Monday, December 1, 2014

Roe Ended a Genuine Holocaust

Well of course the first and more important item on the agenda of the new repug majorities in the states is saving women from the horrors of legal abortion slapping the bitches back to the kitchen.

Applying our standard rule that reality is precisely the opposite of what repugs claim it is, we should find that legal abortion in fact save women's lives.

Yep, that's exactly what it does

Dr. David Grimes, who has been providing abortion care for four decades, is worried that the time period before abortion was legalized in the United States is becoming a distant memory.

“I’m 67 now, and people younger than me don’t remember what the bad old days were like. That’s why people seem so complacent about allowing those days to return,” he said in an interview with ThinkProgress.

Grimes, who currently works as a clinical professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, was in his final year of medical school when Roe v. Wade was handed down. When he was a young doctor, he treated some of the women who were injured by the unsafe abortions that were still being performed in the 1970s.

People younger than me don’t remember what the bad old days were like.

He still remembers some of the extreme cases he encountered. One patient, for example, was running a 106 degree fever after having a rubber catheter inserted in her uterus in an attempt to terminate a pregnancy. Another arrived at the hospital in a state of antiseptic shock with a dead fetus inside of her.

In his new book — entitled Every Third Woman in America: How Legal Abortion Transformed Our Nation — Grimes returns to those days. And he uses the stories from that time period to argue that medical historians will put legal abortion on par with antibiotics, vaccinations, and modern contraception as one of the most meaningful advances of the 20th century.


In the decade when Grimes was born, the 1940s, there were records of more than 1,000 women dying each year from unsafe and largely self-induced abortions. Every large municipal hospital in the U.S. had a “septic abortion ward,” and treatment for the complications from so-called “incomplete abortion” was the single leading cause for admission for OB-GYN services across the country. National Opinion Research Center surveys conducted in the 1960s found that hundreds of women were attempting to self-abort by penetrating themselves with knitting needles, coat hangers, bicycle spokes, ballpoint pens; others tried to swallow chemicals like turpentine, laundry bleach, and acid.

“When the laws began to change, almost overnight, deaths from septic abortion disappeared,” he told ThinkProgress. “Any way you look at it, abortion has been an astounding public health success.”


The current juggernaut of laws are designed to drive women back into the back alley.

“An entire generation of Americans has grown up expecting safe and legal abortion to be there, and it may not be — as we’ve seen with this recent skirmish in Texas,” Grimes said. “The current juggernaut of laws are designed to drive women back into the back alley. But people don’t really understand what the implications are.”

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