While abortion has been legal in the United States for 35 years and remains legal and available throughout pregnancy for any reason, public recognition of the negative impact of abortion on women is increasing and more pro-life laws are in effect than ever before.
“Abortion-on-demand has been imposed on our nation because the courts and others have accepted — and even advanced — at least two pervasive myths: that abortion is ‘good’ for women and that the interests of women and their unborn children are necessarily in opposition,” says Americans United for Life (AUL) Vice President & Legal Director Denise Burke. “To restore a culture that respects and values human life, we first have to counter these myths with facts.”
“In the 35 years that abortion has been legal in the United States, much information has accumulated demonstrating that abortion hurts women in devastating ways,” states AUL Staff Counsel Mailee Smith.
The five most well-documented medical risks from abortion are: (1) a heightened risk of pre-term birth in future pregnancy, (2) an increased incidence of alcohol and drug abuse, (3) an increased risk of suicide, (4) a heightened risk of placenta previa in future pregnancies, and (5) the loss of protective effect against breast cancer from a first full-term pregnancy.
Smith adds, “These risks are in addition to the significant risks inherent in the procedure itself and the substandard health and safety conditions that exist in many abortion clinics around the nation.”
“Until all the pieces are in place to make the overruling of Roe a realistic possibility and until the truth has replaced misinformation about abortion,” says Burke, “laws that put fences around the abortion license and highlight the negative impact of abortion on women are imperative.”
Prudent and effective regulations to reduce abortion and limit its negative impact include rigorous informed consent, parental involvement for minors seeking abortions, limitations on public funding for abortion, minimum health and safety standards for abortion clinics, and many others.
“Abortion simply does not promote the psychological or physical health of women,” declares AUL Staff Counsel Maggie Datiles. “Once the scope of the negative impact of abortion on women is fully understood, support for most or all abortions will erode and a renewed culture of life will be within our grasp.”
AUL attorneys and policy staff are available for interviews.
About Defending Life 2008
AUL’s annual publication, Defending Life 2008: Proven Strategies for a Pro-Life America, is the definitive legal guide to abortion, bioethics, and the end of life. Cutting through the murky cloud of media chatter and controversy, Defending Life 2008 provides clear, thoroughly researched, and accurate information and is available to anyone who wants to understand key pro-life issues and utilize proven legal strategies to address them.
Defending Life 2008: http://www.aul.org/?p=Defending_Life
About Americans United for Life
Americans United for Life (AUL) is a nonprofit, public-interest law and policy organization whose vision is a nation in which every human being is welcomed in life and protected in law. The first national pro-life organization in America, AUL has been committed to defending human life through vigorous judicial, legislative, and educational efforts at both the federal and state levels since 1971. The Wall Street Journal has profiled AUL, and PBS’ Frontline program chronicled AUL’s successful efforts in Mississippi.