“You don’t care about all the women who would die from botched-up backstreet-abortions…” Comes the tired old allegation from the sincere advocate of a woman’s right to have her baby killed by abortion. In his latest article, Dr. Matthew Flannagan discusses the flaws in the famous backstreet abortion argument for abortion rights. Below is an excerpt,
During fails to distinguish between an action that foreseeably results in a person’s death and an action that causes that person’s death. Suppose that Parliament were to criminalise feticide and this led to a chain of events one of which was the death of a woman due to septic abortion. Somewhere in this chain, between the act of the legislature and the death of the woman, are the free actions of various people who choose to ignore or breach these laws. Parliament does not perform these actions; in fact they are done in defiance of Parliament’s will and hence without Parliament’s consent. Such actions include the choice of a woman to violate the law and procure an abortion and the choice of an abortionist to perform an abortion and to violate hygiene and safety standards. The death and injury that occurs is caused by these actions. It is the abortionist’s decision, acting as an agent of the woman, to perform unsafe surgery that causes the injury to occur. These facts make it evident that Parliament does not cause such deaths. The actions of the woman and abortionist are un-coerced. They are free, voluntary actions and as such not caused by someone else. It follows immediately that they were not caused by the state. If they were not caused by the state, then the effects that follow from them were not caused by the state either. The suggestion that one causes the free (and hence uncaused) reactions of others to decisions one makes is far fetched. (Continue Reading)
Regardless of the validity of the argument, the cold hard statistics do not appear to be in the favour of its proponents. At its highest, 37 women died as a result of an abortion attempt, while NZ’s current abortion rate is floating around 18,000 per year.
3 thoughts on “Flannagan Deconstructs Backstreet Abortion Myth”
can you clarify – is that 37 women who have died in NZ’s entire history of illegal abortions?
will check up on that Allie and comment here when I locate the source.
To confirm, that was – the highest number of maternal deaths from illegal abortion in one year, prior to abortion “being made legal” was 37. The source is: Wayne Facer Criminal Abortion in New Zealand: Public Health Consequences; this study was distributed by the Abortion Law Reform Association of New Zealand in the 1970’s. Facer was an outspoken proponent of decriminalising abortion.