June 24e marks a dark day for the American people who have fought hard to prevent their constitutional right to safe and legal abortions from being overturned. Almost 50 years ago, Roe v. Wade commemorated a milestone for the women’s movement regarding bodily autonomy, freedom, agency, and equality. Today, for nearly half of the States, the organizations are again under the strict control of the law. Without exception, and regardless of age, financial status, marital status, or health of the fetus or carrier, all unwanted pregnancies must be accommodated. This major setback in the evolution of emancipation will not save lives, only destroy them.
Perhaps the most widely used argument for choice is the well-known fact that making abortion illegal does not end the practice. Illegalization only makes abortion clandestine or encourages those who have abortions to self-induce, two extremely dangerous, painful and often fatal compromises. “Nearly half of all abortions worldwide are unsafe,” states the nonprofit Our Bodies Ourselves in a 2014 article, “and nearly all unsafe abortions occur in developing countries. In countries where abortions remain unsafe, [the procedure] is one of the main causes of maternal mortality.
The medical complications that arise from unsafe abortions are not only due to the procedure itself, but also because the decision to abort, affected by stigma and fear, is often made at later stages. of pregnancy. “In 1970, one in four abortions in the United States took place at or after 13 weeks of gestation. In 2015, 91% of abortions were performed in the first trimester, with 65% at eight weeks’ gestation or less,” writes Our Bodies Ourselves. Timely abortions reduce the risk of complications.
ABC News reported in April that the states that comply with the strictest abortion laws are also the states with the hardest time raising a healthy child. For example, “Mississippi has the highest proportion of children living in poverty and babies with low birth weight.” Texas, meanwhile, “has the highest rate of women receiving no prenatal care in their first trimester and ranks second in the proportion of poor children who are uninsured.” States with restrictive abortion laws typically have weaker safety nets, including underfunded foster families, unpaid maternity leave, and inadequate care for children. Roe’s overthrow will subsequently disproportionately affect lower class people and people of color compared to upper and middle class whites, as they will not be able to afford to travel for abortions in a state not prohibited or the money to properly receive any of the social care mentioned above.
These arguments are far from new. Decades have proven that facts and figures are not enough proof for anyone who holds design unanimously sacred. The debate is not about human lives; it’s more about politics and control, another symptom of a twisted system that challenges a nation’s secularism. Again, it’s left versus right, Democrats versus Republicans, liberals versus conservatives. The endless back and forth between the two “fronts” is a battle that should never be fought on the backs of those in need of medical care.