Abortion Laws Need Your Opinion!

Many individuals including the government consider the abortion laws rational especially when abortion is inevitable in the case of threatened maternal life or confirmed fetal-defects. This simply means that most laws permit abortion on therapeutic bases.

Of course, abortion (termination of a fertilized ovum before the fetus becomes viable) for maternal safety is termed justifiable, however, the restrictions placed on other abortion cases outside the viability period has contributed too many maternal deaths compared to maternal lives saved on the therapeutic grounds around the globe. Criminalizing abortion doesn't in any way reduce the practice of abortion in many countries.

One might think that supporting the reformation of abortion laws worldwide is insane- well, that isn't true.
If abortion laws place a high restriction on other abortion grounds except for therapeutic reasons (to save the woman's life or in the case of a fatal fetal anomaly), what happens in the case of a rape or sexual abuse? While this is arguably by many who thinks any form of abortion outside therapeutic reasons is a sin or illegal and should be highly restricted or punishable by law, the rate is still high. However, considering the high rate of abortions in the United States which counted approximately 893,000 in 2016 as revealed by an anonymous survey made by Guttmacher Institute on 1,209 post-abortive women from nine different abortion clinics, the lowest percentage of abortion cases recorded over time was conducted for therapeutic reasons.
Percentage Reason
<0.5% Victim of rape
3% Fetal health problems
4% Physical health problems
4% Would interfere with education or career
7% Not mature enough to raise a child
8% Don't want to be a single mother
19% Done having children
23% Can't afford a baby
25% Not ready for a child
6% Other

Does this ring any bell in sensible minds? Does the law permit all of these abortion cases or reasons as shown in the chat in other parts of the world?

This simply means that most of the abortions conducted in the United States whether successful or unsuccessful should be tagged illegal or criminal offenses if the law doesn't permit it. But this has done us well than harm. If the law permits this in the United States, what happens in the other parts of the world?
Statistics also show that most of the abortion fatalities occur in countries where the abortion laws are highly restrictive. The cause of this isn't far from the fact that abortion cases irrespective of the gestational period are liable to complications especially if not conducted by an expert. It's proven that most of the countries with highly restrictive abortion laws record the highest rate of abortion cases. This isn't arguable especially in a country like Nigeria where:

An estimated 1.25 million induced abortions were recorded in 2012, equivalent to a rate of 33 abortions per 1,000 women between the ages of 15-49 years. The estimated unplanned pregnancy rate was 59 per 1,000 women between the ages 15-49 years. Fifty-six percent of unplanned pregnancies ended in abortion. About 212,000 complications of unsafe abortions were recorded and treated representing a treatment rate of 5.6 per 1,000 women of the reproductive age, and an additional 285,000 unsafe abortion cases experienced serious health consequences but don't receive the treatment they needed. - Guttmacher Institute and the University of Ibadan, Nigeria.

The levels of unplanned pregnancies and unsafe abortions continue to rise in countries with highly restrictive abortion laws as evident in the above research.
Although abortion laws in some countries are highly considered and abortion practices termed "Illegal", does this have any effect on the rate of abortion cases recorded in these countries? While abortion practices are on the rise in these countries irrespective of the abortion laws, this only leaves women unprotected and helpless in case of any form of abortion complications.
Many abortionists in these areas aren't equipped with complications management techniques or equipment while they blindly involve in the practices unlike some states in the United States with specialized abortionists which have greatly reduced fatality rate to the nearest minimum.
• Since the laws are highly restrictive and offenders are severely punished, women's lives are continually at a great risk at any point in the abortion process. If any complications arise, both the woman and the abortionist wouldn't seek help from anywhere even when it's available. What happens to the woman?
• Some laws see abortion as a form of moral transgression and mostly women, especially between the ages of 19-29 would rather die in silence than a complaint to friends or relations for any form of help in case of abortion complications.

The above scenarios have contributed to over 52% abortion fatality and over 90% abortion complications in some countries, especially in Africa. This shows that the abortion laws however strong they claim to be aren't effective at all. Women lives are lost which could've been saved. If the laws can't stop abortion, won't it be wise to reform them to save women's lives?
At any point, one could tell why the major reasons why abortion laws were put in place in some parts of the world. The three major reasons for the strict abortion laws as revealed by research were because:
• Abortion was considered as a moral transgression and/or a sin and was served to punish offenders.
• Abortionists weren't well trained which made abortion very dangerous for women. The law was a service to protect the women.
• Many fetal lives were lost due to unplanned pregnancies and abortion and/or lack of contraceptives. The law was serviced to protect fetal lives in all circumstances.
However, many of the above concerns for abortion laws are highly limited today.
Reformation of abortion laws could mean decriminalization (removing criminal punishments) against abortion from the law which may include not:
• Punishing anyone for abortion
• Punishing anyone who provides safe abortion
• Involving the court in abortion decisions
• Involving the police in investigation of safe abortion practices
• And handling abortion cases as other forms of health care which include training abortion providers, using abortion best practices, exercising punishments on any negligence or dangerous practices, and the development and application of evidence-based guidelines.

Although there's relatively low abortion fatality recorded in the U.S, the reverse could've been the case if abortion laws in the United States were the same. This is the reality.
Do you think improvements in the provision of safe abortion and post-abortion care if permitted by law in such countries and even in the U.S could reduce abortion complications and fatality rate?

This item was posted by a community contributor.

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