Posted by: bridget | 26 January 2007

Filed Under: “Ya Think?”

The Boston Globe reports that a young Latina woman used prescription anti-ulcer pills as an aborficant. After taking Cytotec, which causes uterine contractions and widens the cervix, she delivered her 1.25 lb baby, who died after four days in a neonatal ward. Cytotec was found in samples of the baby’s urine.

The Boston Globe titled this article, “Alleged Bid to Abort Leads to Baby’s Death.” No kidding. Isn’t that like “Alleged Bid to Embezzle Leads to Financial Gain for Perpetrator?”

What makes this story unusual is that the woman did not try to obtain an abortion at an earlier date; prosecutors estimate that she was 23-25 weeks along in her pregnancy. (Note that a 22-week old fetus weighs about 1/2 lb.) Furthermore, she did not obtain an abortion from a medical practioner, but used a method from South America to induce an abortion. The story is sad, considering that her baby was viable and could have survived but for the violent method in which she was delivered.

She will be charged either with forcing a miscarriage or with homicide. There is a point at which any civilised society refuses to allow a woman to abort, as she is carrying a viable baby – a point at which, no matter how much she may dislike being pregnant, she is legally and morally obligated to remain so. Her baby died well after delivery: this is no blob of cells. That is the crux of the reason for charging her with homicide. Abortion is legal in Massachusetts up until fetal viability; Miss Abreau had more than enough time to make a decision and seek resources. The fact that she waited so long does not make this an “anti-choice” problem, but is a symptom of a culture so pro-abortion that it justifies the killing of a viable baby, despite a mother who had ample opportunity for legal abortion. The at-home nature of the abortion does not change these facts.

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