Fifteen years ago sitting in biochem class at the UON, I remember learning about the morning-after pill. Back in those days before the reproductive health bill, my prof pointed it out as a newly developed early-stage abortion drug. Interestingly today, the morning-after pill has successfully been re-branded from abortion pill to over-the-counter medication, procured with the same ease as paracetamol. And our government is using tax-payer money to subsidize marketing the so-called ‘e-pill’ across the whole nation. You’ve heard the soothing voice on radio… ‘kuanguka sio kuteleza’. Now they’re even sponsoring newspaper announcements.
When the elephant sneezes, the rest of the jungle catches cold. One of the side-immediate effects of the new US government is increased funding and thus lobbying for pro-abortion legislation (As a caveat, I need to say that I’m neither pro-democrat or pro-republican US government). Over 1 million abortions are done every year in the US. The abortion industry (that’s actually what it is, a global multi-million dollar industry) has successfully re-positioned the debate from taking life to respecting women’s rights (see article below). But that’s extremely simplistic; what if I’m pro-women’s rights and anti-abortion?
Right now under the radar, there’s a concerted campaign to overturn our abortion laws. The FIDA drafted Reproductive Health and Rights Draft Bill 2008 is one of the many that’s pending before the crowded parliamentary agenda. Heavily influenced by lobbyists, it seeks to legalize abortion by lumping it together with reproductive health, HIV and family planning. It would also force mission hospitals, Christian doctors and other value-based health service providers to offer abortion services or refer cases to others. And it would undermine the right of parents to keep their adolescent children from government sponsored reproductive health indoctrination and services.
The Christian Medical Association here has written a protest against the bill but much more remains to be done. First steps include familiarizing ourselves with the bill and with the realities behind abortion. Here are a few links I’ve found helpful.
1. The Ex-abortionists: Why They Quit – Understanding what actually happens in an abortion
2. Innocent blood. A fascinating article about the PR spin-doctors sold a lie to a hapless nation. Scary… I think the exact thing is happening here! A must read
3. Testimonies – Several testimonies by former abortion providers, including the plaintiff in Roe vs. Wade, the landmark case that legalized abortion in all 50 US States. The site also has a sidebar where you can access testimonies by abortion survivors and children conceived through rape. And women who underwent abortions. Important because a lot of the rhetoric is centered on these.
A second step might be engaging in conversation with any doctors, members of parliament and other stakeholders about the realities of the bill. Lest we as a nation buy a lie. And renegade on our responsibility to the next generation.