Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Even if abortion rates are higher in countries that ban abortion...

It is often argued-- based on dubious statistics -- that abortion rates are higher in countries that ban abortion than in those that don’t, with the implication that abortion bans lead to more abortions.

So we are supposed to believe that abortion were re-criminalized in North America, abortion rates would sky-rocket.

Even if those abortion statistics were reliable, there is no way that they show that abortion bans lead to more abortions.

Because it is assumed that abortion bans are enforced in countries where it is illegal. But they are not.

From Abortion Policies : a Global Review By United Nations. Dept. of Economic and Social Affairs. Population Division, 2002:

Of the approximately 50 million abortions carried out every year in the world, estimates place the number performed illegally at 40 percent. In these countries, law enforcement authorities ignore or tolerate the perform of illegal abortion or even unofficially license clinics for that purpose. A number of factors are responsible for this situation. Among these are the ease with which abortions can be performed, the lack of will or resources to prosecute, particularly in the light of more pressing social needs, and the clandestine nature of the procedure. In some countries where abortion is technically legal, access to authorized facilities and personnel may be limited, or resources to pay for the abortion may be limited, resulting in more illegal abortions. In a few cases, although abortion is authorized, the Government may not have issued regulations allowing the law to be effectively implemented. In all of these situations, legal action is rarely taken, except in the most egregious cases, usually involving the death of the pregnant woman. In some countries, the indifference to abortion is so great, that most of those performing abortions or enforcing laws do not know what the provisions of the law actually are. The advent of new scientific developments such as RU-486, the so-called “abortion pill”, which makes the abortion even easier to perform without the need for special facilities, will in all probability only increase the gap between law and practice.

If abortionists are able to practice their trade without being hassled, then the legality of abortion is not really at play.

The contexts of these countries are irrelevant in the North American abortion debate on abortion, because once the unborn child is recognized as a person, and abortion is criminalized,  these laws will be enforced.

 How do we know that? Because American fetal protection laws already are.

 If abortion is criminalized, and laws are enforced, and abortion crime syndicates will be closely monitored (as I anticipate they will be) this will lead to less access to abortion, not more.