Saturday, September 19, 2009

Abortion and the Triumph of Ideology Over Science

Jill Stanek, has a note on her blog about a new study in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology on the risk that abortion has for future pregnancies in terms of premature delivery, low birth rate etc. It is entitled "Induced termination of pregnancy and low birthweight and preterm birth: a systematic review and meta-analyses" and it is by a researcher from the University of Toronto, Dr. Prakesh Shah.

Stanek writes:

"This is certainly not new news, just corroboration. Meanwhile the preeminent organization devoted to preventing preterm births, the March of Dimes, still refuses to list "induced abortion" as a risk on its webpage."

If abortion is so good for women, one wonders why crucial medical information must be withheld from them in order that they might exercise "choice" in the "right" way. The fact is that abortion is a tragic choice that always has consequences of one type or another - beyond the killing of a new human being - and so promoting it as "liberation" or as a "blessing" is just plain wrong and should be recognized as such even by pro-choicers. The fact that it is not tells you that to be pro-choice is not to be pro-woman.


David said...

This reminds me very much of the Israeli artist and practising psychoanalyst Bracha Litchenberg-Ettinger, whose research led her to postulate the existence of a pre-natal consciousness. She writes about this at great length, but I discovered in a footnote that, even though this might lead one to oppose abortion, because she was a feminist she still persisted in believing in abortion rights for women. The hold of ideology on the woman must be immense to allow such a glaring contradiction in her work!

Craig Carter said...

Yes, it is not easy for scientests whose research calls feminist ideology into question. They have to be careful whatever their personal views. This is the kind of thing that really makes me cynical about "academic freedom" in today's university.

Luis said...


A friend referred me to your blog and it looks great. But I have an correction and a observation.

You say that the study that Jill Stanek refers to about the risk that abortion has for future pregnancies says "low birth rate," but that should be "low birth weight."

And, those of us in the pro life work should never refer to abortion problems without mentioning the 50% increase in risk for breast cancer. Look this up at and