Just a year ago, pro-life researcher Randall O’Bannon spoke about abortion activists’ growing talk about women seeking self-induced and back alley abortions as access to abortion facilities declines.
Now, abortion activists are openly promoting what they once claimed to want to prevent.
During a workshop Thursday at the National Right to Life Convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, O’Bannon and Raimundo Rojas, leaders with the National Right to Life Committee, spoke about the rise in do-it-yourself abortions.
Since last year, “it has gone full-bore public: an effort by the abortion industry to promote it publicly and above board,” O’Bannon said.
“[Abortion] is about as legal here as it can be anywhere, and we’re still seeing this happen,” Rojas added.
O’Bannon said abortion activists claim there is an urgency because the number of abortion providers in the U.S. has dropped drastically. Pro-abortion groups now have websites, brochures and hotlines dedicated to telling women how to abort their unborn babies at home, he said.
O’Bannon said one pro-abortion group’s website has women fill out a form online to request abortion drugs in the mail. Another company even sells abortion drugs in various flavors, including chocolate and marijuana, he said.
Right now, a research group in the U.S. is conducting a study where they offer abortion drugs to women in the mail, he said. Some prominent pro-abortion researchers are suggesting that abortion drugs be offered over the counter, too, he added.
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For example, the University of California, Berkeley has a Self-Induced Abortion Legal Team, a nonprofit group that “envisions a world” where abortion drugs are as easy to buy as the morning-after pill, according to the Christian Science Monitor.
Abortion activists promote drugs as the primary do-it-yourself method of killing unborn babies. In abortion facilities, two drugs typically are used to abort unborn babies in the first trimester: mifepristone (RU-486) and misoprostol. On their own, O’Bannon said either drug can cause an abortion, but their effectiveness is low. Coupled together, however, they are much more likely to kill the unborn child.
However, one of the two drugs is easier to obtain. Misoprostol, which also is an ulcer drug, often is sold on the black market as an abortion drug; it also is cheaper than mifepristone, O’Bannon said.
Rojas said people sometimes find the abortion drugs in border towns in Mexico. He said many speak about it in “hushed tones” and refer to it as the “star pill.”
Rojas said do-it-yourself abortions particularly are dangerous for women in poorer countries because they do not have easy access to medical care. In such cases, both the women and their unborn babies could die.
Rojas asked pro-lifers to image being a pregnant young woman in Central America. He cited statistics indicating that she probably is poor, anemic and malnourished. Then, she learns about these “magical pills” that she can get in the mail to “end her pregnancy.” She takes them and begins to bleed heavily. With abortion illegal in her country and doctors being hours away from her home, Rojas asked people to consider what could happen to her.
“Do they care about women?” Rojas said of abortion groups. “No. They care about an ideology.”
The abortion industry also has been pushing for less medical involvement. Some now do abortions via webcam and lobby for laws allowing non-doctors to perform them, he continued. Under pro-abortion President Barack Obama, the Food and Drug Administration also approved new, weaker protocols for abortion drugs, allowing fewer in-clinic visits, smaller doses and non-doctor abortion practitioners.
“All these things make it easier for the [abortion] clinic … but don’t necessarily make it safer for the woman,” O’Bannon said. “We’re seeing a full-blown promotion of do-it-yourself abortions.”