Are reproductive rights in danger in the United States? Sonja Bonin compares the situation in the United States and Europe.
Her article is at the end of this email.
Woman In Trouble
Are reproductive rights in danger in the
A friend and I went so see Vera Drake recently. In this award-winning movie, Mike Leigh portraits a backstreet abortionist in 1950 London who is prosecuted and sent to prison when a woman almost dies after an illegal abortion Vera has performed on her. After the film, following a long, awkward silence, my friend sighed: “This is what president Bush wants us to go back to.” I offered her private asylum in
De facto, the situation is not so different here than in most European countries at the moment: While certain restrictions may apply (mandatory counseling, prescribed waiting periods, parental consent for minors), abortions within the first trimester of pregnancy are legal or not penalized in many European countries, including France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, The Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Greece, Italy, Czech and Slovak Republic, the Baltic states, all former Yugoslavian states, as well as most of Eastern and Central European former communist countries. Great Britain, Luxemburg, Finland and Iceland practice a so-called indication model, where abortion is allowed on socioeconomic grounds; whereas termination of pregnancies are legal in Israel, Northern Ireland and Spain only in case the woman’s physical or mental health are in danger. Most countries allow abortions in cases of rape, incest or severe fetal impairment.
There are European nations, though, where extremely restrictive anti-abortion laws are in place, which tolerate termination of a pregnancy only to save the woman’s life. Such is the law in
Other than in Europe, the