Sorry, Anti-Choicers. Abortion Stigma Doesn’t Lower the Abortion Rate


Last Monday, the Guttmacher Institute released a new report showing the abortion rate dropped 13 percent between 2008 and 2011. This news was no big surprise to pro-choice activists and journalists, who have long argued that increasing social acceptance of contraception and generally relaxed attitudes about sex generally make it easier to prevent unintended pregnancy. But anti-choicers are unhappy about the abortion rate drop. (Which is again no surprise to pro-choicers, who know antis depend on the sense of a world in decline to fundraise, but may surprise most people who mistakenly believe anti-choicers care about fetal life.) In particular, they don’t like the researcher’s inference that better contraception use is the likely cause, because, say it with me now, the anti-choice movement is about punishing sex, not saving life. So the strategy is to deny that contraception has anything to do with it and instead take credit for shaming women out of abortion.

Charmaine Yoest of Americans United for Life, in particular, was all over the news media, trying to get credit for it, grumpily claiming that the Guttmacher report “fails to acknowledge the impact of pro-life legislation.” (She also insinuated elsewhere that abortion providers are just straight up lying and performing more abortions than they say.) Since the numbers can’t be attributable to the massive uptick in abortion restrictions—most of these went into effect after the end of the study period—the narrative has emerged that the increased lobbying by anti-choicers somehow alerted women previously unaware that some people disapprove of abortion to instead carry otherwise unwanted pregnancies to term. Catholic News Agency gathered a bunch of anti-choicers together to take credit for changing the “culture.” They quote Michael New attributing the shift to “changes in public opinion” on abortion. SBA List’s Marjorie Dannenfelser also tried to credit the rise in lobbying on the issue with, “our nation is indeed growing weary of the destruction wrought by legalized abortion on demand.”

Bluntly put, this is all just hand-waving nonsense. Public opinion on abortion has remained relatively stable since it was first legalized and the small bits of up-and-down movement don’t really correlate with actual abortion rates. More importantly, the argument only works if you ignore the fact that not having an abortion means you will have a baby. It’s not uncommon for anti-choicers to gloss over this fact, as bizarre as this is, but this case is particularly egregious. This is simple enough for a kindergartner to figure out: If the abortion rate was falling because women were choosing to have babies instead, the birth rate would go up right as the abortion rate went down. But the writer Adelaide Mena admits in the piece that the birth rate is going down too. What do they think is happening here? Women who want abortions but refuse them are thanked by God by making their pregnancies go away? Do they think we’re undergoing a sudden downturn in fertility? It’s kind of hard to parse, since they outright refuse to accept that contraceptive use is as universal as it really is.  Honestly, I think they just hope gullible readers overlook the discrepancy.

But no amount of hand-waving can fix this for the anti-choice movement. There is no real evidence that stigmatizing and shaming abortion stops women from having abortions. The most that it does is makes them feel really bad about it—which I have to imagine is a consolation prize for antis—and to drive it underground. Shame doesn’t stop women from having abortions, however. Women have abortions for financial and personal reasons, and these reasons are usually profound enough to overwhelm any pre-existing distaste for abortion pounded into your head by religious authorities and misogynist political movements. Abortion is a deeply personal decision. What politicians think about it, therefore, just doesn’t even register for most women who are faced with it.

Look at this recent chart released by the American Values Network, a progressive religious organization. If the debates about abortion in mere state legislatures supposedly lowers the abortion rate, as Dannenfelser argues, then the president of the United States—the guy that most Americans can name while they draw a blank on who represents them locally—should have an even bigger impact, right? No one is more famous or has a bigger bully pulpit than the president. Having a president who denounces abortion, by this theory, should result in a larger drop in the number of abortions than having a president who supports abortion. But what we find is that the opposite is true: Pro-choice presidents presided over much bigger declines in the abortion rate than anti-choice presidents.

This isn’t to say that the pro-choice presidents were making choices that somehow lowered the abortion rate, of course. The abortion rate is probably declining for reasons unrelated to who the president is. Which is the point: Women’s choices to have abortions have very little to do with what “society” tells them to do, and everything to do with what their personal circumstances demand.

The Guttmacher study revealed something that’s incredibly simple but also incredibly profound: The biggest factor when it comes to how many abortions there are is how many unintended pregnancies there are. Yes, the percentage of pregnancies that are unintended doesn’t seem to be changing a lot, but since the overall rate of pregnancy dropped significantly, the unintended pregnancy rate dropped with it. When unintended pregnancy rates go down, the abortion rate goes down.

This fact is uncomfortable for anti-choicers because they don’t want to lower the unintended pregnancy rate. The whole premise of the anti-choice movement is that getting pregnant should be the price you pay for having sex. It’s an entire ideological movement that mourns, as conservative New York Times columnist Ross Douthat grossly puts it, a society where “sex has been decoupled from marriage.” The abortion debate is really a stand-in for the unintended pregnancy debate. Anti-choicers see unintended pregnancy largely as a social good that forces some people to get married and punishes other people for the “sin” of having unsanctioned sex. It’s a form of social control, and conservatives love themselves some social control. Pro-choicers, on the other hand, view it through a human rights lens. We think women should be in control of pregnancy, not that pregnancy should be used to control women. Once you understand that, how it can be that anti-abortion people are discombobulated by a lower abortion rate and pro-choice people are excited about it makes perfect sense.

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  • five_by_five

    Oh my. Look at those anti-women Democrats Clinton and Obama with their abysmal abortion numbers. And we know that’s bad because abortions are a good thing.

    More abortions for everybody!!!!!

    • expect_resistance

      Did you read the article?

      • Jennifer Starr

        No. It’s beyond her comprehension.

        • expect_resistance

          I knew it was too much to ask.

      • five_by_five

        Yeah, unfortunately I did read the article. And like most Amanda Marcotte pieces, it’s completely dishonest. Just look at her conclusions from the LA Times article about claiming the pro-life crowd wasn’t happy with the reduction in abortions. Yes, they may have disagreed about the cause of the reductions, but they certainly weren’t displeased by the actual reduction in abortions.

        If more restrictive abortion laws do not cause a decrease in the amount of abortions that women are having, then why does the pro-choice crowd object to them?

        • expect_resistance

          So you didn’t read the article. Got it.

          • five_by_five

            Aww….that’s cute. You got a little confused about my question, couldn’t answer it, and ran away. Got it.

          • expect_resistance

            Nope. You still haven’t answered my question on the other thread from a day ago. Don’t be so hypocritical.

          • five_by_five

            And what question would that be?

          • expect_resistance

            Really? I thought you are so smart that you could remember.

            From 2/9/14:

            Expect resistance responses to your comment:

            Your interpretation of “elective” is formed from a myopic anti-choice viewpoint that’s not accurate.

            And…

            Are you equating cosmetic surgery to abortion? As in you think cosmetic surgery is “not required” and therefore “elective?” Have you ever thought about why people might have cosmetic surgery? They may have been injured in the war, they may have had a mastectomy, they may have been in an accident. So no, I guess their want to have corrective cosmetic surgery is “superfluous.” Sounds like your doing a lot of judging when it’s not necessary. As for abortion being elective, damn right it is. If I’m pregnant and do not want to be, I can elect to have an abortion. It’s none of your business or anyones business.

            No response from 5×5.

            It’s clear from your posts that you have no real world experience and you are parroting anti-choice talking points.

          • five_by_five

            Sigh. You really don’t understand context.

            There are two types of induced abortions: therapeutic and elective – and those definitions have nothing to do with the scheduling of the procedure, but rather the reason for the abortion. One is done for the health of the mother and/or fetus and the other is not. I’ll let you guess which is which.

            You’re right, the “elective” when it comes to other surgeries is generally meant as “scheduled for the future.” This, in fact, includes elective cosmetic surgery – which can include both facial reconstruction of infants or the people who want DD boobs.

            But you’ve made the common mistake of thinking “elective abortions” means “scheduled.” It doesn’t and that could have been easily cleared up by you if you took 1 minute googling the term “elective abortion definition.”

          • expect_resistance

            No I do understand. You are arguing that abortion can only be done to save the life of the mother. Abortion can be done for any reason. No woman needs to explain to you why she is having an abortion. Most abortions are done very early and you are hung up on later abortions, which are the minority.

            You are also hung up on the word “elective.” What’s your point? If I am pregnant and don’t want to be I can elect to have an elective abortion. End of story.

            If I have a heart condition and need surgery, I will elect to have elective life-saving heart surgery.

          • five_by_five

            No, I argued that abortion SHOULD only be done to save the life of the mother.

            Can Should Can Should Can Should……two different words.

            Hey, you finally used the term “elective abortion” correctly. Congrats. It only took 2 days. If you have an abortion and it isn’t for the health of the mother/fetus it’s “elective.” If it IS for the health of the mother/fetus, then it’s “therapeutic abortion.”

            These are the correct medical term in regards to abortion.

          • HeilMary1

            Since ALL pregnancies are damaging to women’s bodies, ALL abortions are therapeutic, troll. Just because abortion patients don’t share the scary, embarrassing details of their medical problems with jackass you doesn’t mean their reasons are frivolous and cosmetic. Women don’t go around braying that they are scheduling abortions to avoid bladder and bowel incontinence or kidney or heart failure.

          • expect_resistance

            Again what is your point? Women can have an “elective” or “therapeutic” abortion. What’s the problem? Why are you hung up on “elective.” I can have an abortion for any reason I see fit. Get it? Elective or therapeutic. No woman needs to explain or justify why she doesn’t want to be pregnant. Do you understand?

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            Wrong, little dummy. There are two kinds of abortion: induced and spontaneous.

            One can have a therapeutic elective abortion and many do.

            “Should” in one hand and shit in the other, both handfuls have the same value.

          • five_by_five

            Induced abortions: elective or therapeutic
            Spontaneous abortions: —Threatened, inevitable, incomplete,
            complete, missed or recurrent

            Understand now?

          • expect_resistance

            You also didn’t answer this question.

            “Again what is your point? Women can have an “elective” or “therapeutic” abortion. What’s the problem? Why are you hung up on “elective.” I can have an abortion for any reason I see fit. Get it? Elective or therapeutic. No woman needs to explain or justify why she doesn’t want to be pregnant. Do you understand?”

          • fiona64

            He’s an idiot teen, and not worth your time.

            He keeps pretending that actual medical professionals don’t know what “elective” means when it comes to procedures … because he’s a dimwit.

          • expect_resistance

            I know. I kind of feel bad for him.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            5×5 … another mess … we asked you to use the john … ewwww

        • goatini

          “it’s completely dishonest”

          Translation: It’s 100% FACTUAL and some forced-birther nitwit doesn’t like facts.

    • L-dan

      *eyeroll*

      Seriously, grow up.

    • Ivy Mike

      Babblebabblebablebabble whaaarrrrgarbbble!

      • five_by_five

        Hey Mike. Why do you, as a man, like abortions so much?

        How about keeping it wrapped, ok?

        • Ivy Mike

          How about growing up a bit before interrupting adult conversations?

          Possibly stop regurgitating forced-birth propaganda talking points? Such as the outright bullshit LIES you were spreading about Savita Halappanavar’s death? Or the other complete lies you promoted about fetal development?

          You know, all the stuff you got thoroughly SCHOOLED on, to use your word?

          You are naught but a young, overconfident, under-informed parrot, repeating propaganda you were taught. You’re a shill, and not a particularly good one.

          • Jennifer Starr

            Yep, a parrot indoctrinated by parents, she just spouts stuff without even fully understanding it.

          • Ivy Mike

            Notice the response when cornered, as well…accuse, deflect, change subject, etc…

          • L-dan

            Or simply stop responding and go harass others on the exact same points someone else has already schooled them on.

          • five_by_five

            How am I interrupting your conversation? You replied to me, idiot.

            How many abortions have you been personally responsible for, Mikey? 1? 2? 10?

          • Jennifer Starr

            Shush, child. Adults speaking. And you’ve been flagged.

          • five_by_five

            I’m flagging you for flagging.

          • Ivy Mike

            How mature. Oh, I flagged you as well.

            You really need to grow up some more…at the very least, you can learn to lie better.

          • Ivy Mike

            None. One woman I dated decades ago had one, which I paid for. Her choice, though, so I wasn’t, as you say, “personally responsible”.

            In any case, why does it matter, except to a forced-birth religious fanatic who trolls message boards with strings of lies? Who seems to type rather quickly and articulately for a purported “18-year old 7th grader with Down’s”?

            Quit bulshitting…you’re a shill, nothing more.

          • five_by_five

            You got her pregnant and now you’re not somehow partially responsible for her abortion?

            Oh stop the presses. We’ve got a man in denial here.

            “I paid for it” Well, I guess that’s settled. You’re in the clear.

            And when have I ever claimed to be religious Mikey? (hint: I’m not) And the middle-schooler thing was obviously a joke. I’m surprised you had a hard time figuring that one out.

          • Ivy Mike

            If you’ll recall, I caught your lie in one post. Only now are you claiming it was a “joke”. You are really bad at this, you know?

            And you are most certainly religious…else you would not be parroting talking points that are put out by religious organizations.

            Do you really think anyone here believes you about anything anymore? Do you seriously hallucinate that you are accorded even a smidgen of credibility or respect?

            Do yourself a favor, kid…quit and go back to school tomorrow. Try to learn something.

          • five_by_five

            Nope. Sorry to disappoint you but I’m an atheist. But I once went to church…. if that helps you think of me as religious though.

            Question: If someone is against murder, does that make them religious because one of the 10 commandments is “thou shall not kill?” Are you against murder? Does that make you religious Mikey?

            And if you didn’t realize the “I have trisomy 21. I’m in middle-school” thing wast a joke until I had to tell you, you’re even dumber than I thought. That, or you think that there are a lot of downs kids (that you haven’t aborted yet) out there posting on pro-abortion websites.

          • HeilMary1

            The troll’s priests and wife dumpers like Randall Terry don’t keep it wrapped.

    • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

      My abortuary gives a door prize monthly. Last month I got a new toaster. Jimmy and I are screwing up a storm. I want to get pregnant soon. I am hoping for a new electric can opener.

      • HeilMary1

        “Five” would get a legal or illegal abortion in a minute if she knew completing a pregnancy would force her to wear diapers for the rest of her life like Amy Herbst or need a face transplant for FETAL-CAUSED FACE CANCER like my dead best friend.

      • Shan

        Can’t…stop…laughing…

        • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

          If I have made you laugh, Grasshopper, I have fulfilled my mission. Namaste.

          • Shan

            Whenever I see the word “abortuary” my brain goes straight to that Onion “Abortionplex” article from a couple of years ago, the one the idiot congressman linked to his Facebook page. Credulous people all over the country lost their minds – it was hilarious.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            I have never seen it. I hope I can find it.

          • Shan

            It’s all over the place. By the time I post this, you probably will have found it already.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            Found it. Funny.

        • five_by_five

          Ha ha..

          Laughing about abortion.

          Ha ha so funny.

          • goatini

            Beavis and Butt-head, Season 9, Episode 12. Hilarious.

          • Mirable

            Fuck laughing. Those of us who are really into it masturbate to pix of aborted fetuses.

          • five_by_five

            Too embarrassed by what you originally posted so you had to edit it.

            Nice.

          • Mirable

            Masturbate.

            Happy now?

          • Jennifer Starr

            “five_by_five” does that while looking at pictures of Corporal Ferro.

          • Shan

            What can I say? It’s a gift.

            Hey, I have an extra microwave I don’t need if you want one for when you move into your own place. I’m on the same program as Plum Dumpling and I accidentally had *two* abortions this month already. I guess that’s why I’m on the Platinum Membership plan.

  • expect_resistance

    “Shame doesn’t stop women from having abortions, however. Women have abortions for financial and personal reasons, …….Abortion is a deeply personal decision. What politicians think about it, therefore, just doesn’t even register for most women who are faced with it.”

    Great article! The antis are delusional and believe their own outrageous lies.

  • TheBrett

    Anti-choicers see unintended pregnancy largely as a social good that forces some people to get married and punishes other people for the “sin” of having unsanctioned sex.

    That’s when those pregnancies are being had by middle-class white women. If they’re poor minority women, then they start fretting about them “breeding too much” and having “ten kids while claiming food stamps” – and in the not too distant past, it was an excuse they used for sterilization programs.

    • expect_resistance

      For the antis it’s all about the “shamming.” That way they can claim moral superiority.

    • AZDem9933

      But anti-choice policies disproportionately affect poor women and women of color. They want to shame those women for having babies but still want to force them to give birth to them. Antis want lots and lots of poor people around to do their dirty work.

  • expect_resistance

    Speaking of anti-choice politicians like Ohio Congressman Jim Buchy who wants all abortions outlawed, with the exception of death for the mother. When asked why a woman might need an abortion, he was dumbfounded. The interview was from the documentary “The Abortion War” by Al Jazeera.

    • HeilMary1

      I’ll bet Buchy would cheat on and divorce any wife suffering the embarrassing childbirth complications that Amy Herbst is suffering.

  • five_by_five

    The next time someone writes an article about how much they hate restrictive abortion laws, I’m just going to them them to read this article and tell them

    “But Amanda Marcotte doesn’t think those laws reduce the number abortions, so don’t worry about it.”

    • ansuz

      So you don’t think that back-alley abortions are any worse than safe and legal abortions?

      • five_by_five

        Marcotte is pretty sure that these abortion laws aren’t causing fewer abortions. Therefore, you don’t need to worry about back-alley abortions because the reduction is solely caused by increased use of contraception – according to Marcotte of course)

        (I guess we’re ignoring the fact that the Guttmacher numbers showing that 49% of the women receiving abortions were not using any contraception when they became pregnant – which is up from 46% the year prior).

        • ansuz

          The implication of the lack of reduction in abortions is that, while the proportion of legal abortions may decrease, the number of illegal (i.e., back alley) abortions increases to make up the difference.

          • fiona64

            Our little teen troll isn’t very good at nuanced thinking.

          • colleen2

            Or unnuanced thinking.

          • Jennifer Starr

            Or any kind of thinking.

          • five_by_five

            Too bad there isn’t any proof of that.

            Otherwise it would be a good point.

        • L-dan

          Do you actually know how to read? That conclusion was reached because the huge pile of restrictive abortion laws came after the timeframe of the study. Do you somehow want to claim that those laws caused abortion declines *before* they were enacted? Some trick.

          And no, we’re not ignoring the percentage using contraception. That 49% of women seeking abortions is a larger percentage of that population, but since the number of women seeking abortions is smaller, that does not imply a larger number of women overall using contraception. Nor does it imply a larger number of those using contraception are having unwanted pregnancies anyway. Pregnancies, wanted and unwanted, are down in the timeframe the report addresses. There are three really obvious reasons that could be the case: women became less fertile overall in that timeframe, women had a lot less sex in that timeframe, or women were using contraception to avoid pregnancies in that timeframe. I think we would have heard about a general drop in fertility, since that’s a broad public health problem. Human nature makes it unlikely that there’s been a precipitous drop in sexual activity. Meanwhile, things like IUDs have been seeing increased usage, which indicates that at least one contraceptive method is seeing greater use.

          So much for yet another stupid attempt at a childish troll ‘gotcha’.

          • five_by_five

            Aren’t you the one who got pregnant after skipping your birth control medication?

          • L-dan

            Regardless of whether or not that’s the case, (hint, mischaracterizing my personal history to discount my actual knowledge=less than effective debate technique) do you see me explaining how birth control works in the post you’re replying to? Wow, nope.

            Want to actually address the above post pointing out that you were dead wrong in your reading comprehension? Or are you going to continue to just jump up and down and hope that tossing out supposed zingers will somehow make people think you have a valid point?

          • five_by_five

            How am I mischaracterizing your story?

            You skipped a day of the pill . You still decided to have sex. You got pregnant.

            Are those not the facts?

          • L-dan

            Forgot isn’t purposefully skipping a day. The implication of purposefully skipping contraception is very different from the implication of forgetting it. That’s mischaracterization.

            Secondly, you’re using it in a fashion designed to shame. It doesn’t, because missing a day of any medication is a common and human occurrence. Pretty much everyone using birth control pills has missed one from time to time. Same for most medications that one is on daily for years at a time. But you seem to hope that I’ll be shamed, shut up, and not notice that you still haven’t actually addressed my point. That’s debating in poor faith.

            Thirdly, you’re using it as an argument to cast doubt upon knowledge, which is an even poorer debate tactic. My knowledge of contraception has nothing to do with my daily routine occasionally going awry. Missing a meeting at work doesn’t mean that I don’t actually know the information I was going to present at the meeting, as a quick analogy.

            And it still doesn’t address the actual point. I won’t bother responding to further trolling that’s simply intended to derail.

          • five_by_five

            Funny, I didn’t write that you “purposefully” skipped a day. I said that you skipped a day. Which you did.

            “Pretty much everyone using birth control pills has missed one from time to time.”

            Yeah, you’re right. And do you know what you’re supposed to do if you miss a day?

            Ding ding ding. That’s right. Either use extra protection or abstain from sex. Which you didn’t. And you got pregnant. And had an abortion.

            I guess you learned that choices have consequences.

          • expect_resistance

            Your child-like ramblings show your ignorance of the real world.

          • five_by_five

            In the real world we have our partner wear a condom if we skip a day on the pill….unless we want an increased risk of pregnancy that is.

          • L-dan

            Because everyone knows when they’ve missed a day. If you’d actually been on the pill for the last 20 years, you’d know that they originally were just numbered with days 1-28 (or 21 if you were on the ones without placebo pills for the time you were supposed to be bleeding).

            More recently, they have days of the week, and you’re supposed to start on a particular day…thus making it easier to see you’ve missed one.

            Now that that shit’s settled…still don’t have an actual response to the post you wanted to detract from little troll?

          • expect_resistance

            Sweet, 5×5 is busted.

          • L-dan

            I really don’t care that they somehow think that missing a pill is somehow so important to my past that bringing it up will be enough to derail the conversation because I’ll just *have* to respond to such a ‘zinger.’

            Continually mischaracterizing it as “yer dumb fer not using other protection after missing” is equally par for their course in that using other protection when you’ve missed a pill relies upon you knowing that you’ve missed it. The fact that they have such trouble getting that fact (just the facts, right?) through their dense head, says plenty about the unlikelihood that they’ve ever used the pill, but certainly says that they weren’t using it 20 years ago.

            But now they’ve derailed a bunch of people from the original point that the dense little brick doesn’t want to admit that they didn’t actually pay attention to the article they wanted to snipe at, and can’t actually do proper math. (jumping on percentages in the fashion they did is one more bit of evidence of how innumerate our society has become, frankly.)

          • expect_resistance

            Well said. I’m really sick of 5×5 derailing the conversation and had to call him/her on their bullpucky.

          • fiona64

            I *REALLY* wish DISQUS had a “block user” option. I would then not have to look at this juvenile twit’s postings at all.

          • HeilMary1

            If 5×5 has been on the pill for 20 years, I’m sure she missed pills, didn’t abstain, and JUSTIFIED her resulting abortions because her lover, Father Fetus Savior, couldn’t be bothered with child support!

          • expect_resistance

            You are way out of line.

            Bringing up L-dan’s personal health history into a thread, followed by a judgmental statement about L-dan’s personal life or decisions is VERY OUT OF LINE.

            I don’t believe in flagging comments because I think everyone should have a chance to see everything, including your pathetic comments. Without flagging you I want you to know you’re statements are uncalled for. Stop it!

          • five_by_five

            How would I know about L-dan’s health history if she didn’t post about it on this very website?

            She brought her personal story into this when she replied to me about ME not knowing how the pill works. I didn’t start this.

          • expect_resistance

            Bringing up L-dans’s post and then using that to shame and belittle her is wrong. You’re doing this because you are so experienced? You’ve had numerous sexual experiences and are sharing your personal knowledge of birth control. If not than shut up.

          • five_by_five

            I’ve been using the pill for 20 years. Yeah, I have some experience.

            And I at least know that if you skip a dose, it’s risky to have unprotected sex because the risk of pregnancy increases dramatically.

            Either L-dan did not know that, or ignored it.

            It’s interesting that you think that bringing up the facts is shaming and belittling her.

          • Mirable

            I thought you were in 7th grade?

          • five_by_five

            I stayed back.

          • HeilMary1

            Gaslighting again to cover your exposed lies! You call us stupid, but now pretend you stayed in 7th grade for 20 years!

          • expect_resistance

            Do you see a discrepancy here? 5×5 has claimed she/he is in grade school or high school and then has been using the pill for 20 years?

          • Mirable

            yep

          • expect_resistance

            I think someone needs to remember what lies they’ve told. Can’t wait to hear five’s answer.

          • expect_resistance

            I’m a dork, I just recognized your new handle. I miss “Hitler was not pregnant” but I understand if you need to change to something else. I can’t get the picture out of my mind of Hitler being pregnant. I need to do a painting of that or something.

          • Mirable

            It was a great nym, but it’s the kind of nym that would even get me banned from pc sites:P

          • Jennifer Starr

            I like the name Mirable too :)

          • Mirable

            Inspired by wolfcat – who bragged about her dictionary skillz.

          • expect_resistance

            I forgot about her. She’s almost as bad as 5×5 with a long list of lies and bull$hit.

          • expect_resistance

            You’re in high school and you’ve been using the pill for 20 years? Did you start taking the pill at birth?

          • HeilMary1

            She can’t keep her lies straight!

          • expect_resistance

            Yep.

          • HeilMary1

            You are a disgusting liar!

          • L-dan

            Or, you know, as I told you before, didn’t realize I’d missed a pill.

            Now shut up or answer the actual point you’ve decided to derail with your completely unrelated side trip into my history. Seriously, you realize the only one looking stupid here is you with your tendency to sidestep, dance, and derail whenever you don’t have a real response to being called out for your stupidity.

          • five_by_five

            How did you not know?

            Were you drunk?

          • Mirable

            You still need to provide us with links from UPTODATE dot com so you can cite your sources. I told you how to do it

            So do it.

          • five_by_five

            Sure. No problem.

            http://www dot uptodate dot com/contents/prenatal-diagnosis-of-renal-agenesis?source=search_result&search=renal+agenesis&selectedTitle=1~35

          • five_by_five

            But, you know I already provided the quote and the article title, so what was your problem with that?

            If I gave you a quote from a book, wouldn’t that be a source even though a online link wasn’t available?

          • Mirable

            Links for everything or gtfo.

          • five_by_five

            What else would you like?

            Be specific.

          • Mirable

            For everything that you’ve claimed. In fact, you told us numerous times that you linked directly to uptodate only that they were unviewable because of the spam filter.

            So, get to it.

          • five_by_five

            Be specific. What claim of mine don’t you believe that you would like me to verify for you.

            Don’t say “everything” that means nothing to me. Be specific.

          • Mirable

            You know what claims you made.

            Don’t be coy. You can look back over your history. Get to work.

          • expect_resistance

            Five is a habitual liar.

          • five_by_five

            Well, I guess I’m done with you.

            If you cannot mention one single specific claim that you are contesting, then I’m going to have to assume you don’t want a real response.

          • Jennifer Starr

            That’s a cop-out. You know what claims you’ve made, and you haven’t provided a real response to any of them.

          • expect_resistance

            Sure. let’s assume for a minute…………………………..

            No. We know you’re a liar. You have no factual responses for anything. We see right through your deception. Ha.

          • five_by_five

            I guess I’ve been correct on all my claims since you cannot not pinpoint any specific claim that you think is incorrect.

            I win.

          • Jennifer Starr

            No, because you refuse to back up any of your claims, you lose. It’s not up to us to prove you incorrect. It’s up to you to prove yourself correct. You know what claims you’ve made, though you’re pretending not to.

          • five_by_five

            Which claim didn’t I back up? Name one.

          • expect_resistance

            If you count cheating and lying as winning.

          • fiona64

            More proof that it is an undereducated teen: it’s all about “winning” to that creature. Pitiful.

          • Jennifer Starr

            If you can find a quote in a book, you should be able to be able to find corresponding information on the internet. That everyone can read without a subscription. Shouldn’t be hard, unless you’re telling us yet another lie.

          • L-dan

            Did you reply to the actual schooling on your original comment yet?

            If not, I guess you’ll never know.

          • fiona64

            It doesn’t have any answers … because it’s a snot-nosed teen boy. It wants to deflect and try to make you look like a “bad guy” (which is absurd) because it can’t answer the question put to it.

            This seems to be a problem with most anti-choicers, come to think of it …

          • expect_resistance

            Bingo!

          • L-dan

            Pretty much. Since they’re happy to argue all night long about a topic they can apparently only find on one subscription site, but are unwilling to answer my question with anything other than an attempt at derailment via personal attack.

            That’s pretty much been their go-to strategy whenever they’re soundly outclassed. Best I can tell the whole renal agenesis nonsense is a red herring anyway, since it really doesn’t matter how early one can detect something so much as when it’s usually detected. But that’s the argument they’re willing to stick with because they’ve got text to back them up. Text that nobody here can see; thus nobody here can point out the failures of analysis that have plagued most of their arguments.

          • fiona64

            I’m not even bother to read posts from that individual any more. It’s a waste of time.

          • ansuz

            Jesus Fucking Christ, they’re annoying.

          • Jennifer Starr

            And you still keep deflecting to avoid answering any real questions. Perhaps because you don’t have any actual answers worth posting?

          • five_by_five

            Nope.

            Hey, look, I answered your question.

          • Jennifer Starr

            Five paragraphs that tell me what renal agenesis is and pretty much nothing else. I don’t see anything about ultrasound diagnostics in those five paragraphs.

          • five_by_five

            Huh? In the article titled “Prenatal diagnosis of renal agenesis” you didn’t see anything about ultrasound diagnostics?

            Maybe if you read it:

            “Fetal kidneys can be seen on transvaginal ultrasound as early as 10 to 12 weeks of gestation.”

          • Jennifer Starr

            Nope. Without a subscription to that service, five paragraphs is all you can see. This:

            INTRODUCTION

            Development renal defects include: (1) bilateral/unilateral renal agenesis, (2) renal hypodysplasia characterized by a reduction in the number of nephrons leading to a small overall kidney size and frequent dysplasia with or without cysts, and (3) multicystic dysplastic kidney.

            A kidney may be absent because it never developed (agenesis) or because of complete regression of a dysplastic kidney (aplasia). In the following topic review, the term renal agenesis will be used to refer to absent kidneys resulting from either of these etiologies (figure 1).

            Renal agenesis may be either unilateral or bilateral. Bilateral renal agenesis is incompatible with extrauterine life because prolonged absence of amniotic fluid results in pulmonary hypoplasia leading to severe respiratory insufficiency at birth.

            INCIDENCE

            Prior to the widespread use of prenatal ultrasonography and availability of legalized pregnancy termination in the United States, the incidence of bilateral renal agenesis was about 1 in 4000 births and about 1 in 250 autopsies of stillbirths and infant deaths [1,2]. It is 2.5 times more common in males than in females [3].

            The incidence of unilateral renal agenesis is about 1 in 1300 births [4]. This is probably an underestimate because many cases remain asymptomatic.

            Subscribers log in here

            To continue reading this article, you must log in with your personal, hospital, or group practice subscription. For more information or to purchase a personal subscription, click below on the option that best describes you:

            Want to try again?

          • five_by_five

            That’s why I quoted it before. Derp derp…but you didn’t like that.

            If you want to personally see the whole thing, get a subscription. Otherwise, if you want someone elese to verify my quote, get fiona64 to do it. She a doctor or something. I’m sure she has access to that site.

          • Jennifer Starr

            Meaning that you don’t actually have any verifiable source. Because you know your word is not good enough.

          • five_by_five

            How is UpToDate not verifiable?

          • Jennifer Starr

            Find a source which can be read by anybody. Go on. Shouldn’t be hard, if what you’re saying is true.

          • five_by_five

            It can be read by anybody. Get a subscription. Or access it from the library.

          • Jennifer Starr

            Again, do your own homework. And no–we’re not taking your word for it that it proves what you say. Because it probably doesn’t, which is why you picked a source that almost no one can access.

          • five_by_five

            If I picked a textbook as a source would you complain that you couldn’t verify that because you’d have to get off your fat ass and go to the library to look it up?

          • Jennifer Starr

            Because if this is such common knowledge, you should be able to easily find a source that we can all read. Really shouldn’t be that hard to do. And since you made the claim, it’s up to you to provide the evidence. Or has mommy put a lock on which sites you can access?

          • five_by_five

            You can read it. Get a subscription and read it online from home.
            Or go to the library.

            Don’t play stupid.

          • Jennifer Starr

            Meaning that you have nothing and you’re probably not telling the whole truth. We’re not doing your homework for you kiddo. You made the claim, you back it up.

          • five_by_five

            I already backed it up kiddo.

            You just don’t like that I was correct.

          • Jennifer Starr

            No –no, you really didn’t.

          • five_by_five

            Yeah, I guess quoting an article and even providing the link for it if you so choose to look it up yourself didn’t quite cut it for you.

            Because fuck facts, amiright?

          • L-dan

            As much as you’ve tossed lies around here? No, nobody is simply going to accept your ‘facts’ at face value.

            And when you’re not outright lying, you’re misrepresenting things either out of a lack of reading comprehension or deliberate intent to mislead. So nobody here is going to trust your interpretation of a factual text either.

            Oh look….actions have consequences.

          • five_by_five

            You don’t have to accept MY facts at face value. I’ve provided sources for your perusal.

            But I guess that’s too much to expect from someone who doesn’t’ know how to correctly use birth control.

            And, yes, that was a personal attack.

          • Jennifer Starr

            No. If you haven’t provided sources that everyone can look at–without having to subscribe, then you haven’t provided sources. My guess is that you can’t find anything to back up your claim, otherwise, you would post something else.

          • L-dan

            Oh please. Going to stick your thumbs in your ears and cry “neener neener” too?

            You have no actual evidence (and quite a bit to the contrary, if you’re paying the slightest attention) that I don’t know how to correctly use birth control. I’ve supplied a fair bit of evidence that, in fact, I know more about how it works than you do.

            Providing sources that are unreachable is pretty much the same as asking to be taken at face value, and you’re not going to be.

            At this point, you’ve proven to be a liar, and someone who doesn’t bother to let any sort of integrity stand in the way of ‘scoring points’ in the debate. So anything you say is treated as untrue until proven otherwise.

            Now, if that doesn’t bother you, it’s not like you need to respond to the people telling you that we don’t believe a word you say. But since you seem to have *some* sort of vested interest in having someone accept your ‘facts’. I mean you’re arguing at it awfully hard…while you continue to completely ignore your misinterpretation of the article here and my commentary on that fact.

          • five_by_five

            Actually, you’re right. I don’t have evidence that you don’t know how to use birth control. Just evidence that you didn’t use birth control correctly, which you admitted to.

            UpToDate isn’t “unreachable.” Far from it. I guess you’d call a textbook “unreachable” too.

            Bottom line is that you’re denying that what I QUOTED from the article (and subsequently linked) isn’t true. That’s on you.

          • L-dan

            hmm, no, actually. If you give a damn about being believed, it’s on you.

            We, on the other hand, would be pretty silly to accept anything from so untrustworthy a source without rock solid authentication.

          • five_by_five

            Well, I’ve already provided my sources for my claims on renal agenesis and anencephaly. If you don’t like those sources, tough.

            What other claims would you specifically like to contest? Or are you done?

          • L-dan

            I don’t know, maybe the whole “hey this article says that abortion restricting laws don’t actually restrict abortion,” and “the percentage of folks getting abortions who weren’t using contraceptives is higher and we’re somehow ignoring that fact,” that I responded too ages ago before you decided my personal history would be a more entertaining deflection.

            I’m paraphrasing there because your original post was deleted, making it impossible to quote.

          • five_by_five

            1. The author claimed the reduction in abortions had nothing to do with more restrictive laws. That is what she wrote.

            2. As far as the percentage of people receiving abortions who didn’t use (or incorrectly used) contraception being on the rise….it was from a Guttmacher facts sheet about abortion. Would you like the link? (it is 49% today and was 46% in the previous years report, hence an increase in percentage)

          • L-dan

            1. The reduction in the report had nothing to do with more restrictive laws because the rash of laws in the past two years didn’t exist yet. They couldn’t affect the rate of abortions prior to coming into existence. Which is precisely what I said above.

            2. As explained in my previous post as well, you can’t actually make that determination from the 46-49% rise without looking at the actual numbers. The total number of pregnancies was lower, thus the total number of unwanted pregnancies and of abortions was lower. All the percentage tells us is that a slightly larger percentage of those getting abortions reported not using contraception. This may not actually be a larger number of people. There’s no indication of how many of those were trying to get pregnant and had abortions due to maternal or fetal issues. Etc. In short, you’re misusing a single statistic to claim as a ‘fact’ something that it does not actually show.

          • five_by_five

            1. “because the rash of laws in the past two years didn’t exist yet.”

            Yes, the article claims that there has been a “massive uptick in abortion restrictions” yet, interestingly enough, provides no metric or numbers to even support this claim.

            2.”There’s no indication of how many of those were trying to get pregnant and had abortions due to maternal or fetal issues.”

            That’s actually a good point. The Guttmacher number don’t differentiate between subgroups.

          • fiona64


            Yes, the article claims that there has been a “massive uptick in
            abortion restrictions” yet, interestingly enough, provides no metric or
            numbers to even support this claim.

            305 last year alone, sweetie. those of us who monitor this kind of thing already know that.

            But you know that *too,* don’t you, little boy?

            Drop dead. I really am done with you.

          • five_by_five

            So was that stated in the article? Nope.

            Did you compare your number (cite your sources, ha ha) with the previous year? 5 years? 10 years? Prove your claim.

          • fiona64

            The author claimed the reduction in abortions had nothing to do with more restrictive laws.

            That is because, dummy, the laws didn’t exist during the study period. That is ALSO what she wrote.

            Just. Frigging. Stop.

          • five_by_five

            And yeah, why was my original post deleted? I actually understand why my other post calling your birth control practices was deleted. It was a low blow. But, I went there after you claimed that I didn’t know
            anything about contraception which I thought was funny from someone who admits to using contraception incorrectly.

          • L-dan

            One. last. time.

            Missing a pill doesn’t mean one doesn’t know how to use contraception correctly. Nor does having a fender-bender mean you don’t know how to drive.

            There’s a reason the perfect use rate for the pill is something like 98% and the actual rate is nowhere near as good.

            For someone who wants to keep tossing this out because I dared to claim you don’t know anything about contraception (which, btw, I made no mention of in this thread till you brought it up), you don’t actually seem to have any real experience with hormonal contraception.

          • Jennifer Starr

            If what you’re saying is true, it should be a piece of pie to find a source on the internet that confirms it, and that doesn’t require a subscription to view. My guess is that you can’t find anything that backs up your claims.

          • five_by_five

            Hmm…ok. But I already provided a source. I guess one more should be sufficient. Or are you going to claim this doesn’t count as well?

            w w w dot ncbi dot nlm.nih dot gov/pubmed/9060123

            “These findings demonstrate that anencephaly can be reliably diagnosed at the routine 10-14-week ultrasound scan, provided a specific search is made for the sonographic features for this condition.”

          • Jennifer Starr

            And renal agenesis, which is what the uptodate link was supposedly about?

          • five_by_five

            w w w dot glowm dot com/section_view/heading/Ultrasound%20Diagnosis%20of%20Fetal%20Anomalies/item/205

          • fiona64

            It’s kind of interesting to watch the poor creature decompensate …

          • fiona64

            So, you’ve got nothing.

            As usual.

            Quelle surprise.

          • five_by_five

            Hey you. I was waiting for you to show up.

            Since you’re a doctor or something, go onto UpToDate, and tell me how the article I quoted doesn’t say what I quoted it as saying.

            Please please please please please with a cherry on top.

          • fiona64

            Didn’t your mommy tell you not to ask others to do your homework? You’ve been told *repeatedly* how to post a link so that your post doesn’t go into moderation. It’s no one’s fault but your own that you can’t figure out how to do that even with your hand being held. ::shrug::

            I’m not doing diddly-squat for you, little boy.

          • five_by_five

            www dot uptodate dot com/contents/prenatal-diagnosis-of-renal-agenesis?source=search_result&search=renal+agenesis&selectedTitle=1~35

            enjoy

          • five_by_five

            from uptodate:

            contents/prenatal-diagnosis-of-renal-agenesis?source=search_result&search=renal+agenesis&selectedTitle=1~35

            copy and paste.

            Enjoy

          • Mirable
          • expect_resistance

            Do you know how I can post links on a post and not have it go into moderation? I haven’t been able to get this to work. Did I miss the memo?

          • Mirable

            Dot in place of .

            Or put spaces around . like this

          • expect_resistance

            Still waiting for your answer! Were you drunk when you posted that you have been taking the pill for 20 years as a high school or grade school student? We are waiting for your explanation.

          • five_by_five

            Did you ask a question?

          • expect_resistance

            Yes, THIS IS THE QUESTION from my previous post: You’re in high school and you’ve been using the pill for 20 years? Did you start taking the pill at birth?

            Furthermore, are you claiming you have 20 years of experience using the pill?

            Let me remind you. From this thread:
            five_by_five a day ago 2/12/14
            “I’ve been using the pill for 20 years. Yeah, I have some experience. And I at least know that if you skip a dose, it’s risky to have unprotected sex because the risk of pregnancy increases dramatically.”

            my response, “expect_resistance a day ago 2/12/14
            You’re in high school and you’ve been using the pill for 20 years? Did you start taking the pill at birth?”

          • five_by_five

            Yes, because when I stated I was in high school and had downs syndrome, I was totally being serious.

          • expect_resistance

            You keep changing your story. Are you in high school or seventh grade? You say you have 20 years of experience using the pill. Have you been sexually active for 20 years? If not, then what do you mean by “Yeah, I have some experience. And I at least know that if you skip a dose, it’s risky to have unprotected sex because the risk of pregnancy increases dramatically.” You say this as if you’ve had sex. It sounds like if you are a vulnerable adult and have been sexually active for 20 years. If this is the case if sounds like you are being sexually abused. Is that the case? Maybe RH Reality Check should check your IP address and inform the authorities. Really, do you need help?

          • five_by_five

            Actually, yesterday I failed a test and they sent me back a grade. I’m now in middle school. I’m totally serious. You’d better call the authorities.

          • expect_resistance

            Could you clarify? If you started taking the pill at an early age of 12, add 20 years of taking the pill, and you are 32? Or around 32ish? You are telling me you’re in middle school?

          • five_by_five

            No, actually I just got off the phone with the principal of the school. They didn’t want me so they are demoting me to elementary school. Can you believe this? I’m never going to get to college at this rate.

          • expect_resistance

            That’s great you’re getting help.

          • five_by_five

            Oh and hey. My principal also told me that the word “gullible” was removed from the dictionary this year. Amazing.

          • expect_resistance

            Is that a fact? Wow imagine that.

          • fiona64

            Funny, I didn’t realize teenaged boys took BCPs.

          • expect_resistance

            I know. Can’t wait to hear the explanation from five on this one.

          • L-dan

            OK…enough. Just because I divulged such information doesn’t mean you get to toss it up any time you don’t want to answer the actual question.

            If you want to debate, answer my actual post. The rest is just childish.

        • AZDem9933

          “(I guess we’re ignoring the fact that the Guttmacher numbers showing
          that 49% of the women receiving abortions were not using any
          contraception when they became pregnant – which is up from 46% the year
          prior).”

          Which is probably an indication of better contraception effectiveness. If we ever got to the point where contraception was 100% effective then all abortions would be going to women who were not using contraception.

          • five_by_five

            “If we ever got to the point where contraception was 100% effective then
            all abortions would be going to women who were not using contraception.”

            True . Well …or people were using it incorrectly. Like skipping days while using the pill like L-dan did and then….geez….she got pregnant.

            Oopsiedaysie.

        • John H

          “I guess we’re ignoring the fact that the Guttmacher numbers showing that
          49% of the women receiving abortions were not using any contraception
          when they became pregnant – which is up from 46% the year prior”

          That’s great! It means that more people are better at using contraception correctly than before! Planned Parenthood et al. are kicking ass! Keep up the comprehensive sex ed efforts, everyone!

          (Also, I’m not sure you understand what percentages are.)

          • five_by_five

            I’m all for people using contraception if it means less abortions.

          • expect_resistance

            Birth control would mean less abortions.

            The “fly in the ointment” is the anti-choices that are against many types (if not all) contraception and health insurance coverage of. How do we deal with that?

          • five_by_five

            Donate more of your paycheck to Planned Parenthood?

            That might be a start.

          • expect_resistance

            Great idea. I’m a donor and supporter of Planned Parenthood.

          • five_by_five

            Gotta love how my suggestion to donate more to planned parenthood got 3 downvotes. Interesting.

          • HeilMary1

            You have zero credibility on anything.

          • fiona64

            Make sure that your next donation is in honor of our little teen troll here. :-) Mine’s already earmarked for Calvin Freak-burger, or I’d do the same.

          • five_by_five

            Nobody cares about your $50 donation.

            If you really cared about women you’d donate $5,000.

          • expect_resistance

            That’s laughable! How do you know she didn’t donate 5K, 10K, or more. Nice try at a personal attack. You seriously suck at this okay.

          • five_by_five

            She donated $5,000?

            I’m impressed.

          • HeilMary1

            You wouldn’t give 50 cents to a starving homeless kid or a shunned mother suffering obstetric bladder and bowel incontinence.

          • HeilMary1

            Don’t believe you!

    • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

      Refute her. She is not alone. I will wait for your refutation. Source it or it did not happen.

      http://www.nbcnews.com/id/21255186/#.UvilJ2JdWzk

      Women are just as likely to get an abortion in countries where it is outlawed as they are in countries where it is legal, according to research published Friday.

      In a study examining abortion trends from 1995 to 2003, experts also found that abortion rates are virtually equal in rich and poor countries, and that half of all abortions worldwide are unsafe.

    • HeilMary1

      Women facing grisly, deadly pregnancy complications will get abortions whether they’re legal or not.

      • five_by_five

        The fetus faces certain death 100% of the time during an abortion.

        • goatini

          But there is only ONE patient, ONE citizen, ONE person, and ONE entity in a safe, legal pregnancy termination – the WOMAN.

        • Mirable

          A fetus isn’t a person and even if it was it would not have the right to use another person’s body as life support.

          • five_by_five

            And after birth a woman should be able to dump her baby in the dumpster.

            Because, after all, the baby doesn’t have the right to use the mother as life support. Oh wait.

          • Mirable

            Irrelevant. We are talking about abortion, not infanticide of infants.

            Do try to keep up.

          • Jennifer Starr

            Histrionics. Anyone can care for a baby once it’s born–only the woman can be pregnant.

          • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

            A woman does have the right to abandon (dump) her baby at any firehouse, police station or hospital.
            Catch up.

          • fiona64

            And even some public libraries, believe it or not — our nearest branch is one such location.

        • HeilMary1

          Raw Story is reporting on your hero: “…police are currently looking for 58-year-old Curtis Anton Beseda — who served more than a dozen years in federal prison for firebombing abortion clinics in the 1980s and 90s — on charges of child molestation….”

          No woman deserves the shredding of her lady parts for creeps like him.

        • http://plumstchili.blogspot.com/ Plum Dumpling

          Unless it is the abortion of a dead fetus. Too bad. So sad. Crying a river.

    • John H

      Which might matter at all if one cares about and ONLY about how many pregnancies are terminated before a fetus has been gestated to a viable state. We dislike restrictions on abortion becasue they harm women (and cross-cultural surveys suggest that they may increase the abortion rate; bans on abortion are correlated with higher rates, though the causality is still undetermined).

  • HeilMary1

    How many mothers has troll Five kicked into early graves and how many homeless kids in Manila has she trafficked to pedophile priests?

  • HeilMary1

    Pro-liar Five supports STARVING TO DEATH all DS folks depending on government aid for their continuing survival, but considers herself “pro-life” because she insists they all be born so she can abuse them AFTERWARDS.

  • JamieHaman

    Excellent news. Win for women everywhere.

  • Amanda Kazarian

    Makes sense, guiltily someone won’t keep them from getting pregnant.