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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 10:50AM #1
MysticWanderer
Posts: 1,328

I have tried this once or twice before but I am a glutton for punishment.


I am interested in people's proposed solutions to the current abortion controversy, not as ethereal theories but as hard proposals.  Thus I am asking anyone, PL or PC:


If you were suddenly placed as absolute dictator of this nation, a veritable Solon of Athens what would you propose to do about abortion.


Would you allow abortion at all.


If so under what circumstances.  Pleas try to be somewhat specific, if threat to the life of the mother is allowed then how immediate and severe must the threat be.  If health of the mother is allowed then what do you define as health.  If there are no restrictions then do yoou mean you would allow abortion electively in the 38th week.


If you allow abortion for rape then what conditions must be met to claim rape.


The same question above for incest.


What mechanisms would you create to help enforce your laws.  Just a warning with current technology a physician can perform an abortion in his office with standard office equipment and document this as such things as an inevitable miscarriage without any oversight what so ever.



I am not doing this to look for a fight I am doing this to see any reasonably thought out options as alternatives to the current situation in abortion.

"Not all who wander are lost" J.R.R.Tolkein
You can safely assume that you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do. ~Anne Lamott
"Against stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain."
Friedrich von Schiller
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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 11:11AM #2
Tolerant Sis
Posts: 4,201

I would allow abortion for any reason at all until viability, and then allow it for severe fetal anomaly and/or maternal health reasons.  Women have the right to equal protection under the law.

First amendment fan since 1793.
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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 11:18AM #3
Tmarie64
Posts: 5,277

Aug 28, 2009 -- 11:11AM, Tolerant Sis wrote:


I would allow abortion for any reason at all until viability, and then allow it for severe fetal anomaly and/or maternal health reasons.  Women have the right to equal protection under the law.




Ditto.  After viability is the only time I would impose limits.

James Thurber - "It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers."
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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 11:52AM #4
newsjunkie
Posts: 5,750

I basically agree with Tmarie and TolerantSis. Regarding how much of a threat to a woman's health is required in order to allow post-viability abortion, well, I'm not a doctor, so I don't feel qualitifed to know all the potential threats. I would support a requirement that exists today in many state laws, that a second physician must confirm that the abortion is necessary to protect the life/health of the woman.


Regarding what types of fetal abnormalities must be present in order to allow a post-viability abortion, I would support abortion in cases where the abnormality will cause death before or soon after birth. I don't support it for things like Down syndrome, dwarfism, and other conditions that will cause even severe disability, but that can still allow for a good quality of life if the person has assistance coping with their disability. I would also want to see legislation committing more funding for assisting disabled people accompany any legislation to prevent abortion of fetuses with disabling abnormalities. Again, I am not a medical professional, so I would not want to be the one writing these laws!


Another case I was thinking about was whether to outlaw abortions for sex-selection purposes, as that is problematic for many people, including many PCers. I'm certainly no expert on this, but I googled and found that there is a test (CVS test?) that can be done at 10-14 wks that can determine the fetus's sex. I also read that ultrasound at 20-24 wks is the more common way to determine the sex, i.e. most people find out the sex of their fetus (if they want to know it) close to the time the fetus is reaching viability. So perhaps there can be a restriction on abortions after 8 wks -- that they can't be done solely for sex selection purposes. Of course anybody can lie and say they want the abortion for some other reason -- just as if you outlawed all abortion people with resources could still obtain them, as MW hinted in his OP. No law is perfect, but I'm guessing that this restriction would appeal to a majority of people in the US.

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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 12:33PM #5
MysticWanderer
Posts: 1,328

Tmarie and TolerantSis, thank you for your input.  Now a question, how will you define viability in a statute?  I can find authors who will define viability as early as 20 weeks EGA where the chance of survival is 10% and many others who will use 24 weeks where the chance is 50%.  The reason I ask is not to nitpick but to show the very real difficulty legislation faces in these matters.  What if through further advancements the point of viability fall even lower.  Such advancements could be more effective means of oxygenating the blood and clearing wastes such as the ECMO but more developed.  Do we then lower the point of viability.  Because of these possibilities do we legislate an age of viabiity or merely a definition and allow the courts to interpret it?

"Not all who wander are lost" J.R.R.Tolkein
You can safely assume that you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do. ~Anne Lamott
"Against stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain."
Friedrich von Schiller
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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 2:06PM #6
Tmarie64
Posts: 5,277

22 weeks is the youngest ever surviving preemie, I believe.


I need to respeak.  I'll say the first trimester, instead of viability.  12-14 weeks.  Since gestation is not 9 months, but 40 weeks, 14 is about one-third.


 

James Thurber - "It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers."
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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 2:47PM #7
Tolerant Sis
Posts: 4,201

I believe that abortion should be legal up to 24 weeks.  A vanishingly small number of fetuses survive before that, usually with serious and debilitating impairments.  


However, I do believe that the state's interest beyond viability is still not paramount.  The life and health of the mother, and severe fetal anomalies should still be rationales for late term abortion.  For a medically fragile woman but a healthy fetus, beyond that point, induction of labor is a better solution than abortion.

First amendment fan since 1793.
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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 3:49PM #8
Tmarie64
Posts: 5,277

No, not necessarily.  I have a cousin who found out when she was pregnant that she cannot deliver, labor would have killed her.  So, no, labor induction is not always viable or better.

James Thurber - "It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers."
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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 3:52PM #9
Tolerant Sis
Posts: 4,201

I agree, Marie.  It should be medically appropriate.  In most cases, a late term (3rd trimester) abortion is no safer and in many ways less safe than an early induction, however.

First amendment fan since 1793.
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5 years ago  ::  Aug 28, 2009 - 4:20PM #10
MysticWanderer
Posts: 1,328

Very good both of you.  By the way in the case of the medically fragile mother at or beyond the point of viability a cesarean section is far less stressful than induction of labor or abortion and would usually be the medical recommendation.  Personally I can imagine no maternal condition where abortion of a viable fetus would be the only option.  Now in conditions where the fetus simply will never be viable such as anencephaly then there is precious little indication for anything more than termination of the pregnancy whenever diagnosed.  The problem with these situations and law is that each situation is relatively unique and requires individual attention.

"Not all who wander are lost" J.R.R.Tolkein
You can safely assume that you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do. ~Anne Lamott
"Against stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain."
Friedrich von Schiller
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