About a week ago this time, I was in New York City. It was my first time ever in the Big Apple. And what was I doing? Living my dream of being at the United Nations (UN). Not only being there, but participating as a youth representative for National Right to Life for the UN High Level Meeting (HLM) on Youth. And while I loved being there and the experience was really great, at the same time, I came away feeling frustrated and discouraged. Why, you ask? Mainly because of organizations like International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and their extreme Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (hereafter referred to as SRHR as their own abbreviation) agenda.
If you had asked me, I’d have to be honest. I have probably always known that IPPF and other organizations don’t just allow abortion, they encourage it. But, I had no idea it was so bad, to tell you the truth. I almost titled this post – Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights: The Bad and the Ugly, but I changed my mind at the last minute. But to me, it was truly sad and disheartening to witness how taken in by this idea (and in my opinion, lie) that some people are.
These are some of the things that I heard and that some people said and my comments in parantheses.
- “Abstinence leads to greater infections of HIV and AIDS.” (This is one I really don’t understand. Back in the day, people could get it from blood transfusions, but now that we can and do test for it, one of the main ways to get it is to have unprotected sex or to share needles for drugs. And I don’t think there’s any correlation like ‘People who abstain are more likely to do drugs.’ Abstinence is the best way to prevent HIV.)
- After having stated that the purpose of Y-PEER (an arm of IPPF) is to “empower youth to make their own health choices” I asked “Isn’t it our responsibility to protect youth sometimes? I mean, we don’t let them smoke, we discourage them from doing drugs, we don’t let them drink alcohol. Isn’t it our responsibility to protect youth from certain health choices?” To which the answer was (one sentence) “As a progressive education organization, we don’t believe in telling youth what to do and what not to do.” (This to me is really scary – it sounds like they would let young people do anything as long as young people were educated to me. Say I had a ten year old and my ten year old wanted to do drugs and he had been educated about what they did and how they work. By their own reasoning, my ten year old should be allowed to do drugs. That kind of reasoning is such a slippery slope.)
- “Abstinence is impossible!” (To which I say false. I know for a fact that I am not the only person who was abstinent until marriage. And if I did it, clearly it’s not impossible. I am far from superhuman, trust me.)
- “When the sexual and reproductive health rights of youth are upheld, they have greater access to education.” (This seems all backwards to me. How does knowing how to have safe sex teach you how to read? Someone explain please.)
- “There is a huge problem in my country that people think children are a blessing from God so they keep having more of them.” (First of all, children ARE a blessing from God. Second of all, if you are all about choices, how can you tell people that they are having too many children?)
- One speaker implied that women who marry young are uneducated. (This really upset me because I married at 20 and I am almost finished with my Bachelor’s degree – early at that – and considering getting my Master’s. Even if I don’t get my Master’s, it would be because I have never felt strongly about getting a Master’s degree and I have other goals and dreams, not because I got married.)
- After hearing a man talk about how it was time to listen to the young people all evening long, afterwards I approached him and the following exchange took place (I think it speaks for itself).
“You keep saying you want to listen to the young people, but the truth is, you don’t want to listen to the young people who disagree with you.”
“Well when all the choices are available, if you disagree, you don’t have to make that choice.”
“But we know some things are bad for people, that’s why we try not to let people make those choices, like we make some drugs illegal.”
“It’s just that our society was founded on the basis of freedom.”
“But we restrict some freedoms for the protection of other people, like if I wanted to murder you, I couldn’t do that, because there are laws limiting my freedom for your protection.”
“That may be so.”
We also saw blatant attempts to censor us. In their earlier events, they took questions from the audience. After getting many, many pro-life questions that they fumbled through the answers on, in their last event, they only took written questions so they could pick and choose which ones to ask. There were many questions we submitted that were never asked or answered.
They are trying to put all of this in under Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 5 which is on improving maternal health. However, when you listen to them and see their publications, it’s pretty clear that they don’t want to improve maternal health, they just want guaranteed access to contraception and abortion for everyone.
But abortion and contraception are not the answer to solving maternal health. Contraception doesn’t fix maternal health because it allows people to have more sex, thus increasing their risk of becoming pregnant, since no contraception works 100 percent. The reasons for that are two fold. First because abortions actually hurt maternal health and second because it doesn’t address some of the real causes of maternal mortality.
There is a LOT of evidence to support these two points (By the way, don’t feel like you need to read them all – just a sampling will give you an idea of what is out there. I include them in case you are like ” I can’t get enough of this” as I sometime am) .
- This article shows that not only is the likelihood of death is higher after abortion, but that the likelihood of dying from suicide is also higher after abortion and more women are treated for mental health problems after abortion. It also shows that women who experience pregnancy loss, especially abortion, have worse health overall. Abortion is Four Times Deadlier Than Childbirth from After Abortion
- This article shows some of the statistics showing that maternal mortality can and IS reduced, even where abortion is illegal. Jeanne Head, a wonderful lady I worked with, who was a Labor and Delivery RN for many, many years, is also quoted in this piece. WHA Told Maternal Mortality Not Improved by Legalizing Abortion from LifeNews.com
- This article is very similar to the one directly above it, but is slightly different. New Analysis of Maternal Mortality Confirms Health Care, Not Abortion, Key Factors in Saving Lives
- A little look at Chile, where abortion is illegal and then have low rates of maternal mortality. Chile: Legalizing Abortion Does Not Reduce Maternal Mortality : Catholic News Agency
- A look at Ireland, number 1 lowest maternal mortality in the world, where abortion is illegal and some potential complications of abortions that can lead to higher maternal mortality rates. Maternal Death Rate Lowest in Abortion Free Ireland
- This is a look at the studies that have been done with maternal mortality and induced abortion, straight from OB/GYNs themselves. Pro-life OB/GYNs – AAPLOG – American Association of Pro-life Obstetricians and Gynecologists – Introduction to induced abortion and maternal mortality
- This graph and other material from the WHO shows that the majority of the women who die from pregnancy related causes do not die from unsafe abortion and are completely preventable. And, if we created a culture of life, where women didn’t feel the need to seek abortions, we could get that figure down to 0 percent, in my opinion. However, this website also lists contraception and access to abortion as the first thing that needs to be done. To be honest, this makes very little sense to me. More than 75 percent of women do not die from unsafe abortion (by their own statistics) – how is “safe” abortion supposed to help them? The simple fixes are listed as secondary ways to help, not first ways to help, even though they effect the majority of the women. WHO on Maternal Mortality
- This is a chapter from a book called Women’s Health After Abortion: The Medical and Psychological Evidence and goes through how deaths from abortion in the United States are probably much higher than reported and well as some of the medical consequences. Maternal Mortality
- This is the material we used at the UN about how abortion does not do anything to help maternal mortality. Why Legalized Abortion is Not Good for Women’s Health
- This contains the common myths surrounding abortion and maternal mortality and why they are untrue. Confronting the Myths About Maternal Mortality and Abortion
- Here’s a look at Sri Lanka and Malaysia and their maternal mortality and abortion facts. Abortion and Maternal Mortality
- This is a look at the bad state of maternal mortality in Ghana and how legalized abortion there has not helped it at all. Maternal Mortality a National Emergency as Promotion of Abortion Continues
- This is another list of links on the connection between maternal mortality and abortion. C-FAM: Additional Research: Maternal Mortality
- This is a report that shows maternal mortality decreasing with no uptake in the legalization of abortion. UN: Maternal Mortality Declines by One-Third Despite No Abortion Legalization
- Here is more information on it, comparing various countries around the world. Life Issues Connector – June 2010: Abortion and Maternal Mortality
- This is another article on a study done in Chile. Abortion Man Does Not Mean More Maternal Deaths, Chilean Study Finds
- From my last post on this subject, abortion leads to a greater chance of Placenta Previa and ectopic pregnancy in later pregnancies and Pelvic Inflammatory Disease.
- These graphs here show even lower numbers of women dying from abortion complications, so then how can providing “safe” abortion be held up as lowering maternal mortality? Childinfo.org
There are other ways to end the problem of maternal mortality. More hospitals, that are sterile and clean. Educating women about proper prenatal care. Having more trained doctors and midwives. Having the supplies and drugs on hand that are needed. Basically, providing women with the adequate care. Because women are dying from things we know how to treat and prevent. So we should channel our energy and funds into treating and preventing, not into abortion.
It’s my hope that after reading this, you’ve learned a little bit about why increasing access to abortion does nothing to reduce maternal mortality. I think the agenda they’re pushing – sex for anyone, with anyone, any time you want and if an oops happens then you should get an abortion, is healthy, normal, or good for society.
Further more, here are some links to read by others who were there or who reported on it. I’ll star the ones that talk about one or more events that I witnessed or pamphlets that I have seen and in some cases have in my possession and will be going over with a fine tooth comb to blog about when I get a chance that I can back up and say, yes, that really did happen.
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