HomeoldThe “Father of the Abortion Pill” reveals it was always about death

The “Father of the Abortion Pill” reveals it was always about death

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In a recent profile in the New York Times, reporter Pam Belluck presents an account of the historical context surrounding the development of the chemical abortion pill. The article, which was intended to be a laudatory profile of Étienne-Émile Baulieu, who is known as the “Father of the Abortion Pill,” in fact demonstrates the deceptive practices employed in the commercialization of lethal drugs that have, to date, resulted in the deaths of millions of unborn children.

Those who oppose the use of the chemical abortion pill, which is now commercially available as Mifepristone, claim that it has numerous functions and benefits, and that it is responsible for the death of preborn babies. In a statement, Baulieu, the creator of the chemical abortion pill, asserted that the pill was always intended as an “unpregnancy pill.” From the outset, he conceived of a pharmaceutical designed to terminate a healthy pregnancy, resulting in the demise of the foetus.

Baulieu, now 96 years of age, asserts that he conceived the idea over half a century ago. Baulieu was already engaged in the practice of medicine and research into human hormones when he began work on the chemical abortion pill, also known as RU-486. This was developed by the French pharmaceutical company Roussel-Uclaf, which had links to the Nazi regime.

Baulieu was acutely aware of the potential shock value of the chemical abortion pill, and thus devoted decades of his life to meticulously crafting the marketing of RU-486 in order to secure approval. He was initially successful in several European countries, beginning with France in 1988. After years of effort and further deception, he achieved success in the United States in 2000.

In order to enhance the appeal of RU-486 and to circumvent the moral outrage that is commonly directed at the killing of innocent preborn children, Baulieu attempted to disassociate it from the practice of abortion. He coined the term “contragestion” to describe the manner in which the chemicals counteracted the protective and nurturing effects of progesterone during normal gestation.

Baulieu’s description of the chemical abortion pill as a “middle ground” between preventing fertilisation and surgically removing a fetus is misleading. The distinction between the two methods is not significant. Regardless of the means employed, elective abortion is the deliberate and unjust ending of a human life.

Deceptive marketing practices have been observed in the pharmaceutical industry for some time, long before Baulieu began attempting to persuade health regulators to approve the use of the lethal pharmaceutical in question. Belluck is not the first journalist to describe how Baulieu misled pharmaceutical executives in the initial stages of chemical development. As the head of Hoechst AG, which controlled Roussel-Uclaf, was opposed to abortion, Baulieu presented his research into counteracting progesterone as a means of reducing the effects of cortisol in astronauts in high-stress situations and certain chronic illnesses.

The apparent absence of a distinction between abortion and the chemical abortion pill is of significant consequence to Baulieu, and forms the basis of his justification for his actions. He asserts that his intention was to provide women with a choice that, through the use of a pill, respects their privacy and physical integrity and allows them to avoid the aggression of surgery entirely. This is not a reflection of reality.

As the use of the chemical abortion pill continues to expand in contexts that are increasingly risky and traumatic, it is evident that self-managed abortions do not benefit women and do not protect mothers from the reality of ending the lives of their preborn babies. A mother who sees the lifeless body of her baby, small but fully formed, cannot be told that she is simply “unpregnant.” She is aware that she is the mother of a deceased infant.

In a chilling turn of events, Baulieu employs an image of a woman he observed soliciting alms to justify his heinous actions. During a visit to India with a group of intellectuals, a woman approached him, holding the body of her deceased infant, and requested financial assistance. Baulieu stated: “The incident evoked a profound emotional response that has persisted throughout my life.” I believe that my experiences in Calcutta have consistently motivated me to strive for excellence in my work. Baulieu may no longer have to witness the bodies of the mothers who have lost their babies when society tells them that they are not worthy of support, but they still exist.

It is also evident that women are harmed by the use of the contraceptive pill RU-486. Updated figures from the Food and Drug Administration indicate that at least 28 women have died from complications of the chemical abortion pill since its approval in 2000. Furthermore, studies have demonstrated that one-third of women who undergo an abortion using the chemical abortion pill experience emotional distress in the aftermath of the procedure. Furthermore, complications may result in infertility and other injuries for women.

These unfortunate outcomes are not unexpected, given that Baulieu was inspired by the development of the contraceptive pill by his mentor, Gregory Pinkus. Pinkus encouraged him to travel to Puerto Rico to observe the clinical trials of oral contraceptives, and Baulieu informed the New York Times of this. “Upon observing the procedures employed in Puerto Rico, I was impressed by the treatment of women.”

This description is strikingly naive, given that Pinkus’s notoriously unethical experiments on human subjects in Puerto Rico resulted in serious illness and complications for women who were dismissed and ignored. Three women even died while participating in the trial, yet there was no investigation into whether the contraceptive pill contributed to their deaths.

In a manner characteristic of classical misogyny, Baulieu asserts that he is fond of women, yet fails to acknowledge the physical and emotional distress he causes those he purports to help.

Baulieu refutes the assertion that his lethal actions are on a par with those of Hitler and Stalin. Baulieu responds to the suggestion with a derisive laugh, invoking his Jewish heritage as a means of deflecting any criticism. It is important to note that no one is accusing him of anti-Semitism. The similarity between the actions of Hitler, Mao, Stalin and other tyrants and those of Baulieu is that they were responsible for millions of deaths because they viewed certain groups of human beings as inferior and thought the solution to their problems was to kill en masse. The use of the chemical abortion pill, RU-486, continues to result in the deaths of upwards of 500,000 preborn babies in the United States each year.

In a state of complete denial, Baulieu refers to the chemical abortion pill as “the work I had envisioned with artist friends in New York.” The chemical abortion pill is an instrument of death that was intended to kill babies from the very beginning. It is synonymous with destruction and injustice.

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on ThisIsChemicalAbortion.com and subsequently reposted on MercatorNet.


Daniel Miller is responsible for nearly all of National Right to Life News' political writing.

With the election of Donald Trump to the U.S. presidency, Daniel Miller developed a deep obsession with U.S. politics that has never let go of the political scientist. Whether it's the election of Joe Biden, the midterm elections in Congress, the abortion rights debate in the Supreme Court or the mudslinging in the primaries - Daniel Miller is happy to stay up late for you.

Daniel was born and raised in New York. After living in China, working for a news agency and another stint at a major news network, he now lives in Arizona with his two daughters.

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