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Partial-birth abortion - Essay Example

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According to the American Life League (2002), the history of abortion in the United States has been recorded going back to 1859, when the American Medical Association condemned the procedure except as medically necessary for the perseveration of life of the mother or child. In 1875, every state had a ban on abortion. In 1916, Margaret Sanger created the Birth Control League, which is now called Planned Parenthood, in promotion of contraception and abortion. Nearly 60 years later, in the infamous ruling of the Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade 1973, abortion on demand was made legal, although the individual states were still allowed to outlaw abortions within the third trimester unless medically necessary. Also in 1973, in Doe v. Bolton the Supreme Court defined the “health” of the mother to include physical, emotional, psychological, and familial and age. This ultimately allowed the woman to have an abortion at any time, for any reason. A Missouri abortion law that required parental consent of minors and husbands was ruled unconstitutional in 1976. In 1992, in Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey, the decision there outlawed restrictions that “impose an undue burden” on a woman’s “right” to an abortion. In 1993, President Clinton signed five executive orders that allowed for fetal tissue research and harvesting, RU486 research, abortion counseling in family planning clinics and abortion services in U. S. military hospitals. In 1994, he also signed the Freedom of Access to Clinics Entrance Act (FACE), which inhibits the first amendment rights of people who are pro-life to protest and demonstrate peacefully at abortion clinics. According to a study done by the Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance (Robinson, 2007), women generally give at least three reasons why they want an abortion. For the most part, the reasons are the same. They are: lack of financial ability to raise the child; they’re not ready for the responsibility of the child; their lives would be changed too much, i.e., she has future plans that do not allow for having a child; her relationship with her partner is tumultuous; they feel they are too young; and some feel that they are too old to have another child as her family is grown. These reasons are generally influenced by pressures from the father or the mother’s parents to have the abortion; lack of physical or emotional strength; she is too young and a child would be too disruptive of her life; she doesn’t want others to know that she became pregnant; interference of the child with her career; and fear of physical abuse from a parent or significant other. Although these are only the personal reasons that a woman may choose to have an abortion, although less likely, there are medical reasons that support abortion. They are: the fetus was hurt by exposure to drugs, alcohol or other chemicals; the age of the mother is so young that the pregnancy is dangerous to the mother; the fetus has some genetic defect; the mother develops eclampsia; and in the case of multiple pregnancy, quintuplets, sextuplets and so on, the physician will often recommend a reduction process of the fetuses where one or more are killed so that the remaining fetuses are born normal and healthy. Generally, most abortions are performed within the first nine weeks of pregnancy, but there are some that are performed later. The reasons for these later term abortions according to a report by Physicians for Reproductive Choice and Health (PRCH) & The Guttmacher Institute (AGI) in 2005, were because: she did not recognize that she was pregnant; they had financial difficulty in arranging for an earlier term abortion; they were afraid to tell others of the pregnancy; they needed the time to make the decision; they felt that they should not follow through with it; they did not know they could get an abortion; and they ...Show more
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According to the American Life League, the history of abortion in the United States has been recorded going back to 1859, when the American Medical Association condemned the procedure except as medically necessary for the perseveration of life of the mother or child…
Partial-birth abortion
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