Indiana State: Anti-Abortion, Pro-Coerced Probing

To learn more about how RU-486 works, click on the image

Indiana’s new legislation concerning the RU-486 pill (a.k.a. abortion pill) states that a woman must undergo two trans-vaginal ultrasounds in order to attain a prescription for the pill. Legislators hide behind silly ideas that this is for the woman’s health even though there is no medical risk that is avoided with this institutional rape.

Quoted by USA Today, Dr. Brownsyne Tucker Edmonds states:

“I can only assume that the ultrasound mandate — a mandate for a costly, invasive test that confers no medical benefit to the woman subjected to it — speaks to the lack of clinical understanding and expertise of the authors of the bill. If not for lack of understanding, I would have to conclude that the mandate speaks to a lack of regard for the bodily sanctity and integrity of Hoosier women at large.”

Dr. Sue Ellen Braunlin, an anesthesiologist says:

“It creates a health risk in a nearly risk-free treatment, and it does so to exert social control.”

The risk that Dr. Braunlin refers to is the risk that women will resort to unsafe options to terminate a pregnancy. The Population Reference Bureau’s Unsafe Abortion Facts & Figures Report (in 2011) states that worldwide, 210 million women become pregnant each year and 2/3 (133 million) of them deliver infants. The remaining 78 million end in miscarriages, stillbirth or induced abortions (46 million). Of the induced abortions, approximately 19 million are done under unsafe conditions and result in the deaths of 68,000 women and girls worldwide. This adds up to 13% of all pregnancy related deaths.

What are these unsafe conditions that we are referring to?

  • Good old-fashioned wire hanger or knitting needle to rupture the amniotic sac. The risks include infection or injury such as perforating the uterus or intestines, which can result in infertility and/or death.
  • Pumping chemicals such as chili peppers, a variety of salts and disinfectants or plant poison into the vagina. The risks include toxic shock syndrome, which can lead to death.
  • Taking over the counter or prescription medications that are known to cause uterine contractions – Oxytocin, prostaglandins, and ergoline. Risks include uterine rupture, irregular heartbeat, a rise in blood pressure hypertension, a drop in blood pressure (hypotension, anemia requiring transfusion, cardiovascular problems, pulmonary edema, and death. (Cited from Wikipedia: Unafe Abortions)

With all these risks and serious threats to the life of women, when asked about the additional hardship and discouragement of abortion, Sue Swayze, the legislative director of Indiana Right to Life argues:

“I got pregnant vaginally…. Something else could come in my vagina for a medical test that wouldn’t be that intrusive to me. So I find that argument a little ridiculous.”

I believe that Katie Halper of Feministing.org says it best:

“Consensual sex, forced probing with a foreign object, same thing! This lady must have a great sex life.”

Right to Life considers this a mild victory since this tactic is another way to discourage women from eliminating unwanted pregnancies. The irony of the name “right to life” is astounding since the life of a full-grown, living, breathing, decision-making woman is being treated as completely irrelevant and neither is the potential life of the unwanted child.

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