Rape by ultrasound?

Thumbnail image for ultrasound.jpgYesterday an OK judge delayed for 45 days enactment of a new law mandating that mothers get ultrasounds before abortions. This will allow the 2 sides to get their arguments in order to defend or oppose it.

OK's ultrasound law goes farther than others. According to the Associated Press...

The law requires doctors to use a vaginal probe, which provides a clearer picture of the fetus than a regular ultrasound, and to describe the fetus in detail, including its dimensions, whether arms, legs and internal organs are visible and whether there is cardiac activity.

That's sloppy journalism, if not intentionally biased. The law actually requires either the abortionist or "certified technician" to "[p]erform an obstetric ultrasound on the pregnant woman, using either a vaginal transducer or an abdominal transducer, whichever would display the embryo or fetus more clearly...."

The "vaginal transducer" distinction is what drives this legislation further than others, making it critical to this conversation. It is different in probe placement than abdominal ultrasounds of which we're all aware:


vaginal ultrasound.jpg


Creative Minority Report adds, "I've seen the term 'invasive' used to describe the ultrasounds dozens of times in the past few days." Yes, and here the AP calls it "intrusive."

The other side is arguing this is "rape by instrumentation." At least one argues the new ultrasound law is literally "legaliz[ing] rape" by countermanding OK's rape statute that indeed includes "rape by instrumentation."

Gov. Brad Henry originally vetoed the law (which was overridden) stating, according to the AP, "'it would be unconscionable to subject rape and incest victims to such treatment' because it would victimize them again."

Of course, pro-lifers have argued forever that abortion is violent and akin to rape. Dr. David Reardon writes (in the best article on rape and abortion ever):

Abortion is not some magical surgery which turns back time to make a woman "un-pregnant." Instead, it is a real life event which is always very stressful and often traumatic....

[M]any women report that their abortions felt like a degrading and brutal form of medical rape. This association between abortion and rape is not hard to understand.

Abortion involves a painful examination of a woman's sexual organs by a masked stranger who is invading her body. Once she is on the operating table, she loses control over her body. If she protests and asks for the abortionist to stop, she will likely be ignored or told: "It's too late to change your mind. This is what you wanted. We have to finish now." And while she lies there tense and helpless, the life hidden within her is literally sucked out of her womb. The difference? In a sexual rape, a woman is robbed of her purity; in this medical rape she is robbed of her maternity.

This experiential association between abortion and sexual assault is very strong for many women. It is especially strong for women who have a prior history of sexual assault, whether or not she is presently pregnant as the result of an assault. This is just one reason why women with a history of sexual assault are likely to experience greater distress during and after an abortion than other women.

The difference, according to Oklahoma Voice of Reason, is that a mother doesn't give consent to the former but does the latter.

But there is no comparison between a benign ultrasound probe and a painful abortion that is actually akin to rape on so many levels, as Dr. Reardon described.

Pro-aborts trivialize rape by making such a comparison, and they also draw attention to that which is actually "rape by instrumentation," the invasive and violent abortion procedure.

Giving one's consent to abortion does not erase its trauma. Women with breast cancer may give consent to have a breast removed, but that doesn't erase their trauma.

It is shameful for the other side to consider abortion a panacea for traumatized and vulnerable rape victims.

This is another losing argument for the other side.


Comments:

And the insertion of a suction cannula during the abortion is what?

The insertion of a speculum during a follow-up exam is what?

It would be nice if the MSM printed the descriptions of the pain induced by a suction that is 16x more powerful than a household vacuum cleaner.

Posted by: Gerard Nadal at May 4, 2010 6:42 AM


this is basically informed consent. She is not required to look at the ultrasound.

Posted by: Susie at May 4, 2010 6:46 AM


Sixteen times more powerful than a carpet vacuum? *instinctively crosses arms around uterus*

If women are having abortions, they're getting something inserted into their vaginas anyway - and past their cervixes and into their uteruses. How would a vaginal transducer be any more invasive?

People have to deal with all sorts of informed consent forms and information for most other surgeries. If abortion is "just another medical procedure," this just makes sense.

Posted by: Marauder at May 4, 2010 7:09 AM


I thought abortion advocates were all about women getting things rammed into their nether regions. They don't object to the penis ramming. That's "sexual liberation". They don't object to speculum ramming, dilator ramming, tenaculum ramming, cannula ramming. It's only the vaginal ramming that might lead a woman to recognize the humanity of the baby she's slated for death that they suddenly object to. Oh THAT kind of vaginal ramming is bad.

Posted by: Christina at May 4, 2010 7:14 AM


I had an ultrasound once using a vaginal transducer. It wasn't painful or anything... a speculum is more uncomfortable than a vaginal transducer. It was a little odd (I had never had one before) but not so bad. The only real problem would maybe be for a woman who has been a rape victim in the past. And it is my understanding that women who are sexual assault survivors and then get abortions say that their abortions were like getting raped all over again.

In my view as a woman (and as a rape and child sexual abuse survivor)... I think something as invasive as an abortion would really bother me. And I'm not saying that because I think abortion is 100% wrong, but just as a woman thinking of a doctor (most likely a male one who obviously is not my husband) jamming all kinds of sharp instruments into my vagina, cervix, then uterus. That sounds very much like a violation to me, not to mention dangerous.

Now coming from the aspect that abortion IS wrong - let us suppose that a woman is a rape victim and has become pregnant as a result. I totally understand the horror/shame and the feeling of wanting to "get rid of it". However, these are irrational thoughts. The woman needs therapy, not infantacide. Although my children were not conceived in rape, I can say that having an infant around really helped me with my own depression problem. They just bring so much sunshine into one's life, despite the hard work and interrupted sleep at night. The child is not a burden but a gift. And if she still feels she does not want the child, it can be a blessing to someone else's family. It is not right to punish a child for the wrong actions of his/her father.

Posted by: army_wife at May 4, 2010 7:57 AM


"I thought abortion advocates were all about women getting things rammed into their nether regions. They don't object to the penis ramming. That's "sexual liberation". They don't object to speculum ramming, dilator ramming, tenaculum ramming, cannula ramming. It's only the vaginal ramming that might lead a woman to recognize the humanity of the baby she's slated for death that they suddenly object to. Oh THAT kind of vaginal ramming is bad.
Posted by: Christina at May 4, 2010 7:14 AM"

Hahahahaha! Love it! I'm SO with you on this one!!!

Posted by: Vita at May 4, 2010 8:11 AM


The pro-aborts must operate under the delusion that a woman recovers from rape in less than 9 months. So she must kill her baby to avoid being reminded of the rape. Because she must get over it as quickly as possible. So what if now abortion nightmares adds to rape nightmares?

Anyone who has had the misfortune to endure both traumas can tell you, rape is eventually healed from, but abortion's regret lasts a lifetime.

Posted by: ninek at May 4, 2010 8:37 AM


Agreed, Ninek.

Posted by: carla Author Profile Page at May 4, 2010 8:42 AM


Needless to say,most abortionists are men, so they are looking at women's wombs as a goldmine! To quote former abortionists Brian Finkel [incarcerated for raping, molesting, fondeling, and kissing at least 100 abortion patients while on his table] Also, he jerked one woman hard down into the stirrups and hiked her gown up while calling her a "whore"!! Finkel once bragged "Back in the day, I could open up a woman in 5 minutes." "I'd worked many other floors, but it wasn't until I worked on the abortion floor that I fouund out that women will do ANYTHING to get an abortion!" ...Empowering?? nly for a male abortionist.

Posted by: Heather at May 4, 2010 10:17 AM


sorry for all the typos above

Posted by: Heather at May 4, 2010 10:21 AM


I'm from Oklahoma and, up until they started talking about this recently, I had never even HEARD of a 'vaginal probe ultrasound'. I've had I don't know how many ultrasounds done for various reasons, and not ONE of them was a 'vaginal probe'. They did a detailed ultrasound of my daughter when I was pregnant, but it was STILL just an 'abdominal' ultrasound. I also used to be a volunteer at a CPC and they had an ultrasound machine..but it was just your 'standard' (abdominal) machine.

Posted by: Pamela at May 4, 2010 10:24 AM


I had a vaginal ultrasound with my son because I was only 5 weeks pregnant (7LNMP) and they couldn't pick him up on an abdominal ultrasound.

The sensation was weird...its hard and plastic and uncomfortable but not at all painful.

I saw my son with his head and arms and legs and his beating heart and I began crying because I was overwhelmed thinking "THIS IS MY BABY!" and the ultrasound tech was afraid she had hurt me. She was very professional and gentle. It isn't like rape at all.

Don't women want all the facts and options before they do something they can never take back?

Posted by: Sydney M. at May 4, 2010 10:56 AM


My experience was the same as yours Sydney, it was so early in the pregnancy that they couldn't see him properly with an abdominal ultrasound. It wasn't painful at all, not even as uncomfortable as a regular pelvic exam. And like you, the joy of seeing my little guy for the first time was overwhelming!

Posted by: Peg at May 4, 2010 11:08 AM


The other side is arguing this is "rape by instrumentation." At least one argues the new ultrasound law is literally "legaliz[ing] rape" by countermanding OK's rape statute that indeed includes "rape by instrumentation."

That's a bit far reaching considering that ultrasounds are medically indicated and standard medical practice in the first trimester to verify and date an intrauterine pregnancy, and to rule out ectopic pregnancy.

Posted by: Rachael C. at May 4, 2010 11:28 AM


I had one with one of my miscarriages. So heartbreaking listening and looking for a heartbeat and not seeing or hearing it. :(

On another note,
How in the world would they enforce this? Like abortionists are following the letter of the law now anyway? Think Live Action.....

Posted by: carla Author Profile Page at May 4, 2010 12:06 PM


It is my understanding that, with almost any kind of abortion (in fact, I'm pretty sure it's ALL abortions) an ultrasound is necessary during the procedure in order to locate the fetus and be sure that all the lil torn limbs and stuff is removed. Since most abortions are 1st trimester abortions, it's very probably that a vaginal ultrasound is necessary in order to see anything during the process.

I've never heard of anyone having a problem with this!! So why are they suddenly panicking now?? Makes absolutely no sense, unless you're smart enough to realize that they are full of crap. The only problem they really have with it is LESS WOMEN WILL WANT ABORTIONS AFTER SEEING THIER BABIES!!

Posted by: Karen at May 4, 2010 1:34 PM


It is my understanding that, with almost any kind of abortion (in fact, I'm pretty sure it's ALL abortions) an ultrasound is necessary during the procedure in order to locate the fetus and be sure that all the lil torn limbs and stuff is removed. Since most abortions are 1st trimester abortions, it's very probable that a vaginal ultrasound is necessary in order to see anything during the process.

I've never heard of anyone having a problem with this!! So why are they suddenly panicking now?? Makes absolutely no sense, unless you're smart enough to realize that they are full of crap. The only problem they really have with it is LESS WOMEN WILL WANT ABORTIONS AFTER SEEING THIER BABIES!! $$ WILL WALK OUT THE DOOR.

Posted by: Karen at May 4, 2010 1:36 PM


The only problem they really have with it is LESS WOMEN WILL WANT ABORTIONS AFTER SEEING THIER BABIES!! $$ WILL WALK OUT THE DOOR.
Posted by: Karen at May 4, 2010 1:36 PM

**************

Bingo.

I had a vaginal ultrasound to determine the due date of my first child. Actually, I found it easier on my bladder than the typical ultrasound where they had to press on my stomach when I really needed to "go"! :D

Posted by: Kelli Author Profile Page at May 4, 2010 1:40 PM


Abortion [like rape,] involves a painful examination of a woman's sexual organs by a masked stranger who is invading her body.

Not usually...


In a sexual rape, a woman is robbed of her purity;

??? seriously, wtf


the best article on rape and abortion ever

Nope, try again.

Posted by: Austin Nedved at May 4, 2010 2:50 PM


I was at the laundromat with Alison this morning and somebody turned on "The View" (trust me, I wouldn't have watched it by choice.)

Behar insisted that she had had an abortion for an ectopic pregnancy (that's not an abortion). And Sherry (sp?) whoever she is said that she had had two and she is against this law because it would have made it too hard for her to go through with the abortion by forcing her to see that it was a baby, that she was working hard to ignore that fact.

Um... isn't that kind of the point?

And she kept repeating that no one had a right to tell her what she could and couldn't do to her body. Love my kid, she was standing next to me folding laundry and muttered under her breath... "Yeah, well since it's somebody else's body that's a stupid thing to say!"

Off to finish packing. That's got to be the worst part of moving...

Posted by: Elisabeth at May 4, 2010 3:21 PM


I thought Sherri was supposed to be a "Christian." Guess she's another one of those who's bought so many lies, she's not sure what one is supposed to live like anymore... Sad.

Posted by: Kel at May 4, 2010 4:57 PM


Maybe Gerard would like to go on The View and set the record straight.
Gerard?
:)

Posted by: Janet at May 4, 2010 5:15 PM


In the case of an unemancipated minor who cannot legally give her consent to engage in sex, then the abortion procedure itself is 'rape by instrumentation'.

I have to confess I am uncomfortable with the government forcing me or anyone else to submit to an intrusive medical examination.

I understand the good intentions behind the law but it reminds me of an IRS audit.

Posted by: yor bro ken at May 4, 2010 6:37 PM


Posted by: Christina at May 4, 2010 7:14 AM


Sounds like you are describing bumper cars or demolition derby.

Or the implementation of b.o.'s hellth scare scam.

Posted by: yor bro ken at May 4, 2010 6:42 PM


Posted by: Austin Nedved at May 4, 2010 2:50 PM

"Abortion [like rape,] involves a painful examination of a woman's sexual organs by


a masked stranger


who is invading her body."

---------------------------------------------------

Boy that ruins the William Tell overture, Hi Ho Silver and the Lone Ranger for me.

"Our work is done here Tonto." [what?!?!]

What ever happened to 'truth, justice and the american way'?

Posted by: yor bro ken at May 4, 2010 6:52 PM


To argue that abortion is not an invasive medical procedure is silly. But in early pregnancy, when a vaginal transducer does indeed yield a more complete picture of the fetus, the Oklahoma law makes this ultrasound, which is indeed invasive, mandatory. The rest of the abortion procedure is something that is voluntary. When it yields a better image, a vaginal ultrasound is not voluntary. It's forced upon women regardless of whether the doctor thinks it's necessary, regardless of whether it's medically indicated, regardless of whether the woman wants it done. Even if both doctor and patient agree it is wholly unnecessary and would only be traumatic for the patient, it has to be done.

I'm anticipating the response, "If you don't want the vaginal ultrasound, just don't get an abortion." Let me draw a parallel to another invasive regulation that's being forced on people every day: the use of full body scanners at airports that allow TSA agents to see people naked. Don't want yours or your family's nude images displayed for any employee to see? Don't fly. Even though the full body scan is only imposed on people who choose to fly (out of certain airports, the number is growing), the full body scan itself is not voluntary.

But let's go back to the question at hand. A lot of people here have stated how invasive and traumatic an abortion can be, especially for a victim of rape or incest. If abortion is invasive, what do you call giving birth? Having a doctor, nurse, or midwife repeatedly inserting their hands to check your cervix; repeated pelvic exams; painful contractions; and finally (at least for vaginal births) pushing an up to 9 or 10 pound infant through the vaginal canal. How is that any less traumatic for a rape or incest victim? Does the fact that you're giving birth magically make the trauma go away so you forget all about it? No way.

Yes, I know that there are a few women out there who have become pregnant because of rape or incest, and who had their babies and raised them with love and care (or gave them up for adoption). Some women are able to do that. Some women aren't.

Anyone who has had the misfortune to endure both traumas can tell you, rape is eventually healed from, but abortion's regret lasts a lifetime.

I haven't had an abortion, but I have talked to many, many survivors of rape and incest of all ages and at all stages of life. A few might be lucky enough to consider themselves "healed," but in my experience, the trauma never goes away and rarely gets to a place where it could be called fully healed. The trauma of rape can and often does last a lifetime, especially when it's followed by procedures like the one Oklahoma is forcing on women that only serve to increase the trauma's effect.

The only problem they really have with it is LESS WOMEN WILL WANT ABORTIONS AFTER SEEING THIER BABIES!! $$ WILL WALK OUT THE DOOR.

That must be awfully fun and satisfying to say, but you're completely wrong. Opposition to this law has nothing to do with trying to keep women from seeing ultrasound images. And it has absolutely nothing to do with money or profit (not even going to get into the whole Planned Parenthood/abortion profits thing again, if you've heard it before there's no reason to repeat myself). It's about a legislature mandating that doctors perform and patients undergo a medical procedure regardless of whether it's medically necessary. Opposing this law has very little if anything to do with abortion; it's about the right of patients to consent to the care that they want, and the right of doctors to make the determination of what procedures are needed by their patients. This is a patients' rights issue. Period.

Posted by: Violet at May 4, 2010 9:43 PM


Violet - let me repeat some of your own words back to you:

I haven't had an abortion, but I have talked to many, many women who've had abortions of all ages and at all stages of life. A few might be lucky enough to consider themselves "healed," but in my experience, the trauma never goes away and rarely gets to a place where it could be called fully healed. The trauma of abortion can and often does last a lifetime.

So how will an abortion make a rape victim's life any better?

Can I assume that since rape/incest accounts for only 1% of abortions, you would fully support an ultrasound being done with the other 99% of attempted abortions?

You really should read some of these stories, if you're not too close-minded to explore other points of view.

Posted by: JoAnna at May 4, 2010 10:46 PM


So how will an abortion make a rape victim's life any better?

A pregnant rape victim has two choices: abortion or giving birth. Each woman who faces this terrible situation has to make that choice. In terms of the trauma, neither will "make her life any better." It's up to each woman to decide which trauma she is strong enough to endure.

Can I assume that since rape/incest accounts for only 1% of abortions, you would fully support an ultrasound being done with the other 99% of attempted abortions?

No. If you read my whole comment, I said that the core issue here is the Oklahoma legislature taking the decision of whether to use a vaginal probe or do an abdominal ultrasound out of the hands of doctors and patients and mandating I consider on any woman to be an invasive procedure, especially when the woman has no choice in the matter. Neither does her doctor -- even if the ultrasound required by law is not medically necessary and the doctor does not want to perform the procedure, he or she can't say no. They can no longer decide with the patient what is right for that patient.

To me, this is a patients' rights issue. Its effect on rape and incest victims is the worst part of it, but its impact on a whole group of women and doctors is almost equally bad.

Posted by: Violet at May 4, 2010 11:00 PM


You really should read some of these stories, if you're not too close-minded to explore other points of view.

I've actually read most of the stories on this page, which I've been referred to before. The women whose stories are told there and who chose to give birth to children conceived in rape are examples of incredible, strong people who (in most cases) had the right to choose how they reacted to a difficult trauma. I'm grateful that their stories are out there and that much good has come from their decision. I'm also grateful that facing such hardship, they had a choice.

Posted by: Violet at May 4, 2010 11:03 PM


The fact is that the ultrasound is already being done because it has to be done to show gestational age, placental location, location of the pregnancy, and find out if there are any abnormalities that may affect the procedure. If an ultrasound is not done, it is bad medical practice, and the woman could be injured or she could even die because something went wrong.

It's just that many abortionists refuse to let these women see the screen, even when they ask to see it.

This law is just making sure that the abortionists are following procedure and doing an ultrasound, looking for abnormalities, and making sure that women are given the choice to see the ultrasound.

Therefore, your "rape" issue doesn't even come into play here, because the ultrasound should already be done. If it's not, then the abortionist is a bad practitioner, and I wouldn't doubt that there are many injuries and deaths that abortionist's office. Ultrasounds and/or ex-rays are done before ALL major procedures to screen for abnormalities. Abortion should be no different.

Posted by: Amy at May 4, 2010 11:07 PM


Just to clarify, I'm not insensitive to issues of sexual abuse. When I was in grade school, one of the kids in my class sexually assaulted me, many harassed me, and nothing was done about it. I just don't see common medical practice that should be done as something that you cry rape over. I would expect a doctor to use proper medical protocol when preforming a procedure on me. I would be concerned if an ultrasound and/or x-ray weren't done, no matter the procedure.

Posted by: Amy at May 4, 2010 11:19 PM


The legislature isn't MANDATING the use of the vaginal probe. The choice to use a vaginal or abdominal transducer would be a medical decision, most likely based on how far advanced the pregnancy is. I've had several early ultrasounds and only ONE used a vaginal transducer - it was when I was miscarrying the first time and it was so early that they HAD to use it. It was so early in that pregnancy that most women wouldn't even have known that they were pregnant yet, particularly if they weren't expecting/trying to be (I was actively TTC so I was keeping track of ovulation and pregnancy-testing early and at regular intervals).

Posted by: army_wife at May 5, 2010 7:15 AM


Posted by: Violet at May 4, 2010 9:43 PM

"Let me draw a parallel to another invasive regulation that's being forced on people every day: the use of full body scanners at airports that allow TSA agents to see people naked."

----------------------------------------------------

vilest,

My wife recently returned from a trip to Canada.

The TSA actually gave her at least there options.

1. She could choose not to fly.

2. She could choose to submit to the fully body imaging.

3. She could choose to submit to a full body 'pat down' by a TSA agent.

But that little detail aside, the government has, not just a compelling interest, but a responsibility to ensure the safety of the flying public.

Your comparison of the body scan, used by the TSA to check for banned items, to the intrauterine transponder exam, is at least a lemons to limes analogy.

The TSA would have to require would be flyers to submit to body cavity search for your analogy to work.

Personally I have no problem consenting to the TSA scan if it will minimize the chance there will be a bomb totin, jew hatin mass murderin muslim on the same plane with me and the rest of the non-terrorist flyin public.

But if you are content to fly with the Osama bin laden and his band of butchers then, by all means, you go right ahead.

Give em a big hug from me so you will get the full effect of the blast when she/he detonates his/her and your express ticket that new reality.

Maybe she/he will view you as show of good faith or apetizier on that 72 virgins deal for which he/she is a hopin.

Allah akbar baby!


Posted by: yor bro ken at May 5, 2010 5:40 PM



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