Deanna Wallace, Director of Legal Communications
In today’s culture, abortion has been marketed to women as a “cure all” solution to unintended pregnancies. Masked by inaccurate and incomplete data on abortion’s safety and efficacy, the true dangers of abortion remain under-reported and all too often ignored. How many women have died from botched abortions? How many women continue to suffer in silence from long-term abortion complications? How many abortions are actually performed in the United States each year? We simply do not know.
It’s frightening that, for more than 45 years, although abortion has become a regularly performed medical procedure, it remains a procedure that we know so little about. The reality of abortion and its impact on women remain shrouded in mystery, yet abortion advocates demand unfettered access to the procedure and crassly promote abortion as a “life-saving” and “health-promoting” solution with negligible risks. A significant number of abortions go unreported, and the deaths of and injuries to countless women who have had abortions are effectively swept under the rug. As the author of a leading abortion textbook acknowledges, “[T]here are few surgical procedures given so little attention and so underrated in its potential hazard as abortion.”
A few weeks ago a report was published by the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, claiming that abortion is safe and poses minimal risks to women. However, this simply does not line up with the facts. In response to the mountains of media coverage touting this claim as fact, our good friends Dr. Michael New of the Charlotte Lozier Institute and Dr. Donna Harrison of the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians & Gynecologists wrote a remarkable op-ed in National Review Online exposing the pro-choice biases of the report authors and highlighting the scientific research proving the safety claim as false.
One of the points made in this op-ed – that “[a]bortion-rights groups have shown almost no interest in improving abortion-reporting requirements to allow for better data on abortion-related injuries and deaths” – directly correlates to a legislative priority AUL has been advancing this session.
Idaho Lt. Governor Brad Little, David Ripley of Idaho Chooses Life, Idaho Governor Butch Otter, and bill sponsors Rep. Greg Chaney and Sen. Fred Martin at the signing of H 638, the Abortion Complications Reporting Act.
At AUL, we recognize that in order to safeguard maternal health, complete and reliable data on abortion must be available to women, the medical community, and the general public. A comprehensive state reporting system – one that specifically emphasizes reporting on complications – is the only way to accomplish this goal. AUL’s Abortion Reporting Act provides such a system, and we worked with the Charlotte Lozier Institute to update our 2018 bill to include new data points that will allow us to better track the incidence of abortion and related complications.
Encouragingly, we are already seeing progress towards making this comprehensive reporting system a reality: in the ongoing 2018 state legislative sessions, Idaho and Indiana and have already passed laws based on our updated Abortion Reporting Act.
AUL will continue our push for this important legislation as the 2018 sessions continue and in future sessions, because we will only be able to unmask the reality of abortion in America when such a system is in place in every state.