Bizarre by Any Reckoning

By Dave Andrusko

So, this is Part Two of “what you can learn from pro-abortionists writing in the more-or-less popular press.” I had seen the headline—“The DIY Abortion

Two new studies on how American women end their own pregnancies”—last month and saved the story from to my hard-drive, intending to read it immediately. I ran across last night looking for something else.

If you’re like me, you didn’t immediately get that “DIY” refers to “do it yourself.”

So the article, written by Sharon Lerner, looks at a couple of studies that, frankly, border on the bizarre. The studies appeared in the “American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology” and “Reproductive Health Matters” and were investigating self-induced abortions.

I asked a couple of people who read Lerner’s story and both came to the same conclusion I did. Lerner is, at best, nervous about techniques that are the spawn of the Internet [“various herbs, vitamin C, birth control pills, laxatives, and a beverage cart worth of strange concoctions, including coffee with lemon, warm Coca-Cola with baking soda, various syrups, and Malta, a wheat soda”] and, at worse, worried.

I did not list one prominent “alternative” Lerner mentions–misoprostol, a prostaglandin that induces uterine contractions–which evidently is used by about half the women self-aborting. Most of our readers probably know misoprostol is used in tandem with mifepristone, together making up  the two-drug  RU486 abortion technique.

Used on its own misoprostol is “inefficient” in resulting in a complete abortion—and is dangerous to mother and the baby who survives. This is not idle speculation. “In Brazil, one of many countries where misoprostol self-abortions are common, there is widespread evidence of facial, nerve, and limb malformation in children born to the 5 percent to 10 percent of mothers whose efforts to abort with the drug fail,” Lerner writes.

Why do an unknown  but small number of American women (the studies contend the figure is from 2% to 4.6% , which is hard to believe) try to self-abort? There are obvious (but not necessarily true or representative) answers, beginning with cost.

But what makes the article so fascinating is how certain radical pro-abortionists continue to see self-abortion as a kind of ultimate liberation, a throwback to the “old days” when abortion was still illegal in most states. Then women “helped” one another, using a primitive technique known as menstrual extraction. 

Lerner’s account ends with one pro-abortionist scratching her head wondering why anyone would risk, for example, hemorrhaging, while the other insists “Very early abortion is not rocket science,”  says Beverly Winikoff, one of the co-authors of the Reproductive Health Matters.

She adds, “The earlier you’re going to do this, the more the woman could do herself.”

And, of course, the more women who will die.

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