Roundup: Anti-Abortion Payout in Italy


Let’s take a little tour of reproductive health news around the globe, shall we?

First up: Thank goodness Obama repealed the global gag rule. One of the effects of the ban on funds to organizations that perform, refer, or mention abortion is that International Planned Parenthood had to give out condoms from two separate buckets:

“While this may sound ludicrous, IPPF has before been in the position where, in the clinic, we have to ask clients if they want they want the condom for pregnancy or STI prevention,” read Jolanta Scott-Parker in a statement written by IPPF.

“This is because the donor for the former was a European community and the latter was the United States government. Not only is this invasive and confusing for clients, but it also precludes dual protection if we run out of the family planning condoms.”

But what if that pregnancy preventing condom broke, and a woman faced an unplanned pregnancy? In the Lombardy region of Italy, women are being offered the equivalent of about $5,500  - paid out over 18 months – NOT to have an abortion.

Regional president Roberto Formigoni announced the project , saying: ‘No women need to abort now in Lombardy for financial reasons.

If a woman tells her doctor that she is seeking an abortion because she cannot afford to raise a child, she will be referred to a center that will determine if she is eligible for the payout, based on her current income and if she is already a mother. But wait – it takes longer than 18 months to raise a child, doesn’t it?

Cinzia Sasso, a feminist writer in Milan, said that the move was propaganda, and the sum set aside was risible because it would allow only just over 1,000 women to avoid abortions. “In any case it is not clear how these women are supposed to manage when the anti-abortion bonus runs out after 18 months.”

Hopefully the women considering the anti-abortion bonus will have taken some math and budgeting classes. Such as in the Philippines, where a select number of schools are integrating sex ed lessons with other studies:

Kenneth Tirado, head of the communications unit of the Department of Education (DepEd), said the topic will be incorporated in math lessons by way of problem solving and computation of figures using facts and figures related to sex education, such as the awareness level of the youth about sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs) and HIV, and the number of AIDS cases in the country.

Mini-Roundup: Sigh. Some teenagers apparently still think Mountain Dew prevents pregnancy.

June 1

Is Sarah Palin Allowed To Call Herself A Feminist? – The Frisky (blog)

Russian Church calls for tougher abortion laws – Reuters

McGurn: Gallup’s Pro-Life America – Wall Street Journal

Women in Italy to be offered €4500 to not have abortions – Times Online

Reid camp says pro-abortion charge is “laughable” – Las Vegas Review-Journal (blog)

Abortion bill may be political land mine for Crist – Florida Times-Union

Nun Excommunicated After Saving a Mother’s Life With Abortion – ABC News

A list of Okla. abortion laws passed in 2010 – CNBC

Bayer sues Teva over US launch of contraceptive – Reuters

Avoiding Stupak II – Washington Post (blog)

School clinics armed for reproductive health – INDenverTimes.com

New Utah program aims for healthier pregnancies – Deseret News

This health minister can’t tell AIDS from HIV – Hindustan Times

Forced sterilisation trials begin in Namibia – RFI

HIV stable despite risky behaviour – Sydney Star Observer

Teenage Pregnancies Soar as Church Looks the Other Way – Inter Press Service

Health Care Coverage: Birth Control Pills? – Christian Broadcasting Network (blog)

Infant and Maternal Mortality Rates Drop – NHPR

Breast Cancer Vaccine Promising – Food Consumer

New HPV vaccine gives consumers another choice – Danbury News Times

Sarah Palin’s grab for feminism – Salon

June 2

Democrats clarify abortion views at SC gov debate – WMBF

Busting the abortion myths – Montreal Gazette

The Republican Retreat on Health Care – National Review Online

Abortions in Brazil, Though Illegal, Are Common – TIME

Cut tax money from birth-control group – DesMoinesRegister.com

An uncomfortable question – Toronto Sun (blog)

Sex education part of math in pilot program – ABS CBN News

3 Namibian women with HIV say they were sterilized – Washington Post

Studies finding link of virus to breast cancer – Charlotte Observer

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  • crowepps

    Saw this in the roundup and checked it out. Was totally blown away by the fact that rather than ‘busting myths’ she was concentrating on promoting them. Some excerpts:

    That allows two myths that favour the pro-choice stance on abortion to be propagated: That late-term abortion is rare

     

    it’s known that at least 400 post-viability abortions take place in Canada each year and the actual number is most probably more than twice that. …

     

    In Canada, infant-mortality statistics include the death of any breathing infant. Statistics Canada’s records on causes of death in the perinatal period (defined as after 22-weeks gestation) list a category “Termination of pregnancy, fetus and newborn,” which shows a total of 241 deaths for the years 2000 to 2005, inclusive, the latest numbers available. Because babies born dead as a consequence of abortion are not reported in these statistics as infant deaths, one can only assume that these must be babies who were born alive as a result of abortion after 22 weeks gestation, breathed, but later died. This also raises further ethical questions about how such babies are treated. Are they given medical care or just left to die, as has happened in the past? …

     

    The strongest consensus that a woman should have the option of abortion, that is, it should not be legally prohibited, exists in relation to pregnancy resulting from rape (Gagnon cites 94 per cent of Quebecers surveyed took this position) or where there is a serious risk to a woman’s life or health in continuing the pregnancy, a very rare situation.

     

    http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Busting+abortion+myths/3100361/story.html#ixzz0piUPPpho

    New Myth: Late term abortions are not rare.

    Truth: In 2005 there were 96,815 abortions in Canada.  If her “one can only assume” more than 800 late-term ones is actually correct, late term abortions comprise .008% of the total. That is rare – 8 in 100,000.

     

    New Myth: Fetuses surviving abortions and then the infants being allowed to die without care is not rare.

    Truth: Note that her figure of 241 deaths covers a FIVE YEAR PERIOD and averages 48 cases per year or .0004% of all abortions performed and .05% of late-term abortions performed.  Consider that this would include fetuses with gross fetal malformities such as no kidneys, anencephalia, etc., where after delivery the infant is EXPECTED to die after a short time and there is NO medical treatment which change the prognosis.

     

    New Myth: Pregnancies from rape, serious risk to a woman’s life or health are “very rare”. Truth: In 2005 in Canada there were about half a million pregnancies resulting in 342,176 births, 9,120 miscarriages requiring hospitalization, 96,815 abortions and an unknown number of miscarriages not requiring hospitalization but statistically likely to be around 70,000.

     

    Statistically, starting with the very conservative number of 1% of all pregnancies involving gross fetal anomaly incompatible with life/serious pregnancy complications/pregnancy from rape, then even using just the number for actual BIRTHS and not all pregnancies, the number of those cases in Canada should be almost 3,500 cases which she insists means they are very rare.

     

    I find it difficult to understand how .008% of abortions should NOT be considered rare and yet the statistically likely 1% ‘late-term abortions for reasons considered appropriate by most people’ should be considered very rare.

     

    I have a real problem with an article that mixes annual statistics with the totals cases over several years, anecdotal evidence, guesses because “one can only assume” when instead one could actually dig out actual facts, assumes that what “was done in the past” is still happening, and am particularly offended by the verbal gymnastics with the word ‘rare’, particularly when it is written by someone who identifies herself only as an ‘ethicist’ but who upon further investigation turns out to be a lawyer who makes a living as a conservative moralist.

     

    She is obviously very, VERY good at framing (busting the myths?  Snort!)  and she is a very, very clever writer, but this kind of drek is precisely why common ground is so very hard to establish.

     

    Statistics from:

     

    http://www.abortionincanada.ca/stats/annual_abortion_rates.html

     

    http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/070921/dq070921b-eng.htm

     

    http://www2.macleans.ca/tag/miscarriage/

  • bei1052

    See other response.

  • bei1052

    1.) Eight-hundred is about .83% of 96,815, not .0083%. Extrapolating, though, you could assume 889 late-term abortions per year, which would be about .92%, give or take, which is pretty close to that of the U.S.

     

    2.) What percentage of those deaths do you believe was due to “gross fetal malformities”? I’ll be overly generous and grant you 15% (which is a ridiculously high number), which still leaves 205 deaths unaccounted for.

     

    3.) 3,500 of 96,815 isn’t 1%. One percent of 96,815 is 968′ish. Furthermore, pull up the number of abortions done specifically because of rape or issues of maternal health (if you can find them, that is). I’d be willing to bet that they’re low. Not as low as 1%, but probably in the 5%’ish range.

     

    I have a real problem with an article that mixes annual statistics with the totals cases over several years, anecdotal evidence, guesses because “one can only assume” when instead one could actually dig out actual facts, assumes that what “was done in the past” is still happening.

     

    Except when a pro-choicer does it. Then it’s okay.

  • crowepps

    I really sincerely apologize for not making sure the math was correct before I posted this.  I know I’m really bad at math so I should have been more careful.

    1.) Eight-hundred is about .83% of 96,815, not .0083%. Extrapolating, though, you could assume 889 late-term abortions per year, which would be about .92%, give or take, which is pretty close to that of the U.S.

    Which I think you would agree still qualifies as ‘rare’?

    2.) What percentage of those deaths do you believe was due to “gross fetal malformities”? I’ll be overly generous and grant you 15% (which is a ridiculously high number), which still leaves 205 deaths unaccounted for.

    Oh, geez, more math. I’m pretty busy today and don’t have time to find the incidence rates of ‘no kidneys’, ‘no esophagus’, ‘no brain’ and then track down the percentage that choose ‘abortion’ versus ‘natural delivery’ and then struggle with the math. I did find several ‘pay-per-view’ articles regarding organ donation which estimate the number of anencephalic infants born in Canada each year is 2,000 to 3,000, and that between 25 to 40% are live births which using the mean would result in 625 to 1,000 live births with death following with 24 hours.

    3.) 3,500 of 96,815 isn’t 1%. One percent of 96,815 is 968′ish. Furthermore, pull up the number of abortions done specifically because of rape or issues of maternal health (if you can find them, that is). I’d be willing to bet that they’re low. Maybe not as low as 1%, but probably in the 3′ish% range.

     

    In any case, you really should check your math.

    I really, really loathe math. Thanks for correcting that. I would still say that 3% cannot be labeled as ‘very rare’ if the author asserts that the smaller number of .83%, 3 times SMALLER, is NOT ‘rare’.

    I have a real problem with an article that mixes annual statistics with the totals cases over several years, anecdotal evidence, guesses because “one can only assume” when instead one could actually dig out actual facts, assumes that what “was done in the past” is still happening.

     

    Except when a pro-choicer does it. Then it’s okay.

    No, it is NOT okay. If you have a valid point to make, you should be able to make it comparing apples to apples, without massaging statistics, without ‘assuming’ stuff, and without using anecdotes to imply that all the other cases are probably like the two arguably ‘frivilous’ ones that you personally SAY you know about.

     

    I don’t think ProChoicers should do any of those things either. How is the general public supposed to learn what the issues actually are and how are they/we ever going to reach a consensus on this issue if either/both sides lie? This is an important issue because women voluntarily put their lives are on the line when they want to become mothers. It’s an outrageous betrayal of their willingness to take that risk to lie and say that their lives are never at risk and that all pregnancies will have happy outcomes.

     

    I know lots of women whose pregnancies did not have happy outcomes, including myself.  ‘That never happens’ is ignorance, not a policy position.