A new study shows that abortion rates around the world have dropped from around 42 million in 1996 to just about 42 million in 2003. The report, released by the Guttmacher Institute, states that the reason that most abortions are down is due in part to the option of contraception being utilized more frequently by women and their partners.
However, the same study states that although abortions are dropping in frequency, the mortality rates for women who do go undergo abortions — primarily in countries where the procedure is illegal — are still dying at alarming rates. The current figure states that almost 70,000 women a year succumb to abortion complications and die shortly thereafter.
The report also relates some striking information, which, I suppose only makes sense if you really take the time to consider it: the more abortion is outlawed, the higher the risk is that a woman will go to extreme measures in order to have an abortion served to her, whether by her own hand or by undereducated individuals in unsafe settings. The Guttmacher report states that “total abortions occurred at roughly equal rates” in countries where they were legal and where they were highly restricted as well, which does clearly prompt women to go to extreme measures and throw all caution to the wind.
However, not all groups are completely jiving with what the Institute is reporting. Several religious-based groups are stating that any legalization of abortion will only result in more abortions, rather than cutting down on women who are not surviving them.
Despite the fact that I am a self-proclaimed “pro-lifer,” I do think that having such restrictions on abortions, especially in certain areas, could obviously be a severe detriment to women as a whole. The approximation of 70,000 women a year (and I highly doubt that it’s as low as that, if you truly think about it) dying due to botched abortions done in shady clinics or home-based abortions is totally frightening.
Do I feel that abortion is the best form of contraception? No way. Would I, personally, ever have an abortion under any circumstances? No way, doubly. Do I think abortion should be nationally legalized? I’m not even opening that can of worms today; I’m merely saying that pro-life extremists should also factor in the women who lie bleeding to death on a dirty gurney in a darkened room to have some of the same courtesies that patients of more “legal” procedures would.
After all, pro-life is pro-ALL life, no?