Abortion: The Facts

Though very controversial abortion is a rather large part of our reality and has been for a very long time. Ancient tribes would cause abuse to the woman’s stomach area and also caused premature births by excessive horseback riding. The infant would then be killed or left there to die. During this time, the mothers often died during giving birth. The question of the legality of abortion varied from culture to culture. It was and still is widely thought to be life whether still in the mother or born. Many years ago, they had no way to perform early term abortions. In those days, the baby was delivered prematurely and it would be finished by killing the infant.

The methods of abortion that were more modern didn’t really come around until the nineteenth century. Laws soon began to be created to protect the fetuses. The American Medical Association adopted a resolution condemning “the procuring of abortion, at every period of gestation, except as necessary for preserving the life of either mother or child.” Abortion was practiced under different names. In 1900 one in every six pregnancies in America were terminated. Soon in the early 1900’s laws became more harsh making it even more unacceptable. Still for years, they had illegal abortions performed by doctors and also by people that weren’t medically trained. This included the women giving themselves abortions and family members. In the late 1960’s the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League started gaining support while the number of illegal abortions increased. That organization said that abortion doesn’t hurt the fetuses and that child abuse, illegal abortion, and teen pregnancies would decrease if it were made legal. The Supreme Court issued the verdict of Roe vs. Wade made abortion legal in most of the United States in 1973. Despite what NARAL had said, since the legalization of abortion-child abuse, illegal abortion, and teen pregnancy rates have increased.

Recently, the major issue in the states is partial birth abortions. Partial birth abortions are late term abortions when a baby is partially delivered and then killed. Many states have tried to make this illegal, but they have been mostly unsuccessful. It’s believed that partial birth abortions are rare. That is untrue. Thousands of them are performed every year and most of them are not health based reasons.

Embryos are biologically complete humans from the exact time of conception. The only thing is that they develop during the term of pregnancy. The fetus has the ability to live without it’s mother during the end of it’s second trimester. In fact, by the end of the first trimester the fetus has a beating heart. They also have many organs that are completed.

There are many side effects for the women having the abortions. We’ll cover them mainly because many women aren’t informed about the side effects. Abortion can cause infertility, making it impossible to have kids later in life. It can cause uterine bleeding, prolonged bleeding or spotting lasting more than two weeks. African American women who have abortions are 4.7 times more likely to get breast cancer. The side effects that happen more often include intense bleeding, cervical infections, uteral infections or rupture, reduced fertility, breast cancer, cervical laceration, blood clotting, hemorrhaging, seizures, comas, and death. When it comes to mental side effects most women have negative psychological side effects caused by their abortion. A study conducted by a doctor at the University of Minnesota. She stated “After 5-10 years 54% of the mothers who had an abortion had nightmares, 81% had preoccupation with their aborted child, 35% had perceived visitations with their child, and 96% feel they had taken a human life.” Oddly enough it is said that 245,000 women that have had abortions are members of National Right to Life.

Let’s cover the many methods of abortion. There are three main categories. Invading the uterus and terminating the fetuses life by using instruments that enter the uterus through the cervix, drugs that terminate the fetuses life and then induce the labor of the stillborn baby, and abdominal surgery. First we’ll talk about suction aspiration. This method is most common and happens during the first twelve weeks of pregnancy. A local anesthesia is given to the mother and soon her cervix is dilated. A hollow tube with a sharp tip called a suction curette is inserted into the womb. They then connect the curette to a vacuum machine that is 29 times more powerful than a household vacuum cleaner. It tears the fetus and placenta into small pieces that are sucked through the tube into a bottle and thrown away.

Another method that is similar to the previously mentioned method is called Dilation and Curettage. Instead they insert a hook shaped knife which cuts the baby into pieces. The pieces are then scraped out through the cervix and thrown away. A method that is used up to 18 weeks gestation is called Dilation and Evacuation. A pair of forceps is inserted into the womb to grasp part of the fetus. The teeth of the forceps twist and tear the bones of the fetus. This process is repeated until complete and the fetus is removed. The spine must be snapped and the skull crushed to remove the dead fetus.

After four months another method called Salt Poisoning (also known as Saline Injection) can be used. When enough fluid has accumulated a long needle injects a strong salt solution through the mother’s abdomen into the baby’s sac. The baby is poisoned by it. It also burns off the outer layer of skin. It takes over an hour for the fetus to die from this. Within 24 hours, a labor will happen and the mother will give birth to the dead or dying fetus. There have been cases where the babies are still alive. They’re left to die and some have even survived and been adopted.

Next type of abortion is Prostaglandin Chemical Abortion. This chemical abortion was developed by the Upjohn Pharmaceutical Company. It causes the uterus to contract intensely and pushes the baby out. These contractions are more violent than natural contractions, so the fetus is generally killed by them. It is said that some have even been decapitated. It’s also known to be unsuccessful in terminating the pregnancies many times.
Used mainly in the last three months of pregnancy there is a method of abortion called a hysterotomy or cesarean section. The doctor enters the womb surgically through the wall of the abdomen. This technique is similar to the c-section delivery. The only difference is that the umbilical cord is cut while the baby is still inside the womb. This cuts off the fetuses oxygen supply and causes it to suffocate. In some cases, the fetus is removed alive and left to die.

According to the National Center for Health Statistics abortion is the most frequent surgical operation. Fifty percent of women who have abortions use it as their sole means of birth control, according to AG institute. according to an American Survey of 1900 women who have had abortions their reasons included the mother’s health, the child having possible health conditions, rape or incest, couldn’t afford the child, the change of life if having had the child, relationship problems, not ready for the responsibility, not mature enough, or had all the children they wanted already.

Currently, there are no national laws in reference to abortion. There are many states that enforce their own laws, however. For example, in Michigan and Ohio the partial birth abortion is considered unconstitutional. Abortion is banned on all oversea U.S. military bases, unless it’s to protect the mother’s health. Despite all of the laws and the pro-life groups, it’s still absolutely up to the mother to decide whether an abortion would be a good decision or not. It is still absolutely legal in most places and obviously a common decision made. To cut back on the rate of abortions there needs to be more programs out there to teach safe sex. Especially in urban areas with high rates of teen pregnancies. Hopefully someday the rates will decrease, but this will more than likely last as a necessary evil.

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