The Cost of Choice: Women Evaluate the Impact of Abortion by Erika Bachiochi

By Erika Bachiochi

Captures the ethical, criminal, scientific and political complexities surrounding abortion.

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Extra resources for The Cost of Choice: Women Evaluate the Impact of Abortion

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Two surveys — one by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists in 1985,9 the other by the Kaiser Family Foundation in 199510— found that two-thirds of the obstetricians and gynecologists in practice in the United States, especially female doctors and those under forty, refuse to do abortions under any Three Decades of Empty Promises 17 circumstances. Few of these mentioned public pressure from antiabortion activists as a reason; most cited religious scruples or simply said they didn’t like doing the procedure.

23 In the presidential race of 2000, while 27 percent of those polled by the Los Angeles Times said they were more likely to vote for George W. S. Census Bureau. S. birth rate was up. Kids are no longer being regarded as a threat to the planet or as a woman’s ball and chain. 26 ••• INITIALLY HAILED AS A WOMAN’S TICKET out of the kitchen and into the boardroom, abortion today has become increasingly associated with sexual irresponsibility and cultural degradation. Once a proclamation of independence, a woman’s admission that she has had an abortion has now become the kind of public announcement that makes men, and other women, cringe, regardless of their politics.

12 Nor were the abortionists of the 1950s and 1960s necessarily untrained. Dr. 13 18 The Cost of Choice In this there is no little irony. Prior to Roe v. Wade, the fact that these doctors were breaking the law kept the numbers of abortions relatively low—as few as 200,000 a year by some estimates— and effectively discouraged most of the doctors from taking unnecessary risks. Legalization removed that constraint. An unscrupulous abortion doctor could now advertise openly, confident that he would be shielded by abortion rights rhetoric that uniformly proclaimed him a hero, even if his motives were something other than compassion.

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