28 October 2011

The new war on Woman

          It's been a turbulent few months in the battle for womans rights, in the UK and the USA.

 But just in time has come a UN report from UN special rapporteur on health, Mr Anand Grover who says all states must provide safe abortion and contraception for women.

Criminal prohibition of abortion is a very clear expression of State interference with a woman's sexual and reproductive health because it restricts a woman's control over her body, possibly subjecting her to unnecessary health risks. Criminal prohibition also requires women to continue unplanned pregnancies and give birth when it is not their choice to do so.
States must take measures to ensure that legal and safe abortion services are available, accessible, and of good quality.
Absolute prohibition under criminal law deprives women of access to what, in some cases, is a life-saving procedure. Even where a clandestine abortion can be performed in a relatively safe, hygienic setting, it may be financially inaccessible for the most vulnerable women. Poor and marginalized women may instead turn to unsafe, self-induced abortions.

The complete report is here

I suspect the Queens cousin Lord Windsor will not agree.

I also suspect we will be hearing from the Rightwing  Christians and conspiracy nuts around the world that this is yet again the UN trying to take control of their country.

There has been a UK politician that has been the centre of some attention for the last few years. Her name is Nadine Dorries, as far as I can tell she became well known during the MP expenses affair, for which she was eventually cleared.

She has a blog, but she has also admitted in the past, that 70% of the content in her blog is fictional.

Recently she tried unsuccessfully to change the rules on abortion in the UK, this obviously shows she is not really on the side of woman, but working as the spokesperson of a right wing Christian anti-woman movement. Nadine Dorries wanted to stop abortion providers giving NHS-funded counselling to women. So basically the idea was that those that provide the abortions, should not give counselling as well. This argument was dismissed quite easily

She said it was about offering women more choice but was accused of trying to "import American sensationalism"  by Diane Abbott MP to the abortion debate.

The Dorries amendment would have stripped abortion providers such as Marie Stopes and the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (bpas) from offering counselling to women, MPs rejected her call to offer women the "option" of independent counselling by 368 votes to 118. There are some other advice agencies, but an investigation has shown that some of them are giving absolutely dreadful advice. 

In one centre, Skylight Counselling, a Care Confidential affiliate in Coventry, the researcher was given material linking abortion to breast cancer and infertility, and was warned about "post-traumatic stress", should she choose to have a termination.
Deliberately bad advice is common in the USA as well.

Nadine is not really keen on Dr Evan Harris, and had a bit of a chat with him on Sky News

   Other weird things this woman has been advocating is the "Just say No" method of sex education, one that has been such a failure in the USA

Young single mothers remain the most impoverished group in society, and the Anti-choice campaigners have a mantra "Support the mother". Does this ever happen? I think not. Again it's more Christian rhetoric but with no substance. Half of those who get abortions in the UK are already mothers, and will have various reasons for not wanting another child, supposedly Nadine says she can stop 60,000 abortions a year. Creating even more single mothers! What do Tories hate more than Unions? People on welfare, and then again the August riots were blamed by many on the lack of parental care, or the amount of single parent families. Soooo..we have a case of trying to have it both ways, so very strange.

As an aside, Nadine is a nominee in the New Humanist Bad Faith Award.

I'm not the only one who is not keen on her http://nadine-dorries.blogspot.com/  seems to be a bit of a fan club.

For anyone who is really interested in the numbers, the Guardian Data blog has done some visualizations on the number of abortions in England and Wales

The USA house of representative recently passed the  H.R. 358, the “Protect Life Act.” The measure, introduced by Rep. Joe Pitts (R-Pa.), is to prohibit federal funds from going toward any health care plan that covers abortion services; it also would block funding from being withheld from institutions that are opposed to providing abortions.

The bill is one of two abortion-related measures introduced by House Republicans in this Congress; the other is H.R. 3, the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act,” which passed the House in early May on a near-party-line vote.

On the state level, the attack continues with legal attacks on the suppliers , and Personhood laws. Here is an example:-

“SECTION 1. Article III of the constitution of the state of Mississippi is hearby amended BY THE ADDITION OF A NEW SECTION TO READ:
Section 33. Person defined. As used in this Article III of the state constitution, “The term ‘person’ or ‘persons’ shall include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning or the functional equivalent thereof.”

Naturally hand in hand with womans rights is birth control, this often leads to farcical statements such as the one made by presidential candidate Ron Paul this month. But it even gets better in the race for "How much more crazy can I get" is Sen. Jim DeMint with his push to stop people talking about abortion over the Internet.

The Australian leader of the Opposition Tony Abbot hasn't decided what his Abortion position is this week.

When men are motivated by religion, it's usually the woman who get crucified first.

Comprehensive information on Abortion Laws can be found here http://www.worldabortionlaws.com/

For further information Please see Abortion Rights

More Factual information can be obtained from Education for Choice  and Reproductive rights

"No woman wants an abortion as she wants an ice cream cone or a Porsche. She wants an abortion as an animal caught in a trap wants to gnaw off its own leg."  - Frederica Mathewes-Green

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