In California last October, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed Senate Bill 24, a bill requiring all 34 public universities to distribute RU-486 abortion pills, which induce an abortion for women up to 10 weeks pregnant. Similar bills have been introduced in both Massachusetts and New York. This loss for the pro-life movement reveals just how far our legislators are willing to go on abortion. The race to push these drugs reflects an inconsistent worldview about women’s health and pharmaceutical advances.
The FDA reports 24 deaths associated with these drugs and more than 1,000 hospitalizations since their approval in 2000. Little research has been done on people using RU-486 multiple times, to determine how it might affect their future fertility or damage them internally. Yet women are encouraged to decide promptly about their pregnancy because of the time limit before they “must” undergo a surgical abortion.
Abortion Industry Passes Out Abortifacients Like Candy
Student health centers exist to serve students’ basic health needs. But the abortion industry is so desperate to increase abortion numbers, they are willing to start passing out these pills on college campuses, giving the appearance that the severity of the procedure is as simple as taking an ibuprofen.
Colleges in California, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania even offer in vending machines “Plan B” pills, which can cause an abortion up to 72 hours after sex by making the womb inhospitable to a newly formed life. These are sold along with feminine hygiene products, allergy medication, and Advil.
Given all the efforts to streamline ending unborn life, the perception of California as a place with no regard for the unborn isn’t completely accurate. California still treats fetal homicide as murder. In December 2019, a 23-year-old man in Bakersfield was charged with murder after he forced his girlfriend to swallow abortion pills at gunpoint.
Of course, this simply means that if the mother does not consent to the death of the baby, the baby has value. If she does consent, in an abortion, the baby has no value. But if the baby is a member of the human race, shouldn’t he or she be protected at all times?
To take the pro-abortion “bodily autonomy” argument seriously, society must allow women to do anything they want with their bodies and their unborn children. The Equal Rights Institute published a blog outlining exactly what this would mean.
A notable theoretical circumstance includes a woman taking thalidomide, a drug banned by the FDA for use on pregnant women because it causes severe birth defects, purposefully malforming her child to gain sympathy. Should the woman be allowed to do this since it is “her choice” before the baby is born?
The Government Is Intellectually Inconsistent on Abortion
Another drug used to treat acne, oral isotretinoin, more commonly known as Accutane, is also restricted by the FDA for use on pregnant women because it also causes birth defects. I am on my third round of Accutane, so I am quite familiar with the procedures for getting approved for my monthly dose.
Upon being approved for the treatment, I was placed in the iPledge system, an FDA-required program implemented “to prevent fetal exposure to isotretinoin and to inform … about isotretinoin’s serious risks and safe-use conditions.” I watched a video training, reviewed a workbook with the nurse, signed numerous documents, and signed up to take oral contraceptives as one of my two forms of birth control. My second form was abstinence, which my doctor allows me to use as my only form.
Upon logging into the iPledge system online, I receive yet another warning of the possible effects of isotretinoin if I get pregnant. Scroll to the “About iPledge” tab, and I find that the iPledge system is designed to “further the public health goal to eliminate fetal exposure to isotretinoin.”
Each month, I go to the dermatologist’s office for a pregnancy test, describe what side effects I am experiencing, verify what forms of birth control I’m using, and take a short quiz online, with most of the questions revolving around pregnancy prevention. On a recent quiz, one prompt asked what would happen “if your partner’s condom broke when you had sex.” The correct answer? “Call your doctor/prescriber to see if you might need emergency birth control,” otherwise known as the abortifacient Plan B.
When I am finally cleared to pick up the treatment, there are several warnings against pregnancy on the box and even on each pill’s pouch — a total of 43 picture warnings on just one month’s worth of pills. The box also includes pictures of what the baby’s malformations will look like, including abnormalities of the head, ears, and cardiovascular system. In other words, the government takes numerous precautionary moves for both Accutane and thalidomide because it has an interest in the health of a baby that could potentially be born.
Sadly, no such precautions are exhausted for the unborn when he or she is going to be dismembered, killed, and disposed of by means of abortion. To be consistent in valuing the baby’s health, all unborn people must be protected. Society must consider the ramifications of the ideological inconsistencies of working diligently to protect life in few select settings while turning a blind eye to the genocide of the unborn at the hands of a predatory abortion industry.