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Online Book Club Chapter Ten: Abortion

December 2, 2009 | Annemarie

Abortion is one of the most controversial debates that takes place in America.  Carrie Lukas is very diplomatic in her handling of this very controversial topic. She presents both sides of the issue, highlighting the often neglected facts:


“This chapter does not attempt to tackle the question of abortion’s legality. Instead, it explores some of the incomplete information given to young women about abortion and delves into a few issues rarely covered in the current debate.”


Lukas goes on to point out how women’s magazines and media assume that women are pro-choice: 

“The treatment of abortion in women’s magazines and media often begins with the assumption that most young women are–and ought to be–pro-choice. The August 2005 issue of Glamour contains an article, “The Mysterious Disappearance of Young Pro-Choice Women.” It includes a serious examination of the shift in attitude among young women, a majority of whom had supported unrestricted abortion rights ten years ago and now have greater sympathy for restrictions on abortion”


Roe v. Wade brought abortion to the courts. If Roe v. Wade were overturned abortion would not become illegal, instead it would bring abortion back to the state governments: 

“In discussions about abortion and role of the Supreme Court, it’s important to understand what would really happen if the Court were to reverse Roe v. Wade. Contrary to most rhetoric, overturning Roe would not make abortion illegal in the United States. It would grant state legislatures and the Congress greater latitude to place or enforce restrictions on abortion.”


Americans are often viewed as more conservative then Europeans; however, on the issue of abortion the opposite is true:

“Abortion is illegal in Ireland unless the mother’s life is in danger. In Sweden, abortion is allowed only up to week eighteen, after that abortions are limited to “extraordinary circumstances.” In France–often touted as the pinnacle of enlightened liberalism–abortion is available up until the twelfth week of pregnancy.”


In some states a child must have parental permission to get a tan, receive aspirin, or get a piercing–if they want an abortion no parental permission required:

“Yet in six states and in Washington D.C. a minor can obtain an abortion without getting permission from a parent . . . Similar restrictions on children’s access to tanning machines exist in California, where a child can get an abortion without parental notification. New York has no parental notification requirement when it comes to abortion, but it does have one for a child who wants to get a tattoo or have his or her nose pierced.”


In closing, I would like to challenge American women to reconsider their “right” to chose. I believe that life begins at conception, not whenever is most convenient. As women, we are given the great opportunity to bring life into the world — as a new mother I can honestly say this is the most important and significant responsibility I have ever been given. The unborn don’t have a voice in today’s society; as women and mothers we must be their voice.
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