Friday, March 17, 2006

Molly Saves the Day: For the women of South Dakota: an abortion manual

Molly Saves the Day: For the women of South Dakota: an abortion manual

I can't tell you how very, utterly relieved I am to know that I will never have to have an illegal abortion, given my age at this time. I'm also glad I don't have a daughter entering her fertile years, faced with the shocking misogyny of a nation determined to force women to "pay the price" of having sex. "Pay the price" is the operative term here - in pro-life circles, the baby is the punishment for the sex. How wrong is that??? A baby shouldn't be a punishment - it should be wanted & loved. Make no mistake: pro-lifers don't love babies, or even fetuses: they hate women. They particularly hate women who have sex.

I'd never have the nerve to set up or try to run an illegal clinic, but I'm hoping there are women who do have the cojones to do it when it comes down to it. In fact, in South Dakota, the time may be now. The kind of abortion clinics run by the Jane Collective were used primarily by women of limited means - women who couldn't fly to Mexico or France to get an abortion. Hell, even driving to the next state and taking a few days off work is a financial hardship for most women, and an impossibility for teenagers who don't have adult assistance. I hate to see it come to this but I'm thinking it will. The morning-after pill is an option in some cases, as is RU-486. However, both are only for early in the pregnancy, and a minority of RU-486 patients will need access to a D&C followup. Birth control pills can be repurposed as a morning-after pill (there is info on this online); but how often do you know your birth control has failed? More often than not, you don't for at least six weeks or so.

What it comes down to is this: women, all women, need ready access to surgical abortion, on demand and without apology. Nothing less is acceptable.

If it takes some brave women with a little medical knowledge setting up an illegal clinic - and it has in the not-so-distant past - well, then, Molly's started the ball rolling by getting information out there. More power to her, I say.

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