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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Ethics and Politics » Abortion ultrasound viewing required?

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Author Topic: Abortion ultrasound viewing required?
faifai
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http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17741934/

"With calls of emotional blackmail from opponents, a measure requiring women seeking abortions to first review ultrasound images of their fetuses advanced Wednesday in the South Carolina Legislature."

What do you think? Personally, I do think it is emotional blackmail. I highly doubt anyone getting an abortion doesn't know what they're there for, and requiring them to view the images will not sway them, it will just make a difficult decision even harder. I think there is a lot of difference between having such pictures available (which seems good, if someone wants more information/images/etc. before they make a decison, by all means go for it) and requiring that they view them.

"The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Greg Delleney, a Republican, said the measure would save lives and a lifetime of regret for some women.

“She can determine for herself whether she is carrying an unborn child deserving of protection or whether it’s just an inconvenient, unnecessary part of her body and an abortion fits her circumstances at that time,” Delleney told NBC affiliate WIS-TV of Columbia.


The sponsor's attitude seems to be either you are "protecting" an unborn child if you choose to remain pregnant, or you're saying it's just an inconvenient, unnecessary part of your body if you terminate. This kind of black and white thinking seems to cause SO many problems with the whole issue.

[ 03-25-2007, 01:12 AM: Message edited by: faifai ]

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bluefreak44
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I'm torn over this because I'm pro-life (*waits to be hit with the rotten tomatoes*).

However, morals aside, from a more political perspective, how much would this cost? I know some typically pro-life people who wouldn't be in favor of such a thing if it cost too much.

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-Lauren-
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Woah, can't believe I missed this.

I think this is a clear form of manipulation. A woman should have the RIGHT to see an ultrasound of the embryo/fetus, as well as the right to not. Forcing it comes off to me as guilting manipulation. This had better not go through.

A woman doesn't hop, skip, and jump to the abortion clinic, and some really don't want to have to think too much about it, knowing that as painful as it is, it's the only good choice for them and a prospective child. Making that any more difficult is shameful.

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Heather
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Ultrasounds are COSTLY.

And in general -- as history dictates, anyway -- most antichoice organizations really don't care what something costs if it results in women being scared into choosing as they would like her to for their own reasons.

(Not projecting these views unto you, bluefreak: it's sage to recognize that a given person's way of enacting a pro-life view and the way groups seeking to enact that UNTO women systemtaically are not always one and the same, even though you do have to recognize that when you use that term -- rather than saying, for instance, that for YOUR own choices, you don't feel supportive of abortion -- you do align yourself with those people.)

Just the other day, I was spending some time here, where this legal organization had gone into (thankfully-now-since-resigned from the bat-shite-crazy post Bush put him in, as the head of the office that is supposed to SUPPORT and distribute contracpetion -- this guy is loudly and strongly anti-contraception) Eric Keroack's "A Women's Concern" clinic:

quote:
The center staff told our volunteer misinformation and lies about abortion. Counselors provided gruesome exaggerated details of an abortion procedure – including a description of “prying” open her cervix to get the “bigger baby out” because her pregnancy was past the first trimester. Our volunteer was also told gross exaggerations about the risks associated with RU-486 (the abortion pill), including hemorrhaging and ineffectiveness.

Counselors further made false assertions about the mental health effects of abortion –including telling our volunteer that she would likely have severe depression as a result of her abortion and that this was a common occurrence. Such assertions about “post-abortion syndrome” are not supported by the weight of scientific evidence, nor recognized by major psychiatric associations.

A Woman’s Concern also provided our volunteer with pamphlets containing information falsely linking abortion to a risk of breast cancer. This long-time anti-abortion myth has been repeatedly discredited. Other pamphlets in the center’s waiting room likewise contained disinformation about condoms and sexually transmitted infections, and were often seriously outdated.

A Woman’s Concern adopts an air of medical authority but in actuality it fails to provide accurate information or legitimate medical services of use to any woman.

But Aren’t There Laws that Prohibit Practicing Medicine Like This? The center’s use of ultrasound technology is medically irresponsible and violates accepted medical practice.

The Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) and the major professional medical associations all agree that fetal ultrasound is only appropriate when used to obtain “diagnostic information.” Indeed, the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine has warned that “nondiagnostic fetal imaging without medical indication is inappropriate, medically irresponsible, and potentially unsafe.”

A Woman’s Concern uses ultrasound simply to advance its own anti-abortion beliefs. The center staff specifically informed our volunteer that the ultrasound they performed on her could not be considered a diagnostic ultrasound. Our volunteer’s ultrasound examination lasted almost thirty minutes and included a detailed description claiming to identify the heart, arms and legs, ribs and brain of our volunteer’s “baby.” Our volunteer was sent home with a printed image of the fetus.

The use of ultrasound is a hallmark of Dr. Keroack’s anti-abortion work. Dr. Keroack views all women who enter his center as being “at-risk” for deciding to have an abortion and “abortion-vulnerable.” To Dr. Keroack the medically inappropriate use of ultrasound is justified simply because he believes it may convince a woman not to have an abortion.

Just to give you an idea about how something like this usually goes in one of those clinics and in practice (it's SO not even, "Hey, do you want to see what's really going on in there right now to help you figure out what you want to do?", and even that, again, would be medically unethical per what ultrasound technology is supposed to be sued for) and what that legislation is seeking to require of women who have already MADE their choice, or have a strong sense of what they think they'd like to do, which is why they are AT an abortion clinic in the first place.

[ 04-06-2007, 04:06 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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bluefreak44
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Still not sure whether I would support something like this or not, but there seem to be a lot of unanswered questions.

First, even for those who support it, is there evidence that this kind of thing works? Or would it be a waste of money that just makes things even worse for the woman involved?

And I'm still thinking about the cost thing, too. If it really is about the greater good...if it costs a lot and doesn't result in much change, couldn't we spend that money elsewhere on "life saving" things (I'm trying to think of examples; maybe better health care, better roads to decrease accidents, something to help combat crime)?

I know ultrasounds used to cost a lot of money, but I wasn't sure about now. My mom was only able to get an ultrasound of my little sister because they thought there might be something wrong, but that was 17 years ago.

And Heather, I understand the frustration with some pro-life organizations, particularly the more extreme ones that do things like protest at clinics. What frustrates me is that sometimes these groups want to preach at women that they are making the wrong choice, they should carry the baby to term, etc...but if a woman is in a precarious situation (not much money, still in school, etc.), they don't seem to want to do anything to help that woman carry the child. It's just, "Here's the right thing to do; we're gonna yell at you to do it but don't expect any help from us." I just labeled myself pro-life because I don't know how else to phrase my views (and even my pro-life stance isn't absolute; for example, sexual violence is a whole nother story).

Edited for spelling

[ 04-06-2007, 10:10 PM: Message edited by: bluefreak44 ]

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-Lauren-
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Like the article Heather linked to describes, though, is that biased "crisis pregnancy centers" often receive federal funding to provide these "services" to pregnant women. They HAVE been using ultrasounds illegally, often without any sort of medical license or training, simply for use as a manipulating tactic.

So, cost isn't an issue; this IS happening nationwide, they just want to legitimize it in this state and force it upon women who could previously access unbiased medical services.

[ 04-06-2007, 10:16 PM: Message edited by: Miss Lauren ]

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Heather
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Just so that I'm not misunderstood, personally I have a problem with ANY organization, not just some, who is trying to influence any woman's reproductive choice based on what THEY want her to do, not in doing their level best, considering all three options equally, to help her find out what SHE feels is best for HER. [b]ANY[/b, not some.

So, even when you ask if these practices "work," you're effectively asking if they work to make a woman be guilted, pressured, or manipulated into making the choice a given group or person wants her to. Does bullying women like this "work" sometimes in that respect? Yes, it works often, actually. Bullying and manipulation are effective ways of making people do something, and a person who is manipulated and bullied into something is always worse for that experience. Manipulation and bullying are abuses of power.

So, from my frame of reference, as an advocate for women, as a woman, and sitting here at a site which is not only supportive of all frrely made choices and NONsupportive of things like bullying and trying to keep women or anyone else from making their own choices, calling that "working," or even implying that that kind of result justifies things (and even more offensively to me, that money is the dealbreaker here, NOT bullying) is more that merely precarious.

And for the record, clinic protesting is done by nearly all of these orgs, and that'd not be what the most extremist ones do, but the most benign: the most extremist of them quite literally bomb clinics, stalk women and doctors and gun people down in cold blood.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About MeGet our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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bluefreak44
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I guess I should have clarified. I meant the extremist ones that have some semblance of sanity. I liken the bombers to terrorists, which are just so off the charts I didn't even feel the need to mention it.
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LilBlueSmurf
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I think you're missing the point, bluefreak44. While the methods are different, the purpose and outcome are still the same; these people are trying to coherece women out of making choices by scaring them and telling me lies. Where is the sanity in that? Why is this okay, as long as it 'works'/is cost effective?

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