Tag Archives: The Guardian

Abortion supporters clash on whether late term abortions are tragic or trivial


It was pro-abortion President Bill Clinton who first coined the term “safe, legal, and rare” in the early 1990s to describe his supposedly moderate view on abortion.

The phrase served Clinton well during the years-long partial birth abortion debate, making him sound reasonable even as he vetoed a ban against the heinous procedure twice. The conflicted masses liked it as well.

But abortion zealots got stuck on that word “rare.” As proponent Jessica Valenti wrote in The Guardian last year:

It’s a “safe” pro-choice answer: to support abortion, but wish it wasn’t necessary….

In a 2010 research article, Dr Tracy Weitz wrote that “rare suggests that abortion is happening more than it should, and that there are some conditions for which abortions should and should not occur”.

“It separates ‘good’ abortions from ‘bad’ abortions”, she added….

The “rare” framework adds to the stigmatization around the procedure – and that has further-reaching complications for abortion care than just how women feel about it.

Weitz wrote that calling for abortions to be rare has tangible negative consequences for women and women’s health because it legitimizes efforts to legally restrict abortion – i.e., make it more “rare”.

Hence, the 2012 Democrat platform called for abortion to be “safe and legal.” Period.

Jump ahead, and we are launching into another national debate on late-term abortions, this time on two fronts: a federal bill to block abortions past 20 weeks and an emerging state ban on “dismemberment abortions” past 12 weeks.

And already some abortion proponents are violating their own embargo on the word “rare.”

Furthermore, they’re adding acceptable “conditions” for late-term abortions.

Planned Parenthood is calling late-term abortions “a deeply personal decision [made in] unimaginable situations… for serious medical reasons.”

The Center for Reproductive Rights says there is a susceptibility factor that sets late-term abortions apart:

Apparently, one can be cavalier about abortion just in the first trimester. After that only hardcore zealots can stomach the “any time, any reason” line – like Valenti:

Am I actually arguing that there should be no legal limitations on abortion?

The short answer: yes.

I think abortion should be legal without any restrictions – no parental consent laws, no mandated ultrasounds, no waiting periods, no bans on late term abortions and no bans on federal funding for abortion….

If that were the law of the land, it would also mean an end to rape and incest exceptions – because we wouldn’t need them. Women wouldn’t (and shouldn’t) have to prove that their abortion is of the “acceptable” variety….

RH Reality Check’s editor-in-chief Jodi Jacobson agrees:

Valenti concludes:

Particularly when it comes to later term abortions, there is a myth that women are so evil, misguided or stupid that they go seven months into a pregnancy before deciding willy-nilly to end it. This is simply not true.

Actually, it is true. (And so what if the decision was made “willy-nilly” anyway, right?) According to the National Abortion Federation, late-term abortions are most often procured by those sorts of women or girls. From its 2009 handbook (page 160):

Second-trimester patients in the USA undergo termination for a variety of reasons, but most often because of delay in recognizing pregnancy or obtaining necessary funds and support.

This type of delay may reflect inadequate access to health services, ambivalence about the decision to terminate the pregnancy, familial conflict, or peer-group pressure. Teenagers are likelier than older women to delay abortion until the second trimester.

Abortion zealots are trying to destigmatize abortion by saying anything goes, but I doubt Americans will empathize with mothers who seek late-term abortions simply because they procrastinated.

There’s also something amiss with claiming a $375 abortion is unaffordable but one costing $2$10,000 suddenly is.

And is the safest way to help a confused teen or abused woman to give her a dangerous late-term abortion – or give her support and guidance?

Valenti maintains talk like Planned Parenthood and CFRR are engaging in plays into our hands “as part of the rhetoric that anti-abortion activists use to try to demonize abortion as a whole.”

I’d say something demonic requires no demonization.

But as far as stigmatizing goes, if abortion proponents want to help, sure, anytime.

Meanwhile, it’s fun to continue watching the other side unravel.

“Let all those who seek to end my life be confused.” ~ Psalm 40:14

Star gets testy when “Obvious Child” billed as “abortion rom-com”

Jenny Slate in the abortion rom-com Obvious Child

As commenter Christina noted on Facebook (a line I stole on Twitter), “Let’s make abortion the central theme of a comedy, then pretend we’re not trivializing it and trying to make it funny.”

But that’s exactly what the star of a romantic comedy about abortion is trying to say.

The movie Obvious Child is debuting across the pond, and before it has gone reviews and opinions from America, pretty much all pegging it as “the abortion romcom,” to quote The Guardian.

But the movie’s star, Jenny Slate (pictured above in a scene from the movie), doesn’t like that portrayal:

“Ugh, that is such a bummer, that term. An abortion romcom – that’s not a thing!” Slate says with an eye-roll. “The movie isn’t saying that abortions are funny. It’s saying that people are funny.”

That’s not what Slate’s comedic pal Jimmy Fallon thought when complimenting her on the picture. “It’s getting great reviews because it’s a serious issue, but you make it lighthearted, you make it funny,” said Fallon, as quoted by NewsBusters.

planned-parenthood-america-obvious-child-abortion-rom-comAnd Slate kept her thoughts to herself when Obvious Child was being plugged by Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards:

This is a hilarious and honest story about one young woman trying to figure out life and dating, and it includes an unapologetic look at her decision to have an abortion….

[I]t shows her as a full and complete person making the serious decision to end a pregnancy and still having a full and fun life.

Or when the Los Angeles Times was giving Obvious Child rave reviews as “finally, a romantic comedy about abortion.”

If this wasn’t a rom-com about abortion, why all the advance screenings for the abortion industry? Why was Planned Parenthood consulted in the making of the film, “vetting the script and allowing them to shoot in a clinic”? quoting Mother Jones.

But Slate and director Gillian Robespierre apparently no longer need abortion zealots to help them sell their movie. That or they have found abortion advocates are really no help at all – perhaps radioactive even?

Whatever, they’re now shunning the “abortion rom-com” label, to which I tweeted yesterday:

A few hours later Slate responded:

I did see the movie, Jenny. It’s a romantic comedy about abortion. Again, own it. What’s the problem?

[HT: AntiRHOfficial on Twitter; second photo of Slate viaPlanned Parenthood]

Pro-lifers hopeful Supreme Court will now revisit “undue burden” test

judge-myron-thompson who ruled against Alabama's admitting privileges law, stating it created an "undue burden" to abortionTo no one’s surprise, U.S. District Court Judge Myron Thompson, pictured right, ruled on August 4 that Alabama’s law forcing abortionists to have admitting privileges at local hospitals was unconstitutional.

This is the same judge, after all, who forced the removal of the Ten Commandments monument from the Alabama capitol building. He’s a devout liberal, handpicked by the abortion industry to rule on this case. Noted Dr. Michael New at First Things:

However, this development is not unexpected. Planned Parenthood Southeast shopped for a sympathetic judge and found one in Thompson – an appointee of Jimmy Carter who frequently rules against pro-life legislation.

The abortion industry claims such a law would force three of the state’s five remaining abortion clinics to close.

Ironically, two of them are presently closed anyway, by no one’s doing but their own.

Planned Parenthood Birmingham’s clinic shut down in December 2013 after one of its nurses was caught selling RU-486 in the parking lot and the entire staff was fired. (Read more juicy details on this in Thompson’s decision, beginning at page 152.)

Alabama Women’s Center in Huntsville closed in June because it couldn’t meet new regulations requiring the state’s abortion clinics to follow the same building requirements as ambulatory surgical centers. The clinic is trying to move to a new location.

Yet, even abortion proponents are not jumping for joy by this favorable decision. Noted Think Progress:

It is an open question, however, whether Thompson’s decision will survive further review. Thompson’s opinion will appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, a court which includes some very conservative judges. Moreover, even if it upholds Thompson’s decision, the conservative Fifth Circuit recently upheld a similar Texas law. When federal appeals courts divide in similar cases, the Supreme Court often steps in to resolve the dispute.

If the justices do step in, that is probably bad news for Team Choice. Justice Anthony Kennedy, the ostensible swing vote in abortion cases, has not cast a pro-choice vote in the last 22 years.

It does appear likely that the ultimate decision about laws requiring abortionists to have hospital privileges will be made by the Supreme Court, since lower courts have split on allowing them to go forward. The Guardian explains:

Similar laws have been blocked by federal courts in Kansas and Wisconsin [and Mississippi], while they have taken effect in Missouri, North Dakota, Tennessee, Texas and Utah.

Anthony Kennedy who ruled on "undue burden" to abortion in the Casey decisionThere’s more to know about  Supreme Court swing voter Anthony Kennedy, pictured right. Thompson ruled that a law forcing abortionists to play by the same rules as legitimate doctors would create an “undue burden” to abortion access:

Indeed, the court is convinced that, if this requirement would not, in the face of all the evidence in the record, constitute an impermissible undue burden, then almost no regulation, short of those imposing an outright prohibition on abortion, would.

The “undue burden” threshold has been used to both uphold and strike down admitting privilege laws.

From where did the concept of an “undue burden” t0 abortion arise? It came from the Supreme Court’s 1992 Planned Parenthood v Casey decision. Who wrote that decision? Anthony Kennedy. An August 6 memo from the Southeast Law Institute, which I recommend reading, notes:

Depending on what the Eleventh Circuit does, these cases will provide an excellent opportunity for the U.S. Supreme Court to revisit the abortion issue, which it has not done in a long time. With the present makeup of the U.S. Supreme Court, whatever opinion will be written will be a five-four decision, with Justice Kennedy being the swing vote. Kennedy wrote the Casey decision and we would be hopeful he would take offense at using his “undue burden” reasoning to diminish women’s healthcare.

[HT for Southeast Law Institute memo: Fr. Terry Gensemer of CEC for Life]

Stanek wkend Q: Is the push for unconditional acceptance of abortion hurting or helping the pro-choice side?

Josie Cunningham Emily Letts abortionColumnist Eva Wiseman wrote at The Guardian wrote:

Pro-choicers are facing some uncomfortable truths….

When, at the end of April, escort, aspiring glamour model and mother-of-two Josie Cunningham [pictured top right] told the Sunday Mirror she was planning an abortion to ensure her place on Big Brother, there was mild uproar. The earliest response was from Mirror readers, 93% of whom said they’d boycott Big Brother if she appeared on the show… These alongside disgusted tweets from high-profile doctors and liberal commentators….

A week or so later, a YouTube video of an abortion went viral. The clip, by 25-year-old abortion counsellor Emily Letts [pictured bottom right], focuses on her face as she breathes, calmly, through the short procedure. At the end she says: “I feel good.”…

Again, the reaction has been fierce – both from anti-abortion protestors… and from those who are passionately pro-choice….

For me? The reactions have illustrated a widening gap between the theory of being pro-choice and the real, day-to-day “Oh sh**… oh well” of abortion….

These two cases have brought uncomfortable truths about many pro-choicers’ feelings to the surface. They’ve shown that many believe that not only are there right and wrong reasons to get an abortion but that women’s (legal, considered) decisions are up for examination….

There is no right or wrong reason for a woman to get an abortion, and there is no right or wrong way for her to feel about it. For pro-choicers, there should be no confusion.

Similarly, columnist Jessica Valenti wrote at The Guardian:

I think abortion should be legal without any restrictions – no parental consent laws, no mandated ultrasounds, no waiting periods, no bans on late term abortions and no bans on federal funding for abortion….

If that were the law of the land, it would also mean an end to rape and incest exceptions – because we wouldn’t need them. Women wouldn’t (and shouldn’t) have to prove that their abortion is of the “acceptable” variety. We wouldn’t (and shouldn’t) have to pretend that women who are forced into sex are somehow more deserving of medical care than women who chose to have sex. We could rid ourselves of the hierarchy of “good” and “bad” abortions.

I particularly found Valenti’s thoughts on the rape/incest exception quite interesting.

It’s true that to decry abortion in any way is to cast judgment on the act itself.

Is it possible to expect people who consider themselves “pro-choice” to reach this level of acceptance? Or is pushing this level of acceptance working in favor of the pro-life position?


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BREAKING: Australian TV personality commits suicide after depression triggered by abortion

post-abortion depression led to suicide

This is such a tragedy. And abortion proponents share the blame. They, of course, push for easy access to abortion, deemphasizing its after-affects to the point they absolutely refuse to acknowledge post-abortion depression, which further incapacitates those actually living through it (more on depression following an abortion).

Charlotte Dawson, RIP, was born in New Zealand but achieved fame in Australia as a model and a judge on Australia’s Next Top Model.

From The Telegraph, today:

In the end it seemed like the final, inevitable episode of a tragic soap opera: Charlotte Dawson — the model, TV star and social crusader who spent many of her adult years battling depression — ended her life at the age of 47.

It is understood Dawson was found hanged in her luxury Woolloomooloo Finger Wharf apartment by a security guard on Saturday morning, the day after the birthday of her ex-husband and the man she still described as the love of her life – disgraced Olympic swimmer Scott Miller….

But friends believe she had never really gotten over her marriage to Miller, which ended in divorce after only a year. In her tell-all autobiography Air Kiss And Tell, she revealed she had an abortion because the pregnancy would interfere with Miller’s preparation for the 2000 Olympics – and blamed that for the start of her long battle with depression.

More from The Australian:

Ms Dawson gave an insight into her life – both her troubles and the highlights – in her autobiography, released late 2012.

In the book, Air Kiss and Tell, she revealed she had had an abortion with her former husband, Olympic swimmer Scott Miller, so that he would not have any distractions in the lead up to the Sydney Olympics.

She had been looking forward to having a baby but sensed “hesitation” in Miller.

”Everything Scott had done was leading up to this moment and nothing could stand in his way, so it was decided that we would terminate the child and try again later. Who needed a developing foetus when a gold medal was on offer, eh?”

Ms Dawson wrote that she was alone when she had the termination.

In he book she wrote that this was her first experience with depression – a battle she continued to fight for the next 14 years.

The Guardian:

Miller… did not go with her when she had the procedure.

On this side of the pond newsrooms aren’t mentioning the abortion connection.

Associated Press:

Dawson revealed in her 2012 autobiography “Air Kiss & Tell” that she was frequently visited by the “depression bogeyman.”


Despite her professional successes, Dawson’s personal life was often tumultuous. In 1999, she married Olympic swimmer Scott Miller. Although the marriage ended after a few short months, she struggled with the breakup and said he was the only man she would ever marry.

After Miller recently gave a tell-all interview to 60 Minutes in Australia, Dawson spoke out: “I continue to fight my depression”…

Seemingly a stab, from E! Online:

Per the BBC, Dawson suffered with depression for a very long time and was admitted to a hospital in 2012 after being targeted by cyber bullies.

Dawson married Olympic swimmer Scott Miller in 1999 but they were divorced two years later. She had no children.

[HT: Reader Sean]

Nearly naked man vs dead babies: Guess which campus display was censored?


Backdrop on the above (click to enlarge) from the Boston Globe, February 5:

A realistic-looking statue of a man sleepwalking in his underwear near the center of Wellesley College has created a stir among the women on campus, especially as more than 100 students at the all-women’s college signed a petition asking administrators to remove it.

The statue, called Sleepwalker, is part of an art exhibit featuring sculptor Tony Matelli….

“[T]his highly lifelike sculpture has, within just a few hours of its outdoor installation, become a source of apprehension, fear, and triggering thoughts regarding sexual assault for many members of our campus community,” says the petition…. “[I]t has already become a source of undue stress for many Wellesley College students, the majority of whom live, study, and work in this space.”

video-undefined-1B404A0A00000578-751_637x367Surprisingly, notable abortion proponents are defending the statue.

Explained Amanda Marcotte on Slate, “College is a time for taking everything too far.” Certainly Sleepwalker is that.

Added Jill Filipovic at The Guardian:

At the heart of the debate is the question of what a college should be. Is it preparation for the real world? …

College is supposed to be physically safe. But it’s not supposed to be intellectually safe. Shielding students from uncomfortable moments does them no favors.

Sexual assault is a serious offense from which many women suffer major physical and psychological trauma, including post-traumatic stress reactions that may be triggered by particular sights, sounds or events. When Wellesley students say the statue is “triggering,” that’s what they mean. Those feelings are valid and those reactions are real.

But here is the sad truth: the world is not a particularly safe place for women. It should be, but it’s not. Everyone has a right to physical safety. Emotional and psychological safety, though, isn’t quite as simple a calculus…. Do women have the right to live free of the intentional infliction of emotional and psychological violence? Yes. Do we have the right to move through public space without being harassed or assaulted? Yes. Do we have the right to move through public space without having our PTSD triggered by a source with no intention of triggering us? No, we don’t. That’s an impossible standard, and a dangerous one….

Our schools would be poorer if all potentially triggering material – hell, if all offensive, sexist, blatantly feminist unapproved material – were removed from them, and if students could not engage with troubling material.

I wonder when Marcotte and Filipovic will take up the cause of Bama Students for Life regarding what the two would surely consider “blatantly feminist unapproved material” that the University of Alabama recently removed. Click to enlarge…

BamaStudentsForLifeDisplay (1)

School officials deemed the group’s pro-life display, which included pictures of three mothers who died from abortions and two photos of young abortion victims, “offensive” and “graphic,” according to administrator Donna Lake, who added in a secretly recorded video, “We have to keep it happy for everybody.”

ImageUploadedByTapatalk1376425910.416386Happy happy happy? Somebody has been watching too much Duck Dynasty.

The display was removed on February 6, just one day 48 hours short of its reserved run from January 8 through February 7.

“You guys were lucky to get it up there as long as you did,” said Lake on the video.

Actually, school administrators were unlucky and unsmart not simply to grit their intolerant teeth for just a few more hours. The information about abortion they intended to suppress has now exploded onto the national public scene and mushroomed into a PR nightmare for them.

They also picked the wrong group to mess with. Only three weeks ago Bama Students for Life won Students for Life of America’s Group of the Year award, so these kids are not ones to walk away from this injustice.

The group has retained Alliance Defending Freedom as legal counsel, sent the university a formal letter of complaint requesting an apology and another display opportunity, and scheduled two days of public events on February 19 and 20 to spotlight the school’s denial of their First Amendment rights.

They have already won.


Male “pill” further along in development

male-birth-controlby Carder

A pill that provides a safe, effective and reversible method of contraception for men has been brought a step closer by scientists.

Researchers identified two proteins that can be blocked to prevent the launch of sperm cells from the testes during ejaculation. Knocking out the proteins in genetically engineered mice resulted in male animals that were completely infertile, though they continued to mate normally.

A similar goal could theoretically be achieved by suppressing the proteins with drugs, scientists say. 

~ The Guardian, December 2

[HT: Laura Loo; Photo Credit: Feminspire]

Feminist says “absolutist” pro-choice stance harms preborn girls

RahilaGupta2We must be careful not to make a fetish of choice. If the technology allows and a woman wants a blue-eyed, blonde baby, do we support her because we are pro-choice?

While we must be vigilant about the “pro-lifer”-infested waters, we must be prepared to refine our pro-choice position; it must be circumscribed by context.

Approximately 60 million women are “missing” in India. The cultural reasons for this femicide do not magically disappear with migration.

A girl’s right to life has to be a basic tenet of any feminist position and cannot be compromised by an absolutist pro-choice narrative.

~ Pro-choice feminist Rahila Gupta, who seems to have stumbled upon the Catch-22 of the pro-choice position, The Guardian, October 8

[HT: JivinJehoshaphat; photo via aworldtowin.net]