama’s abortion ban?

The battle over abortion: Alabama ban opens new chapter in bitter fight

Pro and anti-abortion rights activists on future of Alabama abortion bill

Alabama passes strictest abortion ban in the US

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey Signs U.S.’s Strictest Abortion Ban Into Law

Alabama BANS Abortion

Abortions after about 6 weeks will now be illegal in Georgia

More states are passing laws to make abortion illegal if Roe v. Wade is overturned

Access Restricted: Abortion in Texas – Fault Lines

Abortion frontline of America: life and death in Texas

Pro-Choice and Anti-Abortion: Both Sides of the ‘Heartbeat’ Bill

What Happens If The U.S. Outlaws Abortion? | AJ+

NY Bishop Calls Out Cuomo Over State’s New Abortion Law: ‘It Goes Way Beyond Roe vs. Wade’

What So-Called Pro-Choicers Cannot Watch From Start To Finish

The Silent Scream (Full Length)

FULL FOOTAGE: Planned Parenthood Uses Partial-Birth Abortions to Sell Baby Parts

Abby Johnson Exposes The Lie of Planned Parenthood

Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards’ Attempt To Dismiss Viral Video Backfires!

Caught on Camera: Planned Parenthood Harvesting Babies Organs

Die Wannseekonferenz (1984)

A real time recreation of the 1942 Wannsee Conference, in which leading SS and Nazi Party officials led by SS-General Reinhard Heydrich gathered to discuss the “Final Solution to the Jewish Question”.

MAAFA 21 THE BLACK HOLOCAUST

Abortion Inc: Promoting Black Genocide in US?

A Dangerous Idea: The History of Eugenics in America

Fit vs. UnFit, Eugenics, Planned Parenthood & Psychology, Mind Control Report

Sex Control Police State, Eugenics, Galton, Kantsaywhere, Mind Control Report

Mind Control Hate Propaganda, Hate Speech & Crime, Black PR

Mind Control, Psychology of Brainwashing, Sex & Hypnosis

Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood’s Racist Founder

Margaret Sanger: Eugenicist (1/3)

Margaret Sanger: Eugenicist (2/3)

Margaret Sanger: Eugenicist (3/3)

Eugenics Glenn Beck w/ Edwin Black author of “War Against the Weak” talk Al Gore & Margaret Sanger

Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood’s Racist Founder

Justice Antonin Scalia talks about Roe v. Wade

Auschwitz The Nazis and the Final Solution complete

Auschwitz: The Nazi and the Final Solution (1/5)

AUSHWITZ:THE FINAL SOLUTION CLIP 2/5

Auschwitz: The Nazi and the Final Solution (3/5)

Auschwitz: The Nazi and the Final Solution (4/5)

Auschwitz: The Nazi and the Final Solution (5/5)

Science and the Swastika: The Deadly Experiment

Sterilizing Undesirables: Did The USA Inspire The Nazis?

Keeping Dems Honest: CNN’s Anderson Cooper Puts Truth First and Challenges DNC Abortion Lies

Glenn Beck : Agenda 21 is not a fiction, it’s implemented right now in US and all over the World !

Glenn Beck – Ted Cruz Discusses the Evils of Agenda 21

Bill Whittle What We Believe Full Version

Brenda Lee – I’m Sorry (Live from Canada 1980)

 

Alabama governor signs bill authorizing near total ban on abortions in the state in a bid to challenge Roe v Wade in Trump’s conservative Supreme Court

  • Alabama governor Kay Ivey signed the bill into law on Wednesday afternoon 
  • Law will ban nearly all abortions in the state with no rape or incest exceptions 
  • Doctors who provide abortions in Alabama could face up to life in prison 
  • Law will draw immediate lawsuits and could end up before the Supreme Court
  • Democrat presidential candidates are drawing battle lines on the issue for 2020 
  • Klobuchar called it ‘unconstitutional’ and Biden said ‘Roe v. Wade is settled law’ 
  • ‘This is a war on women, and it is time to fight like hell,’ said Kirsten Gillibrand 

Alabama’s governor has signed the most stringent abortion ban in the nation.

Republican Governor Kay Ivey signed the measure on Wednesday. The law will make performing an abortion at any stage of pregnancy a felony punishable by 10 to 99 years or life in prison.

The law contains an exception for when the pregnancy creates a serious health risk for the woman, but not an exception for rape or incest.

There would be no punishment for the woman receiving the abortion, only for the abortion provider.

‘Today, I signed into law the Alabama Human Life Protection Act,’ Ivey said in a statement.

‘To the bill’s many supporters, this legislation stands as a powerful testament to Alabamians’ deeply held belief that every life is precious and that every life is a sacred gift from God,’ she continued.

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey is seen signing the bill into law on Wednesday. She called the new law 'a powerful testament to Alabamians' deeply held belief that every life is precious'

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey discusses the bill while visiting a car factory at Montgomery, Alabama on Wednesday shortly before signing it into law

Alabama Governor Kay Ivey discusses the bill while visiting a car factory at Montgomery, Alabama on Wednesday shortly before signing it into law

Gov. Ivey’s full statement on HB314

‘Today, I signed into law the Alabama Human Life Protection Act, a bill that was approved by overwhelming majorities in both chambers of the Legislature. To the bill’s many supporters, this legislation stands as a powerful testament to Alabamians’ deeply held belief that every life is precious and that every life is a sacred gift from God.

‘To all Alabamians, I assure you that we will continue to follow the rule of law.

‘In all meaningful respects, this bill closely resembles an abortion ban that has been a part of Alabama law for well over 100 years. As today’s bill itself recognizes, that longstanding abortion law has been rendered ‘unenforceable as a result of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade.’

‘No matter one’s personal view on abortion, we can all recognize that, at least for the short term, this bill may similarly be unenforceable. As citizens of this great country, we must always respect the authority of the U.S. Supreme Court even when we disagree with their decisions. Many Americans, myself included, disagreed when Roe v. Wade was handed down in 1973. The sponsors of this bill believe that it is time, once again, for the U.S. Supreme Court to revisit this important matter, and they believe this act may bring about the best opportunity for this to occur.

‘I want to commend the bill sponsors, Rep. Terri Collins and Sen. Clyde Chambliss, for their strong leadership on this important issue.

‘For the remainder of this session, I now urge all members of the Alabama Legislature to continue seeking the best ways possible to foster a better Alabama in all regards, from education to public safety. We must give every person the best chance for a quality life and a promising future.’

The bill passed the state senate 25-6, after being approved by the state’s lower house 75-3.

The new law will not go into effect for six months, and in the interim abortions will remain legal in Alabama, which has three abortion clinics.

The law will likely to be challenged immediately in court, potentially setting up a case which could allow anti-abortion groups to force a Supreme Court hearing in which they would seek to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Democrats accused Alabama Republicans of leading a charge to overturn Roe v. Wade in the Supreme Court.

A series of the 2020 presidential candidates warned that Republican-controlled legislatures around the country may follow suit, emboldened by President Donald Trump’s two conservative justices and a warning from one of the liberal justices that abortion rights were now in play.

Democrats say that abortion opponents are hoping that the 5-4 conservative majority on the court – put in place by Trump installing Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh – will rule in their favor, and tear up the 1973 ruling which makes abortion a federal right.

An anti-abortion bill that pass both houses of Alabama's legislature has Democratic presidential candidates up in arms

Conservative court: Chief Justice John Robert now presides over a court with five justices - himself included - seen as anti-abortion, two of them Trump's picks: Brett Kavanaugh (top right), and Neil Gorsuch (top left)

Conservative court: Chief Justice John Robert now presides over a court with five justices – himself included – seen as anti-abortion, two of them Trump’s picks: Brett Kavanaugh (top right), and Neil Gorsuch (top left)

New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand believes the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which guaranteed the legal right to abortions, could be in jeopardy

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren is warning what the bill's authors have readily admitted, that the legislation is meant to be a mechanism to get abortion before the Supreme Court again

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren is warning what the bill’s authors have readily admitted, that the legislation is meant to be a mechanism to get abortion before the Supreme Court again

Under the Alabama law, the only legal abortions would be those performed to protect a woman’s life.

Doctors could face 10 years in prison for attempting an abortion in any other circumstance, and 99 years for actually carrying out the procedure.

Other Republican-controlled states, including Ohio, have passed less restrictive ‘heartbeat bills’ which effectively ban abortion after six weeks. Roe v. Wade established it was legal in the first and second trimesters.

THE ‘HEARTBEAT BILL’ MOVEMENT: WHICH STATES ARE BRINGING THE MEASURES

STATES THAT NOW HAVE ‘FETAL HEARTBEAT’ LAWS

  • Georgia (signed into law May 7, 2019)
  • Ohio (signed into law April 11, 2019)
  • Mississippi (signed into law March 21, 2019) – though it is being challenged
  • Alabama (on May 14, passed ban with no exceptions for rape or incest 25-6)

STATES WHOSE BILLS HAVE BEEN BLOCKED BY COURTS

  • Arkansas (passed March 2014, blocked March 2015)
  • North Dakota (passed July 2015, blocked January 2016) 
  • Iowa (passed May 2018, blocked January 2019)
  • Kentucky (passed March 2019, blocked April 2019)

STATES THAT ARE CONSIDERING IT

  1. Louisiana has a bill in the senate with strong bipartisan support 
  2. Tennessee has a bill but the Republican AG warned it will be hard to pass, driving many to vote against
  3. South Carolina gave near-final approval to the bill last month
  4. Missouri‘s bill also advanced last month
  5. Texas wanted to bring the death penalty for women who undergo abortions
  6. West Virginia introduced a bill in February 2019
  7. Florida‘s bill failed yesterday, but anti-abortion lawmakers are expected to try again
  8. Minnesota proposed the bill in January 2019
  9. Maryland‘s failed to pass in April 
  10. Kansas Republican lawmakers are trying and failing to override a veto that blocks a fetal heartbeat bill
  11. Illinois‘s bill was proposed in February
  12. New York‘s bill was proposed in February 

Many pro-life groups have acknowledged they are looking for a case which would allow them to directly challenge Roe v. Wade in the Supreme Court. 

Anti-abortion activists hope the high court will be willing to reconsider Roe.

‘It is clearer than ever that Roe is far from being settled law in the eyes and hearts of the American people, and this is increasingly reflected in state legislatures,’ said Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the anti-abortion Susan B. Anthony List. ‘The American people want a fresh debate and a new direction.’

The Supreme Court affirmed women’s constitutional right to abortion in its 1973 Roe v. Wade decision. President Donald Trump has added two conservative members to the court, changing its dynamic in a way that could end the case’s authority.

Legal fights are likely ahead over the Alabama measure if Ivey signs it into law.

Similar abortion restrictions are under consideration or already enacted in other conservative-leaning states.

Republican state Senator Clyde Chambliss, arguing in favor of the Alabama bill, said the point was ‘so that we can go directly to the Supreme Court to challenge Roe v. Wade.’

Republican lawmaker Terri Collins, who sponsored the legislation, said: ‘Our bill says that baby in the womb is a person.’

Courts this year have blocked restrictive abortion laws in Kentucky and Iowa. But supporters of the Alabama ban said the right to life for the unborn child transcends other rights, an idea they would like tested.

In the case of Alabama, if passed, the law is certain to be challenged in federal court in the state and almost surely will be blocked because it plainly conflicts with Supreme Court precedent.

Review by the federal appeals court in Atlanta would come next, and only then would the Supreme Court be asked to weigh in. Emergency appeals by either side could put the issue before the justices sooner, but that would not be a full-blown review of the law.

Abortion-rights activists say they have no alternative but to file lawsuits challenging every tough abortion ban passed.

‘Were we not to challenge them, they would go into effect,’ said Jennifer Dalven, director of the ACLU’s Reproductive Freedom Project. ‘There’s no strategy of ‘Maybe we leave this one and challenge that one.”

The ACLU and its allies expect lower-level federal courts to honor Roe by blocking the abortion bans. The ultimate question, Dalven said, is whether the Supreme Court will decide to revisit Roe by agreeing to hear an appeal from one or more of the states whose ban was blocked.

‘It would be an extraordinary thing for the Supreme Court to take away an individual constitutional right,’ she said.

WHERE SUPREME COURT JUSTICES STAND ON ABORTION

Swing vote

Chief Justice John Roberts

George W. Bush appointee. Voted in favor of abortion restrictions until Justice Anthony Kennedy left the bench. In only abortion case since then, voted to provisionally block new restrictions in Louisiana. As swing justice, seen as wanting to avoid the Supreme Court being associated with entrenched political positions. Could do his best to avoid a Roe v. Wade challenge coming to the court. Position if one did is now unclear

Liberal wing

Stephen Breyer

Clinton appointee. Warned in May that that the conservative majority could overturn a 1992 decision upholding Roe v. Wade. Has consistently voted pro-choice

Elena Kagan

Obama appointee. Has consistently voted pro-choice 

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Clinton appointee. Has consistently voted pro-choice 

Sonia Sotomayor

Obama appointee. Has consistently voted pro-choice

Conservative wing

Clarence Thomas

George H.W. Bush appointee. Said this year that Roe v. Wade was ‘notoriously incorrect’ and compared it to Dred Scott, the case which upheld slavery before the Civil War. Has consistently voted for anti-abortion positions

Samuel Alito

George W. Bush appointee. As a federal appeal judge, he voted to uphold a Pennsylvania law which required women to tell their husbands they planned to have an abortion. As Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey, his ruling was overturned in the Supreme Court the next year, in a ruling Stephen Breyer says could be overturned itself. Has consistently voted for anti-abortion positions

Neil Gorsuch

Trump appointee. Only vote on abortion-related case was in February, on whether to block restrictions on clinics in Louisiana pending a full appeal. Gorsuch voted for them to go into place but the block was kept in place by Roberts voting with the liberal wing. Federal court career has no abortion votes. Seen as likely to vote for anti-abortion positions

Brett Kavanaugh

Trump appointee. Like Gorsuch, only vote on abortion-related case was in February, on whether to block restrictions on clinics in Louisiana pending a full appeal, when he joined Gorsuch in losing minority. As federal appeal court judge had one significant abortion vote, against allowing a 17-year-old illegal immigrant in detention to seek a termination without delay. Seen as likely to vote for anti-abortion positions

Justice Stephen Breyer offered the latest recognition of the difficulty his liberal side of the court faces in a dissent in a case unrelated to abortion that the court decided Monday, one in which the five conservatives voted to overturn a 1979 decision.

Breyer, joined by liberal colleagues Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor, cited the 1992 abortion decision in Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey in a dissent that concluded: ‘Today’s decision can only cause one to wonder which cases the court will overrule next.’

Justice Clarence Thomas is the only member on record as supporting overruling the court’s abortion precedents. In his most recent comments on the topic in February, also in a case unrelated to abortion, Thomas likened Roe to the court’s 1857 Dred Scott decision, which said African Americans weren’t citizens. Both, he wrote, were ‘notoriously incorrect.’  

But Chief Justice John Roberts also has a track record of preferring smaller bites before making significant changes in constitutional law.

‘You do see consistently in the chief justice’s career a willingness to go incrementally and only decide what the court needs to resolve in the case before it,’ said Michael Moreland, a Villanova University law professor.

Roberts also is aware of the questions the court would face if a conservative majority of justices, all appointed by Republican presidents, were to reverse the abortion decisions, Moreland said.

Still, Roberts has, with one exception, favored abortion restrictions. His provisional vote to block the Louisiana clinic law was the only time he voted in support of abortions rights in more than 13 years on the court.

The Alabama vote set off outrage among Democrats.

‘This is wrong. This is unconstitutional,’ Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar tweeted.

Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke wrote on Twitter: ‘We will fight these dangerous efforts with everything we’ve got in legislatures across the country.’

Former vice president Joe Biden, the early Democratic front-runner, touted his anti-abortion credentials, tweeting on Wednesday: ‘Republicans in AL, FL, GA, and OH are ushering in laws that clearly violate Roe v Wade and they should be declared unconstitutional. Roe v Wade is settled law and should not be overturned. This choice should remain between a woman and her doctor.’

South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg criticized Alabama lawmakers for ‘ignoring science, criminalizing abortion, and punishing women.’

‘Instead, the government’s role should be to make sure all women have access to comprehensive affordable care, and that includes safe and legal abortion,’ he wrote.

New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand told CNN on Tuesday: ‘It’s certainly the intention of President Trump and the Republican Party to overturn Roe v. Wade.’

Gillibrand observed on Twitter that that Alabama bill includes ‘[n]o exceptions for rape or incest. Doctors could face 99 years in prison for providing abortions.’

‘This is a war on women, and it is time to fight like hell,’ she added.

Alabama senate challenges Roe v Wade with abortion ban bill

Alabama Democratic state Sen. Roger Smitherman is pictured speaking in opposition to HB314, which now sits on Gov. Kay Ivey's desk awaiting her signature

 

Gillibrand also claimed in an MSNBC interview on Wednesday that the public won’t stand for any interference with legal abortion rights.

‘This is not something the American people support. Seventy percent of Americans want safe, legal abortion to be available to women when they need it,’ she claimed.

‘This ban is dangerous and exceptionally cruel – and the bill’s authors want to use it to overturn Roe v. Wade,’ Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren wrote Tuesday night.

‘I’ve lived in that America and let me tell you: We are not going back – not now, not ever. We will fight this. And we will win.’

‘I say to Gov. Ivey: Veto this cruel bill,’ tweeted Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. ‘Stop the attack on women’s rights.’

Alabama Democratic state Senator Linda Coleman-Madison called the Republicans hypocritical for advocating small government that ought to stay out of private matters but ‘now you want in my womb; I want you out.’13

Anti-abortion protesters are hopefully awaiting a day when Roe v. Wade can be reopened in light of 46 years of shifting public sentiments on abortion rights

Former Texas Rep. Beto O¿Rourke wrote on Twitter: 'We will fight these dangerous efforts with everything we¿ve got in legislatures across the country'

Former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke wrote on Twitter: ‘We will fight these dangerous efforts with everything we’ve got in legislatures across the country’

Anti-abortion protesters demonstrated this week in front of the Alabama State House in Montgomery

Anti-abortion protesters demonstrated this week in front of the Alabama State House in Montgomery

Pregnant 11-year-old rape victim in Ohio would have no right to an abortion under new state law

An 11-year-old in Ohio who allegedly became pregnant after being raped by a 26-year-old would have no right to an abortion under new state legislation signed into law last month.

Ohio passed a bill banning abortion after a heartbeat is detected in the fetus, at around five or six weeks into a pregnancy, in April.

As the bill will not come into effect until July, the victim, who cannot be named, will be allowed to have abortion if she chooses, but thousands of other victims will soon be denied the same right.

A pregnant 11-year-old rape victim in Ohio would have no right to an abortion under new laws in her state had she been assaulted just two months later. Pictured: protesters fighting against an abortion ban dress up as handmaids outside Alabama State House in Montgomery

The legislature also means many women will only discover they are pregnant after the time period for a legal abortion has passed.

The case has raised serious questions about the so-called ‘heartbeat bill’, which four other states have passed so far.

Attorney General Dave Yost defended the law after being quizzed about this specific case by CBS News.

He told the broadcaster: ‘Sometimes, the evolution of the law requires bold steps.

‘In the last 46 years, the practice of medicine has changed. Science has changed. Even the point of viability has changed. Only the law has lagged behind.’

Ohio already bans abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, and the girl will need to gain parental consent or her case to a judge for permission.

Although the bill passed the House of Representatives 74-3, some GOP state senators have expressed discomfort that the bill doesn’t include an exception for rape.

‘Overwhelmingly, the people out on the street I’m talking to, they are hesitant to put into law no exceptions,’ Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh said.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7032873/Democratic-2020-candidates-lash-Alabama-bill-making-abortion-felony.html

Alabama house votes to BAN abortion with doctors facing up to 99 years in jail if they carry out the procedure in the state including cases of rape or incest

  • Alabama’s House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a near-total abortion ban
  • Politicians in the statehouse voted against adding an amendment that would have added an exception for victims of rape and incest
  • If passed into law, the legislation would criminalize abortion, classifying it as a Class A felony in Alabama
  • A doctor caught performing abortions in the state would face up to 99 years jail 
  • The text of the Alabama bill likens legalized abortion to history’s greatest atrocities, including the Holocaust 
  • Because federal law supersedes state law, Alabama would be in violation of the U.S. Constitution if lawmakers attempted to implement the legislation 
  • The bill will now move to the Senate where it will be debated and voted upon 
  • The legislation is purposely designed to conflict with the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion nationally 

 

The Alabama House voted overwhelmingly Tuesday to outlaw almost all abortions in the state as conservatives took aim at the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

The Republican-dominated House of Representatives voted 74-3 for legislation that would make it a felony to perform an abortion at any stage in a woman’s pregnancy.

The proposal passed after Democrats walked out of the chamber after sometimes emotional debate with opponents and supporters crowding the gallery. The bill now moves to the Alabama Senate.

Supporters said the bill is intentionally designed to conflict with the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion nationally, hoping to spark court cases that might prompt the justices to revisit Roe.

The bill contains an exemption for situations in which there is a serious risk to the mother’s health, but not for rape and incest.

Bianca Cameron-Schwiesow, from left,Kari Crowe and Margeaux Hardline, dressed as handmaids, take part in a protest against HB314, the abortion ban bill, at  Alabama State House+11

Bianca Cameron-Schwiesow, from left,Kari Crowe and Margeaux Hardline, dressed as handmaids, take part in a protest against HB314, the abortion ban bill, at  Alabama State House

Abortion rights protesters painted the window in the House Gallery during debate on the abortion ban bill at the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery on Tuesday

Abortion rights protesters painted the window in the House Gallery during debate on the abortion ban bill at the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery on Tuesday

Women's heath clinic escorts, from left Mia Raven, Margeaux Hartline and Kari Crowe walk into the gallery to watch debate on the abortion ban bill at the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery,

Women’s heath clinic escorts, from left Mia Raven, Margeaux Hartline and Kari Crowe walk into the gallery to watch debate on the abortion ban bill at the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery,

Travis Jackson holds signs during a protest against, the abortion ban bill

Travis Jackson holds signs during a protest against, the abortion ban bill

Speaker of the House Mac McCutcheon gavels in the session at the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery

Speaker of the House Mac McCutcheon gavels in the session at the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery

‘The heart of this bill is to confront a decision that was made by the courts in 1973 that said the baby in a womb is not a person,’ said Republican Rep. Terri Collins of Decatur.

Republicans in the chamber applauded after the bill was approved after more than two hours of sometimes emotional debate.

Collins acknowledged that such a ban would likely be struck down by lower courts, but she said the aim is eventually to get to the Supreme Court.

Without the numbers to stop the bill, Democrats walked off the House floor ahead of the vote, calling the proposal both extreme and fiscally irresponsible.

They said the ban would cost the state money for a potentially expensive legal fight that could be spent on other needs.

Rep. Louise Alexander, a Democrat, said the choice to give birth to a child should be left up to a woman, and the decision should not be made on the floor of the Alabama Legislature.

A protest is held against the abortion ban bill, at the Alabama State House in Montgomery

A protest is held against the abortion ban bill, at the Alabama State House in Montgomery

Rep. Terri Collins answers questions during debate on the abortion ban bill at the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery, Alabama

Rep. Terri Collins answers questions during debate on the abortion ban bill at the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery, Alabama

Rep. Merika Coleman, center, and members of the Democratic caucus walk out of the debate on the abortion ban bill to hold a press conference explaining their opposition to the bill

Rep. Merika Coleman, center, and members of the Democratic caucus walk out of the debate on the abortion ban bill to hold a press conference explaining their opposition to the bill

‘You don’t know why I may want to have an abortion. It may be because of my health. It may be because of many reasons.

Until all of you in this room walk in a woman’s shoes, y’all don’t know,’ Alexander said.

Emboldened by new conservatives on the Supreme Court, abortion opponents in several states are seeking to incite new legal fights in the hopes of challenging Roe v. Wade.

The Alabama bill comes on the heels of several states considering or approving bans on abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected, which occurs in about the sixth week of pregnancy.

The Alabama bill attempts to go farther by banning abortion at any stage of pregnancy.

House Republicans voted down Democrats’ attempt to amend the bill to add an exemption for rape and incest. Representatives voted 72-26 to table the proposed amendment.

Rep. Terri Collins talks on the house floor. The bill contains an exemption for the mother's health but not for rape or incest. Collins is the sponsor of the abortion ban bill

Rep. Terri Collins talks on the house floor. The bill contains an exemption for the mother’s health but not for rape or incest. Collins is the sponsor of the abortion ban bill

Rep. Terri Collins, R-Alabama, gets a standing ovation after her near total ban on abortion bill

Rep. Terri Collins, R-Alabama, gets a standing ovation after her near total ban on abortion bill

‘They would not even allow an exception for rape and incest. … What does that say to the women in this state,’ House Minority Leader Anthony Daniels.

Collins argued that adding exemptions would weaken the intent of the bill as a vehicle to challenge Roe. She said if states regain the ability to decide abortion access, Alabama lawmakers could come back and decide what exemptions to allow.

The bill drew a crowd of opponents and supporters to the House gallery. A group of abortion clinic escorts wore their rainbow-colored vests in the House gallery.

A demonstrator was arrested on disorderly conduct charges after shouting ‘dumb,’ attempting to write on the glass window overlooking to the House chamber and throwing paint at legislative security officers, House spokesman Clay Redden said.

Bianca Cameron-Schwiesow, dressed as a handmaid, takes part in a protest against the bill

Bianca Cameron-Schwiesow, dressed as a handmaid, takes part in a protest against the bill

Rep. Merika Coleman, center, and members of the Democratic caucus walk out of the debate on the abortion ban bill to hold a press conference explaining their opposition to the bill

Rep. Rolanda Hollis, a Birmingham Democrat, read a poem that criticized Republicans’ embrace of gun rights but not abortion rights, and later referred to the state as ‘Ala-Backwards.’

The text of the Alabama bill likens legalized abortion to history’s greatest atrocities, including the Holocaust.

Tuscaloosa Republican Rep. Rich Wingo, a supporter of the bill, likened abortion to murder and read statistics that estimate that there have been 60 million abortions since the Supreme Court’s landmark decision.

‘I believe this chamber, this body, will never make a greater decision than today… protecting the life of an unborn child,’ Wingo said.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6974893/Alabama-House-ready-debate-near-total-abortion-ban.html

 

 

Alabama law moves abortion to the center of 2020 campaign

yesterday
Cory Booker
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FILE – In this April 15, 2019 file photo, Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., speaks during an election stop at the Sioux City Public Museum in Sioux City, Iowa. The campaign of presidential candidate Cory Booker is defending his decision to start a tech company while he was serving as mayor of New Jersey’s largest city. A spokeswoman says that Booker “jumped at the chance” to start Waywire in 2012 because he saw it as a socially-conscious video network that could bring people together. But his one-time aspiration to be a tech mogul, and his long ties to the industry, could become a liability for his campaign. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Alabama’s new law restricting abortion in nearly every circumstance has moved one of the most polarizing issues in American politics to the center of the 2020 presidential campaign.

The state’s legislation — the toughest of several anti-abortion measures that have passed recently, with the only exception being a serious risk to the woman’s health — prompted an outcry from Democratic presidential candidates, who warned that conservatives were laying the groundwork to undermine the landmark Roe v. Wade decision. The White House, meanwhile, didn’t comment on the Alabama bill, signed into law Wednesday by Republican Gov. Kay Ivey, as President Donald Trump tries to balance his conservative base against the potential of antagonizing women who are already skeptical of his presidency.

Alabama legislators have given final approval to a ban on nearly all abortions, and if the Republican governor signs the measure, the state will have the strictest abortion law in the country. (May 15)

“I respect every woman’s right to make a decision about what’s in the best interest of herself and her family,” Harris said.

Kentucky, Mississippi, Ohio and Georgia have approved abortion bans once a fetal heartbeat is detected, which can occur in about the sixth week of pregnancy. None of these laws are yet in force, either because of later effective dates or legal challenges that have blocked them. But supporters have openly predicted that the laws could spark court fights that will eventually lead the Supreme Court to revisit its Roe decision.

Gillibrand plans to fly to Atlanta on Thursday to meet with women protesting Georgia’s state law.

Sen. Cory Booker told The Associated Press that backers of the Alabama measure are “saying that they designed this bill with certain provisions — like not having any exceptions for rape or incest — specifically designed so that they can lead a fight to the Supreme Court” to “undermine other freedoms and liberties of women to control their own bodies.”

Booker said it’s not enough to hope that Roe will be upheld, adding: “We cannot wait to see if this gets worse.”

Several Democratic presidential candidates sought to use their high-profile positions to boost organizing against the state-level abortion laws. Harris emailed her campaign supporters offering to “split a donation” to four advocacy groups working to defend abortion rights. Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Indiana, directed his supporters by email to the abortion-rights group NARAL.

Among the other Democratic candidates who took to Twitter to blast Alabama’s law and other state-level restrictions were Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, as well as former Vice President Joe Biden and former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke.

Ilyse Hogue, the president of NARAL, lauded the Democrats for their support. But she urged them to go further than pro-abortion-rights rhetoric, calling instead for “articulated plans about how we’re going to address and get out of this crisis.”

The Democratic pushback comes as Trump makes his selection of conservative judges a centerpiece of his political stump speech, part of a long-running courtship of social conservatives whose support he needs to win reelection next year. Republicans have long believed that the politics of abortion have shifted somewhat in their favor in recent years. But the near-absolutist nature of the most recent bills has sparked some concern among the president’s team that it could energize Trump critics and female voters, with whom the president has long struggled.

Polling suggests that the issue of abortion has the potential to stoke political engagement among both parties. The General Social Survey released last year found 64% of Democrats, but just 35% of Republicans, saying a woman should be able to have an abortion for any reason.

Other surveys have found majority support for legalized abortion in “all or most cases.” A Pew Research Center survey in September 2018 found 58% of Americans saying abortion should be legal in at least most cases, compared with 37% who said it should be illegal in all or most cases.

Trump won the White House in 2016 in part because of strong support from socially conservative Republicans who wanted to ensure that a conservative justice got named to the Supreme Court seat that had been occupied by Antonin Scalia — a seat held open by the GOP’s refusal to confirm President Barack Obama’s pick for the lifetime post. Since his first campaign began, Trump has supported a ban on abortions at the point that a fetus is believed to feel pain and publicly released a list of conservative judges from which he would select a nominee for the nation’s highest court.

The president’s selection of Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court has emboldened conservative allies of the White House who believe the time is ripe for a court case to challenge Roe v. Wade. Kavanaugh assured senators before his confirmation last year that he viewed Roe as precedent, but Democratic senators pointed to a 2003 memo he wrote that suggested it wasn’t necessary to call the landmark abortion-rights ruling “settled law” because the “Court can always overrule its precedent.”

The Trump campaign deferred to the White House on whether Trump supported the Alabama measure or other restrictive bills passed by other states. White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere touted Trump’s record on abortion, noting that he “is protecting our most innocent and vulnerable, defending the dignity of life, and called on Congress to prohibit late-term abortions.”

___

Associated Press writers Hunter Woodall in Nashua, N.H., and Hannah Fingerhut in Washington contributed to this report.

https://apnews.com/1ef6c45ac16e4468a1f6ae2f52f0a419

Why America’s strict new anti-abortion laws could backfire

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Joel Mathis

Fists coming out of Alabama.

Illustrated | nezezon2/iStock, beakraus/iStock

The anti-abortion laws passed in recent days by legislatures in Alabama and Georgia seem designed for one purpose: to get the Supreme Court to overturn its landmark 1973 Roe v. Waderuling that guaranteed a woman’s right to an abortion. The Court — more solidly conservative now than ever thanks to the recent addition of Justice Brett Kavanaugh — may well uphold those new laws.

Will voters do the same?

Maybe not. There is plenty of evidence that citizens of conservative states are, to some extent, actually protective of abortion rights. It may not be something they proclaim in their offices, at church, or to pollsters — but their secret beliefs can become quite evident once they enter the voting booth. This should make the legislators who passed the new bills very nervous.

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My home state of Kansas has been a hotbed of abortion-related activism for more than a generation. Most memorable, perhaps, were the 1991 “Summer of Mercy” protests in Wichita, where thousands of protesters flooded the city to blockade an abortion clinic operated by Dr. George Tiller; over the course of six weeks and more than 2,600 people were arrested. Anti-abortion protests in Kansas have, on occasion, congealed into violence: Tiller’s clinic was firebombed in 1986; he was shot and injured by an abortion opponent in 1993; he was shot and killed by another abortion opponent in 2009.

But the state’s record on abortion is more mixed than Tiller’s story might suggest. Take, for example, the story of Phill Kline, someone you’ve likely never heard of but whose rise and fall could be a warning sign for anti-abortion legislators in Kansas and other red states today. Kline spent a decade as a culture warrior in the Kansas legislature before being elected the state’s attorney general in 2002. He used the perch to go on an anti-abortion crusade, ultimately bringing more than 30 misdemeanor charges against Tiller in 2006. A judge threw out those charges; Tiller was acquitted in a follow-up case the following year.

But voters in the famously red state of Kansas had enough: Kline lost his re-election campaign, badly, with just 41 percent of the vote. He managed to get himself appointed as district attorney in Johnson County, home to prosperous Kansas City suburbs, only to lose a primary election two years after that. These days, he’s on the faculty at Liberty University in Virginia, having lost his law license for misconduct during the abortion investigations.

Kansas is hardly a progressive state, but voters here often tire quickly of extremists. The same is probably true in other conservative states. While America’s abortion politics are polarized, many citizens are closer to the mushy middle on abortion — morally squeamish about it, but sometimes willing to suspend those qualms when faced with difficult decisions for themselves or their family members.

Across the nation as a whole, just 17 percent of Americans say Roe should be overturned entirely, and this reality is reflected at the state level: In 2008, voters in the solidly-Republican state of South Dakota overwhelmingly rejected a statewide ban on abortion — and repeated the feat two years later, even after exceptions for incest and rape were added to the proposed law. In 2011, Mississippi voters rejected a similar referendum by an even larger margin. Back in my home state of Kansas, the state Supreme Court last month ruled — shockingly — that the state constitution protects the right to an abortion.

“There’s a lot of public pressure to be anti-abortion,” Marvin Buehner, a South Dakota OB-GYN said at the time of the 2008 proposal. “People are more likely to answer the poll that they’ll support [a ban]. Then they get into the ballot booth and decide they just can’t vote for something like that.”

These sweeping new laws do very little to assuage the concerns of such voters. Alabama’s bill, for example, makes no exception for incest or rape. Georgia’s law would grant personhood protections to fetuses just six weeks after conception. Even if the Supreme Court upholds the laws, the examples from Kansas, Mississippi, and South Dakota suggest that legislators who passed these new bills could find themselves suddenly vulnerable.

Of course, that won’t satisfy pro-choice women and men who believe the right to abortion is just that — a right, to be defended by government, not compromised by it. “Today’s women can only thrive in a state that protects their most basic rights — the right to choose when and whether to start a family,” Andrea Young, executive director of Georgia’s ACLU, said last week, pledging to challenge the state’s new law.

Despite the high stakes of the coming court battles over the new anti-abortion laws, the Supreme Court is not the end of the line. In politics, few battles are ever completely won or lost. Nearly 50 years after Roe v. Wade, the fight may just be beginning anew.

https://theweek.com/articles/841763/why-americas-strict-new-antiabortion-laws-could-backfire

Roe v. Wade

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Roe v. Wade
Seal of the United States Supreme Court

Argued December 13, 1971
Reargued October 11, 1972
Decided January 22, 1973
Full case name Jane Roe, et al. v. Henry Wade, District Attorney of Dallas County
Citations 410 U.S. 113 (more)

93 S. Ct. 705; 35 L. Ed. 2d 147; 1973 U.S. LEXIS 159
Argument Oral argument
Reargument Reargument
Decision Opinion
Case history
Prior Judgment for plaintiffs, injunction denied, 314 F. Supp.1217 (N.D. Tex. 1970); probable jurisdiction noted402U.S. 941 (1971); set for reargument408 U.S. 919 (1972)
Subsequent Rehearing denied410 U.S.959 (1973)
Holding
Texas law making it a crime to assist a woman to get an abortion violated her due process rights. U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas affirmed in part, reversed in part.
Court membership
Chief Justice
Warren E. Burger
Associate Justices
William O. Douglas · William J. Brennan Jr.
Potter Stewart · Byron White
Thurgood Marshall · Harry Blackmun
Lewis F. Powell Jr. · William Rehnquist
Case opinions
Majority Blackmun, joined by Burger, Douglas, Brennan, Stewart, Marshall, Powell
Concurrence Burger
Concurrence Douglas
Concurrence Stewart
Dissent White, joined by Rehnquist
Dissent Rehnquist
Laws applied
U.S. Const. Amend. XIV;
Tex. Code Crim. Proc. arts. 1191–94, 1196

Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973),[1] was a landmark decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in which the Court ruled that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides a fundamental “right to privacy” that protects a pregnant woman’s liberty to choose whether or not to have an abortion. It also ruled that this “right to privacy” is not absolute and must be balanced against the government’s interests in protecting women’s health and protecting prenatal life.[2][3] The Court resolved this balancing test by tying state regulation of abortion to the three trimesters of pregnancy: the Court ruled that during the first trimester, governments could not prohibit abortions at all; during the second trimester, governments could require reasonable health regulations; during the third trimester, abortions could be prohibited entirely so long as the laws contained exceptions for cases when abortion was necessary to save the life of the mother.[4] Because the Court classified the right to choose to have an abortion as “fundamental”, the decision required courts to evaluate challenged abortion laws under the “strict scrutiny” standard, the highest level of judicial review in the United States.[5]

In disallowing many state and federal restrictions on abortion in the United States,[6][7] Roe v. Wade prompted a national debate that continues today about issues including whether, and to what extent, abortion should be legal, who should decide the legality of abortion, what methods the Supreme Court should use in constitutional adjudication, and what the role should be of religious and moral views in the political sphere. Roe v. Wadereshaped national politics, dividing much of the United States into pro-life and pro-choice camps, while activating grassroots movements on both sides.

Roe was criticized by some in the legal community,[8] with the decision being seen as a form of judicial activism.[9] In a 1973 article in the Yale Law Journal,[8][9] the American legal scholar John Hart Ely criticized Roe as a decision that “is not constitutional law and gives almost no sense of an obligation to try to be.”[10] Ely added: “What is frightening about Roe is that this super-protected right is not inferable from the language of the Constitution, the framers’ thinking respecting the specific problem in issue, any general value derivable from the provisions they included, or the nation’s governmental structure.” Professor Laurence Tribe had similar thoughts: “One of the most curious things about Roe is that, behind its own verbal smokescreen, the substantive judgment on which it rests is nowhere to be found.”[11]

In 1992, the Supreme Court modified the legal principles in Roe in the case of Planned Parenthood v. Casey.[12] In Casey, the Court reaffirmed Roe‘s holding that a woman’s right to abort a nonviable fetus is constitutionally protected, but abandoned Roe‘s trimester framework in favor of a standard based on fetal viability, and overruled Roe‘s requirement that government regulations on abortion be subjected to the strict scrutiny standard.[2][13]The Roe decision defined “viable” as “potentially able to live outside the mother’s womb, albeit with artificial aid.”[14] Justices in Casey acknowledged that viability may occur at 23 or 24 weeks, or sometimes even earlier, in light of medical advances.[15]

Contents

Background

History of abortion laws in the United States

According to the Court, “the restrictive criminal abortion laws in effect in a majority of States today are of relatively recent vintage.” Providing a historical analysis on abortion, Justice Harry Blackmun noted that abortion was “resorted to without scruple” in Greek and Roman times.[16] Blackmun also addressed the permissive and restrictive abortion attitudes and laws throughout history, noting the disagreements among leaders (of all different professions) in those eras and the formative laws and cases.[17] In the United States, in 1821, Connecticut passed the first state statute criminalizing abortion. Every state had abortion legislation by 1900.[18] In the United States, abortion was sometimes considered a common law crime,[19] though Justice Blackmun would conclude that the criminalization of abortion did not have “roots in the English common-law tradition.”[20] Rather than arresting the women having the abortions, legal officials were more likely to interrogate these women to obtain evidence against the abortion provider in order to close down that provider’s business.[21][22]

In 1971, Shirley Wheeler was charged with manslaughter after Florida hospital staff reported her illegal abortion to the police. She received a sentence of two years’ probation and, under her probation, had to move back into her parents’ house in North Carolina.[21] The Boston Women’s Abortion Coalition held a rally for Wheeler in Boston to raise money and awareness of her charges as well as had staff members from the Women’s National Abortion Action Coalition (WONAAC) speak at the rally.[23] Wheeler was possibly the first woman to be held criminally responsible for submitting to an abortion.[24] Her conviction was overturned by the Florida Supreme Court.[21]

History of the case

In June 1969, 21-year-old Norma McCorvey discovered she was pregnant with her third child. She returned to Dallas, Texas, where friends advised her to assert falsely that she had been raped in order to obtain a legal abortion (with the incorrect assumption that Texas law allowed abortion in cases of rape and incest). This scheme would also fail because there was no police report documenting the alleged rape. In any case, the Texas statute allowed abortion only ”for the purpose of saving the life of the mother”. She attempted to obtain an Illegal abortion, but found that the unauthorized facility had been closed down by the police. Eventually, she was referred to attorneys Linda Coffee and Sarah Weddington.[25][26] (McCorvey would end up giving birth before the case was decided, and the child was put up for adoption.)[27]

In 1970, Coffee and Weddington filed suit in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas on behalf of McCorvey (under the alias Jane Roe). The defendant in the case was Dallas County District AttorneyHenry Wade, who represented the State of Texas. McCorvey was no longer claiming her pregnancy was a result of rape, and later acknowledged that she had lied about having been raped.[28][29] “Rape” is not mentioned in the judicial opinions in the case.[30]

On June 17, 1970, a three-judge panel of the District Court, consisting of Northern District of Texas Judges Sarah T. HughesWilliam McLaughlin Taylor Jr. and Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Irving Loeb Goldberg, unanimously[30] declared the Texas law unconstitutional, finding that it violated the right to privacy found in the Ninth Amendment. In addition, the court relied on Justice Arthur Goldberg‘s 1965 concurrence in Griswold v. Connecticut. The court, however, declined to grant an injunction against enforcement of the law.[31]

Issues before the Supreme Court

Roe v. Wade reached the Supreme Court on appeal in 1970. The justices delayed taking action on Roe and a closely related case, Doe v. Bolton, until they had decided Younger v. Harris (because they felt the appeals raised difficult questions on judicial jurisdiction) and United States v. Vuitch (in which they considered the constitutionality of a District of Columbia statute that criminalized abortion except where the mother’s life or health was endangered). In Vuitch, the Court narrowly upheld the statute, though in doing so, it treated abortion as a medical procedure and stated that physicians must be given room to determine what constitutes a danger to (physical or mental) health. The day after they announced their decision in Vuitch, they voted to hear both Roe and Doe.[32]

Arguments were scheduled by the full Court for December 13, 1971. Before the Court could hear the oral arguments, Justices Hugo Black and John Marshall Harlan II retired. Chief Justice Warren Burger asked Justice Potter Stewart and Justice Blackmun to determine whether Roe and Doe, among others, should be heard as scheduled. According to Blackmun, Stewart felt that the cases were a straightforward application of Younger v. Harris, and they recommended that the Court move forward as scheduled.[33]

In his opening argument in defense of the abortion restrictions, attorney Jay Floyd made what was later described as the “worst joke in legal history.”[34] Appearing against two female lawyers, Floyd began, “Mr. Chief Justice and may it please the Court. It’s an old joke, but when a man argues against two beautiful ladies like this, they are going to have the last word.” His remark was met with cold silence; one observer thought that Chief Justice Burger “was going to come right off the bench at him. He glared him down.”[35][36]

After a first round of arguments, all seven justices tentatively agreed that the Texas law should be struck down, but on varying grounds.[37] Burger assigned the role of writing the Court’s opinion in Roe (as well as Doe) to Blackmun, who began drafting a preliminary opinion that emphasized what he saw as the Texas law’s vagueness.[38] (At this point, Black and Harlan had been replaced by Justices William Rehnquist and Lewis F. Powell Jr., but they arrived too late to hear the first round of arguments.) But Blackmun felt that his opinion did not adequately reflect his liberal colleagues’ views.[39] In May 1972, he proposed that the case be reargued. Justice William O. Douglas threatened to write a dissent from the reargument order (he and the other liberal justices were suspicious that Rehnquist and Powell would vote to uphold the statute), but was coaxed out of the action by his colleagues, and his dissent was merely mentioned in the reargument order without further statement or opinion.[40][41] The case was reargued on October 11, 1972. Weddington continued to represent Roe, and Texas Assistant Attorney General Robert C. Flowers replaced Jay Floyd for Texas.[citation needed]

Blackmun continued to work on his opinions in both cases over the summer recess, even though there was no guarantee that he would be assigned to write them again. Over the recess, he spent a week researching the history of abortion at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, where he had worked in the 1950s. After the Court heard the second round of arguments, Powell said he would agree with Blackmun’s conclusion but pushed for Roe to be the lead of the two abortion cases being considered. Powell also suggested that the Court strike down the Texas law on privacy grounds. Justice Byron White was unwilling to sign on to Blackmun’s opinion, and Rehnquist had already decided to dissent.[42]

Prior to the decision, the justices discussed the trimester framework at great length. Justice Powell had suggested that the point where the state could intervene be placed at viability, which Justice Thurgood Marshall supported as well.[43] In an internal memo to the other justices before the majority decision was published, Justice Blackmun wrote: “You will observe that I have concluded that the end of the first trimester is critical. This is arbitrary, but perhaps any other selected point, such as quickening or viability, is equally arbitrary.”[44]Roe supporters are quick to point out, however, that the memo only reflects Blackmun’s uncertainty about the timing of the trimester framework, not the framework or the holding itself.[45] In his opinion, Blackmun also clearly explained how he had reached the trimester framework – scrutinizing history, common law, the Hippocratic Oath, medical knowledge, and the positions of medical organizations.[46] Justice Blackmun’s trimester framework was later rejected by the O’Connor–Souter–Kennedy plurality in Casey, in favor of the “undue burden” analysis still employed by the Court.[47] Contrary to Blackmun, Justice Douglas preferred the first-trimester line.[48] Justice Stewart said the lines were “legislative” and wanted more flexibility and consideration paid to state legislatures, though he joined Blackmun’s decision.[49] Justice William J. Brennan Jr. proposed abandoning frameworks based on the age of the fetus and instead allowing states to regulate the procedure based on its safety for the mother.[48]

Supreme Court decision

On January 22, 1973, the Supreme Court issued a 7–2 decision in favor of Roe that struck down Texas’s abortion ban as unconstitutional. In addition to the majority opinion, Justices Burger, Douglas, and Stewart each filed concurring opinions, and Justice White filed a dissenting opinion in which Justice Rehnquist joined. Burger’s, Douglas’s, and White’s opinions were issued along with the Court’s opinion in Doe v. Bolton (announced on the same day as Roe v. Wade).

Opinion of the Court

Justice Harry Blackmun, the author of the majority opinion in Roe v. Wade.

Seven justices formed the majority and joined an opinion written by Justice Harry Blackmun. The Court began by exhaustively reviewing the legality of abortion throughout the history of Roman law and the Anglo-American common law up until the 20th century.[50] It also reviewed the developments of medical procedures and technology to perform abortions safely.[50]

Right to privacy

With its historical survey as background, the Court centered its opinion around the notion of a constitutional “right to privacy” that was intimated in earlier cases involving family relationships and reproductive autonomy.[50] After reviewing these cases, the Court proceeded, “with virtually no further explanation of the privacy value”,[5] to rule that regardless of exactly which provisions were involved, the U.S. Constitution’s guarantees of liberty covered a right to privacy that generally protected a pregnant woman’s decision whether or not to abort a pregnancy.[3]

This right of privacy, whether it be founded in the Fourteenth Amendment‘s concept of personal liberty and restrictions upon state action, as we feel it is, or … in the Ninth Amendment‘s reservation of rights to the people, is broad enough to encompass a woman’s decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy.

— Roe, 410 U.S. at 153.[51]

The Court reasoned that outlawing abortions would infringe a pregnant woman’s right to privacy for several reasons: having unwanted children “may force upon the woman a distressful life and future”; it may bring imminent psychological harm; caring for the child may tax the mother’s physical and mental health; and because there may be “distress, for all concerned, associated with the unwanted child.”[52] However, the Court rejected the notion that a pregnant woman’s right to abort her pregnancy was absolute, and held that the right must be balanced against other considerations such as the state’s interest in protecting “prenatal life.”[53]

The Court acknowledged that states had two interests that were sufficiently “compelling” to permit some limitations on the right to choose to have an abortion: their interests in protecting the mother’s health and protecting the life of the fetus. The Court had rejected Roe’s argument that a woman’s right to choose to have an abortion should be absolute, and it also rejected Texas’s argument that total bans on abortion were justifiable because “life” begins at the moment of conception.[5] The Court found that there was no indication that the Constitution’s uses of the word “person” were meant to include fetuses, and so it rejected Texas’s argument that a fetus should be considered a “person” with a legal and constitutional right to life.[54] It noted that there was still great disagreement over when an unborn fetus becomes a “person”.[54]

We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins. When those trained in the respective disciplines of medicine, philosophy, and theology are unable to arrive at any consensus, the judiciary, in this point in the development of man’s knowledge, is not in a position to speculate as to the answer.

— Roe, 410 U.S. at 159.[55]

The Court settled on the three trimesters of pregnancy as the framework to resolve the problem. During the first trimester, when it was believed that the procedure was safer than childbirth, the Court ruled that the government could place no restriction on a woman’s ability to choose to abort a pregnancy other than minimal medical safeguards such as requiring a licensed physician to perform the procedure.[5] After the first trimester, the Court ruled that evidence of increasing risks to the mother’s health gave the state a compelling interest, and that it could enact medical regulations on the procedure so long as they were reasonable and “narrowly tailored” to protecting mothers’ health.[5] At the level of medical science available in the early 1970s, the beginning of the third trimester was normally considered to be the point at which a fetus became viable. Therefore, the Court ruled that, from the beginning of the third trimester on through the rest of a pregnancy, the state had a compelling interest in protecting prenatal life, and could legally prohibit all abortions except where necessary to protect the mother’s life or health.[5]

Justiciability

An aspect of the decision that attracted comparatively little attention was the Court’s disposition of the issues of standing and mootness. Under the traditional interpretation of these rules, Jane Roe’s appeal was “moot” because she had already given birth to her child and thus would not be affected by the ruling; she also lacked “standing” to assert the rights of other pregnant women.[56] As she did not present an “actual case or controversy” (a grievance and a demand for relief), any opinion issued by the Supreme Court would constitute an advisory opinion.

The Court concluded that the case came within an established exception to the rule: one that allowed consideration of an issue that was “capable of repetition, yet evading review.”[57] This phrase had been coined in 1911 by Justice Joseph McKenna in Southern Pacific Terminal Co. v. ICC.[58] Blackmun’s opinion quoted McKenna and noted that pregnancy would normally conclude more quickly than an appellate process: “If that termination makes a case moot, pregnancy litigation seldom will survive much beyond the trial stage, and appellate review will be effectively denied.”[59]

Concurrences

Several other members of the Supreme Court filed concurring opinions in the case. Justice Potter Stewart wrote a concurring opinion in which he stated that even though the Constitution makes no mention of the right to choose to have an abortion without interference, he thought the Court’s decision was a permissible interpretation of the doctrine of substantive due process, which says that the Due Process Clause‘s protection of liberty extends beyond simple procedures and protects certain fundamental rights.[54] Justice William O. Douglas wrote a concurring opinion in which he described how he believed that while the Court was correct to find that the right to choose to have an abortion was a fundamental right, it would be better to derive it from the Ninth Amendment – which states that the fact that a right is not specifically enumerated in the Constitution shall not be construed to mean that American people do not possess it – rather than through the Fourteenth Amendment’s Due Process Clause.[54]

Dissents

Byron White was the senior dissenting justice.

Only two justices dissented from the Court’s decision, but their dissents touched on the points that would lead to later criticism of the Roe decision.[5]

Justice Byron White wrote a dissenting opinion in which he stated his belief that the Court had no basis for deciding between the competing values of pregnant women and unborn children. He wrote:

I find nothing in the language or history of the Constitution to support the Court’s judgment. The Court simply fashions and announces a new constitutional right for pregnant women and, with scarcely any reason or authority for its action, invests that right with sufficient substance to override most existing state abortion statutes. The upshot is that the people and the legislatures of the 50 States are constitutionally disentitled to weigh the relative importance of the continued existence and development of the fetus, on the one hand, against a spectrum of possible impacts on the woman, on the other hand. As an exercise of raw judicial power, the Court perhaps has authority to do what it does today; but, in my view, its judgment is an improvident and extravagant exercise of the power of judicial review that the Constitution extends to this Court.

— Roe, 410 U.S. at 221–22 (White, J., dissenting).

White asserted that the Court “values the convenience of the pregnant mother more than the continued existence and development of the life or potential life that she carries.” Though he suggested that he “might agree” with the Court’s values and priorities, he wrote that he saw “no constitutional warrant for imposing such an order of priorities on the people and legislatures of the States.” White criticized the Court for involving itself in the issue of abortion by creating “a constitutional barrier to state efforts to protect human life and by investing mothers and doctors with the constitutionally protected right to exterminate it.” He would have left this issue, for the most part, “with the people and to the political processes the people have devised to govern their affairs.”

Justice William Rehnquist also dissented from the Court’s decision. In his dissenting opinion, he compared the majority’s use of substantive due process to the Court’s repudiated use of the doctrine in the 1905 case Lochner v. New York.[5] He elaborated on several of White’s points, asserting that the Court’s historical analysis was flawed:

To reach its result, the Court necessarily has had to find within the scope of the Fourteenth Amendment a right that was apparently completely unknown to the drafters of the Amendment. As early as 1821, the first state law dealing directly with abortion was enacted by the Connecticut Legislature. By the time of the adoption of the Fourteenth Amendment in 1868, there were at least 36 laws enacted by state or territorial legislatures limiting abortion. While many States have amended or updated their laws, 21 of the laws on the books in 1868 remain in effect today.

— Roe, 410 U.S. at 174–76 (Rehnquist, J., dissenting).[60][61][62]

From this historical record, Rehnquist concluded, “There apparently was no question concerning the validity of this provision or of any of the other state statutes when the Fourteenth Amendment was adopted.” Therefore, in his view, “the drafters did not intend to have the Fourteenth Amendment withdraw from the States the power to legislate with respect to this matter.”

Reception

Political

A statistical evaluation of the relationship of political affiliation to pro-choice and anti-abortion issues shows that public opinion is much more nuanced about when abortion is acceptable than is commonly assumed.[63] The most prominent organized groups that mobilized in response to Roe are the National Abortion Rights Action League and the National Right to Life Committee.

Support

Advocates of Roe describe it as vital to the preservation of women’s rights, personal freedom, bodily integrity, and privacy. Advocates have also reasoned that access to safe abortion and reproductive freedom generally are fundamental rights. Some scholars (not including any member of the Supreme Court) have equated the denial of abortion rights to compulsory motherhood, and have argued that abortion bans therefore violate the Thirteenth Amendment:

When women are compelled to carry and bear children, they are subjected to ‘involuntary servitude’ in violation of the Thirteenth Amendment….[E]ven if the woman has stipulated to have consented to the risk of pregnancy, that does not permit the state to force her to remain pregnant.[64]

Supporters of Roe contend that the decision has a valid constitutional foundation in the Fourteenth Amendment, or that the fundamental right to abortion is found elsewhere in the Constitution but not in the articles referenced in the decision.[64][65]

Opposition

Protestors at the 2009 March for Life rally against Roe v. Wade

Every year, on the anniversary of the decision, opponents of abortion march up Constitution Avenue to the Supreme Court Building in Washington, D.C., in the March for Life.[66] Around 250,000 people attended the march until 2010.[67][68] Estimates put the 2011 and 2012 attendances at 400,000 each,[69] and the 2013 March for Life drew an estimated 650,000 people.[70]

Opponents of Roe assert that the decision lacks a valid constitutional foundation.[71] Like the dissenters in Roe, they maintain that the Constitution is silent on the issue, and that proper solutions to the question would best be found via state legislatures and the legislative process, rather than through an all-encompassing ruling from the Supreme Court.[72]

A prominent argument against the Roe decision is that, in the absence of consensus about when meaningful life begins, it is best to avoid the risk of doing harm.[73]

In response to Roe v. Wade, most states enacted or attempted to enact laws limiting or regulating abortion, such as laws requiring parental consent or parental notification for minors to obtain abortions; spousal mutual consent laws; spousal notification laws; laws requiring abortions to be performed in hospitals, not clinics; laws barring state funding for abortions; laws banning intact dilation and extraction, also known as partial-birth abortion; laws requiring waiting periods before abortions; and laws mandating that women read certain types of literature and watch a fetal ultrasound before undergoing an abortion.[74] In 1976, Congress passed the Hyde Amendment, barring federal funding of abortions (except in cases of rape, incest, or a threat to the life of the mother) for poor women through the Medicaid program. The Supreme Court struck down some state restrictions in a long series of cases stretching from the mid-1970s to the late 1980s, but upheld restrictions on funding, including the Hyde Amendment, in the case of Harris v. McRae (1980).[75]

Some opponents of abortion maintain that personhood begins at fertilization or conception, and should therefore be protected by the Constitution;[65] the dissenting justices in Roe instead wrote that decisions about abortion “should be left with the people and to the political processes the people have devised to govern their affairs.”[76]

Perhaps the most notable opposition to Roe comes from Roe herself: In 1995, Norma L. McCorvey revealed that she had become pro-life, and from then until her death in 2017, she was a vocal opponent of abortion.[77]

Legal

Justice Blackmun, who authored the Roe decision, stood by the analytical framework he established in Roe throughout his career.[78] Despite his initial reluctance, he became the decision’s chief champion and protector during his later years on the Court.[79] Liberal and feminist legal scholars have had various reactions to Roe, not always giving the decision unqualified support. One argument is that Justice Blackmun reached the correct result but went about it the wrong way.[80] Another is that the end achieved by Roe does not justify its means of judicial fiat.[81]

Justice John Paul Stevens, while agreeing with the decision, has suggested that it should have been more narrowly focused on the issue of privacy. According to Stevens, if the decision had avoided the trimester framework and simply stated that the right to privacy included a right to choose abortion, “it might have been much more acceptable” from a legal standpoint.[82] Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had, before joining the Court, criticized the decision for ending a nascent movement to liberalize abortion law through legislation.[83]Ginsburg has also faulted the Court’s approach for being “about a doctor’s freedom to practice his profession as he thinks best…. It wasn’t woman-centered. It was physician-centered.”[84] Watergate prosecutor Archibald Cox wrote: “[Roes] failure to confront the issue in principled terms leaves the opinion to read like a set of hospital rules and regulations…. Neither historian, nor layman, nor lawyer will be persuaded that all the prescriptions of Justice Blackmun are part of the Constitution.”[85]

In a highly cited 1973 article in the Yale Law Journal,[9] Professor John Hart Ely criticized Roe as a decision that “is not constitutional law and gives almost no sense of an obligation to try to be.”[86] Ely added: “What is frightening about Roe is that this super-protected right is not inferable from the language of the Constitution, the framers’ thinking respecting the specific problem in issue, any general value derivable from the provisions they included, or the nation’s governmental structure.” Professor Laurence Tribe had similar thoughts: “One of the most curious things about Roe is that, behind its own verbal smokescreen, the substantive judgment on which it rests is nowhere to be found.”[87] Liberal law professors Alan Dershowitz,[88] Cass Sunstein,[89] and Kermit Roosevelt[90] have also expressed disappointment with Roe.

Jeffrey Rosen[91] and Michael Kinsley[92] echo Ginsburg, arguing that a legislative movement would have been the correct way to build a more durable consensus in support of abortion rights. William Saletan wrote, “Blackmun’s [Supreme Court] papers vindicate every indictment of Roe: invention, overreach, arbitrariness, textual indifference.”[93] Benjamin Wittes has written that Roe “disenfranchised millions of conservatives on an issue about which they care deeply.”[94] And Edward Lazarus, a former Blackmun clerk who “loved Roes author like a grandfather,” wrote: “As a matter of constitutional interpretation and judicial method, Roe borders on the indefensible…. Justice Blackmun’s opinion provides essentially no reasoning in support of its holding. And in the almost 30 years since Roe’s announcement, no one has produced a convincing defense of Roe on its own terms.”[95]

The assertion that the Supreme Court was making a legislative decision is often repeated by opponents of the ruling.[96] The “viability” criterion is still in effect, although the point of viability has changed as medical science has found ways to help premature babies survive.[97]

Public opinion

Americans have been equally divided on the issue; a May 2018 Gallup poll indicated that 48% of Americans described themselves as pro-choice and 48% described themselves as pro-life. A July 2018 poll indicated that only 28% of Americans wanted the Supreme Court to overturn Roe vs. Wade, while 64% did not want the ruling to be overturned.[98]

Gallup poll conducted in May 2009 indicated that 53% of Americans believed that abortions should be legal under certain circumstances, 23% believed abortion should be legal under any circumstances, and 22% believed that abortion should be illegal in all circumstances. However, in this poll, more Americans referred to themselves as “Pro-Life” than “Pro-Choice” for the first time since the poll asked the question in 1995, with 51% identifying as “Pro-Life” and 42% identifying as “Pro-Choice”.[99] Similarly, an April 2009 Pew Research Center poll showed a softening of support for legal abortion in all cases compared to the previous years of polling. People who said they support abortion in all or most cases dropped from 54% in 2008 to 46% in 2009.[100]

In contrast, an October 2007 Harris poll on Roe v. Wade asked the following question:

In 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that states laws which made it illegal for a woman to have an abortion up to three months of pregnancy were unconstitutional, and that the decision on whether a woman should have an abortion up to three months of pregnancy should be left to the woman and her doctor to decide. In general, do you favor or oppose this part of the U.S. Supreme Court decision making abortions up to three months of pregnancy legal?[101]

In reply, 56% of respondents indicated favour while 40% indicated opposition. The Harris organization concluded from this poll that “56 percent now favours the U.S. Supreme Court decision.” Anti-abortion activists have disputed whether the Harris poll question is a valid measure of public opinion about Roes overall decision, because the question focuses only on the first three months of pregnancy.[102][103] The Harris poll has tracked public opinion about Roe since 1973:[101][104]

Roe v Wade.svg

Regarding the Roe decision as a whole, more Americans support it than support overturning it.[105] When pollsters describe various regulations that Roe prevents legislatures from enacting, support for Roe drops.[105][106]

Role in subsequent decisions and politics

Opposition to Roe on the bench grew when President Reagan, who supported legislative restrictions on abortion, began making federal judicial appointments in 1981. Reagan denied that there was any litmus test: “I have never given a litmus test to anyone that I have appointed to the bench…. I feel very strongly about those social issues, but I also place my confidence in the fact that the one thing that I do seek are judges that will interpret the law and not write the law. We’ve had too many examples in recent years of courts and judges legislating.”[107]

In addition to White and Rehnquist, Reagan appointee Sandra Day O’Connor began dissenting from the Court’s abortion cases, arguing in 1983 that the trimester-based analysis devised by the Roe Court was “unworkable.”[108] Shortly before his retirement from the bench, Chief Justice Warren Burger suggested in 1986 that Roe be “reexamined”;[109] the associate justice who filled Burger’s place on the Court – Justice Antonin Scalia – vigorously opposed Roe. Concern about overturning Roe played a major role in the defeat of Robert Bork‘s nomination to the Court in 1987; the man eventually appointed to replace Roe-supporter Lewis Powell was Anthony Kennedy.

The Supreme Court of Canada used the rulings in both Roe and Doe v. Bolton as grounds to find Canada’s federal law restricting access to abortions unconstitutional. That Canadian case, R. v. Morgentaler, was decided in 1988.[110]

Webster v. Reproductive Health Services

In a 5–4 decision in 1989’s Webster v. Reproductive Health Services, Chief Justice Rehnquist, writing for the Court, declined to explicitly overrule Roe, because “none of the challenged provisions of the Missouri Act properly before us conflict with the Constitution.”[111] In this case, the Court upheld several abortion restrictions, and modified the Roe trimester framework.[111]

In concurring opinions, O’Connor refused to reconsider Roe, and Justice Antonin Scalia criticized the Court and O’Connor for not overruling Roe.[111] Blackmun – author of the Roe decision – stated in his dissent that White, Kennedy and Rehnquist were “callous” and “deceptive,” that they deserved to be charged with “cowardice and illegitimacy,” and that their plurality opinion “foments disregard for the law.”[111] White had recently opined that the majority reasoning in Roe v. Wade was “warped.”[109]

Planned Parenthood v. Casey

During initial deliberations for Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992), an initial majority of five Justices (Rehnquist, White, Scalia, Kennedy, and Thomas) were willing to effectively overturn RoeKennedy changed his mind after the initial conference,[112] and O’Connor, Kennedy, and Souter joined Blackmun and Stevens to reaffirm the central holding of Roe,[113] saying, “Our law affords constitutional protection to personal decisions relating to marriage, procreation, contraception, family relationships, child rearing, and education. […] These matters, involving the most intimate and personal choices a person may make in a lifetime, choices central to personal dignity and autonomy, are central to the liberty protected by the Fourteenth Amendment. At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human life.”[114] Only Justice Blackmun would have retained Roe entirely and struck down all aspects of the statute at issue in Casey.[78]

Scalia’s dissent acknowledged that abortion rights are of “great importance to many women”, but asserted that it is not a liberty protected by the Constitution, because the Constitution does not mention it, and because longstanding traditions have permitted it to be legally proscribed. Scalia concluded: “[B]y foreclosing all democratic outlet for the deep passions this issue arouses, by banishing the issue from the political forum that gives all participants, even the losers, the satisfaction of a fair hearing and an honest fight, by continuing the imposition of a rigid national rule instead of allowing for regional differences, the Court merely prolongs and intensifies the anguish.”[115]

Stenberg v. Carhart

During the 1990s, the state of Nebraska attempted to ban a certain second-trimester abortion procedure known as intact dilation and extraction (sometimes called partial birth abortion). The Nebraska ban allowed other second-trimester abortion procedures called dilation and evacuation abortions. Ginsburg (who replaced White) stated, “this law does not save any fetus from destruction, for it targets only ‘a method of performing abortion’.”[116] The Supreme Court struck down the Nebraska ban by a 5–4 vote in Stenberg v. Carhart (2000), citing a right to use the safest method of second trimester abortion.

Kennedy, who had co-authored the 5–4 Casey decision upholding Roe, was among the dissenters in Stenberg, writing that Nebraska had done nothing unconstitutional.[116] In his dissent, Kennedy described the second trimester abortion procedure that Nebraska was not seeking to prohibit, and thus argued that since this dilation and evacuation procedure remained available in Nebraska, the state was free to ban the other procedure sometimes called “partial birth abortion.”[116]

The remaining three dissenters in Stenberg – Rehnquist, Scalia, and Thomas – disagreed again with Roe: “Although a State may permit abortion, nothing in the Constitution dictates that a State must do so.”

Gonzales v. Carhart

In 2003, Congress passed the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, which led to a lawsuit in the case of Gonzales v. Carhart. The Court had previously ruled in Stenberg v. Carhart that a state’s ban on “partial birth abortion” was unconstitutional because such a ban did not have an exception for the health of the woman. The membership of the Court changed after Stenberg, with John Roberts and Samuel Alito replacing Rehnquist and O’Connor, respectively. Further, the ban at issue in Gonzales v. Carhart was a clear federal statute, rather than a relatively vague state statute as in the Stenberg case.

On April 18, 2007, the Supreme Court handed down a 5 to 4 decision upholding the constitutionality of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act. Kennedy wrote the majority opinion, asserting that Congress was within its power to generally ban the procedure, although the Court left the door open for as-applied challenges. Kennedy’s opinion did not reach the question of whether the Court’s prior decisions in Roe v. WadePlanned Parenthood v. Casey, and Stenberg v. Carhart remained valid, and instead the Court stated that the challenged statute remained consistent with those past decisions whether or not those decisions remained valid.

Chief Justice John Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, and Alito joined the majority. Justices Ginsburg, Stevens, Souter, and Breyer dissented, contending that the ruling ignored Supreme Court abortion precedent, and also offering an equality-based justification for abortion precedent. Thomas filed a concurring opinion, joined by Scalia, contending that the Court’s prior decisions in Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey should be reversed, and also noting that the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act possibly exceeded the powers of Congress under the Commerce Clause.

Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt

In the case of Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, the most significant abortion rights case before the Supreme Court since Planned Parenthood v. Casey in 1992,[117][118][119] the Supreme Court in a 5–3 decision on June 27, 2016, swept away forms of state restrictions on the way abortion clinics can function. The Texas legislature enacted in 2013 restrictions on the delivery of abortions services that created an undue burden for women seeking an abortion by requiring abortion doctors to have difficult-to-obtain “admitting privileges” at a local hospital and by requiring clinics to have costly hospital-grade facilities. The Court struck down these two provisions “facially” from the law at issue – that is, the very words of the provisions were invalid, no matter how they might be applied in any practical situation. According to the Supreme Court the task of judging whether a law puts an unconstitutional burden on a woman’s right to abortion belongs with the courts and not the legislatures.[120]

Activities of Norma McCorvey

Norma McCorvey became a member of the anti-abortion movement in 1995; she supported making abortion illegal until her death in 2017.[121] In 1998, she testified to Congress:

It was my pseudonym, Jane Roe, which had been used to create the “right” to abortion out of legal thin air. But Sarah Weddington and Linda Coffee never told me that what I was signing would allow women to come up to me 15, 20 years later and say, “Thank you for allowing me to have my five or six abortions. Without you, it wouldn’t have been possible.” Sarah never mentioned women using abortions as a form of birth control. We talked about truly desperate and needy women, not women already wearing maternity clothes.[29]

As a party to the original litigation, she sought to reopen the case in U.S. District Court in Texas to have Roe v. Wade overturned. However, the Fifth Circuit decided that her case was moot, in McCorvey v. Hill.[122] In a concurring opinion, Judge Edith Jones agreed that McCorvey was raising legitimate questions about emotional and other harm suffered by women who have had abortions, about increased resources available for the care of unwanted children, and about new scientific understanding of fetal development, but Jones said she was compelled to agree that the case was moot. On February 22, 2005, the Supreme Court refused to grant a writ of certiorari, and McCorvey’s appeal ended.

Activities of Sarah Weddington

After arguing before the Court in Roe v. Wade at the age of 26, Sarah Weddington went on to be a representative in the Texas House of Representatives for three terms.[123] Weddington has also had a long and successful career as General Counsel for the United States Department of Agriculture, Assistant to President Jimmy Carter, lecturer at Texas Wesleyan University, and speaker and adjunct professor at the University of Texas at Austin.[123]

Presidential positions

President Richard Nixon did not publicly comment about the decision.[124] In private conversation later revealed as part of the Nixon tapes, Nixon said “There are times when an abortion is necessary,… .”[125][126] However, Nixon was also concerned that greater access to abortions would foster “permissiveness,” and said that “it breaks the family.”[125]

Generally, presidential opinion has been split between major party lines. The Roe decision was opposed by Presidents Gerald Ford,[127] Ronald Reagan,[128] and George W. Bush.[129] President George H.W. Bush also opposed Roe, though he had supported abortion rights earlier in his career.[130][131]

President Jimmy Carter supported legal abortion from an early point in his political career, in order to prevent birth defects and in other extreme cases; he encouraged the outcome in Roe and generally supported abortion rights.[132] Roe was also supported by President Bill Clinton.[133] President Barack Obama has taken the position that “Abortions should be legally available in accordance with Roe v. Wade.”[134]

President Donald Trump has publicly opposed the decision, vowing to appoint pro-life justices to the Supreme Court.[135] Upon Justice Kennedy’s retirement in 2018, Trump nominated Brett Kavanaugh to replace him, and he was confirmed by the Senate in October 2018. A central point of Kavanaugh’s appointment hearings was his stance on Roe v. Wade, of which he said to Senator Susan Collins that he would not “overturn a long-established precedent if five current justices believed that it was wrongly decided”.[136] Despite Kavanaugh’s statement, there is concern that with the Supreme Court having a strong conservative majority, that Roe v. Wade will be overturned given an appropriate case to challenge it. Further concerns were raised following the May 2019 Supreme Court 5-4 decision along ideological lines in Franchise Tax Board of California v. Hyatt. While the case had nothing to do with abortion rights, the decision overturned a previous 1979 decision from Nevada v. Hall without maintaining the stare decisis precedent, indicating the current Court makeup would be willing to apply the same to overturn Roe v. Wade.[137] Pro-abortion organizations like Planned Parenthood are planning on how they will operate should Roe v. Wade be overturned.[138]

State laws regarding Roe

Since 2010 there has been an increase in state restrictions on abortion.

Several states have enacted so-called trigger laws which would take effect in the event that Roe v. Wade is overturned, with the effect of outlawing abortions on the state level. Those states include Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Dakota and South Dakota.[139] Additionally, many states did not repeal pre-1973 statutes that criminalized abortion, and some of those statutes could again be in force if Roe were reversed.[140]

Other states have passed laws to maintain the legality of abortion if Roe v. Wade is overturned. Those states include California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Nevada and Washington.[139]

The Mississippi Legislature has attempted to make abortion unfeasible without having to overturn Roe v. Wade. The Mississippi law as of 2012 was being challenged in federal courts and was temporarily blocked.[141]

Alabama House Republicans passed a law on April 30, 2019 that will criminalize abortion if it goes into effect.[142] It offers only two exceptions: serious health risk to the mother or a lethal fetal anomaly. Alabama governor Kay Ivey signed the bill into law on May 14, primarily as a symbolic gesture in hopes of challenging Roe v. Wade in the Supreme Court.[143][144][145]

See also

Footnotes …

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roe_v._Wade

Doe v. Bolton, 410 U.S. 179 (1973), was a decision of the United States Supreme Court overturning the abortion law of Georgia.[1] The Supreme Court’s decision was released on January 22, 1973, the same day as the decision in the better-known case of Roe v. Wade.[2]

Contents

Background

The Georgia law in question permitted abortion only in cases of rape, severe fetal deformity, or the possibility of severe or fatal injury to the mother. Other restrictions included the requirement that the procedure be approved in writing by three physicians and by a three-member special committee that either (1) continued pregnancy would endanger the pregnant woman’s life or “seriously and permanently” injure her health; (2) the fetus would “very likely be born with a grave, permanent and irremediable mental or physical defect”; or (3) the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest.[3][4] In addition, only Georgia residents could receive abortions under this statutory scheme: non-residents could not have an abortion in Georgia under any circumstances.

The plaintiff, a pregnant woman who was given the pseudonym “Mary Doe” in court papers to protect her identity, sued Arthur K. Bolton, then the Attorney General of Georgia, as the official responsible for enforcing the law in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. The anonymous plaintiff has since been identified as Sandra Cano, a 22-year-old mother of three who was nine weeks pregnant at the time the lawsuit was filed. Cano, who died in 2014, described herself as pro-life and claimed her attorney, Margie Pitts Hames, lied to her in order to have a plaintiff.[5][6]

On October 14, 1970, a three-judge panel of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia consisting of Northern District of Georgia Judges Albert John HendersonSidney Oslin Smith Jr., and Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Lewis Render Morgan unanimously declared the conditional restrictions portion of the law unconstitutional, though upheld the medical approval and residency requirements.[7] The court also declined to issue an injunction against enforcement of the law, similarly to the district court in the case Roe v. Wade. The plaintiff appealed to the Supreme Court under a statute, since repealed, permitting bypass of the circuit appeals court.

The oral arguments and re-arguments followed the same schedule as those in Roe. Atlanta attorney Hames represented Doe at the hearings, while Georgia assistant attorney general Dorothy Toth Beasley represented Bolton.

Opinion of the Court

The same 7-2 majority that struck down a Texas abortion law in Roe v. Wade, invalidated most of the remaining restrictions of the Georgia abortion law, including the medical approval and residency requirements. The Court reiterated the protected “right to privacy,” which applied to matters involving marriage, procreation, contraception, family relationships, child rearing, and education.[3] Justice Harry A. Blackmun wrote the majority opinion for the Court, in which he explained “the sensitive and emotional nature” of the issue and “the deep and seemingly absolute convictions” on both sides.[4] Justice Blackmun went on to conclude that as a constitutional matter, the right to privacy was “broad enough to encompass a woman’s decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy.”[3][4]

Together, Doe and Roe declared abortion as a constitutional right and overturned most laws against abortion in other U.S. statesRoe legalized abortion nationwide for approximately the first six months of pregnancy until the point of fetal viability.[3]

Definition of health

The Court’s opinion in Doe v. Bolton stated that a woman may obtain an abortion after viability, if necessary to protect her health. The Court defined “health” as follows:

Whether, in the words of the Georgia statute, “an abortion is necessary” is a professional judgment that the Georgia physician will be called upon to make routinely. We agree with the District Court, 319 F. Supp., at 1058, that the medical judgment may be exercised in the light of all factors – physical, emotional, psychological, familial, and the woman’s age – relevant to the well-being of the patient. All these factors may relate to health.

Subsequent developments

In 2003, Sandra Cano filed a motion to re-open the case claiming that she had not been aware that the case had been filed on her behalf and that if she had known she would not have supported the litigation.[8] The district court denied her motion, and she appealed. When the appeals court also denied her motion,[9] she requested review by the United States Supreme Court. However, the Supreme Court declined to hear Sandra Cano’s suit to overturn the ruling.[10] Sandra Cano died on September 30, 2014.[6]

See also

References

  1. ^ Doe v. Bolton410 U.S. 179 (1973).
  2. ^ Roe v. Wade410 U.S. 113 (1973).
  3. Jump up to:a b c d Goldstein, Leslie (1994). Contemporary Cases in Women’s Rights. Madison: The University of Wisconsin. pp. 16–17.
  4. Jump up to:a b c Cushman, Clare (2001). Supreme Court Decisions and Women’s Rights. Washington D.C.: CQ Press. p. 189.
  5. ^ White, Gayle. “Roe v. Wade Role Just a Page in Rocky Life Story”The Atlanta Journal and Constitution (2003-01-22).
  6. Jump up to:a b Wetzstein, Cheryl (October 1, 2014). “Sandra Cano, the ‘Mary Doe’ of landmark abortion case, dies”The Washington Times. Retrieved 2018-02-01.
  7. ^ Doe v. Bolton319 F. Supp. 1048 (N.D. Ga. 1970).
  8. ^ “’Mary Doe’ of Doe v. Bolton Files Motion To Overturn Companion Case to Roe v. Wade” Archived September 27, 2007, at the Wayback MachineKaiser Daily Reproductive Health Report, (2003-08-27).
  9. ^ Cano v. Baker435 F.3d 1337 (11th Cir. 2006).
  10. ^ Mears, Bill. “Court won’t rethink ‘Mary Doe’ abortion case”CNN (2006-10-10).

External links

Griswold v. Connecticut

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Griswold v. Connecticut
Seal of the United States Supreme Court

Argued March 29, 1965
Decided June 7, 1965
Full case name Estelle T. Griswold and C. Lee Buxton v. Connecticut
Citations 381 U.S. 479 (more)

85 S. Ct. 1678; 14 L. Ed. 2d510; 1965 U.S. LEXIS 2282
Case history
Prior Defendants convicted, Circuit Court for the Sixth Circuit, 1-2-62; affirmed, Circut Court, Appellate Division, 1-7-63; affirmed, 200 A.2d 479 (Conn.1964)
Subsequent None
Holding
A Connecticut law criminalizing the use of contraceptives violated the right to marital privacy. Connecticut Supreme Court reversed.
Court membership
Chief Justice
Earl Warren
Associate Justices
Hugo Black · William O. Douglas
Tom C. Clark · John M. Harlan II
William J. Brennan Jr. · Potter Stewart
Byron White · Arthur Goldberg
Case opinions
Majority Douglas, joined by Warren, Clark, Brennan, Goldberg
Concurrence Goldberg, joined by Warren, Brennan
Concurrence Harlan
Concurrence White
Dissent Black, joined by Stewart
Dissent Stewart, joined by Black
Laws applied
U.S. Const. amends. IIVVIXXIV; Conn. Gen. Stat. §§ 53-32, 54–196 (rev. 1958)

Griswold v. Connecticut, 381 U.S. 479 (1965),[1] is a landmark case in the United States about access to contraception. The case involved a Connecticut “Comstock law” that prohibited any person from using “any drug, medicinal article or instrument for the purpose of preventing conception.” The court held that the statute was unconstitutional, and that “the clear effect of [the Connecticut law …] is to deny disadvantaged citizens … access to medical assistance and up-to-date information in respect to proper methods of birth control.” By a vote of 7–2, the Supreme Court invalidated the law on the grounds that it violated the “right to marital privacy“, establishing the basis for the right to privacy with respect to intimate practices. This and other cases view the right to privacy as a right to “protect[ion] from governmental intrusion.”

Although the Bill of Rights does not explicitly mention “privacy”, Justice William O. Douglas wrote for the majority that the right was to be found in the “penumbras” and “emanations” of other constitutional protections, such as the self-incrimination clause of the Fifth Amendment. Douglas wrote, “Would we allow the police to search the sacred precincts of marital bedrooms for telltale signs of the use of contraceptives? The very idea is repulsive to the notions of privacy surrounding the marriage relationship.” Justice Arthur Goldberg wrote a concurring opinion in which he used the Ninth Amendment in support of the Supreme Court’s ruling. Justice Byron White and Justice John Marshall Harlan II wrote concurring opinions in which they argued that privacy is protected by the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

Contents

Background

Griswold v. Connecticut originated as a prosecution under the Connecticut Comstock Act of 1873. The law made it illegal to use “any drug, medicinal article, or instrument for the purpose of preventing conception…”. Violators could be “… fined not less than fifty dollars or imprisoned not less than sixty days nor more than one year or be both fined and imprisoned.”[1] By the 1950s, Massachusetts and Connecticut were the only two states that still had such statutes, although they were almost never enforced.

In the late 19th and early 20th century, physicians in the United States largely avoided the publication of any material related to birth control, even when they often recommended or at least gave advice regarding it to their married patients. Then in 1914, Margaret Sanger openly challenged the public consensus against contraception.[2] She influenced the Connecticut Birth Control League (CBCL) and helped to develop the eventual concept of the Planned Parenthood clinics.

The first Planned Parenthood clinic in Connecticut opened in 1935 in Hartford. It provided services to women who had no access to a gynecologist, including information about artificial contraception and other methods to plan the growth of their families. Several clinics were opened in Connecticut over the following years, including the Waterbury clinic that led to the legal dispute. In 1939, this clinic was compelled to enforce the 1879 anti-contraception law on poor women patients. This caught the attention of the CBCL leaders, who remarked on the importance of birth control for cases in which the lives of the patients depended upon it.[3]

During the 1940s, several cases arose from the provision of contraception by the Waterbury clinic, leading to legal challenges to the constitutionality of the Comstock law, but these failed on technical grounds. In Tileston v. Ullman (1943), a doctor and mother challenged the law on the grounds that a ban on contraception could, in certain sexual situations, threaten the lives and well-being of patients. The U.S. Supreme Court dismissed the appeal on the grounds that the plaintiff lacked standing to sue on behalf of his patients. Yale School of Medicine gynecologist C. Lee Buxton and his patients brought a second challenge to the law in Poe v. Ullman (1961). The Supreme Court again dismissed the appeal, on the grounds that the case was not ripe: the plaintiffs had not been charged or threatened with prosecution, so there was no actual controversy for the Court to resolve.

The polemic around Poe led to the appeal in Griswold v. Connecticut, primarily based on the dissent of Justice John Marshall Harlan II in Poe, one of the most cited dissents in Supreme Court history.

(T)he full scope of the liberty guaranteed by the Due Process Clause cannot be found in or limited by the precise terms of the specific guarantees elsewhere provided in the Constitution. This ‘liberty’ is not a series of isolated points pricked out in terms of the taking of property; the freedom of speech, press, and religion; the right to keep and bear arms in the United States; the freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures; and so on. It is a rational continuum which, broadly speaking, includes a freedom from all substantial arbitrary impositions and purposeless restraints.

— Justice John Marshall Harlan II, dissent in Poe v. Ullman.[4]

He argued, foremost, that the Supreme Court should have heard the case rather than dismissing it. Thereafter, he indicated his support for a broad interpretation of the due process clause. On the basis of this interpretation, Harlan concluded that the Connecticut statute violated the Constitution.

After Poe was handed down on June 1961, the Planned Parenthood League of Connecticut (PPLC) decided to challenge the law again. Estelle T. Griswold served on the PPLC as Executive Director from 1954 to 1965.[5]Struggling through legal battles against birth control restrictions in Connecticut, Griswold and PPLC made an initial effort to financially support women who wanted contraceptives to bus to cities in New York and Rhode Island.[5] PPLC Executive Director Estelle Griswold[6] and Dr. Buxton (PPLC medical volunteer),[7] opened a birth control clinic in New Haven, Connecticut,[8] “thus directly challeng[ing] the state law.”[5] The clinic opened on November 1, 1961, and that same day received its first ten patients and dozens of appointment requests from married women who wanted birth control advice and prescriptions. Griswold and Buxton were arrested, tried, found guilty, and fined $100 each.[9] The conviction was upheld by the Appellate Division of the Circuit Court, and by the Connecticut Supreme Court.[10]

Court’s decision on relationship with the right to privacy

Griswold appealed her conviction to the United States Supreme Court, arguing that the Connecticut statute was a violation of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution, which reads that “no state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law … nor deny any person the equal protection of the laws,” (Amendment 14 Section 1).[11] By a 7–2 majority, on June 7, 1965 the Supreme Court concluded that the Connecticut statute was unconstitutional.

Justice William O. Douglas, writing for the majority of the court, recognized the right to privacy, even though not enumerated in the Bill of Rights, is found in the “penumbras” and “emanations” of other constitutional protections, such as the self-incrimination clause of the Fifth Amendment, or the freedom of association clause of the First Amendment. The right to privacy is seen as a right to “protect[ion] from governmental intrusion.” Justice Arthur Goldberg wrote a concurring opinion in which he used the Ninth Amendment in support of the Supreme Court’s ruling, reasoning that the right of privacy was retained by the people. Justice Byron White and Justice John Marshall Harlan II also wrote concurring opinions in which they argued that privacy is protected by the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.

Justices Hugo Black and Potter Stewart wrote dissenting opinions. Justice Black argued that the right to privacy is nowhere to be found in the Constitution. Furthermore, he criticized the interpretations of the Ninth and Fourteenth Amendments by his fellow justices. Justice Stewart called the Connecticut statute “an uncommonly silly law” but argued that it was nevertheless constitutional.

The final decision of the court was later used in other cases related to sexual practices and other personal, often considered private, decisions for the American citizens.

Precedent for later cases

Later decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court extended the principles of Griswold beyond its particular facts.

Right to birth control for unmarried couples, 1972

Eisenstadt v. Baird (1972) extended its holding to unmarried couples, whereas the “right of privacy” in Griswold was said to only apply to marital relationships.[12] The argument in Eisenstadt was that it was a violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to deny unmarried couples the right to use contraception when married couples did have that right (under Griswold).[13] Writing for the majority, Justice Brennan wrote that Massachusetts could not enforce the law against married couples because of Griswold v. Connecticut, so the law worked “irrational discrimination” if not extended to unmarried couples as well.

Right to abortion for any woman, 1973

The reasoning and language of both Griswold and Eisenstadt were cited in the concurring opinion by Associate Justice Potter Stewart in support of Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973).[14] The decision in Roe struck down a Texas law that criminalized aiding a woman in getting an abortion.[15] The Court ruled that this law was a violation of the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Abortion became legalized for any woman for any reason, up through the first trimester, with possible restrictions for maternal health in the second trimester (the midpoint of which is the approximate time of fetal viability). In the third trimester of pregnancy, abortion is potentially illegal with exception for the mother’s health, which the court defined broadly in Doe v. Bolton.

Right to contraception for juveniles at least 16 years of age, 1977

Right to homosexual relations, 2003

Lawrence v. Texas (2003) struck down a Texas sodomy law that prohibited certain forms of intimate sexual contact between members of the same sex. Without stating a standard of review in the majority opinion, the court overruled Bowers v. Hardwick (1986), declaring that the “Texas statute furthers no legitimate state interest which can justify its intrusion into the personal and private life of the individual.” Justice O’Connor, who wrote a concurring opinion, framed it as an issue of rational basis review. Justice Kennedy‘s majority opinion, based on the liberty interest protected by the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, stated that the Texas anti-sodomy statute touched “upon the most private human conduct, sexual behavior, and in the most private of places, the home,” and attempted to “control a personal relationship that … is within the liberty of persons to choose without being punished.” Thus, the Court held that adults are entitled to participate in private, consensual sexual conduct. While the opinion in Lawrence was framed in terms of the right to liberty, Kennedy described the “right to privacy” found in Griswold as the “most pertinent beginning point” in the evolution of the concepts embodied in Lawrence.[16]

Right to same-sex marriage, 2015

Griswold was also cited in a chain of cases that led the Supreme Court to legalize same-sex marriage in another landmark case, Obergefell v. Hodges.

See also

References

  1. Jump up to:a b Griswold v. Connecticut381 U.S. 479 (1965).
  2. ^ Johnson, John W. (2005). Griswold V. Connecticut. University of Kansas. pp. 8–10. ISBN 0-7006-1378-1.
  3. ^ Johnson, John W. (2005). Griswold V. Connecticut. University of Kansas. pp. Chapter 2. ISBN 0-7006-1378-1.
  4. ^ Johnson, John W. (2005). Griswold V. Connecticut. University Press of Kansas. pp. Chapter 5. ISBN 0-7006-1378-1.
  5. Jump up to:a b c Cheek, Jeannette Bailey (March 17, 1976). “Estelle Griswold oral history interview about her part in Griswold v. Connecticut, legal challenge to Connecticut birth control law”. Women’s Studies Manuscript Collections from the Schlesinger Library: Voting Rights, National Politics, and Reproductive Rights – via ProQuest History Vault.
  6. ^ “Estelle Griswold”. Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame.
  7. ^ “1965 Griswold v. Connecticut Contraception as a right of privacy? The Supreme Court says, ‘Yes!. Action Speaks Radio. 2012.
  8. ^ Garrow, David J. (Spring 2011). “Human Rights Hero. The Legacy of Griswold V. Connecticut” (PDF)Section of Individual Rights and Responsibilities.
  9. ^ Alex McBride (December 2006). “EXPANDING CIVIL RIGHTS Landmark Cases Griswold v. Connecticut (1965)”. PBS.
  10. ^ Laura Carroll (July 2012). The Baby Matrix. LiveTrue Books. ISBN 0-615-64299-3.
  11. ^ “Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution — Ratified 1868”. pbs.org. 2007.
  12. ^ Frances KisslingJonathan D. MorenoThe Nation (March 22, 2012). “The Nation: Still Fighting ‘Eisenstadt v. Baird. npr.org.
  13. ^ Sheraden Seward (2008-12-03). “Griswold v. Connecticut (1965)”embryo.asu.eduArizona State University.
  14. ^ Cornell University Law School“Roe v. Wade (No. 70-18) 314 F.Supp. 1217, affirmed in part and reversed in part. STEWART, J., Concurring Opinion SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES”. law.cornell.edu.
  15. ^ University of Missouri-Kansas City (January 22, 1973). “ROE v. WADE 410 U.S. 113 (1973)”. umkc.edu.
  16. ^ Lawrence v. Texas539 U.S. 558 (2003).

Further reading

  • Bailey, Martha J. (2010). “Momma’s Got the Pill’: How Anthony Comstock and Griswold v. Connecticut Shaped US Childbearing”. American Economic Review100 (1): 98–129. doi:10.1257/aer.100.1.98.
  • Garrow, David J. “Human Rights Hero: The Legal Legacy of Griswold v. Connecticut“.” Human Rights (2011): 26-25.
  • Hasian Jr, Marouf. “Vernacular Legal Discourse: Revisiting the Public Acceptance of the “Right to Privacy” in the 1960s.” Political Communication 18, no. 1 (January 2001): 89-105. Communication & Mass Media Complete, EBSCOhost (accessed March 2 29, 2015).
  • Helscher, David (1994). “Griswold v. Connecticut and the Unenumerated Right of Privacy”. Northern Illinois University Law Review15: 33. ISSN 0734-1490.
  • Kalman, Laura; Garrow, David (1994). “Review: The Promise and Peril of Privacy”. Reviews in American History. The Johns Hopkins University Press. 22 (4): 725–731. doi:10.2307/2702826JSTOR 2702826.
  • Lockhart, Andrea (1997). “Griswold v. Connecticut: A Case Brief”. Journal of Contemporary Legal Issues14: 35. ISSN 0896-5595.
  • Loewy, Arnold H. (2003). “Morals Legislation and the Establishment Clause”. Alabama Law Review55 (1): 159–182. ISSN 0002-4279.
  • Johnson, John W. Griswold v. Connecticut: Birth control and the constitutional right of privacy. University Press of Kansas, 2005.
  • Tushnet, Mark (2008). I dissent: Great Opposing Opinions in Landmark Supreme Court Cases. Boston: Beacon Press. pp. 179–190. ISBN 978-0-8070-0036-6.

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Story 1: Radical Extreme Democrats (REDs): Killing Babies In and Out of The Womb OK — Wearing Blackface Not OK– Morally Bankrupt REDs — Videos

See the source image

The Most Important Question About Abortion

A Silent Scream (Short Clip)

[youtuibe=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iy5IUTNqHrs]

The Silent Scream [high quality] (The ultrasound of abortion)

Maafa 21 – Black Genocide in 21st Century America – full documentary

Alveda King on the impact of abortion on minorities – ENN 2019-01-17

Alveda King Shares the History of Abortion in the African American Community (1of5)

Mike Wallace Interviews Margaret Sanger

Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood’s Racist Founder

21 Quotes by Margaret Sanger

Eugenics, Hitler, Margaret Sanger’s Planned Murderhood, etc. by Edwin Black

Eugenics Glenn Beck w/ Edwin Black author of “War Against the Weak” talk Al Gore & Margaret Sanger

Babies In New York Have To Die So This Can Happen In 2020

Virginia Democrat defends bill allowing abortion as woman is giving birth

Virginia governor Ralph Northam: killing live-born babies should be legal

Trump slams Virginia governor over abortion comments

Virginia Governor Targeted By Classmate

“Abortion is clearly wrong.” Jordan Peterson “but it’s not that simple.”

I’m Pro-Life (2nd Edition) | Change My Mind

The Ethics of Abortion

Ben Shapiro DEBATES Dave Rubin On Abortion! (Best of Ben Shapiro)

Blackface Overkill, Hypocrisy, Diversion, Delusion: Media Dumpster Fires and Virtue Signaling Lunacy

Demented Dems Nuts Over 35 Year-Old Blackface Yearbook Idiocy But Indifferent As to Infanticide

INSANE: Dems Now Openly Embrace Infanticide

Ralph Northam’s 1984 Blackface Explanation Is a Racism Dumpster Fire | The Daily Show

Democrats Call on Ralph Northam to Resign After Racist Photo Surfaces: A Closer Look

Cotton and Chick Watts Blackface Minstrel Show Comedy

Even by minstrel show standards, Cotton Watts was far more extreme and offensive than most blackface comedians of his time. This clip includes the classic “Lion Tamer” bit and an excellent dance routine in “slap shoes.” Read more about the history of blackface and minstrel shows at http://black-face.com

Blackface: A cultural history of a racist art form

The racist role of blackface in American society

Understanding the “legacy of oppression” behind blackface

Celeb Defends Whiteface & Blackface | TMZ Live

By the Numbers: U.S. Abortion Statistics

  1. Abortion: Why I’m Pro-Life
  2. The ‘Sanctity of Life’ Ethic
  3. Remembering Roe
  4. The Serpent’s Whisper
  5. What is a Chemical Abortion?
  6. Abortion Complications
  7. By the Numbers: U.S. Abortion Statistics
  8. State Ultrasound Laws
  9. ‘Women’s Right to Know’ Legislation
  10. Abortion and ObamaCare
  11. A Pro-Life Response to Abortion in ObamaCare

Life Issues

The U.S. has seen a steady and significant drop in the number of abortions in recent years.  In 2015, the number of abortions was at its lowest since 1976 – and had dropped almost in half in the last 20 years.

It’s estimated that fewer than one million abortions take place annually and more than 55 million abortions have been performed in the U.S. since 1973, based on accumulative data from the two primary sources of U.S. abortion statistics – U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Guttmacher Institute.

Problematic Reporting

The graph below shows the reported number of legal abortions in the U.S. for selected years according to the CDC’s 2015 Abortion Surveillance Report.

From 1973 to 1997, the CDC received data from all 50 states; however, beginning in 1998, some states did not report, including California.

The sizable drop in abortions between 1997 and 1998 (from 1,186,039 to 884,273) reflects the absence of data from those non-reporting states. The third column of the chart lists the annual percent of change based on the states reporting the previous year and provides the best big picture of abortion trends.

In 2014, several states, including California, Maryland, and New Hampshire – did not report abortions to the CDC. Based on other sources, the total number of abortions in those states in 2014 is approximately 188,000 – the majority occurring in California.

That puts the estimated number of U.S. abortions in 2015 closer to 826,199. However, the downward trend in the abortion numbers continues, even with this adjustment.

Unfortunately, the lack of mandatory abortion reporting for all 50 states hampers the CDC’s ability to accurately report the number of abortions performed in the U.S.

According to the 2015 CDC report:

  • More than 25 percent of abortions are chemical
  • Nearly 75 percent of abortions are surgical
  • 41 percent women who had abortions in the U.S. had no other children
  • 44 percent of women who had abortions in the U.S. had at least one previous abortion
  • 86 percent of women who had abortions in the U.S. were unmarried
  • 41 percent of abortions are among women and teens 24-years old and younger

And according to the Guttmacher Institute, the research arm of the nation’s leading abortion seller, Planned Parenthood:

  • At current rates, an estimated 1/4 of American women will have an abortion by the age of 45
  • About 15,000 abortions are attributed to rape and incest — representing 1.5 percent of all abortions.

https://www.focusonthefamily.com/socialissues/life-issues/dignity-of-human-life/abortion-statistics

 

U.S. Abortion Statistics

Facts and figures relating to the frequency of abortion in the United States.

Primary nationwide abortion statistics for the United States are available from two sources—privately from the Guttmacher Institute (AGI) and publicly from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Guttmacher’s numbers, published every three years, come from direct surveys of all known and suspected abortion providers in the United States. The CDC numbers, published annually, are derived from actual counts of every abortion reported to state health departments. Unfortunately, California, Maryland, and New Hampshire do not publicly report abortion totals. As such, Guttmacher’s abortion numbers are more complete, but they are approximations. Since only 58% of queried providers responded to Guttmacher’s latest survey, abortion totals were estimated for the remaining 42%. These estimates utilized in-state health department data and “service patterns of other abortion-providing facilities in the community.” Whereas the CDC numbers may be too low, Guttmacher’s numbers may be too high. The information on this page has been gleaned from both sources to provide an overview of the frequency and demography of abortion. Additional secondary statistics have been taken from the National Abortion Federation’s (NAF) 2009 teaching text on abortion, Management of Unintended and Abnormal Pregnancy: Comprehensive Abortion Care.

ANNUAL ABORTION STATISTICS

  • Based on the latest state-level data available, approximately 882,000 abortions took place in the United States in 2017—down from approximately 885,000 abortions in 2016 and 913,000 abortions in 2015.
  • According to the Guttmacher Institute, an estimated 926,240 abortions took place in the United States in 2014—down from 1.06 million in 2011, 1.21 million abortions in 2008, 1.2 million in 2005, 1.29 million in 2002, 1.31 million in 2000 and 1.36 million in 1996. From 1973 through 2011, nearly 53 million legal abortions occurred in the U.S (AGI).
  • In 2014, approximately 19% of U.S. pregnancies (excluding spontaneous miscarriages) ended in abortion.1
  • According to the United Nations’ 2013 report, only nine countries in the world have a higher reported abortion rate than the United States. They are: Bulgaria, Cuba, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Romania, Russia, Sweden, and Ukraine.*

    *Though the UN lists China’s official abortion rate at 19.2, China’s actual abortion rate is likely much higher. According to China’s 2010 census, there were approximately 310 million women of reproductive age in the country. An estimated 13-23 million abortions happen annually in China, resulting in an adjusted abortion rate of 41.9-74.2. The abortion rate is the number of abortions per 1,000 women aged 15-44.

  • In 2014, the highest percentage of pregnancies were aborted in the District of Columbia(38%), New York (33%), and New Jersey (30%). The lowest percentage of pregnancies were aborted in Utah (5%), South Dakota (4%), and Wyoming (<2%). (AGI abortion data + CDC birth data).
  • In 2015, approximately 35% of all pregnancies in New York City (excluding spontaneous miscarriages) ended in abortion (CDC).
  • The annual number of legal induced abortions in the United States doubled between 1973 and 1979, and peaked in 1990. There was a slow but steady decline through the 1990’s. Overall, the number of annual abortions decreased by 6% between 2000 and 2009, with temporary spikes in 2002 and 2006 (CDC).
  • From 2014 to 2015, the number, rate2 and ratio3 of reported abortions all decreased by 2% (CDC).

WHO HAS ABORTIONS?

  • In 2015, unmarried women accounted for 86% of all abortions (CDC).
  • Among married women, 4% of pregnancies currently end in abortion. Among unmarried women, 27% of pregnancies end in abortion (CDC).
  • Women in their 20s accounted for the majority of abortions in 2015 and had the highest abortion rates (CDC).
  • Adolescents under 15 years obtained .03% of all 2015 abortions; women aged 15–19 years accounted for less than 10% (CDC).
  • Percentage of 2015 Reported Abortions by Age of Mother (CDC):
    <15 years 15–19 years 20–24 years 25–29 years 30–34 years 35–39 years ≥40 years
    0.3% 9.8% 31.1% 27.6% 17.7% 10.0% 3.5%
  • Women living with a partner to whom they are not married account for 25% of abortions but only about 10% of women in the population (NAF).
  • In 2015, women who had not aborted in the past accounted for 56% of all abortions; women with one or two prior abortions accounted for 35%, and women with three or more prior abortions accounted for 8% (CDC).
  • Among women who obtained abortions in 2015, 41% had no prior live births; 45% had one or two prior live births, and 14% had three or more prior live births (CDC).
  • Among white women, 10% of pregnancies currenlty end in abortion. Among black women, 28% of pregnancies end in abortion (CDC).
  • Black women were more than 3.5 times more likely to have an abortion in 2015 than white women (CDC).
  • The abortion rate of non-metropolitan women is about half that of women who live in metropolitan counties (NAF).
  • The abortion rate of women with Medicaid coverage is three times as high as that of other women (NAF).
  • In 2014, 30% of aborting women identified themselves as Protestant and 24% identified themselves as Catholic (AGI).

WHY DO ABORTIONS OCCUR?

WHEN DO ABORTIONS OCCUR?

  • 89% of all abortions happen during the first trimester, prior to the 13th week of gestation (AGI/CDC).
  • In 2015, 8% of all abortions occurred between 14-20 weeks’ gestation; 1.3% occurred ≥21 weeks’ gestation (CDC).
  • Percentage of 2015 Reported Abortions by Weeks of Gestation* (CDC):
    ≤6 wks 7 wks 8 wks 9 wks 10 wks 11 wks 12 wks 13 wks 14-15 wks 16-17 wks 18-20 wks ≥21 wks
    34.2% 17.8% 13.3% 8.9% 5.6% 4.7% 3.5% 2.8% 3.5% 2.1% 2.0% 1.3%

    *Gestational weeks are measured from the first day of the woman’s last menstruation and not from the day of conception. Though it does not provide an accurate fetal age (which is roughly 2 weeks less than the gestational age), it is the simplest way for an OB/GYN to age a pregnancy since the day of conception is often not known. Hence, if an abortion occurs at 8 weeks gestation, it is actually aborting a 6 week embryo. The images on our Prenatal Development and Abortion Picturespages are more precisely captioned with fetal ages in accordance with standard teaching texts on prenatal development.

HOW DOES ABORTION TAKE PLACE?

WHO IS DOING THE ABORTIONS?

  • The number of abortion providers declined by 3% between 2011 and 2014—from 1,720 to 1,671 (AGI).
  • In 2011, 42% of providers offered very early abortions (during the first four weeks’ gestation) and 95% offered abortion at eight weeks. Sixty-four percent of providers offer at least some second-trimester abortion services (13 weeks or later), and 20% offer abortion after 20 weeks. Eleven percent of all abortion providers offered abortions past 24 weeks (AGI).
  • Only 5% of U.S. abortions occur in hospitals; 2% occur in physician’s offices. The rest occur in freestanding abortion clinics—without any established doctor-patient relationship (NAF).

ABORTION FATALITY

  • In 2014, six women died as a result of complications from induced abortion. Between 1973-2014, 437 women died due to abortion complications (CDC).
  • The number of deaths attributable to legal induced abortion was highest before the 1980s (CDC).
  • In 1972 (the year before abortion was federally legalized), a total of 24 women died from causes known to be associated with legal abortions, and 39 died as a result of known illegal abortions (CDC).

THE COST OF ABORTION

MEDICAL ABORTION

  • In 2011, 59% of abortion providers, or 1,023 facilities, provided one or more types of medical abortions. At least 17% of abortion providers offer only medication abortion services (AGI).
  • Medication abortion accounted for 31% of all nonhospital abortions in 2014 (AGI).

ABORTION AND CONTRACEPTION

  • Induced abortions usually result from unintended pregnancies, which often occur despite the use of contraception (CDC).
  • In 2008, 51% of women having abortions used a contraceptive method during the month they became pregnant. (AGI).
  • 9 in 10 women at risk of unintended pregnancy are using a contraceptive method (AGI).
  • Oral contraceptives, the most widely used reversible method of contraception, carry failure rates of 6 to 8% in actual practice (NAF).

ABORTION AND MINORS

  • 40% of minors having an abortion report that neither of their parents knew about the abortion (AGI).
  • 39 states currently enforce parental consent or notification laws for minors seeking an abortion: ALAKARAZCODEFLGAIAIDILINKSKYLAMAMDMIMNMOMSMTNCNDNENHOHOKPARISCSDTNTXUTVAWIWV, and WY. The Supreme Court ruled that minors must have the alternative of seeking a court order authorizing the procedure (AGI).

ABORTION AND PUBLIC FUNDS

  • The U.S. Congress has barred the use of federal Medicaid funds to pay for abortions, except when the woman’s life would be endangered by a full-term pregnancy or in cases of rape or incest (AGI).
  • 17 states (AKAZCACTHIILMAMDMNMTNJNMNYORVTWA and WV) use public funds to pay for abortions for some poor women. About 14% of all abortions in the United States are paid for with public funds—virtually all from the state (AGI).
  • In 2014, 88,466 abortions in California were paid for with public funds. Public funds paid for 45,722 abortions in New York (AGI).

This page was last updated on January 22, 2019. To cite this page in a research paper, visit: “Citing Abort73 as a Source.”

FOOTNOTES

  1. This percentage was arrived at by comparing the number of 2014 births reported by the CDC (3,984,924) and the number of abortions reported by AGI.
  2. The abortion rate is the number of abortions per 1,000 women aged 15-44.
  3. The abortion ratio is the number of abortions per 1,000 live births.

Abortion

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Abortion
Synonyms Induced miscarriage, termination of pregnancy
Specialty Obstetrics and gynecology
ICD-10-PCS O04
ICD-9-CM 779.6
MeSH D000028
MedlinePlus 007382

Abortion is the ending of pregnancy due to removing an embryo or fetus before it can survive outside the uterus.[note 1] An abortion that occurs spontaneously is also known as a miscarriage. When deliberate steps are taken to end a pregnancy, it is called an induced abortion, or less frequently an “induced miscarriage”. The word abortion is often used to mean only induced abortions.[1] A similar procedure after the fetus could potentially survive outside the womb is known as a “late termination of pregnancy” or less accurately as a “late term abortion”.[2]

When allowed by law, abortion in the developed world is one of the safest procedures in medicine.[3][4] Modern methods use medication or surgery for abortions.[5] The drug mifepristone in combination with prostaglandinappears to be as safe and effective as surgery during the first and second trimester of pregnancy.[5][6] The most common surgical technique involves dilating the cervix and using a suction device.[7] Birth control, such as the pillor intrauterine devices, can be used immediately following abortion.[6] When performed legally and safely, induced abortions do not increase the risk of long-term mental or physical problems.[8] In contrast, unsafe abortions(those performed by unskilled individuals, with hazardous equipment, or in unsanitary facilities) cause 47,000 deaths and 5 million hospital admissions each year.[8][9] The World Health Organization recommends safe and legal abortions be available to all women.[10]

Around 56 million abortions are performed each year in the world,[11] with about 45% done unsafely.[12] Abortion rates changed little between 2003 and 2008,[13] before which they decreased for at least two decades as access to family planning and birth control increased.[14] As of 2008, 40% of the world’s women had access to legal abortions without limits as to reason.[15] Countries that permit abortions have different limits on how late in pregnancy abortion is allowed.[15]

Historically, abortions have been attempted using herbal medicines, sharp tools, forceful massage, or through other traditional methods.[16] Abortion laws and cultural or religious views of abortions are different around the world. In some areas abortion is legal only in specific cases such as rapeproblems with the fetuspoverty, risk to a woman’s health, or incest.[17] There is debate over the moral, ethical, and legal issues of abortion.[18][19] Those who oppose abortion often argue that an embryo or fetus is a human with a right to life, and so they may compare abortion to murder.[20][21] Those who favor the legality of abortion often hold that it is part of a woman’s right to make decisions about her own body.[22] Others favor legal and accessible abortion as a public health measure.[23]

Types

Induced

An induced abortion may be classified as therapeutic (done in response to a health condition of the women or fetus) or elective (chosen for other reasons).[24]

Approximately 205 million pregnancies occur each year worldwide. Over a third are unintended and about a fifth end in induced abortion.[13][25] Most abortions result from unintended pregnancies.[26][27] In the United Kingdom, 1 to 2% of abortions are done due to genetic problems in the fetus.[8] A pregnancy can be intentionally aborted in several ways. The manner selected often depends upon the gestational age of the embryo or fetus, which increases in size as the pregnancy progresses.[28][29] Specific procedures may also be selected due to legality, regional availability, and doctor or a woman’s personal preference.

Reasons for procuring induced abortions are typically characterized as either therapeutic or elective. An abortion is medically referred to as a therapeutic abortion when it is performed to save the life of the pregnant woman; to prevent harm to the woman’s physical or mental health; to terminate a pregnancy where indications are that the child will have a significantly increased chance of mortality or morbidity; or to selectively reduce the number of fetuses to lessen health risks associated with multiple pregnancy.[30][31] An abortion is referred to as an elective or voluntary abortion when it is performed at the request of the woman for non-medical reasons.[31] Confusion sometimes arises over the term “elective” because “elective surgery” generally refers to all scheduled surgery, whether medically necessary or not.[32]

Spontaneous

Miscarriage, also known as spontaneous abortion, is the unintentional expulsion of an embryo or fetus before the 24th week of gestation.[33] A pregnancy that ends before 37 weeks of gestation resulting in a live-born infant is a “premature birth” or a “preterm birth”.[34]When a fetus dies in utero after viability, or during delivery, it is usually termed “stillborn“.[35] Premature births and stillbirths are generally not considered to be miscarriages although usage of these terms can sometimes overlap.[36]

Only 30% to 50% of conceptions progress past the first trimester.[37] The vast majority of those that do not progress are lost before the woman is aware of the conception,[31] and many pregnancies are lost before medical practitioners can detect an embryo.[38] Between 15% and 30% of known pregnancies end in clinically apparent miscarriage, depending upon the age and health of the pregnant woman.[39] 80% of these spontaneous abortions happen in the first trimester.[40]

The most common cause of spontaneous abortion during the first trimester is chromosomal abnormalities of the embryo or fetus,[31][41] accounting for at least 50% of sampled early pregnancy losses.[42] Other causes include vascular disease (such as lupus), diabetes, other hormonal problems, infection, and abnormalities of the uterus.[41] Advancing maternal age and a woman’s history of previous spontaneous abortions are the two leading factors associated with a greater risk of spontaneous abortion.[42] A spontaneous abortion can also be caused by accidental trauma; intentional trauma or stress to cause miscarriage is considered induced abortion or feticide.[43]

Methods

Gestational age may determine which abortion methods are practiced.

Medical

Medical abortions are those induced by abortifacient pharmaceuticals. Medical abortion became an alternative method of abortion with the availability of prostaglandin analogs in the 1970s and the antiprogestogenmifepristone (also known as RU-486) in the 1980s.[5][6][44][45][46]

The most common early first-trimester medical abortion regimens use mifepristone in combination with a prostaglandin analog (misoprostol or gemeprost) up to 9 weeks gestational age, methotrexate in combination with a prostaglandin analog up to 7 weeks gestation, or a prostaglandin analog alone.[44] Mifepristone–misoprostol combination regimens work faster and are more effective at later gestational ages than methotrexate–misoprostol combination regimens, and combination regimens are more effective than misoprostol alone.[45] This regime is effective in the second trimester.[47] Medical abortion regiments involving mifepristone followed by misoprostol in the cheek between 24 and 48 hours later are effective when performed before 63 days’ gestation.[48]

In very early abortions, up to 7 weeks gestation, medical abortion using a mifepristone–misoprostol combination regimen is considered to be more effective than surgical abortion (vacuum aspiration), especially when clinical practice does not include detailed inspection of aspirated tissue.[49] Early medical abortion regimens using mifepristone, followed 24–48 hours later by buccal or vaginal misoprostol are 98% effective up to 9 weeks gestational age.[50] If medical abortion fails, surgical abortion must be used to complete the procedure.[51]

Early medical abortions account for the majority of abortions before 9 weeks gestation in Britain,[52][53] France,[54] Switzerland,[55] and the Nordic countries.[56] In the United States, the percentage of early medical abortions is around 30% as of 2014.[57]

Medical abortion regimens using mifepristone in combination with a prostaglandin analog are the most common methods used for second-trimester abortions in Canada, most of Europe, China and India,[46] in contrast to the United States where 96% of second-trimester abortions are performed surgically by dilation and evacuation.[58]

Surgical

A vacuum aspiration abortion at eight weeks gestational age (six weeks after fertilization).
1: Amniotic sac
2: Embryo
3: Uterine lining
4: Speculum
5: Vacurette
6: Attached to a suction pump

Up to 15 weeks’ gestation, suction-aspiration or vacuum aspiration are the most common surgical methods of induced abortion.[59] Manual vacuum aspiration (MVA) consists of removing the fetus or embryoplacenta, and membranes by suction using a manual syringe, while electric vacuum aspiration (EVA) uses an electric pump. These techniques differ in the mechanism used to apply suction, in how early in pregnancy they can be used, and in whether cervical dilation is necessary.

MVA, also known as “mini-suction” and “menstrual extraction“, can be used in very early pregnancy, and does not require cervical dilation. Dilation and curettage (D&C), the second most common method of surgical abortion, is a standard gynecological procedure performed for a variety of reasons, including examination of the uterine lining for possible malignancy, investigation of abnormal bleeding, and abortion. Curettage refers to cleaning the walls of the uterus with a curette. The World Health Organization recommends this procedure, also called sharp curettage, only when MVA is unavailable.[60]

From the 15th week of gestation until approximately the 26th, other techniques must be used. Dilation and evacuation (D&E) consists of opening the cervix of the uterus and emptying it using surgical instruments and suction. After the 16th week of gestation, abortions can also be induced by intact dilation and extraction (IDX) (also called intrauterine cranial decompression), which requires surgical decompression of the fetus’s head before evacuation. IDX is sometimes called “partial-birth abortion“, which has been federally banned in the United States.

In the third trimester of pregnancy, induced abortion may be performed surgically by intact dilation and extraction or by hysterotomy. Hysterotomy abortion is a procedure similar to a caesarean section and is performed under general anesthesia. It requires a smaller incision than a caesarean section and is used during later stages of pregnancy.[61]

First-trimester procedures can generally be performed using local anesthesia, while second-trimester methods may require deep sedation or general anesthesia.[62]

Labor induction abortion

In places lacking the necessary medical skill for dilation and extraction, or where preferred by practitioners, an abortion can be induced by first inducing labor and then inducing fetal demise if necessary.[63] This is sometimes called “induced miscarriage”. This procedure may be performed from 13 weeks gestation to the third trimester. Although it is very uncommon in the United States, more than 80% of induced abortions throughout the second trimester are labor-induced abortions in Sweden and other nearby countries.[64]

Only limited data are available comparing this method with dilation and extraction.[64] Unlike D&E, labor-induced abortions after 18 weeks may be complicated by the occurrence of brief fetal survival, which may be legally characterized as live birth. For this reason, labor-induced abortion is legally risky in the United States.[64][65]

Other methods

Historically, a number of herbs reputed to possess abortifacient properties have been used in folk medicine. Among these are: tansypennyroyalblack cohosh, and the now-extinct silphium.[66]:44–47, 62–63, 154–55, 230–31

In 1978 one woman in Colorado died and another was seriously injured when they attempted to procure an abortion by taking pennyroyal oil.[67] Because the indiscriminant use of herbs as abortifacients can cause serious—even lethal—side effects, such as multiple organ failure,[68] such use is not recommended by physicians.

Abortion is sometimes attempted by causing trauma to the abdomen. The degree of force, if severe, can cause serious internal injuries without necessarily succeeding in inducing miscarriage.[69] In Southeast Asia, there is an ancient tradition of attempting abortion through forceful abdominal massage.[70] One of the bas reliefs decorating the temple of Angkor Wat in Cambodia depicts a demon performing such an abortion upon a woman who has been sent to the underworld.[70]

Reported methods of unsafe, self-induced abortion include misuse of misoprostol and insertion of non-surgical implements such as knitting needles and clothes hangers into the uterus. These and other methods to terminate pregnancy may be called “induced miscarriage”. Such methods are rarely used in countries where surgical abortion is legal and available.[71]

Safety

An abortion flyer in South Africa

The health risks of abortion depend principally upon whether the procedure is performed safely or unsafely. The World Health Organization defines unsafe abortions as those performed by unskilled individuals, with hazardous equipment, or in unsanitary facilities.[72] Legal abortions performed in the developed world are among the safest procedures in medicine.[3][73] In the US, the risk of maternal death from abortion is 0.7 per 100,000 procedures,[4]making abortion about 13 times safer for women than childbirth (8.8 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births).[74][75] In the United States from 2000 to 2009, abortion had a lower mortality rate than plastic surgery.[76] The risk of abortion-related mortality increases with gestational age, but remains lower than that of childbirth through at least 21 weeks’ gestation.[77][78][79] Outpatient abortion is as safe and effective from 64 to 70 days’ gestation as it is from 57 to 63 days.[80] Medical abortion is safe and effective for pregnancies earlier than 6 weeks’ gestation.[81]

Vacuum aspiration in the first trimester is the safest method of surgical abortion, and can be performed in a primary care officeabortion clinic, or hospital. Complications, which are rare, can include uterine perforationpelvic infection, and retained products of conception requiring a second procedure to evacuate.[82] Infections account for one-third of abortion-related deaths in the United States.[83] The rate of complications of vacuum aspiration abortion in the first trimester is similar regardless of whether the procedure is performed in a hospital, surgical center, or office.[84] Preventive antibiotics (such as doxycycline or metronidazole) are typically given before elective abortion,[85]as they are believed to substantially reduce the risk of postoperative uterine infection.[62][86] The rate of failed procedures does not appear to vary significantly depending on whether the abortion is performed by a doctor or a mid-level practitioner.[87] Complications after second-trimester abortion are similar to those after first-trimester abortion, and depend somewhat on the method chosen. Second-trimester abortions are generally well-tolerated.[88]

There is little difference in terms of safety and efficacy between medical abortion using a combined regimen of mifepristone and misoprostol and surgical abortion (vacuum aspiration) in early first trimester abortions up to 9 weeks gestation.[49] Medical abortion using the prostaglandin analog misoprostol alone is less effective and more painful than medical abortion using a combined regimen of mifepristone and misoprostol or surgical abortion.[89][90]

Some purported risks of abortion are promoted primarily by anti-abortion groups,[91][92] but lack scientific support.[91] For example, the question of a link between induced abortion and breast cancer has been investigated extensively. Major medical and scientific bodies (including the World Health OrganizationNational Cancer InstituteAmerican Cancer SocietyRoyal College of OBGYN and American Congress of OBGYN) have concluded that abortion does not cause breast cancer.[93]

In the past even illegality has not automatically meant that the abortions were unsafe. Referring to the U.S., historian Linda Gordon states: “In fact, illegal abortions in this country have an impressive safety record.”[94]:25 According to Rickie Solinger,

A related myth, promulgated by a broad spectrum of people concerned about abortion and public policy, is that before legalization abortionists were dirty and dangerous back-alley butchers…. [T]he historical evidence does not support such claims.[95]:4

Authors Jerome Bates and Edward Zawadzki describe the case of an illegal abortionist in the eastern U.S. in the early 20th century who was proud of having successfully completed 13,844 abortions without any fatality.[96]:59 In 1870s New York City the famous abortionist/midwife Madame Restell (Anna Trow Lohman) appears to have lost very few women among her more than 100,000 patients[97]—a lower mortality rate than the childbirth mortality rate at the time. In 1936 the prominent professor of obstetrics and gynecology Frederick J. Taussig wrote that a cause of increasing mortality during the years of illegality in the U.S. was that

With each decade of the past fifty years the actual and proportionate frequency of this accident [perforation of the uterus] has increased, due, first, to the increase in the number of instrumentally induced abortions; second, to the proportionate increase in abortions handled by doctors as against those handled by midwives; and, third, to the prevailing tendency to use instruments instead of the finger in emptying the uterus. [98]:223

Mental health

Current evidence finds no relationship between most induced abortions and mental-health problems[8][99] other than those expected for any unwanted pregnancy.[100] A report by the American Psychological Association concluded that a woman’s first abortion is not a threat to mental health when carried out in the first trimester, with such women no more likely to have mental-health problems than those carrying an unwanted pregnancy to term; the mental-health outcome of a woman’s second or greater abortion is less certain.[100][101]Some older reviews concluded that abortion was associated with an increased risk of psychological problems;[102] however, they did not use an appropriate control group.[99]

Although some studies show negative mental-health outcomes in women who choose abortions after the first trimester because of fetal abnormalities,[103] more rigorous research would be needed to show this conclusively.[104] Some proposed negative psychological effects of abortion have been referred to by anti-abortion advocates as a separate condition called “post-abortion syndrome“, but this is not recognized by medical or psychological professionals in the United States.[105]

Unsafe abortion

Soviet poster circa 1925, warning against midwives performing abortions. Title translation: “Abortions performed by either trained or self-taught midwives not only maim the woman, they also often lead to death.”

Women seeking an abortion may use unsafe methods, especially when abortion is legally restricted. They may attempt self-induced abortion or seek the help of a person without proper medical training or facilities. This can lead to severe complications, such as incomplete abortion, sepsis, hemorrhage, and damage to internal organs.[106]

Unsafe abortions are a major cause of injury and death among women worldwide. Although data are imprecise, it is estimated that approximately 20 million unsafe abortions are performed annually, with 97% taking place in developing countries.[3] Unsafe abortions are believed to result in millions of injuries.[3][107] Estimates of deaths vary according to methodology, and have ranged from 37,000 to 70,000 in the past decade;[3][9][108] deaths from unsafe abortion account for around 13% of all maternal deaths.[109] The World Health Organization believes that mortality has fallen since the 1990s.[110] To reduce the number of unsafe abortions, public health organizations have generally advocated emphasizing the legalization of abortion, training of medical personnel, and ensuring access to reproductive-health services.[111] In response, opponents of abortion point out that abortion bans in no way affect prenatal care for women who choose to carry their fetus to term. The Dublin Declaration on Maternal Health, signed in 2012, notes, “the prohibition of abortion does not affect, in any way, the availability of optimal care to pregnant women.”[112]

A major factor in whether abortions are performed safely or not is the legal standing of abortion. Countries with restrictive abortion laws have higher rates of unsafe abortion and similar overall abortion rates compared to those where abortion is legal and available.[9][13][111][113][114][115][116] For example, the 1996 legalization of abortion in South Africa had an immediate positive impact on the frequency of abortion-related complications,[117] with abortion-related deaths dropping by more than 90%.[118] Similar reductions in maternal mortality have been observed after other countries have liberalized their abortion laws, such as Romania and Nepal.[119] A 2011 study concluded that in the United States, some state-level anti-abortion laws are correlated with lower rates of abortion in that state.[120] The analysis, however, did not take into account travel to other states without such laws to obtain an abortion.[121] In addition, a lack of access to effective contraception contributes to unsafe abortion. It has been estimated that the incidence of unsafe abortion could be reduced by up to 75% (from 20 million to 5 million annually) if modern family planning and maternal health services were readily available globally.[122] Rates of such abortions may be difficult to measure because they can be reported variously as miscarriage, “induced miscarriage”, “menstrual regulation”, “mini-abortion”, and “regulation of a delayed/suspended menstruation”.[123][124]

Forty percent of the world’s women are able to access therapeutic and elective abortions within gestational limits,[15] while an additional 35 percent have access to legal abortion if they meet certain physical, mental, or socioeconomic criteria.[17] While maternal mortalityseldom results from safe abortions, unsafe abortions result in 70,000 deaths and 5 million disabilities per year.[9] Complications of unsafe abortion account for approximately an eighth of maternal mortalities worldwide,[125] though this varies by region.[126] Secondary infertility caused by an unsafe abortion affects an estimated 24 million women.[114] The rate of unsafe abortions has increased from 44% to 49% between 1995 and 2008.[13] Health education, access to family planning, and improvements in health care during and after abortion have been proposed to address this phenomenon.[127]

Live birth

Although it is very uncommon, women undergoing surgical abortion after 18 weeks gestation sometimes give birth to a fetus that may survive briefly.[128][129][130] Longer term survival is possible after 22 weeks.[131]

If medical staff observe signs of life, they may be required to provide care: emergency medical care if the child has a good chance of survival and palliative care if not.[132][133][134] Induced fetal demise before termination of pregnancy after 20–21 weeks gestation is recommended to avoid this.[135][136][137][138][139]

Death following live birth caused by abortion is given the ICD-10 underlying cause description code of P96.4; data are identified as either fetus or newborn. Between 1999 and 2013, in the U.S., the CDC recorded 531 such deaths for newborns,[140] approximately 4 per 100,000 abortions.[141]

Incidence

There are two commonly used methods of measuring the incidence of abortion:

  • Abortion rate – number of abortions per 1000 women between 15 and 44 years of age
  • Abortion percentage – number of abortions out of 100 known pregnancies (pregnancies include live births, abortions and miscarriages)

In many places, where abortion is illegal or carries a heavy social stigma, medical reporting of abortion is not reliable.[113] For this reason, estimates of the incidence of abortion must be made without determining certainty related to standard error.[13]

The number of abortions performed worldwide seems to have remained stable in recent years, with 41.6 million having been performed in 2003 and 43.8 million having been performed in 2008.[13] The abortion rate worldwide was 28 per 1000 women, though it was 24 per 1000 women for developed countries and 29 per 1000 women for developing countries.[13] The same 2012 study indicated that in 2008, the estimated abortion percentage of known pregnancies was at 21% worldwide, with 26% in developed countries and 20% in developing countries.[13]

On average, the incidence of abortion is similar in countries with restrictive abortion laws and those with more liberal access to abortion. However, restrictive abortion laws are associated with increases in the percentage of abortions performed unsafely.[15][142][143] The unsafe abortion rate in developing countries is partly attributable to lack of access to modern contraceptives; according to the Guttmacher Institute, providing access to contraceptives would result in about 14.5 million fewer unsafe abortions and 38,000 fewer deaths from unsafe abortion annually worldwide.[144]

The rate of legal, induced abortion varies extensively worldwide. According to the report of employees of Guttmacher Institute it ranged from 7 per 1000 women (Germany and Switzerland) to 30 per 1000 women (Estonia) in countries with complete statistics in 2008. The proportion of pregnancies that ended in induced abortion ranged from about 10% (Israel, the Netherlands and Switzerland) to 30% (Estonia) in the same group, though it might be as high as 36% in Hungary and Romania, whose statistics were deemed incomplete.[145][146]

The abortion rate may also be expressed as the average number of abortions a woman has during her reproductive years; this is referred to as total abortion rate (TAR).

Gestational age and method

Histogram of abortions by gestational age in England and Wales during 2004. (left) Abortion in the United States by gestational age, 2004. (right)

Abortion rates also vary depending on the stage of pregnancy and the method practiced. In 2003, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that 26% of reported legal induced abortions in the United States were known to have been obtained at less than 6 weeks’ gestation, 18% at 7 weeks, 15% at 8 weeks, 18% at 9 through 10 weeks, 10% at 11 through 12 weeks, 6% at 13 through 15 weeks, 4% at 16 through 20 weeks and 1% at more than 21 weeks. 91% of these were classified as having been done by “curettage” (suction-aspirationdilation and curettagedilation and evacuation), 8% by “medical” means (mifepristone), >1% by “intrauterine instillation” (saline or prostaglandin), and 1% by “other” (including hysterotomy and hysterectomy).[147] According to the CDC, due to data collection difficulties the data must be viewed as tentative and some fetal deaths reported beyond 20 weeks may be natural deaths erroneously classified as abortions if the removal of the dead fetus is accomplished by the same procedure as an induced abortion.[148]

The Guttmacher Institute estimated there were 2,200 intact dilation and extraction procedures in the US during 2000; this accounts for <0.2% of the total number of abortions performed that year.[149]Similarly, in England and Wales in 2006, 89% of terminations occurred at or under 12 weeks, 9% between 13 and 19 weeks, and 2% at or over 20 weeks. 64% of those reported were by vacuum aspiration, 6% by D&E, and 30% were medical.[150] There are more second trimester abortions in developing countries such as China, India and Vietnam than in developed countries.[151]

Motivation

Personal

A bar chart depicting selected data from a 1998 AGImeta-study on the reasons women stated for having an abortion.

The reasons why women have abortions are diverse and vary across the world.[148][152]

Some of the most common reasons are to postpone childbearing to a more suitable time or to focus energies and resources on existing children. Others include being unable to afford a child either in terms of the direct costs of raising a child or the loss of income while caring for the child, lack of support from the father, inability to afford additional children, desire to provide schooling for existing children, disruption of one’s own education, relationship problems with their partner, a perception of being too young to have a child, unemployment, and not being willing to raise a child conceived as a result of rape or incest, among others.[152][153]

Societal

Some abortions are undergone as the result of societal pressures.[154] These might include the preference for children of a specific sex or race, disapproval of single or early motherhood, stigmatization of people with disabilities, insufficient economic support for families, lack of access to or rejection of contraceptive methods, or efforts toward population control (such as China’s one-child policy). These factors can sometimes result in compulsory abortion or sex-selective abortion.[155]

An American study in 2002 concluded that about half of women having abortions were using a form of contraception at the time of becoming pregnant. Inconsistent use was reported by half of those using condoms and three-quarters of those using the birth control pill; 42% of those using condoms reported failure through slipping or breakage.[156] The Guttmacher Institute estimated that “most abortions in the United States are obtained by minority women” because minority women “have much higher rates of unintended pregnancy”.[157]

Maternal and fetal health

An additional factor is risk to maternal or fetal health, which was cited as the primary reason for abortion in over a third of cases in some countries and as a significant factor in only a single-digit percentage of abortions in other countries.[148][152]

In the U.S., the Supreme Court decisions in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton: “ruled that the state’s interest in the life of the fetus became compelling only at the point of viability, defined as the point at which the fetus can survive independently of its mother. Even after the point of viability, the state cannot favor the life of the fetus over the life or health of the pregnant woman. Under the right of privacy, physicians must be free to use their “medical judgment for the preservation of the life or health of the mother.” On the same day that the Court decided Roe, it also decided Doe v. Bolton, in which the Court defined health very broadly: “The medical judgment may be exercised in the light of all factors—physical, emotional, psychological, familial, and the woman’s age—relevant to the well-being of the patient. All these factors may relate to health. This allows the attending physician the room he needs to make his best medical judgment.”[158]:1200–01

Public opinion shifted in America following television personality Sherri Finkbine‘s discovery during her fifth month of pregnancy that she had been exposed to thalidomide. Unable to obtain a legal abortion in the United States, she traveled to Sweden. From 1962 to 1965, an outbreak of German measles left 15,000 babies with severe birth defects. In 1967, the American Medical Association publicly supported liberalization of abortion laws. A National Opinion Research Center poll in 1965 showed 73% supported abortion when the mother’s life was at risk, 57% when birth defects were present and 59% for pregnancies resulting from rape or incest.[159]

Cancer

The rate of cancer during pregnancy is 0.02–1%, and in many cases, cancer of the mother leads to consideration of abortion to protect the life of the mother, or in response to the potential damage that may occur to the fetus during treatment. This is particularly true for cervical cancer, the most common type of which occurs in 1 of every 2,000–13,000 pregnancies, for which initiation of treatment “cannot co-exist with preservation of fetal life (unless neoadjuvant chemotherapy is chosen)”. Very early stage cervical cancers (I and IIa) may be treated by radical hysterectomy and pelvic lymph node dissection, radiation therapy, or both, while later stages are treated by radiotherapy. Chemotherapy may be used simultaneously. Treatment of breast cancer during pregnancy also involves fetal considerations, because lumpectomy is discouraged in favor of modified radical mastectomy unless late-term pregnancy allows follow-up radiation therapy to be administered after the birth.[160]

Exposure to a single chemotherapy drug is estimated to cause a 7.5–17% risk of teratogenic effects on the fetus, with higher risks for multiple drug treatments. Treatment with more than 40 Gy of radiation usually causes spontaneous abortion. Exposure to much lower doses during the first trimester, especially 8 to 15 weeks of development, can cause intellectual disability or microcephaly, and exposure at this or subsequent stages can cause reduced intrauterine growth and birth weight. Exposures above 0.005–0.025 Gy cause a dose-dependent reduction in IQ.[160] It is possible to greatly reduce exposure to radiation with abdominal shielding, depending on how far the area to be irradiated is from the fetus.[161][162]

The process of birth itself may also put the mother at risk. “Vaginal delivery may result in dissemination of neoplastic cells into lymphovascular channels, haemorrhage, cervical laceration and implantation of malignant cells in the episiotomy site, while abdominal delivery may delay the initiation of non-surgical treatment.”[163]

History and religion

Bas-relief at Angkor WatCambodia, c. 1150, depicting a demoninducing an abortion by pounding the abdomen of a pregnant woman with a pestle.[70][164]

“French Periodical Pills”. An example of a clandestine advertisement published in a January 1845 edition of the Boston Daily Times.

Since ancient times abortions have been done using herbal medicines, sharp tools, with force, or through other traditional methods.[16] Induced abortion has long history and can be traced back to civilizations as varied as China under Shennong (c. 2700 BCE), Ancient Egypt with its Ebers Papyrus (c. 1550 BCE), and the Roman Empire in the time of Juvenal (c. 200 CE).[16] There is evidence to suggest that pregnancies were terminated through a number of methods, including the administration of abortifacient herbs, the use of sharpened implements, the application of abdominal pressure, and other techniques. One of the earliest known artistic representations of abortion is in a bas relief at Angkor Wat (c. 1150). Found in a series of friezes that represent judgment after death in Hindu and Buddhist culture, it depicts the technique of abdominal abortion.[70]

Some medical scholars and abortion opponents have suggested that the Hippocratic Oath forbade Ancient Greek physicians from performing abortions;[16] other scholars disagree with this interpretation,[16] and state that the medical texts of Hippocratic Corpus contain descriptions of abortive techniques right alongside the Oath.[165] The physician Scribonius Largus wrote in 43 CE that the Hippocratic Oath prohibits abortion, as did Soranus, although apparently not all doctors adhered to it strictly at the time. According to Soranus‘ 1st or 2nd century CE work Gynaecology, one party of medical practitioners banished all abortives as required by the Hippocratic Oath; the other party—to which he belonged—was willing to prescribe abortions, but only for the sake of the mother’s health.[166][167]

Aristotle, in his treatise on government Politics (350 BCE), condemns infanticide as a means of population control. He preferred abortion in such cases, with the restriction[168] “[that it] must be practised on it before it has developed sensation and life; for the line between lawful and unlawful abortion will be marked by the fact of having sensation and being alive”.[169] In ChristianityPope Sixtus V (1585–90) was the only Pope before 1869 to declare that abortion is homicide regardless of the stage of pregnancy;[170] and his pronouncement of 1588 was reversed three years later by his successor. Through most of its history the Catholic Church was divided on whether it believed that abortion was murder, and it did not begin vigorously opposing abortion until the 19th century.[16] In fact, several historians have written[171][172][173] that prior to the 19th century most Catholic authors did not regard termination of pregnancy before “quickening” or “ensoulment” as an abortion.

A 1995 survey reported that Catholic women are as likely as the general population to terminate a pregnancy, Protestants are less likely to do so, and Evangelical Christians are the least likely to do so.[148][152] Islamic tradition has traditionally permitted abortion until a point in time when Muslims believe the soul enters the fetus,[16] considered by various theologians to be at conception, 40 days after conception, 120 days after conception, or quickening.[174]However, abortion is largely heavily restricted or forbidden in areas of high Islamic faith such as the Middle East and North Africa.[175]

In Europe and North America, abortion techniques advanced starting in the 17th century. However, conservatism by most physicians with regards to sexual matters prevented the wide expansion of safe abortion techniques.[16]Other medical practitioners in addition to some physicians advertised their services, and they were not widely regulated until the 19th century, when the practice (sometimes called restellism)[176] was banned in both the United States and the United Kingdom.[16] Church groups as well as physicians were highly influential in anti-abortion movements.[16] In the US, according to some sources, abortion was more dangerous than childbirth until about 1930 when incremental improvements in abortion procedures relative to childbirth made abortion safer.[note 2] However, other sources maintain that in the 19th century early abortions under the hygienic conditions in which midwives usually worked were relatively safe.[177][178][179] In addition, some commentators have written that, despite improved medical procedures, the period from the 1930s until legalization also saw more zealous enforcement of anti-abortion laws, and concomitantly an increasing control of abortion providers by organized crime.[180][181][182][183][184]

Soviet Russia (1919), Iceland (1935) and Sweden (1938) were among the first countries to legalize certain or all forms of abortion.[185] In 1935 Nazi Germany, a law was passed permitting abortions for those deemed “hereditarily ill”, while women considered of German stock were specifically prohibited from having abortions.[186] Beginning in the second half of the twentieth century, abortion was legalized in a greater number of countries.[16]

Society and culture

Abortion debate

Induced abortion has long been the source of considerable debate. Ethicalmoralphilosophicalbiologicalreligious and legal issues surrounding abortion are related to value systems. Opinions of abortion may be about fetal rights, governmental authority, and women’s rights.

In both public and private debate, arguments presented in favor of or against abortion access focus on either the moral permissibility of an induced abortion, or justification of laws permitting or restricting abortion.[187] The World Medical Association Declaration on Therapeutic Abortion notes, “circumstances bringing the interests of a mother into conflict with the interests of her unborn child create a dilemma and raise the question as to whether or not the pregnancy should be deliberately terminated.”[188] Abortion debates, especially pertaining to abortion laws, are often spearheaded by groups advocating one of these two positions. Anti-abortion groups who favor greater legal restrictions on abortion, including complete prohibition, most often describe themselves as “pro-life” while abortion rights groups who are against such legal restrictions describe themselves as “pro-choice”.[189] Generally, the former position argues that a human fetus is a human person with a right to live, making abortion morally the same as murder. The latter position argues that a woman has certain reproductive rights, especially the right to decide whether or not to carry a pregnancy to term.

Modern abortion law

International status of abortion law

UN 2013 report on abortion law.[190]

 Legal on request
 Legal for maternal life, health, mental health, rapeand/or fetal defects, and also for socioeconomic factors
 Illegal with exception for maternal life, health, mental health and/or rape, and also for fetal defects
 Illegal with exception for maternal life, health and/or mental health, and also for rape
 Illegal with exception for maternal life, health, and/or mental health
 Illegal with exception for maternal life
 Illegal with no exceptions
 No information[191]

Current laws pertaining to abortion are diverse. Religious, moral, and cultural factors continue to influence abortion laws throughout the world. The right to life, the right to liberty, the right to security of person, and the right to reproductive health are major issues of human rights that sometimes constitute the basis for the existence or absence of abortion laws.

In jurisdictions where abortion is legal, certain requirements must often be met before a woman may obtain a safe, legal abortion (an abortion performed without the woman’s consent is considered feticide). These requirements usually depend on the age of the fetus, often using a trimester-based system to regulate the window of legality, or as in the U.S., on a doctor’s evaluation of the fetus’ viability. Some jurisdictions require a waiting period before the procedure, prescribe the distribution of information on fetal development, or require that parents be contacted if their minor daughter requests an abortion.[192] Other jurisdictions may require that a woman obtain the consent of the fetus’ father before aborting the fetus, that abortion providers inform women of health risks of the procedure—sometimes including “risks” not supported by the medical literature—and that multiple medical authorities certify that the abortion is either medically or socially necessary. Many restrictions are waived in emergency situations. China, which has ended their[193]one-child policy, and now has a two child policy,[194][195] has at times incorporated mandatory abortions as part of their population control strategy.[196]

Other jurisdictions ban abortion almost entirely. Many, but not all, of these allow legal abortions in a variety of circumstances. These circumstances vary based on jurisdiction, but may include whether the pregnancy is a result of rape or incest, the fetus’ development is impaired, the woman’s physical or mental well-being is endangered, or socioeconomic considerations make childbirth a hardship.[17] In countries where abortion is banned entirely, such as Nicaragua, medical authorities have recorded rises in maternal death directly and indirectly due to pregnancy as well as deaths due to doctors’ fears of prosecution if they treat other gynecological emergencies.[197][198] Some countries, such as Bangladesh, that nominally ban abortion, may also support clinics that perform abortions under the guise of menstrual hygiene.[199] This is also a terminology in traditional medicine.[200] In places where abortion is illegal or carries heavy social stigma, pregnant women may engage in medical tourism and travel to countries where they can terminate their pregnancies.[201] Women without the means to travel can resort to providers of illegal abortions or attempt to perform an abortion by themselves.[202]

The organization Women on Waves, has been providing education about medical abortions since 1999. The NGO created a mobile medical clinic inside a shipping container, which then travels on rented ships to countries with restrictive abortion laws. Because the ships are registered in the Netherlands, Dutch law prevails when the ship is in international waters. While in port, the organization provides free workshops and education; while in international waters, medical personnel are legally able to prescribe medical abortion drugs and counseling.[203][204][205]

Sex-selective abortion

Sonography and amniocentesis allow parents to determine sex before childbirth. The development of this technology has led to sex-selective abortion, or the termination of a fetus based on sex. The selective termination of a female fetus is most common.

Sex-selective abortion is partially responsible for the noticeable disparities between the birth rates of male and female children in some countries. The preference for male children is reported in many areas of Asia, and abortion used to limit female births has been reported in Taiwan, South Korea, India, and China.[206] This deviation from the standard birth rates of males and females occurs despite the fact that the country in question may have officially banned sex-selective abortion or even sex-screening.[207][208][209][210] In China, a historical preference for a male child has been exacerbated by the one-child policy, which was enacted in 1979.[211]

Many countries have taken legislative steps to reduce the incidence of sex-selective abortion. At the International Conference on Population and Development in 1994 over 180 states agreed to eliminate “all forms of discrimination against the girl child and the root causes of son preference”,[212] conditions also condemned by a PACE resolution in 2011.[213] The World Health Organization and UNICEF, along with other United Nations agencies, have found that measures to reduce access to abortion are much less effective at reducing sex-selective abortions than measures to reduce gender inequality.[212]

Anti-abortion violence

In a number of cases, abortion providers and these facilities have been subjected to various forms of violence, including murder, attempted murder, kidnapping, stalking, assault, arson, and bombing. Anti-abortion violence is classified by both governmental and scholarly sources as terrorism.[214][215] Only a small fraction of those opposed to abortion commit violence.

In the United States, four physicians who performed abortions have been murdered: David Gunn (1993), John Britton (1994), Barnett Slepian (1998), and George Tiller (2009). Also murdered, in the U.S. and Australia, have been other personnel at abortion clinics, including receptionists and security guards such as James Barrett, Shannon Lowney, Lee Ann Nichols, and Robert Sanderson. Woundings (e.g., Garson Romalis) and attempted murders have also taken place in the United States and Canada. Hundreds of bombings, arsons, acid attacks, invasions, and incidents of vandalism against abortion providers have occurred.[216][217] Notable perpetrators of anti-abortion violence include Eric Robert RudolphScott RoederShelley Shannon, and Paul Jennings Hill, the first person to be executed in the United States for murdering an abortion provider.[218]

Legal protection of access to abortion has been brought into some countries where abortion is legal. These laws typically seek to protect abortion clinics from obstruction, vandalism, picketing, and other actions, or to protect women and employees of such facilities from threats and harassment.

Far more common than physical violence is psychological pressure. In 2003, Chris Danze organized pro-life organizations throughout Texas to prevent the construction of a Planned Parenthood facility in Austin. The organizations released the personal information online, of those involved with construction, sending them up to 1200 phone calls a day and contacting their churches.[219] Some protestors record women entering clinics on camera.[219]

Other animals

Spontaneous abortion occurs in various animals. For example, in sheep it may be caused by stress or physical exertion, such as crowding through doors or being chased by dogs.[220] In cows, abortion may be caused by contagious disease, such as brucellosis or Campylobacter, but can often be controlled by vaccination.[221] Eating pine needles can also induce abortions in cows.[222][223] Several plants, including broomweedskunk cabbagepoison hemlock, and tree tobacco, are known to cause fetal deformities and abortion in cattle[224]:45–46 and in sheep and goats.[224]:77–80 In horses, a fetus may be aborted or resorbed if it has lethal white syndrome (congenital intestinal aganglionosis). Foal embryos that are homozygous for the dominant white gene (WW) are theorized to also be aborted or resorbed before birth.[225] In many species of sharks and rays, stress-induced abortions occur frequently on capture.[226]

Viral infection can cause abortion in dogs.[227] Cats can experience spontaneous abortion for many reasons, including hormonal imbalance. A combined abortion and spaying is performed on pregnant cats, especially in Trap-Neuter-Return programs, to prevent unwanted kittens from being born.[228][229][230] Female rodents may terminate a pregnancy when exposed to the smell of a male not responsible for the pregnancy, known as the Bruce effect.[231]

Abortion may also be induced in animals, in the context of animal husbandry. For example, abortion may be induced in mares that have been mated improperly, or that have been purchased by owners who did not realize the mares were pregnant, or that are pregnant with twin foals.[232] Feticide can occur in horses and zebras due to male harassment of pregnant mares or forced copulation,[233][234][235] although the frequency in the wild has been questioned.[236] Male gray langur monkeys may attack females following male takeover, causing miscarriage.[237]

Notes

  1. ^ Definitions of abortion, as with many words, vary from source to source. Language used to define abortion often reflects societal and political opinions (not only scientific knowledge). For a list of definitions as stated by obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) textbooks, dictionaries, and other sources, please see Definitions of abortion.
  2. ^ By 1930, medical procedures in the US had improved for both childbirth and abortion but not equally, and induced abortion in the first trimester had become safer than childbirth. In 1973, Roe v. Wade acknowledged that abortion in the first trimester was safer than childbirth:

References … 

Bibliography

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abortion

 

Story 2: The RED New Deal — Santa Claus Socialism — Vote For Me To Get Free Stuff — Government Coercion and Dependence — In Your Guts You Know Socialists Are Nuts — Videos

Here Comes The Sun – The Beatles Tribute

Here Comes the Sun
Here comes the sun (doo doo doo doo)
Here comes the sun, and I say
It’s all right
Little darling, it’s been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it’s been here
Here comes the sun
Here comes the sun, and I say
It’s all right
Little darling, the smiles returning to the faces
Little darling, it seems like years since it’s been here
Here comes the sun
Here comes the sun, and I say
It’s all right
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Little darling, I feel that ice is slowly melting
Little darling, it seems like years since it’s been clear
Here comes the sun
Here comes the sun, and I say
It’s all right
Here comes the sun
Here comes the sun, and I say
It’s all right
It’s all right
Songwriters: George Harrison
Here Comes the Sun lyrics © The Bicycle Music Company

Rep. Ocasio-Cortez proposing Green New Deal to fight climate change

Democrats and the New Green Deal

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and socialism, explained

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Economic Genius

Rush Limbaugh (20190207) AOC and the Green New Deal

60 Minutes of Stupidity with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez – REACTION

SHE’S A CRAZY LOON-BAG SOCIALIST! Ben Shapiro LOSES IT To Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez “Green New Deal”

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: Tax Expert

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is an Idiot

Ocasio-Cortez GOING TO FEDERAL PRISON As Mark Levin Just SAID ONE THING She DREADS THE MOST!

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Brands Climate Change Proposal As ‘Green New Deal’ | NBC

News

Tucker: Solar power cannot replace fossil fuels

Thomas Sowell and a Conflict of Visions

Jordan Peterson: The fatal flaw in leftist American politics

Professor Jordan Peterson on climate change and climate policy at the Cambridge Union

Ben Stein’s take on the ‘Green New Deal’

Knowles SHREDS The Green New Deal

Ep. 1327 The Green New Deal Is Insane

Rep. Alexandria Occasional-Cortex and Her Globalist Green New Deal Should Scare the Hell Out of Dems

WSJ writer slams Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal, says it looks like Dem parody bill

The Wall Street Journal’s Kimberley Strassel issued a blistering critique of the proposed Green New Deal, saying that the proposal reads like a parody of the Democratic Party done by Republicans.

“By the end of the Green New Deal resolution (and accompanying fact sheet) I was laughing so hard I nearly cried,” Strassel wrote on Twitter. “If a bunch of GOPers plotted to forge a fake Democratic bill showing how bonkers the party is, they could not have done a better job. It is beautiful.”

The Green New Deal, pushed by freshman New York Democrat Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, attempts to radically transform the country, including rendering air travel obsolete, move the U.S. to rely completely on renewable energy with net-zero emissions, and guarantee economic security even for people who are “unwilling” to work.

OCASIO-CORTEZ CONTRADICTS HERSELF ON ROLE OF GOVERNMENT IN MASSIVE AND UNPRECEDENTED ‘GREEN NEW DEAL’

But the sweeping proposal was hit with mockery once the details were unveiled on Thursday, with many pointing out how unrealistic the suggestions are.

Strassel pointed out that in order to live up to the proposal’s promise of 100 percent of renewable energy, a space as big as the entire state of California would have to be dedicated solely for the facilities, wind turbines, and solar panels.

The proposal’s suggestion of putting charging stations “everywhere,” upgrading or replacing “every building” and developing high-speed railway across every state may also hit a wall due to permitting laws.

FULL TEXT: GREEN NEW DEAL FAQ CALLS FOR ABOLISHING ‘FARTING COWS’ AND ‘AIRPLANES’ ASAP

Strassel notes that the Green New Deal is far from just a proposal to curb emissions and create more environmental regulations – it’s also about implementing radical left-wing measures.

“Somehow, government-run healthcare, ‘family sustainable’ wages, paid leave, and ‘affordable’ housing are also ‘required’ for a clean economy,” the writer wrote. “I would love to understand this logic. (And imagine what wages will need to be to pay for billion-dollar-per-kilowatt electricity).”

But even those pushing for the document aren’t sure it can actually be achieved within 10 years. In a now-deleted FAQ page on Ocasio-Cortez’s website, the document explains that it’s calling for an elimination of greenhouse gas emissions rather than an immediate ban on fossil fuels because “we aren’t sure that we’ll be able to fully get rid of farting cows and airplanes that fast.”

“Planes run on fossil fuel. No fossil fuel, no visits to granny. Cows produce methane, why alarmists want to get rid of livestock,” Stressel wrote. “She can’t do it ‘fully’ in 10 years, but AOC is coming after your air miles and bacon. This is honesty (sp) about how Democrats would micromanage private life.”

Lastly, the Green New Deal, which doesn’t exactly reveal how it will be funded, except for the suggestion that the Federal Reserve could step in and extend credit.

https://www.foxnews.com/politics/wsj-writer-slams-ocasio-cortezs-green-new-deal-says-it-looks-like-dem-parody-bill-written-by-gop

There’s now an official Green New Deal. Here’s what’s in it.

A close look at the fights it picks and the fights it avoids.

But for now, I just want to share a few initial impressions after reading through the short document a few times.

It’s worth noting just what a high-wire act the authors of this resolution are attempting. It has to offer enough specifics to give it real shape and ambition, without overprescribing solutions or prejudging differences over secondary questions. It has to please a diverse range of interest groups, from environmental justice to labor to climate, without alienating any of them. It has to stand up to intense scrutiny (much of it sure to be bad faith), with lots of people gunning for it from both the right and center.

And, of course, it eventually has to give birth to real legislation.

Given all those demands, the resolution does a remarkably good job of threading the needle. It is bold and unmistakably progressive, matched to the problem as defined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, while avoiding a few needless fights and leaving room for plenty of debate over priorities and policy tools.

The resolution consists of a preamble, five goals, 14 projects, and 15 requirements. The preamble establishes that there are two crises, a climate crisis and an economic crisis of wage stagnation and growing inequality, and that the GND can address both.

The goals — achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions, creating jobs, providing for a just transition, securing clean air and water — are broadly popular. The projects — things like decarbonizing electricity, transportation, and industry, restoring ecosystems, upgrading buildings and electricity grids — are necessary and sensible (if also extremely ambitious).

There are a few items down in the requirements that might raise red flags (more on those later), but given the long road ahead, there will be plenty of time to sort them out. Overall, this is about as strong an opening bid as anyone could have asked for.

Now let’s take a closer look.

Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., questions Andrew Wheeler as he testifies at a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing to be the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019.

Sen. Ed Markey.

 Andrew Harnik/AP

The Green New Deal resolution features 2 big progressive priorities

From a progressive point of view, the discussion over climate change in the US has always been overly skewed toward technologies and markets. (The term of art is “neoliberalism.”)

I have been guilty of this myself. Economics and technology are considered serious topics in the US, a ticket to being heard and acknowledged by the political mainstream, and there is a subtle, tidal pressure to hew to those subjects, at risk of being relegated to the status of activist or, worse yet, ideologue. (As though neoliberalism is not an ideology.)

The resurgent left is done with all that.

It’s not that there’s anything wrong with technologies or markets, as long as they remain servants, not masters. It’s just that in the US, those subjects have tended to occlude deeper and more urgent considerations (like justice) and exclude a wide range of policy instruments (like public investment).

It is for the progressive movement to stand up for those priorities, and that’s what the GND resolution does. We’ll take them in turn.

1) Justice

Ordinary people matter. Emissions matter, yes. Costs and money matter. Technologies and policies matter. But they all matter secondarily, via their effects on ordinary people. The role of progressive politics, if it amounts to anything, is to center the safety, health, and dignity of ordinary people.

That means that justice — or as it’s often called, “environmental justice,” as though it’s some boutique subgenre — must be at the heart of any plan to address climate change. The simple fact is that climate change will hit what the resolution calls “frontline and vulnerable communities” (who have contributed least to the problem) hardest. And attempts to transition away from fossil fuels threaten communities that remain tied to the fossil fuel economy.

Frontline and vulnerable communities stand to get it coming and going, from the problem and from the solutions. And unlike big energy companies pursuing growth, unlike idle billionaires fascinated with new tech, unlike banks and financial institutions seeking out new income streams, unlike incumbent industries fat from decades of subsidies, frontline and vulnerable communities do not have the means to fund campaigns and hire expensive lobbyists. They do not have the means to make their voice heard in the scrum of politics.

That’s why progressives exist: to amplify the voices of those without power (a class that includes future generations).

Accordingly, in the resolution’s preamble — the part with all the whereas this and whereas that — there are three statements focused on climate damages and emissions and four focused, in one way or another, on justice.

Of the resolution’s five goals, three are focused on justice. (For example: “promote justice and equity by stopping current, preventing future, and repairing historic oppression to frontline and vulnerable communities.”)

Of the 12 GND projects, three, including the very first, are focused on community-level resilience and development. And something like two-thirds of the GND requirements, depending on how you count, direct political power and public investment down to the state, local, and worker level, safeguarding environmental and labor standards and prioritizing family-wage jobs.

The resolution makes clear that justice is a top progressive priority. It is fashionable for centrists and some climate wonks to dismiss things like wage standards as tertiary, a way of piggybacking liberal goals onto the climate fight. But progressives don’t see it that way. In a period of massive, rapid disruption, the welfare of the people involved is not tertiary.

Demonstrators march in Washington, DC in 2017 demanding action on climate change. Polls show that Americans are more worried about climate change.

After some justice.

 Astrid Riecken/Getty Images

2) Investment

Neoliberalism has also made old-fashioned public investment something of a taboo. The GND goes directly at it — public investment aimed at creating jobs is central to the project.

The preamble notes that “the Federal Government-led mobilizations during World War II and the New Deal era created the greatest middle class that the US has ever seen” and frames the GND as “a historic opportunity to create millions of good, high-wage jobs in the United States.”

Of the GND requirements, the very first is “providing and leveraging, in a way that ensures that the public receives appropriate ownership stakes and returns on investment, adequate capital (including through community grants, public banks, and other public financing), technical expertise, supporting policies, and other forms of assistance to communities, organizations, Federal, State, and local government agencies, and businesses working on the Green New Deal mobilization.”

Also in the requirements: funding education and job training for frontline communities in transition; investing in research and development; and investing in community ownership and resilience.

The Hoover Dam from the air. Colorado river and Lake Mead. Significant water level decline is indicated by the white high water line.

The Hoover Dam, completed in 1936, back when lawmakers knew what public investment meant.

 Wikipedia/Ubergirl

Public investment with the returns going back to the public — it’s not a GND without that.

The Green New Deal resolution smartly avoids a few fights

There some internecine fights within the broad community of climate hawks that are best left to other venues, in order to keep the coalition behind a GND as broad and small-c catholic as possible. This resolution deftly avoids several of those fights.

1) Paying for it

The question of how to pay for the many public investments called for in the GND is still a bit of a political minefield. There are centrist Democrats who still believe in the old PAYGO rules, keeping a “balanced budget” within a 10-year window. There are Democrats who think deficit fears have been exaggerated and there’s nothing wrong with running a deficit to drive an economic transition. And there are Democrats who have gone full Modern Monetary Theory, which is way too complicated to explain here but amounts to the notion that, short of inflation, the level of the deficit is effectively irrelevant, as long as we’re getting the economy we want.

2) Clean versus renewable energy

Many, probably most, climate hawks would prefer a future in which all electricity is provided by renewable energy. (I am among them.) But there is good-faith disagreement about whether 100 percent renewables is realistic or economical in the 10-year time frame.

Many, probably most energy analysts believe that renewables will need to be supplemented with nuclear power or fossil fuels with carbon capture and sequestration (CCS), but some lefty environmental groups pushed for the GND to explicitly prohibit them.

As I argued earlier, that would have caused a completely unnecessary fight. The resolution wisely avoids taking that route.

Instead, it calls for the US to “meet 100 percent of our power demand through clean, renewable, and zero-emission energy sources.”

Clinton Nuclear Generating Station

Lots of old nuclear plants are still generating carbon-free power.

 NRC

Easy. Now renewables advocates can go right on advocating for renewables, nuclear fans can go right on advocating for nuclear, and they can continue fighting it out on Twitter. But their fight doesn’t need to muck up the GND. The GND targets carbon emissions, which is the right target for a broad programmatic outline.

3) Carbon pricing

Carbon pricing — carbon taxes or cap-and-trade systems — is also the source of much agita within the climate hawk community. The need to price carbon has practically been climate orthodoxy for the past few decades, but lately there’s been something of a lefty backlash.

Some have taken the (sensible) position that climate pricing has been rather fetishized, that it may not be the smartest political priority in all cases, and that other policy instruments with more proven records are equally important. Some have taken the (silly) position that carbon pricing is bad or counterproductive in and of itself and pushed to have it excluded from the GND.

The resolution doesn’t take a position. It merely says that the GND must involve “accounting for the true cost of emissions.” If you’re a carbon pricing fan (as I am), you can read pricing into that. But there are other ways to read it too.

Pricing advocates probably would have liked something a little more muscular there, but in the end, I think the instinct — to avoid the fight entirely — is the right one. The struggle over how or whether to prioritize pricing instruments can come later; it doesn’t need to be settled in advance of getting people on board with the GND.

4) Supply-side policy

Lately, lots of climate activists have been pushing to directly restrict the supply and distribution of fossil fuels — at the mine, well, or import terminal — with an eye toward phasing out fossil fuels entirely. “Keep it in the ground,” as the slogan goes.

This is the leading edge of the climate fight, out ahead of where labor and most moderates are. Including it in the GND probably would have sparked some defections.

The GND resolution doesn’t touch the subject, other than calling for transition assistance for communities losing fossil fuel jobs. And it calls on the US to “achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions,” which theoretically allows for some fossil fuel combustion coupled with carbon removal.

The keep-it-in-the-ground crowd is in the same position as the all-renewables crowd: They may feel some initial disappointment that their perspective was not reflected in the resolution, but they can take comfort in the fact that it was not excluded either. The resolution simply slates that fight as something to take place within the broad GND coalition, rather than making it part of the price of membership.

Sen. Jeff Merkley has sponsored a Keep It In the Ground Act.

Sen. Jeff Merkley has sponsored a Keep It in the Ground Act.

 Sen. Jeff Merkley

All four of these omissions or elisions — these fights postponed — signal, to me, a movement that is capable of reining in its more vigorous ideological impulses in the name of building the broadest possible left coalition behind an ambitious climate solution. That bodes well.

The Green New Deal resolution omits a few key, wonky policies

There are a few things I would have liked to see feature more prominently in the resolution. They are somewhat nerdy, but important in climate policy.

Just about the only urban-focused element of the GND resolution is tucked into the transportation section, calling for “investment in zero-emission vehicle infrastructure and manufacturing, clean, affordable, and accessible public transit, and high-speed rail.”

That’s it. Boo.

Creating dense urban areas with ample public spaces and multimodal transportation options — deprioritizing private automobiles and reducing overall automobile traffic — serves multiple progressive goals.

It tackles the next big climate challenge, which is cars. It reduces urban air pollution, urban noise, and the urban heat island effect, while increasing physical activity and social contact, all of which improves the physical and psychological health of urban communities.

It addresses the housing crisis that is crippling many growing cities, pricing young people, poor people, students, and longtime residents out of walkable urban cores.

And, if you will forgive some dreamy speculation, a little more public space might just generate a sense of community and social solidarity to counteract the segregation, atomization, isolation, and mutual distrust that cars and suburbs have exacerbated.

I get that GND proponents are spooked about being seen as anti-rural, which is why these kinds of plans from the left always include education, training, and transition assistance for rural communities hurt by decarbonization.

And that’s great. But they should also remember that their core demographics live in cities and are engaged in urban issues. Cities are central to any vision of 21st-century sustainability. They deserve pride of place in a GND.

Placa Reial (Royal Plaza), in Barcelona, Spain.

Placa Reial, in Barcelona — a nice public space.

 Shutterstock

2) Electrification

It is widely acknowledged in the climate policy community that deep decarbonization will involve rapid and substantial electrification. We know how to decarbonize electricity grids — so we need to get everything we can onto the grid.

That means two big things in particular.

First, the US vehicle fleet needs to be electrified as fast as practicably possible. The resolution’s “investment in zero-emission vehicle infrastructure” hints at this, but scarcely conveys the needed scale and speed.

Second, the millions upon millions of buildings in the US that use natural gas for heat need to find a zero-carbon alternative, and quickly. There are some zero-carbon liquid substitute fuels on the horizon, but for the time being, the best way we know to decarbonize HVAC (heating, ventilation, and cooling) is to rip out all those millions of furnaces and replace them with electric heat pumps. That’s a big, big job that will create a ton of work and directly involve millions of people’s homes and businesses.

Bruce Nilles@brucenilles

From the good folks at @EIAgov — the electricity in our homes is getting cleaner (almost on 1.5 degree trajectory), we are using less fuel oil for heating, but….we haven’t made progress on reducing gas use. We have efficient electric appliances – let’s get busy.

See Bruce Nilles’s other Tweets

The GND resolution would “upgrade all existing U.S. buildings and build new buildings, to achieve maximal energy efficiency, water efficiency, safety, affordability, comfort, and durability.” Theoretically that could imply electrification, but I’d like to see it called out.

[UPDATE February 7, 2019: In between the leaked copy and the final resolution, a single phrase was added to the sentence quoted above: “including through electrification.” They’re reading my mind!]

The Green New Deal resolution has a few, er, aspirational inclusions

As I said, most of the resolution consists of goals and policies that anyone who takes climate change seriously will find necessary. But down toward the bottom of the list of projects, the resolution really lets its hair down and gets funky. Readers who make it that far into the document will find some eyebrow-raising doozies.

Like No. 8: “guaranteeing a job with a family-sustaining wage, adequate family and disability leave, paid vacations, and retirement security to all people of the United States.” Heyo! There’s that job guarantee.

Or No. 9: “strengthening and protecting the right of all workers to organize, unionize, and collectively bargain free of coercion, intimidation, and harassment.” A full-on right to unionize, okay.

11: “enacting and enforcing trade rules, procurement standards, and border adjustments with strong labor and environmental protections to stop the transfer of jobs and pollution overseas and to grow domestic manufacturing in the United States.” And there’s a liberal trade regime.

14: “ensuring a commercial environment where every businessperson is free from unfair competition and domination by domestic or international monopolies.” All right, we’re going after monopolies too.

And just to fill in the remaining gaps, 15: “providing all members of society with high-quality health care, affordable, safe and adequate housing, economic security, and access to clean water, air, healthy and affordable food, and nature.” That is quite the addendum!

If you’re keeping score at home, the Green New Deal now involves a federal job guarantee, the right to unionize, liberal trade and monopoly policies, and universal housing and health care.

unicornShutterstock

Starting strong, bargaining down

This is just a resolution, not legislation. (I’m pretty sure providing universal housing and health care would require a couple of bills at least.) So I’m not really sure how literally these latter requirements are meant to be read, or how literally those who sign on to the GND will take them.

If they’re taken literally, then everyone who signs on should get a welcome letter from the Democratic Socialists of America. If they are taken as an aspirational list of Good Things, as I suspect they will be (especially given Markey’s involvement), then many arguments will remain to be had about just what a GND endorsement means.

But it definitely means something.

“The Green New Deal is what it means to be progressive. Clean air, clean water, decarbonizing, green jobs, a just transition, and environmental justice are what it means to a progressive,” Sean McElwee said. He’s the director of Data Progress, a young think tank whose work has substantially informed the GND. “By definition that means politicians who don’t support those goals aren’t progressive. We need to hold that line. Get on the GND train or choo-choo, motherfucker, we’re going to go right past you.”

Choo-choo, indeed. As I said in my first post on the Sunrise Movement protest that got the GND train rolling, I think it is all to the good that a muscular progressive movement is rallying behind a program shaped by the problem at hand rather than speculation about what is politically possible. It is good to start from a position of strength.

And just to be clear, I’m a big fan of universal housing and health care. But at some point, we have to grapple with the fact that a solution to climate change will require the support of people who may not be ready to join the democratic socialist revolution.

Given the two-year time window to get legislation ready and the 10-year time window to kickstart multiple decarbonization revolutions, the chances of pulling off a full-scale political revolution beforehand seem remote.

So there will be a lot of bargaining ahead and some of the dreamier GND requirements will go overboard for the time being. Perhaps universal health care will have to be tackled separately.

A whole other thing.

 Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

But take a step back and appreciate: The progressive movement has, in rather short order, thrust into mainstream US politics a program to address climate change that is wildly more ambitious than anything the Democratic Party was talking about even two years ago. One hundred percent clean energy, investment in new jobs, and a just transition have gone from activist dreams to the core of the Democratic agenda in the blink of a political eye. There’s a long way to go, but the GND train has come farther, faster than anyone could have predicted.

“We are going to transition this country into the future and we are not going to be dragged behind by our past,” Ocasio-Cortez said at the press conference Thursday.

With Trump and his attendant chaos, US politics is more disrupted, uncertain, and malleable than it’s been in my adult lifetime. Everything is up for grabs. The forces of ethnonationalism and fossil fuel myopia sense this malleability and are organizing to drag the country backward. But the malleability can serve a humane progressive agenda as well; progressives just have to organize better.

The map has been drawn, the path laid out. Now it’s on.

https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2019/2/7/18211709/green-new-deal-resolution-alexandria-ocasio-cortez-markey

 

 

Green New Deal: “Air Travel Stops Becoming Necessary”


Posted by Michael Palicz on Thursday, February 7th, 2019, 11:27 AM

This morning, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez released an

overview of the Democrat “Green New Deal” which threatens “a massive transformation of our society.”

Below are the details of the proposal.

Rebuild every single building in the U.S.

“Upgrade or replace every building in US for state-of-the-art energy efficiency.”

Will end all traditional forms of energy in the next ten years.

The Green New Deal is “a 10-year plan to mobilize every aspect of American society at a scale not seen since World War 2 to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions.”

Plans to ban nuclear energy within 10 years if possible.

“It’s unclear if we will be able to decommission every nuclear plant within 10 years, but the plan is to transition off of nuclear and all fossil fuels as soon as possible.”

Build trains across oceans and end all air travel!

“Build out highspeed rail at a scale where air travel stops becoming necessary”.

Don’t invest in new technology of Carbon Capture and Storage, just plant trees instead!

“We believe the right way to capture carbon is to plant trees and restore our natural ecosystems. CCUS technology to date has not proven effective.”

Mandates all new jobs be unionized.

“Ensure that all GND jobs are union jobs that pay prevailing wages and hire local.”

May include a carbon tax.

“We’re not ruling a carbon tax out, but a carbon tax would be a tiny part of a Green New Deal.”

May include cap and trade.

“…Cap and trade may be a tiny part of the larger Green New Deal plan.”

How much will it cost?

No estimate of the total cost of implementing the Green New deal is offered by Ocasio-Cortez.

However, as Ocasio-Cortez admits, “even if every billionaire and company came together and were willing to pour all the resources at their disposal into this investment, the aggregate value of the investments they could make would not be sufficient.”

She does provide one estimate that the cost to “repair and upgrade infrastructure U.S. infrastructure” alone will cost “$4.6 trillion at minimum.”

How will it be paid for? Don’t worry about that.

Ocasio-Cortez doesn’t provide any insight into how the trillions of dollars in spending will be paid for other than claiming, “The Federal Reserve can extend credit to power these projects and investments and new public banks can be created to extend credit”.

But as Ocasio-Cortez says, “the question isn’t how will we pay for it, but what will we do with our new shared prosperity”.

https://www.atr.org/green-new-deal-air-travel-stops-becoming-necessary

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Releases Green New Deal Outline

The Green New Deal legislation laid out by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ed Markey sets goals for some drastic measures to cut carbon emissions across the economy. In the process, it aims to create jobs and boost the economy.

Amr Alfiky/NPR

Updated 4:30 p.m.

Whether it’s a deadly cold snap or a hole under an Antarctic glacier or a terrifying new report, there seem to be constant reminders now of the dangers that climate change poses to humanity.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., and Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., think they have a start to a solution. Thursday they are introducing a framework defining what they call a “Green New Deal” — what they foresee as a massive policy package that would remake the U.S. economy and, they hope, eliminate all U.S. carbon emissions.

That’s a really big — potentially impossibly big — undertaking.

“Even the solutions that we have considered big and bold are nowhere near the scale of the actual problem that climate change presents to us,” Ocasio-Cortez told NPR’s Steve Inskeep in an interview that aired Thursday on Morning Edition.

She added: “It could be part of a larger solution, but no one has actually scoped out what that larger solution would entail. And so that’s really what we’re trying to accomplish with the Green New Deal.”

What is the Green New Deal?

In very broad strokes, the Green New Deal legislation laid out by Ocasio-Cortez and Markey sets goals for some drastic measures to cut carbon emissions across the economy, from electricity generation to transportation to agriculture. In the process, it aims to create jobs and boost the economy.

In that vein, the proposal stresses that it aims to meet its ambitious goals while paying special attention to groups like the poor, disabled and minority communities that might be disproportionately affected by massive economic transitions like those the Green New Deal calls for.

Importantly, it’s a nonbinding resolution, meaning that even if it were to pass (more on the challenges to that below), it wouldn’t itself create any new programs. Instead, it would potentially affirm the sense of the House that these things should be done in the coming years.

Lawmakers pass nonbinding resolutions for things as simple as congratulating Super Bowl winners, as well as to send political messages — for example, telling the president they disapprove of his trade policies, as the Senate did in summer 2018.

What are the specifics of that framework?

The bill calls for a “10-year national mobilizations” toward accomplishing a series of goals that the resolution lays out.

(Note: Ocasio-Cortez’s office released an updated version of the bill on Thursday. The earlier version, which we had included in a prior version of this story, is still available here.)

Among the most prominent, the deal calls for “meeting 100 percent of the power demand in the United States through clean, renewable, and zero-emission energy sources.” The ultimate goal is to stop using fossil fuels entirely, Ocasio-Cortez’s office told NPR, as well as to transition away from nuclear energy.

In addition, the framework, as described in the legislation as well as a blog post — containing an updated version of “FAQs” provided to NPR by Ocasio-Cortez’s office — calls for a variety of other lofty goals:

  • “upgrading all existing buildings” in the country for energy efficiency;
  • working with farmers “to eliminate pollution and greenhouse gas emissions … as much as is technologically feasible” (while supporting family farms and promoting “universal access to healthy food”);
  • “Overhauling transportation systems” to reduce emissions — including expanding electric car manufacturing, building “charging stations everywhere,” and expanding high-speed rail to “a scale where air travel stops becoming necessary”;
  • A guaranteed job “with a family-sustaining wage, adequate family and medical leave, paid vacations and retirement security” for every American;
  • “High-quality health care” for all Americans.

Which is to say: the Green New Deal framework combines big climate-change-related ideas with a wish list of progressive economic proposals that, taken together, would touch nearly every American and overhaul the economy.

Are those ideas doable?

Many in the climate science community, as well as Green New Deal proponents, agree that saving the world from disastrous effects of climate change requires aggressive action.

And some of the Green New Deal’s goals are indeed aggressive. For example, Ocasio-Cortez told NPR that “in 10 years, we’re trying to go carbon-neutral.”

According to Jesse Jenkins, a postdoctoral environmental fellow at Harvard’s Kennedy School, that may be an unreachable goal.

“Where we need to be targeting really is a net-zero carbon economy by about 2050, which itself is an enormous challenge and will require reductions in carbon emissions much faster than have been achieved historically,” he said. “2030 might be a little bit early to be targeting.”

Similarly, removing combustible engines from the roads or expanding high-speed rail to largely eliminate air travel would require nothing short of revolutionizing transportation.

Likewise, some of the more progressive economic policies — universal health care and a job guarantee, for example — while popular among some Democrats, would also be very difficult to implement and transition into.

On top of all that, implementing all of these policies could cost trillions upon trillions of dollars.

Altogether, the Green New Deal is a loose framework. It does not lay out guidance on how to implement these policies.

Rather, the idea is that Ocasio-Cortez and Markey will “begin work immediately on Green New Deal bills to put the nuts and bolts on the plan described in this resolution.”

And again, all of this is hypothetical — it would be tough to implement and potentially extremely expensive … if it passed.

So did the idea of a Green New Deal start with Ocasio-Cortez?

Not at all.

While the Green New Deal has in the last year or so grown central to progressive Democrats’ policy conversations, the idea of a Green New Deal itself is well over a decade old. Environmentalists were talking about it as far back as 2003, when the term popped up in a San Francisco Chronicle article about an environmentalist conference.

It gained traction with a 2007 New York Times columnfrom Thomas Friedman, where he used the phrase to describe the scope of energy investments he thought would be necessary to slow climate change on a large scale.

The phrase was also used around President Barack Obama’s 2009 stimulus, which had around $90 billion worth of environmental initiatives.

While the idea gained some currency in Europe and also in the Green Party, it wasn’t until after the 2016 election that it really gained broad popularity on the left in the U.S.(Vox’s Dave Roberts has a more thorough history here).

This latest iteration is different both in the political energy that it has amassed and the grand scope it is taking. While it was a product of the progressive activist community, Ocasio-Cortez has been perhaps the most visible proponent of the plan and has helped it gain nationwide attention.

So will it pass?

That looks unlikely.

Yes, there’s some energy for it on the left — some House Democrats have already said they will support the bill. However, there are indications House leadership isn’t prioritizing the idea as much as those more liberal Democrats would like — Speaker Nancy Pelosi frustrated Green New Deal proponents by not giving them the kind of committee they wanted to put the policies together.

After the deal’s Thursday release, she also cast the plan as simply one of any number of environmental proposals the House might consider.

“It will be one of several or maybe many suggestions that we receive,” Pelosi told Politico. “The green dream or whatever they call it, nobody knows what it is, but they’re for it right?”

In addition, it’s easy to see how the bill could be dangerous for moderate House Democrats, many of whom come from swing districts and may be loath to touch such a progressive proposal.

Among Republicans — even those worried about climate change — the package, with its liberal economic ideas, will also likely be a nonstarter.

“Someone’s going to have to prove to me how that can be accomplished because it looks to me like for the foreseeable future we’re gonna be using a substantial amount of fossil fuels,” said Rep. Francis Rooney, R-Fla., co-chair of the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus, speaking to NPR before the Green New Deal’s text was released.

For his part, Rooney is in favor of a carbon tax, a policy he helped propose with a bipartisan group of lawmakers in November. Information from Ocasio-Cortez’s office says that the Green New Deal could include a carbon tax, but that it would be “a tiny part” of the total package of policies.

Meanwhile, there’s little chance of a Green New Deal getting a vote in the Republican-controlled Senate.

If it’s not going to pass and it’s not even binding, why is it worth even talking about?

It’s worth talking about because it already is a politically powerful idea among Democrats.

Already, presidential candidates are being asked whether they support the idea of a Green New Deal, meaning it’s easy to see the issue becoming a litmus test for some voters in both the 2020 congressional elections and the presidential election.

To more liberal Democrats, the prospect of such an ambitious economic and environmental package at the center of the 2020 campaign may be particularly energizing.

“I think it’s like a really weird instinct that the Democratic Party develops to not be exciting intentionally,” said Sean McElwee, co-founder of the progressive think tank Data for Progress. “Most of politics is getting people excited enough to show up and vote for you. And I think that a Green New Deal and Medicare-for-all — these are ideas that are big enough to get people excited and show up to vote for you.”

For her part, Ocasio-Cortez says that a policy like the Green New Deal could get voters excited enough to pressure their Congress members to support it.

“I do think that when there’s a wide spectrum of debate on an issue, that is where the public plays a role. That is where the public needs to call their member of Congress and say, ‘This is something that I care about,’ ” she told NPR, adding, “Where I do have trust is in my colleagues’ capacity to change and evolve and be adaptable and listen to their constituents.”

That said, it’s easy to see how a Green New Deal litmus test could backfire on that front, endangering some Democrats — particularly in swing districts.

But it’s not just about national politics. The national-level energy for a Green New Deal could boost efforts in cities and states. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, for example, has been pushing a Green New Deal in his state.

Aside from the politics, there’s the fact that climate change remains an impending threat — one for which the world has yet to come up with a fix.

“It’s a big legislation because it’s a huge [expletive] problem! We’re all going to die,” said McElwee. “Every week it seems like the risks of climate change become more real, and the amount of devastation it is going to wreak upon humanity becomes larger, and that means we have to do bigger things.”

https://www.npr.org/2019/02/07/691997301/rep-alexandria-ocasio-cortez-releases-green-new-deal-outline

 

 

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 1199, January 31, 2019, Story 1: Radical Extreme Democrats Reveal They Are Advocating Killing Babies — Virginia Governor Endorses Trimester Abortion Bill — Progressive Eugenics Advocates — What is Next? — Death of The Disabled and Unproductive — Videos — Story 2: President Trump — A Big Beautiful Border Barrier or Wall Is Required To Stop The Continuing Illegal Alien Invasion of United States  — What about The 30 to 60 Million Illegal Aliens Already in the United States? — Part 1 of 2 — Videos

Posted on February 1, 2019. Filed under: 2016 Presidential Candidates, Abortion, American History, Blogroll, Breaking News, Business, Cartoons, College, Communications, Congress, Corruption, Countries, Crime, Culture, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Donald Trump, Drugs, Economics, Education, Elections, Empires, Employment, Eugenics, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Freedom of Speech, Genocide, Government, Government Dependency, Government Spending, Health Care, Health Care Insurance, High Crimes, History, Homicide, House of Representatives, Human, Human Behavior, Illegal Drugs, Illegal Drugs, Illegal Immigration, Illegal Immigration, Immigration, Independence, Law, Legal Drugs, Legal Immigration, Life, Lying, Media, Military Spending, National Interest, News, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, President Trump, Progressives, Public Corruption, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Regulation, Rule of Law, Scandals, Senate, Success, Surveillance and Spying On American People, Tax Fraud, Taxation, Taxes, Technology, Terror, Terrorism, Unemployment, United States Constitution, United States of America, Videos, Violence, War, Wealth, Weather, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

 

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Image result for cartoons progressives abortion and eugenicsSee the source imageSee the source imagePresident Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with American manufacturers in the Oval Office of the White House, Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019, in Washington. Trump was signing an executive order pushing those who receive federal funds to &quot;buy American.&quot; (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)Image result for cartoon branco walls are immoralImage result for cartoon branco walls are immoralImage result for cartoon branco trump wall vs pelosi open bordersImage result for cartoon branco walls are immoralImage result for cartoon branco walls are immoral

Story 1: Radical Extreme Democrats (REDs) Reveal They Are Advocating Killing Babies — Virginia Governor Endorses Trimester Abortion Bill — Progressive Eugenics Advocates — What is Next? — Death of The Disabled and Unproductive Deplorables? — Videos —

See the source image

The Silent Scream (Full Length)

ABORTION – THE SILENT SCREAM COMPLETE VERSION (with permission from APF). Republished with Permission from Roy Tidwell of American Portrait Films as long as the following credits are shown: VHS/DVDs Available American Portrait Films Call 1-800-736-4567 http://www.amport.com The Silent Scream Complete Version – Abortion as Infanticide Dr. Bernard Nathanson’s classic video that shocked the world. He explains the procedure of a suction abortion, followed by an actual first trimester abortion as seen through ultrasound. The viewer can see the child’s pathetic attempts to escape the suction curette as her heart rate doubles, and a “silent scream” as her body is torn apart. A great tool to help people see why abortion is murder.

The most important video on abortion ever made. This video changed opinion on abortion to many people. Introduction by Dr. Bernard Nathanson, host. Describes the technology of ultrasound and how, for the first time ever, we can actually see inside the womb. Dr. Nathanson further describes the ultrasound technique and shows examples of babies in the womb. Three-dimensional depiction of the developing fetus, from 4 weeks through 28 weeks. Display and usage of the abortionists’ tools, plus video of an abortionist performing a suction abortion. Dr. Nathanson discusses the abortionist who agreed to allow this abortion to be filmed with ultrasound. The abortionist was quite skilled, having performed more than 10,000 abortions. We discover that the resulting ultrasound of his abortion so appalled him that he never again performed another abortion.

The clip begins with an ultrasound of the fetus (girl) who is about to be aborted. The girl is moving in the womb; displays a heartbeat of 140 per minute; and is at times sucking her thumb. As the abortionist’s suction tip begins to invade the womb, the child rears and moves violently in an attempt to avoid the instrument. Her mouth is visibly open in a “silent scream.” The child’s heart rate speeds up dramatically (to 200 beats per minute) as she senses aggression. She moves violently away in a pathetic attempt to escape the instrument. The abortionist’s suction tip begins to rip the baby’s limbs from its body, ultimately leaving only her head in the uterus (too large to be pulled from the uterus in one piece).

The abortionist attempts to crush her head with his forceps, allowing it to be removed. In an effort to “dehumanize” the procedure, the abortionist and anesthesiologist refer to the baby’s head as “number 1.” The abortionist crushes “number 1” with the forceps and removes it from the uterus. Abortion statistics are revealed, as well as who benefits from the enormously lucrative industry that has developed.

Clinics are now franchised, and there is ample evidence that many are controlled by organized crime. Women are victims, too. They haven’t been told about the true nature of the unborn child or the facts about abortion procedures. Their wombs have been perforated, infected, destroyed, and sterilized. All as a result of an operation about which they they have had no true knowledge.

Films like this must be made part of “informed consent.” NARAL (National Abortion Rights Action League) and Planned Parenthood are accused of a conspiracy of silence, of keeping women in the dark about the reality of abortion. Finally, Dr. Nathanson discusses his credentials. He is a former abortionist, having been the director of the largest clinic in the Western world.

Eugenics, Hitler, Margaret Sanger’s Planned Murderhood, etc. by Edwin Black

Eugenics Glenn Beck w/ Edwin Black author of “War Against the Weak” talk Al Gore & Margaret Sanger

War on the Weak: Eugenics in America

The Progressive Movement and its Racist Eugenics Fabian Roots

See the source image

See the source image

Planned Parenthood Funded Lawmaker Proposes Bill Allowing Abortion Until Moment of Birth

Viral video sparks division on Virginia House floor over abortions bill

Virginia Democrat defends bill allowing abortion as woman is giving birth

Virginia Democrats Propose Bill Allowing Abortions Until Birth

Democratic delegate Kathy Tran has introduced a bill in Virginia’s House of Delegates that would legalize abortion up to birth. When questioned about the bill on Monday by Republican delegate Todd Gilbert, the Virginia House majority leader, Tran acknowledged that it would allow abortion even at the very end of pregnancy when a woman was going into labor.

Critics Cry Infanticide As Virginia Governor Seemingly Proposes Allowing Abortions At Time Of Birth

VA Gov Ralph Northam Discusses 3rd Trimester Abortion Bill

 THE INGRAHAM ANGLE – LIVE FULL SCREEN – Breaking Fox News Live Stream 1/30/2019 – HD

Sean Hannity 1/30/19 – FOX NEWS LIVE | Breaking News Today Jan 30, 2019

Rush Limbaugh on NY Abortion Law: ‘Here’s Why Liberals Are Cheering Murder’

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Abortion Clinic Employees — “Babies born alive daily.”

‘I Murdered More People Than Ted Bundy’: Former Abortionist Reflects on Painful Past

NY Bishop Calls Out Cuomo Over State’s New Abortion Law: ‘It Goes Way Beyond Roe vs. Wade’

Lawmakers pass bill to protect abortion rights in New York

Babies In New York Have To Die So This Can Happen In 2020

Hitler’s secret Nazi program that killed thousands of disabled people

s

Fit vs. UnFit, Eugenics, Planned Parenthood & Psychology, Mind Control Report

Against the USA, Naked Communist Conspiracy Theory, NWO, Mind Control Report

American Eugenics movement, the truth is here, must see!

Darwin, Nazi Eugenics and Selective Breeding

Science and the Swastika : Hitler’s Biological Soldiers

War on the Weak: Eugenics in America

Sterilizing Undesirables: Did The USA Inspire The Nazis?

Chapter 1 | The Eugenics Crusade

The Man Behind American Eugenics | The Eugenics Crusade

Genetic Screening: Controlling Heredity | Retro Report

Scientific Racism The Eugenics of Social Darwinism

Margaret Sanger, Planned Parenthood’s Racist Founder

Down Syndrome Abortions Are Eugenics

The Progressive Era: Crash Course US History #27

 

Northam on Abortion Bill: Infant Could Be Delivered and Then ‘Physicians and the Mother’ Could Decide If It Lives

BY: 

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D.) commented Wednesday about a controversial 40-week abortion bill and in so doing said the law allows an abortion to take place after the infant’s birth.

“If a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen. The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother,” Northam said, alluding to the physician and mother discussing whether the born infant should live or die.

A Democratic lawmaker in the Virginia House of Delegates proposed a bill Tuesday that would allow abortions through the end of the third trimester of pregnancy. The video of Delegate Kathy Tran presenting her bill led to an exchange where she admitted that her bill would allow for a mother to abort her child minutes before giving birth.

“How late in the third trimester could a physician perform an abortion if he indicated that it would impair the mental health of the woman?” Majority Leader Todd Gilbert (R.) asked.

“Or physical health,” Tran said.

“Okay,” Gilbert replied. “I’m talking about the mental health.”

“I mean, through the third trimester,” Tran said. “The third trimester goes up to 40 weeks.”

“Okay, but to the end of the third trimester?” Gilbert asked.

“Yup, I don’t think we have a limit in the bill,” Tran said.

“Where it’s obvious that a woman is about to give birth, she has physical signs that she’s about to give birth, would that still be a point at which she could request an abortion if she was so certified?” Gilbert asked. “She’s dilating.”

Tran responded that is a decision between the woman and her doctor would have to make. Gilbert asked if her bill would allow an abortion right before the infant was born.

“My bill would allow that, yes,” Tran said.

NBC4 reporter Julie Carey asked Northam about the measure.

“Do you support her measure and explain her answer?” Carey asked.

“I wasn’t there, Julie. And I certainly can’t speak for delegate Tran. But I would tell you one, the first think I would say, this is why decisions such as this should be made by providers, physicians, and the mothers and fathers that are involved,” Northam said. “When we talk about third trimester abortions, these are done with the consent of obviously the mother, with the consent of the physicians, more than one physician by the way. And it is done in cases where there may be severe deformities, there may be a fetus that is non-viable.”

Northam continued by saying government shouldn’t be involved in these types of decisions and that legislators, especially male legislators, shouldn’t be telling women what to do.

“I think this was really blown out of proportion. But again we want the government not to be involved in these types of decisions. We want the decision to be made by the mothers and their providers. And this is why Julie, that legislators, most of whom are men by the way, shouldn’t be telling a woman what she should or shouldn’t be doing with her body,” Northam said.

Carey asked if the law should still require women to have multiple physicians approve an abortion.

“Well, I think it is always good to get a second opinion and for at least two providers to be involved in that decision,” Northam said. “These decisions shouldn’t be taken lightly.

Northam’s office released a statement about his comments.

“No woman seeks a third trimester abortion except in the case of tragic or difficult circumstances, such as a nonviable pregnancy or in the event of severe fetal abnormalities, and the governor’s comments were limited to the actions physicians would take in the event that a woman in those circumstances went into labor,” Ofirah Yheskel, a spokeswoman for Northam, said. “Attempts to extrapolate these comments otherwise is in bad faith and underscores exactly why the governor believes physicians and women, not legislators, should make these difficult and deeply personal medical decisions,”

Update 4:24 p.m.: Article was updated to include Northam’s statement.

https://freebeacon.com/issues/northman-on-40-week-abortion-bill-infant-would-be-delivered-and-then-a-discussion-would-ensue-between-the-physicians-and-the-mother/

 

Failed abortion bill draws GOP outrage against Va. Gov. Northam, Democratic legislators


Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) speaks at a women’s rights rally this month at the State Capitol in Richmond. (Steve Helber/AP)

January 30 at 8:13 PM

 President Trump, Republican lawmakers in Virginia and conservatives across the country attacked Gov. Ralph Northam and other state Democrats on Wednesday after they defended a failed bill that sought to reduce restrictions on late-term abortions.

The furor escalated quickly after Republicans circulated a video of Del. Kathy Tran (D-
Fairfax) acknowledging that her bill, like current law, would allow abortions up to the point of delivery in cases when the mother’s life or health was at serious risk. Northam, a pediatric neurologist, was asked about the issue in a radio interview and gave an answer that was later used by Republicans to suggest he favored killing live babies.

“I’m surprised that he did that. I’ve met him a number of times,” Trump told the Daily Caller when asked about Northam’s remarks. He said he had not seen the governor’s words but had watched the video of Tran.

“I thought it was terrible,” Trump said. “Do you remember when I said Hillary Clinton was willing to rip the baby out of the womb? That’s what it is. That’s what they’re doing. It’s terrible.”

Northam, whose spokeswoman said his words were being taken out of context by Republicans, called the notion that he would approve of killing infants “disgusting.”

“I have devoted my life to caring for children, and any insinuation otherwise is shameful and disgusting,” he said.

The president’s remarks came after former U.S. senator Jim DeMint called the bill “vile” and said Northam should abandon it or resign. Fox News, Breitbart and other conservative news outlets posted stories suggesting that the Democrats embraced infanticide. Tran, the bill’s sponsor, suspended her social media accounts after being besieged with threatening messages.

And Virginia House Speaker Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights) made a dramatic floor speech citing Bible verses to vow to fight against abortion.

Republicans, clinging to a slim majority in an election year when the entire General Assembly is on the ballot, sought to exploit the moment as part of a campaign to paint Democrats as radicals out of step with the state. And the uproar played directly into the national partisan divide, fueling outrage at a time when Democrats are launching presidential campaigns on issues far removed from abortion, an in­trac­table issue in American society.

“What my Democratic colleagues are most concerned about is what this moment actually reveals,” said Del. Todd Gilbert (R-Shenandoah), the House majority leader. “It was a moment of unbridled honesty about their agenda and their legislation and what it actually does.”

It was a surprising turn for legislation that had been introduced — and had failed — each of the past three years without any drama. A companion bill offered in the state Senate more than a week ago failed without comment.

The frontal political assault was also unusual for a chamber that often congratulates itself on the civil “Virginia way,” with GOP leaders joining Northam just last week to tout a bipartisan agreement to clean up coal ash.

In recent weeks, Republicans have sought to focus attention on several Democratic bills that they say would harm the state. Those include bills to enact a $15 minimum wage, move the state away from fossil fuels and provide tax relief to low-income families.

The strategy escalated with the abortion bill, which failed in a subcommittee Monday.

More than half of the bill’s 20 Democratic patrons were elected in 2017 during the surge that nearly erased the GOP majority in the House of Delegates. Among them was Tran, one of a record number of women elected that year and also the first Virginia legislator to nurse her infant on the House floor.

Late-term abortions are permitted in Virginia only when the mother’s life is at grave risk. Tran’s bill would have lifted some restrictions. Instead of requiring three doctors to sign off on the procedure, it would have required only one doctor. It also would have removed language requiring that the danger to the mother be “substantial and irremediable.”

On WTOP radio’s “Ask the Governor” program Wednesday, NBC4’s Julie Carey asked Northam whether he supported Tran’s bill.

Northam expressed support and spoke broadly about his belief that politicians should leave abortion decisions to women and their doctors.

But his comments about third-trimester abortions set off critics. The procedures, he said, are “done in cases where there may be severe deformities. There may be a fetus that’s not viable. So in this particular example, if a mother’s in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen. The infant would be delivered, the infant would be kept comfortable, the infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired. And then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother.”

After which, Twitter erupted.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) retweeted Northam’s comment and added, “I never thought I would see the day America had government officials who openly support legal infanticide.”

Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel tweeted that “Dem Gov. Ralph Northam, a pediatrician himself, is defending born-alive abortions.”

And DeMint, the former senator from South Carolina who is chairman of the Conservative Partnership Institute, tweeted: “VA Gov Northam is no moderate, this is one of the most vile, radical pro-abortion positions ever put forward. This is evil. He should recant or resign.”

Northam’s office made clear the governor was talking about prognosis and medical treatment, not ending the life of a delivered baby. Ofirah Yheskel, a spokeswoman for Northam, said the Republicans were mischaracterizing his remarks.

“No woman seeks a third-
trimester abortion except in the case of tragic or difficult circumstances, such as a nonviable pregnancy or in the event of severe fetal abnormalities, and the governor’s comments were limited to the actions physicians would take in the event that a woman in those circumstances went into labor,” she said.

“Attempts to extrapolate these comments otherwise is in bad faith and underscores exactly why the governor believes physicians and women, not legislators, should make these difficult and deeply personal medical decisions,” Yheskel said.

Republicans on Tuesday night had begun circulating video of Tran discussing the bill in subcommittee the day before. By Wednesday morning, the Republican Party of Virginia had sent the clip out in a fundraising email.

The clip shows Tran before the subcommittee as Gilbert — who is off camera — grills her about whether the bill allows an abortion up to the moment a woman is about to give birth.

Tran paused at the question, and Gilbert added, “She’s dilating.”

With a grimace and another long pause, Tran said, “Mr. Chairman, that would be, you know, a decision that the doctor, the physician and the woman would make a decision at that point.”

“I understand that,” Gilbert said. “I’m asking if your bill allows that.”

“My bill would allow that, yes,” Tran replied.

Seeming to catch Democrats off guard, Cox took the extraordinary step Wednesday of leaving the dais to make a speech from the floor — something he said no other speaker has done in his 30 years in the legislature.

Invoking the biblical story of David and verses in the book of Hebrews about God being the builder of all things, Cox said he was horrified last week when the New York state legislature passed a law to make late-term abortions easier to get.

“Governor Northam vowed to enact [the same law] if Democrats take over the House and Senate in 2019,” he said.

“I will never stop fighting for the promise of life, as long as I hold a gavel, as long as I can speak in this microphone,” Cox said to thunderous applause from Republican delegates.

Del. Eileen Filler-Corn (D-Fairfax), the minority leader, stood to respond, upbraiding Republicans for their treatment of Tran and for what she said was misrepresenting the issue.

“It clearly was part of an orchestrated ambush,” she said. The public statements “were made to inflame passions throughout the social media echo chamber. And they succeeded. What was the result? Ongoing harassment, intimidation against the patron, several members of this body, their families and their children.”

The Democratic caucus slammed the Republicans for what it called “sensationalism and fearmongering [that] is more representative of Trump-style national politics rather than the Virginia Way” and pointed out that 91 percent of the member of the Republican caucus are men.

“House Republicans would do well to pay Virginia women — and their women colleagues — more respect,” Democratic spokeswoman Kathryn Gilley said.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/virginia-politics/failed-abortion-bill-draws-gop-outrage-against-va-gov-northam-democratic-lawmakers/2019/01/30/4a18f022-24b2-11e9-ad53-824486280311_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.050bec98c99d

Infanticide

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Infanticide (or infant homicide) is the intentional killing of infants.

Parental infanticide researchers have found that mothers are far more likely than fathers to be the perpetrators of neonaticide[1] and slightly more likely to commit infanticide in general.[2]

Anthropologist Laila Williamson notes that “Infanticide has been practiced on every continent and by people on every level of cultural complexity, from hunter gatherers to high civilizations, including our own ancestors. Rather than being an exception, then, it has been the rule.”[3]:61

In many past societies, certain forms of infanticide were considered permissible.

Contents

History[

Infanticidio by Mexican artist Antonio García Vega.

The practice of infanticide has taken many forms over time. Child sacrifice to supernatural figures or forces, such as that believed to have been practiced in ancient Carthage, may be only the most notorious example in the ancient world.

A frequent method of infanticide in ancient Europe and Asia was simply to abandon the infant, leaving it to die by exposure (i.e., hypothermia, hunger, thirst, or animal attack).[4][5]

On at least one island in Oceania, infanticide was carried out until the 20th century by suffocating the infant,[6] while in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica and in the Inca Empire it was carried out by sacrifice (see below).

Paleolithic and Neolithic

Many Neolithic groups routinely resorted to infanticide in order to control their numbers so that their lands could support them. Joseph Birdsell believed that infanticide rates in prehistoric times were between 15% and 50% of the total number of births,[7] while Laila Williamson estimated a lower rate ranging from 15% to 20%.[3]:66 Both anthropologists believed that these high rates of infanticide persisted until the development of agriculture during the Neolithic Revolution.[8]:19 Comparative anthropologists have calculated that 50% of female newborn babies were killed by their parents during the Paleolithic era.[9] From the infants hominid skulls (e.g., Taung child skull) that had been traumatized, has been proposed cannibalism by Raymond A. Dart.[10] The children were not necessarily actively killed, but neglect and intentional malnourishment may also have occurred, as proposed by Vicente Lull as an explanation for an apparent surplus of men and the below average height of women in prehistoric Menorca.[11]

In ancient history

In the New World

Archaeologists have uncovered physical evidence of child sacrifice at several locations.[8]:16–22 Some of the best attested examples are the diverse rites which were part of the religious practices in Mesoamerica and the Inca Empire.[12][13][14]

In the Old World

Three thousand bones of young children, with evidence of sacrificial rituals, have been found in SardiniaPelasgians offered a sacrifice of every tenth child during difficult times. Syrians sacrificed children to Jupiter and Juno. Many remains of children have been found in Gezer excavations with signs of sacrifice. Child skeletons with the marks of sacrifice have been found also in Egypt dating 950–720 BCE.[citation needed] In Carthage “[child] sacrifice in the ancient world reached its infamous zenith”.[attribution needed][8]:324 Besides the Carthaginians, other Phoenicians, and the CanaanitesMoabites and Sepharvites offered their first-born as a sacrifice to their gods.

Ancient Egypt

In Egyptian households, at all social levels, children of both sexes were valued and there is no evidence of infanticide.[15] The religion of the Ancient Egyptians forbade infanticide and during the Greco-Roman period they rescued abandoned babies from manure heaps, a common method of infanticide by Greeks or Romans, and were allowed to either adopt them as foundling or raise them as slaves, often giving them names such as “copro -” to memorialise their rescue.[16] Strabo considered it a peculiarity of the Egyptians that every child must be reared.[17] Diodorus indicates infanticide was a punishable offence.[18] Egypt was heavily dependent on the annual flooding of the Nile to irrigate the land and in years of low inundation severe famine could occur with breakdowns in social order resulting, notably between 930–1070 AD and 1180–1350 AD. Instances of cannibalism are recorded during these periods but it is unknown if this happened during the pharaonic era of Ancient Egypt.[19] Beatrix Midant-Reynes describes human sacrifice as having occurred at Abydos in the early dynastic period (c. 3150–2850 BCE),[20] while Jan Assmann asserts there is no clear evidence of human sacrifice ever happening in Ancient Egypt.[21]

Carthage

According to Shelby Brown, Carthaginians, descendants of the Phoenicians, sacrificed infants to their gods.[22] Charred bones of hundreds of infants have been found in Carthaginian archaeological sites. One such area harbored as many as 20,000 burial urns.[22]Skeptics suggest that the bodies of children found in Carthaginian and Phoenician cemeteries were merely the cremated remains of children that died naturally.[23]

Plutarch (c. 46–120 AD) mentions the practice, as do TertullianOrosius, Diodorus Siculus and Philo. The Hebrew Bible also mentions what appears to be child sacrifice practiced at a place called the Tophet (from the Hebrew taph or toph, to burn) by the Canaanites. Writing in the 3rd century BCE, Kleitarchos, one of the historians of Alexander the Great, described that the infants rolled into the flaming pit. Diodorus Siculus wrote that babies were roasted to death inside the burning pit of the god Baal Hamon, a bronze statue.[24][25]

Greece and Rome

Medea killing her sons, by Eugène Ferdinand Victor Delacroix (1862).

The historical Greeks considered the practice of adult and child sacrifice barbarous,[26] however, the exposure of newborns was widely practiced in ancient Greece, it was even advocated by Aristotle in the case of congenital deformity — “As to the exposure of children, let there be a law that no deformed child shall live.”[27] In Greece, the decision to expose a child was typically the father’s, although in Sparta the decision was made by a group of elders.[28] Exposure was the preferred method of disposal, as that act in itself was not considered to be murder; moreover, the exposed child technically had a chance of being rescued by the gods or any passersby.[29] This very situation was a recurring motif in Greek mythology.[30] To notify the neighbors of a birth of a child, a woolen strip was hung over the front door to indicate a female baby and an olive branch to indicate a boy had been born. Families did not always keep their new child. After a woman had a baby, she would show it to her husband. If the husband accepted it, it would live, but if he refused it, it would die. Babies would often be rejected if they were illegitimate, unhealthy or deformed, the wrong sex, or too great a burden on the family. These babies would not be directly killed, but put in a clay pot or jar and deserted outside the front door or on the roadway. In ancient Greek religion, this practice took the responsibility away from the parents because the child would die of natural causes, for example hunger, asphyxiation or exposure to the elements.

The practice was prevalent in ancient Rome, as well. Philo was the first philosopher to speak out against it.[31] A letter from a Roman citizen to his sister, or a pregnant wife from her husband,[32] dating from 1 BC, demonstrates the casual nature with which infanticide was often viewed:

“I am still in Alexandria. … I beg and plead with you to take care of our little child, and as soon as we receive wages, I will send them to you. In the meantime, if (good fortune to you!) you give birth, if it is a boy, let it live; if it is a girl, expose it.”,[33][34] “If you give birth to a boy, keep it. If it is a girl, expose it. Try not to worry. I’ll send the money as soon as we get paid.”[35]

In some periods of Roman history it was traditional for a newborn to be brought to the pater familias, the family patriarch, who would then decide whether the child was to be kept and raised, or left to die by exposure.[36] The Twelve Tables of Roman law obliged him to put to death a child that was visibly deformed. The concurrent practices of slavery and infanticide contributed to the “background noise” of the crises during the Republic.[36]

Infanticide became a capital offense in Roman law in 374 AD, but offenders were rarely if ever prosecuted.[37]

According to mythology, Romulus and Remus, twin infant sons of the war god Mars, survived near-infanticide after being tossed into the Tiber River. According to the myth, they were raised by wolves, and later founded the city of Rome.

Judaism

In this depiction of the Binding of Isaac by Julius Schnorr von Karolsfeld, 1860, Abraham is shone not sacrificing Isaac.

Judaism prohibits infanticide, and has for some time, dating back to at least early Common Era. Roman historians wrote about the ideas and customs of other peoples, which often diverged from their own. Tacitus recorded that the Jews “regard it as a crime to kill any late-born children”.[38] Josephus, whose works give an important insight into 1st-century Judaism, wrote that God “forbids women to cause abortion of what is begotten, or to destroy it afterward”.[39]

Pagan European tribes

In his book GermaniaTacitus wrote in 98 AD that the ancient Germanic tribes enforced a similar prohibition. He found such mores remarkable and commented: “[The Germani] hold it shameful to kill any unwanted child.” It has become clear over the millennia, though, that Tacitus’ description was inaccurate; the consensus of modern scholarship significantly differs. John Boswell believed that in ancient Germanic tribes unwanted children were exposed, usually in the forest.[40]:218 “It was the custom of the [Teutonic] pagans, that if they wanted to kill a son or daughter, they would be killed before they had been given any food.”[40]:211 Usually children born out of wedlock were disposed that way.

In his highly influential Pre-historic TimesJohn Lubbock described burnt bones indicating the practice of child sacrifice in pagan Britain.[41]

The last canto, Marjatan poika (Son of Marjatta), of Finnish national epic Kalevala describes an assumed infanticide. Väinämöinen orders the infant bastard son of Marjatta to be drowned in marsh.

The Íslendingabók, a main source for the early history of Iceland, recounts that on the Conversion of Iceland to Christianity in 1000 it was provided – in order to make the transition more palatable to Pagans – that “the old laws allowing exposure of newborn children will remain in force”. However, this provision – like other concessions made at the time to the Pagans – was abolished some years later.

Christianity

Christianity rejects infanticide. The Teachings of the Apostles or Didache said “thou shalt not kill a child by abortion, neither shalt thou slay it when born”.[42] The Epistle of Barnabas stated an identical command, both thus conflating abortion and infanticide.[43] Apologists TertullianAthenagorasMinucius FelixJustin Martyr and Lactantius also maintained that exposing a baby to death was a wicked act.[4] In 318 ADConstantine I considered infanticide a crime, and in 374 ADValentinian I mandated the rearing of all children (exposing babies, especially girls, was still common). The Council of Constantinople declared that infanticide was homicide, and in 589 AD, the Third Council of Toledo took measures against the custom of killing their own children.[37]

Middle Ages

Whereas theologians and clerics preached sparing their lives, newborn abandonment continued as registered in both the literature record and in legal documents.[5]:16 According to William L. Langer, exposure in the Middle Ages “was practiced on gigantic scale with absolute impunity, noticed by writers with most frigid indifference”.[44]:355–356 At the end of the 12th century, notes Richard Trexler, Roman women threw their newborns into the Tiber river in daylight.[45]

Unlike other European regions, in the Middle Ages the German mother had the right to expose the newborn.[46] In GotlandSweden, children were also sacrificed.[47]

In the High Middle Ages, abandoning unwanted children finally eclipsed infanticide.[citation needed] Unwanted children were left at the door of church or abbey, and the clergy was assumed to take care of their upbringing. This practice also gave rise to the first orphanages.

However, very high sex ratios were common in even late medieval Europe, which may indicate sex-selective infanticide.[48]

Arabia

Some Muslim sources allege that pre-Islamic Arabian society practiced infanticide as a form of “post-partum birth control”.[49] The word waʾd was used to describe the practice.[50] These sources state that infanticide was practiced either out of destitution (thus practiced on males and females alike), or as “disappointment and fear of social disgrace felt by a father upon the birth of a daughter”.[49]

Some authors believe that there is little evidence that infanticide was prevalent in pre-Islamic Arabia or early Muslim history, except for the case of the Tamim tribe, who practiced it during severe famine according to Islamic sources.[51] Others state that “female infanticide was common all over Arabia during this period of time” (pre-Islamic Arabia), especially by burying alive a female newborn.[8]:59[52] A tablet discovered in Yemen, forbidding the people of a certain town from engaging in the practice, is the only written reference to infanticide within the peninsula in pre-Islamic times.[53]

Islam

Infanticide is explicitly prohibited by the Qur’an.[54] “And do not kill your children for fear of poverty; We give them sustenance and yourselves too; surely to kill them is a great wrong.”[55] Together with polytheism and homicide, infanticide is regarded as a grave sin (see 6:151 and 60:12).[49] Infanticide is also implicitly denounced in the story of Pharaoh’s slaughter of the male children of Israelites (see 2:497:1277:14114:628:440:25).[49]

Ukraine and Russia

Femme Russe abandonnant ses enfants à des loupsCharles-Michel Geoffroy (fr), 1845

Infanticide may have been practiced as human sacrifice, as part of the pagan cult of PerunIbn Fadlan describes sacrificial practices at the time of his trip to Kiev Rus (present day Ukraine) in 921–922, and describes an incident of a woman voluntarily sacrificing her life as part of a funeral rite for a prominent leader, but makes no mention of infanticide. The Primary Chronicle, one of the most important literary sources before the 12th century, indicates that human sacrifice to idols may have been introduced by Vladimir the Great in 980. The same Vladimir the Great formally converted Kiev Rus into Christianity just 8 years later, but pagan cults continued to be practiced clandestinely in remote areas as late as the 13th century.

In Kamchatka, babies were killed and thrown to the dogs.[56]:105 American explorer George Kennan noted that among the Koryaks, a Mongoloid people of north-eastern Siberia, infanticide was still common in the nineteenth century. One of a pair of twins was always sacrificed.[57]

Georgia

The Svans killed newborn females by filling their mouths with hot ashes.[56]:106

United Kingdom

Infanticide (as a crime) gained both popular and bureaucratic significance in Victorian Britain. By the mid 19th century, in the context of criminal lunacy and the insanity defence, killing one’s own child(ren) attracted ferocious debate, as the role of women in society was defined by motherhood, and it was thought that any woman who murdered her own child was by definition insane and could not be held responsible for her actions. Several cases were subsequently highlighted during the Royal Commission on Capital Punishment (1864-66), as a particular felony where an effective avoidance of the death penalty had informally begun.

The New Poor Law Act of 1834 ended parish relief for unmarried mothers and allowed fathers of illegitimate children to avoid paying for “child support”.[58] Unmarried mothers then received little assistance and the poor were left with the option either entering the workhouse, prostitution, infanticide or abortion. By the middle of the century infanticide was common for social reasons, such as illegitimacy, and the introduction of child life insurance additionally encouraged some women to kill their children for gain. Examples are Mary Ann Cotton, who murdered many of her 15 children as well as 3 husbands, Margaret Waters, the ‘Brixton Baby Farmer’, a professional baby-farmer who was found guilty of infanticide in 1870, Jessie King hanged in 1889, Amelia Dyer, the ‘Angel Maker’, who murdered over 400 babies in her care, and Ada Chard-Williams, a baby farmer who was later hanged at Newgate prison.

The Times reported that 67 infants were murdered in London in 1861 and 150 more recorded as “found dead”, many of which were found on the streets. Another 250 were suffocated, half of them not recorded as accidental deaths. The report noted that “infancy in London has to creep into life in the midst of foes.”[59]

Recording a birth as a still-birth was also another way of concealing infanticide because still-births did not need to be registered until 1926 and they did not need to be buried in public cemeteries.[60] In 1895 the Sun (London) published an article “Massacre of the Innocents” highlighting the dangers of baby-farming, in the recording of stillbirths and quoting Braxton-Hicks, the London Coroner, on lying-in houses: “I have not the slightest doubt that a large amount of crime is covered by the expression `still-birth’. There are a large number of cases of what are called newly-born children, which are found all over England, more especially in London and large towns, abandoned in streets, rivers, on commons, and so on.” He continued “a great deal of that crime is due to what are called lying-in houses, which are not registered, or under the supervision of that sort, where the people who act as midwives constantly, as soon as the child is born, either drop it into a pail of water or smother it with a damp cloth. It is a very common thing, also, to find that they bash their heads on the floor and break their skulls.”[61]

The last British woman to be executed for infanticide of her own child was Rebecca Smith, who was hanged in Wiltshire in 1849.

The Infant Life Protection Act of 1897 required local authorities to be notified within 48 hours of changes in custody or the death of children under seven years. Under the Children’s Act of 1908 “no infant could be kept in a home that was so unfit and so overcrowded as to endanger its health, and no infant could be kept by an unfit nurse who threatened, by neglect or abuse, its proper care and maintenance.”

Asia

China

Burying Babies in China (p.40, March 1865, XXII)[62]

Short of execution, the harshest penalties were imposed on practitioners of infanticide by the legal codes of the Qin dynasty and Han dynasty of ancient China.[63]

Marco Polo, the explorer, saw newborns exposed in Manzi.[64] China’s society practiced sex selective infanticide. Philosopher Han Fei Tzu, a member of the ruling aristocracy of the 3rd century BC, who developed a school of law, wrote: “As to children, a father and mother when they produce a boy congratulate one another, but when they produce a girl they put it to death.”[65] Among the Hakka people, and in YunnanAnhuiSichuanJiangxi and Fujian a method of killing the baby was to put her into a bucket of cold water, which was called “baby water”.[66]

Infanticide was known in China as early as the 3rd century BC, and, by the time of the Song dynasty (960–1279 AD), it was widespread in some provinces. Buddhist belief in transmigration allowed poor residents of the country to kill their newborn children if they felt unable to care for them, hoping that they would be reborn in better circumstances. Furthermore, some Chinese did not consider newborn children fully “human”, and saw “life” beginning at some point after the sixth month after birth.[67]

Contemporary writers from the Song dynasty note that, in Hubei and Fujian provinces, residents would only keep three sons and two daughters (among poor farmers, two sons and one daughter), and kill all babies beyond that number at birth.[68] Initially the sex of the child was only one factor to consider. By the time of the Ming Dynasty, however (1368–1644), male infanticide was becoming increasingly uncommon. The prevalence of female infanticide remained high much longer. The magnitude of this practice is subject to some dispute; however, one commonly quoted estimate is that, by late Qing, between one fifth and one quarter of all newborn girls, across the entire social spectrum, were victims of infanticide. If one includes excess mortality among female children under 10 (ascribed to gender-differential neglect), the share of victims rises to one third.[69][70]

Scottish Physician John Dudgeon, who worked in Beijing, China, during the Qing Dynasty said that in China, “Infanticide does not prevail to the extent so generally believed among us, and in the north it does not exist at all.”[71]

Sex ratio at birth in mainland China, males per 100 females, 1980-2010.

Gender-selected abortion, abandonment, and infanticide are illegal in present-day China. Nevertheless, the US State Department,[72] and the human rights organization Amnesty International[73] have all declared that China’s family planning programs, called the one child policy, contribute to infanticide.[74][75][76] The sex gap between males and females aged 0–19 years old was estimated to be 25 million in 2010 by the United Nations Population Fund.[77]

Japan

Since feudal Japan the common slang for infanticide was “mabiki” (間引き) which means to pull plants from an overcrowded garden. A typical method in Japan was smothering through wet paper on the baby’s mouth and nose.[78] It became common as a method of population control. Farmers would often kill their second or third sons. Daughters were usually spared, as they could be married off, sold off as servants or prostitutes, or sent off to become geishas.[79] Mabiki persisted in the 19th century and early 20th century.[80] To bear twins was perceived as barbarous and unlucky and efforts were made to hide or kill one or both twins.[81]

India

Hindu Woman carrying her child to be drowned in the River Ganges at Bengal (1852)[82]

Hindoo Mother Sacrificing her infant (November 1853, X, p.120)[83]

Female infanticide of newborn girls was systematic in feudatory Rajputs in South Asia for illegitimate female children during the Middle Ages. According to Firishta, as soon as the illegitimate female child was born she was held “in one hand, and a knife in the other, that any person who wanted a wife might take her now, otherwise she was immediately put to death”.[84] The practice of female infanticide was also common among the Kutch, Kehtri, Nagar, Bengal, Miazed, Kalowries in India inhabitants, and also among the Sindh in British India.[85]

It was not uncommon that parents threw a child to the sharks in the Ganges River as a sacrificial offering. The British colonists were unable to outlaw the custom until the beginnings of the 19th century.[86]:78

According to social activists, female infanticide has remained a problem in India into the 21st century, with both NGOs and the government conducting awareness campaigns to combat it.[87] In India female infanticide is more common than the killing of male offspring, due to sex-selective infanticide.[88] In China for example, the sex gap between males and females aged 0–19 years old was estimated to be 25 million in 2010 by the United Nations Population Fund.[77]

Africa

In some African societies some neonates were killed because of beliefs in evil omens or because they were considered unlucky. Twins were usually put to death in Arebo; as well as by the Nama people of South West Africa; in the Lake Victoria Nyanza region; by the Tswana in Portuguese East Africa; in some parts of IgbolandNigeria twins were sometimes abandoned in a forest at birth (as depicted in Things Fall Apart), oftentimes one twin was killed or hidden by midwives of wealthier mothers; and by the !Kung people of the Kalahari Desert.[8]:160–161 The KikuyuKenya‘s most populous ethnic group, practiced ritual killing of twins.[89]

Infanticide is rooted in the old traditions and beliefs prevailing all over the country. A survey conducted by Disability Rights International found that 45% women interviewed by them in Kenya were pressured to kill their children born with disabilities. The pressure being much higher in the rural areas, with every second mother being forced out of three.[90]

Australia

Literature suggests infanticide may have occurred reasonably commonly among Indigenous Australians, in all areas of Australia prior to European settlement. Infanticide may have continued to occur quite often up until the 1960s. An 1866 issue of The Australian News for Home Readers informed readers that “the crime of infanticide is so prevalent amongst the natives that it is rare to see an infant”.[91]

Author Susanna de Vries in 2007 told a newspaper that her accounts of Aboriginal violence, including infanticide, were censored by publishers in the 1980s and 1990s. She told reporters that the censorship “stemmed from guilt over the stolen children question”.[92] Keith Windschuttle weighed in on the conversation, saying this type of censorship started in the 1970s.[92] In the same article Louis Nowra suggested that infanticide in customary Aboriginal law may have been because it was difficult to keep an abundant number of Aboriginal children alive; there were life-and-death decisions modern-day Australians no longer have to face.[92]

South Australia and Victoria

According to William D. Rubinstein, “Nineteenth-century European observers of Aboriginal life in South Australia and Victoria reported that about 30% of Aboriginal infants were killed at birth.”[93]

James Dawson wrote a passage about infanticide among Indigenous people in the western district of Victoria, which stated that “Twins are as common among them as among Europeans; but as food is occasionally very scarce, and a large family troublesome to move about, it is lawful and customary to destroy the weakest twin child, irrespective of sex. It is usual also to destroy those which are malformed.”[94]

He also wrote “When a woman has children too rapidly for the convenience and necessities of the parents, she makes up her mind to let one be killed, and consults with her husband which it is to be. As the strength of a tribe depends more on males than females, the girls are generally sacrificed. The child is put to death and buried, or burned without ceremony; not, however, by its father or mother, but by relatives. No one wears mourning for it. Sickly children are never killed on account of their bad health, and are allowed to die naturally.”[94]

Western Australia

In 1937, a reverend in the Kimberley offered a “baby bonus” to Aboriginal families as a deterrent against infanticide and to increase the birthrate of the local Indigenous population.[95]

Australian Capital Territory

Canberran journalist in 1927 wrote of the “cheapness of life” to the Aboriginal people local to the Canberra area 100 years before. “If drought or bush fires had devastated the country and curtailed food supplies, babies got short shift. Ailing babies, too would not be kept” he wrote.[96]

New South Wales

A bishop wrote in 1928 that it was common for Aboriginal Australians to restrict the size of their tribal groups, including by infanticide, so that the food resources of the tribal area may be sufficient for them.[97]

Northern Territory

Annette Hamilton, a professor of anthropology at Macquarie University who carried out research in the Aboriginal community of Maningrida in Arnhem Land during the 1960s wrote that prior to that time part-European babies born to Aboriginal mothers had not been allowed to live, and that ‘mixed-unions are frowned on by men and women alike as a matter of principle’.[98]

North AmericaInuit

There is no agreement about the actual estimates of the frequency of newborn female infanticide in the Inuit population. Carmel Schrire mentions diverse studies ranging from 15–50% to 80%.[99]

Polar Inuit (Inughuit) killed the child by throwing him or her into the sea.[100] There is even a legend in Inuit mythology, “The Unwanted Child”, where a mother throws her child into the fjord.

The Yukon and the Mahlemuit tribes of Alaska exposed the female newborns by first stuffing their mouths with grass before leaving them to die.[101] In Arctic Canada the Inuit exposed their babies on the ice and left them to die.[44]:354

Female Inuit infanticide disappeared in the 1930s and 1940s after contact with the Western cultures from the South.[102]

Canada[

The Handbook of North American Indians reports infanticide among the Dene Natives and those of the Mackenzie Mountains.[103][104]

Native Americans

In the Eastern Shoshone there was a scarcity of Indian women as a result of female infanticide.[105] For the Maidu Native Americans twins were so dangerous that they not only killed them, but the mother as well.[106] In the region known today as southern Texas, the Mariame Indians practiced infanticide of females on a large scale. Wives had to be obtained from neighboring groups.[107]

Mexico

Bernal Díaz recounted that, after landing on the Veracruz coast, they came across a temple dedicated to Tezcatlipoca. “That day they had sacrificed two boys, cutting open their chests and offering their blood and hearts to that accursed idol”.[108] In The Conquest of New Spain Díaz describes more child sacrifices in the towns before the Spaniards reached the large Aztec city Tenochtitlan.

South America

Although academic data of infanticides among the indigenous people in South America is not as abundant as that of North America, the estimates seem to be similar.

Brazi

The Tapirapé indigenous people of Brazil allowed no more than three children per woman, and no more than two of the same sex. If the rule was broken infanticide was practiced.[109] The Bororo killed all the newborns that did not appear healthy enough. Infanticide is also documented in the case of the Korubo people in the Amazon.[110]

The Yanomami men killed children while raiding enemy villages.[111] Helena Valero, a Brazilian woman kidnapped by Yanomami warriors in the 1930s, witnessed a Karawetari raid on her tribe:

“They killed so many. I was weeping for fear and for pity but there was nothing I could do. They snatched the children from their mothers to kill them, while the others held the mothers tightly by the arms and wrists as they stood up in a line. All the women wept. … The men began to kill the children; little ones, bigger ones, they killed many of them.”.[111]

Peru, Paraguay and Bolivia

While qhapaq hucha was practiced in the Peruvian large cities, child sacrifice in the pre-Columbian tribes of the region is less documented. However, even today studies on the Aymara Indians reveal high incidences of mortality among the newborn, especially female deaths, suggesting infanticide.[112] The Abipones, a small tribe of Guaycuruan stock, of about 5,000 by the end of the 18th century in Paraguay, practiced systematic infanticide; with never more than two children being reared in one family. The Machigenga killed their disabled children. Infanticide among the Chaco in Paraguay was estimated as high as 50% of all newborns in that tribe, who were usually buried.[113] The infanticidal custom had such roots among the Ayoreo in Bolivia and Paraguay that it persisted until the late 20th century.[114]

Modern times

Infanticide has become less common in the Western world. The frequency has been estimated to be 1 in approximately 3000 to 5000 children of all ages[115] and 2.1 per 100,000 newborns per year.[116] It is thought that infanticide today continues at a much higher rate in areas of extremely high poverty and overpopulation, such as parts of China and India.[117] Female infants, then and even now, are particularly vulnerable, a factor in sex-selective infanticide. Recent estimates suggest that over 100 million girls and women are ‘missing’ in Asia.[118]

Benin[edit]

In spite of the fact that it is illegal, in BeninWest Africa, parents secretly continue with infanticidal customs.[119]

North Korea

According to “The Hidden Gulag” published by the Committee for Human Rights in North Korea, the People’s Republic of China returns all illegal immigrants from North Korea which usually imprisons them in a short term facility. Women who are suspected of being impregnated by Chinese fathers are subjected to forced abortions; babies born alive are killed, sometimes by exposure or being buried alive.[120]

China

There have been some accusations that infanticide occurs in the People’s Republic of China due to the one-child policy.[121] In the 1990s, a certain stretch of the Yangtze River was known to be a common site of infanticide by drowning, until government projects made access to it more difficult. Recent studies suggest that over 40 million girls and women are ‘missing’ in China (Klasen and Wink 2003).[122]

India

The practice has continued in some rural areas of India.[123][124] Infanticide is illegal in India.[125]

According to a recent report by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) up to 50 million girls and women are missing in India‘s population as a result of systematic sex discrimination and sex selective abortions.[126]

Pakistan

Killings of newborn babies have been on the rise in Pakistan, corresponding to an increase in poverty across the country.[127] More than 1,000 infants, mostly girls, were killed or abandoned to die in Pakistan in 2009 according to a Pakistani charity organization.[128]

The Edhi Foundation found 1,210 dead babies in 2010. Many more are abandoned and left at the doorsteps of mosques. As a result, Edhi centers feature signs “Do not murder, lay them here.” Though female infanticide is punishable by life in prison, such crimes are rarely prosecuted.[127]

Oceania

In November 2008 it was reported that in Agibu and Amosa villages of Gimi region of Eastern Highlands province of Papua New Guinea where tribal fighting in the region of Gimi has been going on since 1986 (many of the clashes arising over claims of sorcery) women had agreed that if they stopped producing males, allowing only female babies to survive, their tribe’s stock of boys would go down and there would be no men in the future to fight. They agreed to have all newborn male babies killed. It is not known how many male babies were killed by being smothered, but it had reportedly happened to all males over a 10-year period and probably was still happening.

England and Wales

In England and Wales there were typically 30 to 50 homicides per million children less than 1 year old between 1982 and 1996.[129] The younger the infant, the higher the risk.[129] The rate for children 1 to 5 years was around 10 per million children.[129] The homicide rate of infants less than 1 year is significantly higher than for the general population.[129]

In English law infanticide is established as a distinct offence by the Infanticide Acts. Defined as the killing of a child under 12 months of age by their mother, the effect of the Acts are to establish a partial defence to charges of murder.[130]

United States

In 1983, the United States ranked eleventh for infants under 1 year killed, and fourth for those killed from 1 through 14 years (the latter case not necessarily involving filicide).[131] In the U.S. over six hundred children were killed by their parents in 1983.[132]

In the United States the infanticide rate during the first hour of life outside the womb dropped from 1.41 per 100,000 during 1963 to 1972 to 0.44 per 100,000 for 1974 to 1983; the rates during the first month after birth also declined, whereas those for older infants rose during this time.[133] The legalization of abortion, which was completed in 1973, was the most important factor in the decline in neonatal mortality during the period from 1964 to 1977, according to a study by economists associated with the National Bureau of Economic Research.[133][134]

Canada

In Canada 114 cases of infanticide by a parent were reported during 1964–1968.[135] There is ongoing debate in the Canadian legal and political fields about whether section 237 of the Criminal Code, which creates the specific offence and partial defence of infanticide in Canadian law, should be amended or abolished altogether.[136]

Spain

From 2013 to March 2018, 28 infanticides cases done by 22 mothers and three stepmothers were reported in Spain.[137][138] The most famous case was the murder of Bernardo González Parra in 1910 perpetrated by Francisco Leona Romero, Julio Hernández Rodríguez, Francisco Ortega el Moruno and Agustina Rodríguez.[139][140]

Modern proposals

In a 2012 article in the Journal of Medical Ethics, a philosopher and a bioethicist jointly proposed that infanticide be legalized, calling it “after-birth abortion”, and claiming that both “the fetus and the newborn are potential persons”. Many replies were published to this article.[141]

Child euthanasia

Euthanasia applied to children that are gravely ill or that suffer from significant birth defects is legal in the Netherlands under rigidly controlled conditions, but controversial.[142] Some critics have compared child euthanasia to infanticide.

Explanations for the practice

There are various reasons for infanticide. Neonaticide typically has different patterns and causes than for killing of older infants. Traditional neonaticide is often related to economic necessity – inability to provide for the infant.

In the United Kingdom and the United States, older infants are typically killed for reasons related to child abusedomestic violence or mental illness.[129] For infants older than one day, younger infants are more at risk, and boys are more at risk than girls.[129] Risk factors for the parent include: Family history of violence, violence in current relationship, history of abuse or neglect of children, and personality disorder and/or depression.[129]

Religious

In the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, “loopholes” were invented by those who wanted to avoid the damnation that was promised by most Christian doctrine as a penalty of suicide. One famous example of someone who wished to end their life but avoid the eternity in hell was Christina Johansdotter (died 1740). She was a Swedish murderer who killed a child in Stockholm with the sole purpose of being executed. She is an example of those who seek suicide through execution by committing a murder. It was a common act, frequently targeting young children or infants as they were believed to be free from sin, thus going straight to heaven.[143]

In 1888, Lieut. F. Elton reported that Ugi beach people in the Solomon Islands killed their infants at birth by burying them, and women were also said to practice abortion. They reported that it was too much trouble to raise a child, and instead preferred to buy one from the bush people.[144]

Economic

Many historians believe the reason to be primarily economic, with more children born than the family is prepared to support. In societies that are patrilineal and patrilocal, the family may choose to allow more sons to live and kill some daughters, as the former will support their birth family until they die, whereas the latter will leave economically and geographically to join their husband’s family, possibly only after the payment of a burdensome dowry price. Thus the decision to bring up a boy is more economically rewarding to the parents.[8]:362–368 However, this does not explain why infanticide would occur equally among rich and poor, nor why it would be as frequent during decadent periods of the Roman Empire as during earlier, less affluent, periods.[8]:28–34, 187–192

Before the appearance of effective contraception, infanticide was a common occurrence in ancient brothels. Unlike usual infanticide – where historically girls have been more likely to be killed – prostitutes in certain areas preferred to kill their male offspring.[145]

UK 18th and 19th century

Instances of infanticide in Britain in 18th and 19th centuries is often attributed to the economic position of the women, with juries committing “pious perjury” in many subsequent murder cases. The knowledge of the difficulties faced in the 18th century by those women who attempted to keep their children can be seen as reason for juries to show compassion. If the woman chose to keep the child, society was not set up to ease the pressure placed upon the woman, legally, socially or economically.[146]

In mid-18th century Britain there was assistance available for women who were not able to raise their children. The Foundling Hospital opened in 1756 and was able to take in some of the illegitimate children. However, the conditions within the hospital caused Parliamentto withdraw funding and the governors to live off of their own incomes.[147] This resulted in a stringent entrance policy, with the committee requiring that the hospital:

Will not receive a child that is more than a year old, nor the child of a domestic servant, nor any child whose father can be compelled to maintain it.[148]

Once a mother had admitted her child to the hospital, the hospital did all it could to ensure that the parent and child were not re-united.[148]

MacFarlane argues in Illegitimacy and Illegitimates in Britain (1980) that English society greatly concerned itself with the burden that a bastard child places upon its communities and had gone to some lengths to ensure that the father of the child is identified in order to maintain its well-being.[149] Assistance could be gained through maintenance payments from the father, however, this was capped “at a miserable 2 s and 6 d a week”.[150] If the father fell behind with the payments he could only be asked “to pay a maximum of 13 weeks arrears”.[150]

Despite the accusations of some that women were getting a free hand-out there is evidence that many women were far from receiving adequate assistance from their parish. “Within Leeds in 1822 … relief was limited to 1 s per week”.[151] Sheffield required women to enter the workhouse, whereas Halifax gave no relief to the women who required it. The prospect of entering the workhouse was certainly something to be avoided. Lionel Rose quotes Dr Joseph Rogers in Massacre of the Innocents … (1986). Rogers, who was employed by a London workhouse in 1856 stated that conditions in the nursery were ‘wretchedly damp and miserable … [and] … overcrowded with young mothers and their infants’.[152]

The loss of social standing for a servant girl was a particular problem in respect of producing a bastard child as they relied upon a good character reference in order to maintain their job and more importantly, to get a new or better job. In a large number of trials for the crime of infanticide, it is the servant girl that stood accused.[153] The disadvantage of being a servant girl is that they had to live to the social standards of their superiors or risk dismissal and no references. Whereas within other professions, such as in the factory, the relationship between employer and employee was much more anonymous and the mother would be better able to make other provisions, such as employing a minder.[154] The result of the lack of basic social care in Britain in the 18th and 19th century is the numerous accounts in court records of women, particularly servant girls, standing trial for the murder of their child.[155]

There may have been no specific offence of infanticide in England before about 1623 because infanticide was a matter for the by ecclesiastical courts, possibly because infant mortality from natural causes was high (about 15% or one in six).[156]

Thereafter the accusation of the suppression of bastard children by lewd mothers was a crime incurring the presumption of guilt.[157]

The Infanticide Acts are several laws. That of 1922 made the killing of an infant child by its mother during the early months of life as a lesser crime than murder. The acts of 1938 and 1939 abolished the earlier act, but introduced the idea that postpartum depression was legally to be regarded as a form of diminished responsibility.

Population control

Marvin Harris estimated that among Paleolithic hunters 23–50% of newborn children were killed. He argued that the goal was to preserve the 0.001% population growth of that time.[158]:15 He also wrote that female infanticide may be a form of population control.[158]:5Population control is achieved not only by limiting the number of potential mothers; increased fighting among men for access to relatively scarce wives would also lead to a decline in population. For example, on the Melanesian island of Tikopia infanticide was used to keep a stable population in line with its