The article John posted yesterday from Jezebel about the New York Reproductive Health Act (RHA) is worth a read. It addresses the cloud of bullshit around abortion after 24 weeks of pregnancy which, as anyone who cares about women’s health instead of policing uteri knows, is a rare procedure only used in cases of severe, unsurvivable fetal abnormality or risk to the mother’s life:
The RHA now ensures that people in New York will have their constitutional right to an abortion; that includes the right to abortion after the 24th week in pregnancy if the pregnant person’s life or health is threatened by the pregnancy, or if the fetus has a condition incompatible with life. Prior to this legislation, I have had patients find out about a fetal anomaly who then had to travel long distances to other states to get the care they needed. Abortion later in pregnancy is not what patients anticipate for themselves; it’s not how they see their pregnancies unfolding. I had one patient who couldn’t afford to travel outside of the state and so she continued the pregnancy and the baby died shortly after birth due to a brain malformation. Years later, she is unable to tell her story without tears.
Before Ralph Northam’s blackface revelations, he was part of a faux controversy over a similar law in Virginia. Northam is a pediatric neurosurgeon, and here’s the answer he gave to a radio station on the issue of abortion after 24 weeks:
“[Third trimester abortions are] done in cases where there may be severe deformities. There may be a fetus that’s nonviable. So in this particular example, if a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen,” […] “The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired. And then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother.”
I’m sure it could have been phrased better, but he basically spoke the truth. Babies who are severely deformed may live for a few minutes, hours or days, but they’re not going to live long. It’s a sad fact of life, but just speaking it summons a screeching hoard of anti-abortion dementors who pick apart the wording of whoever spoke the awful truth.
These zealots are winning – soon the Supremes will effectively do away with affordable abortions, if not all abortions, in red states. They’ve have been enabled by people like Trump, who know that their children or mistresses will be able to get a safe, legal abortion because they can pay for it. It’s only the poor who suffer, as always.