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Abortion has been common in the United States since the 18th century.There is a debate | Opinion

Treva B. Lindsey

State-by-state battles are intensifying In the wake of the news The US Supreme Court seems poised to dismiss Breakthrough Judgment- Roe v. Wade When Planned parent-child relationship v.Casey – And remove the constitutional protection for the right to have an abortion.

Well, with a professional Defenders against abortion We are preparing for a new stage in the abortion conflict.

Many may think that the political debate over abortion is now fresh and new, but scholars in the history of women, medicine and law say the debate has a long history in the United States. increase

It began more than a century before the Roe v. Wade case, a 1973 decision that established the Constitution to protect one’s right to abortion.

The era of “pills”

November 14, 1972, a controversial two-part episode of a groundbreaking television show.modeWas aired.

The episode entitled “The Dilemma of Mode” recorded the protagonist’s decision to have an abortion.

Roe v. Wade Published two months after these episodes. The ruling confirmed the right to have an abortion during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. The “mode dilemma” brought the fight for abortion from the streets and courts to prime-time television.

The reaction to the episode Anger celebrationReflects a modern attitude about abortion.

Less than a decade after the “Mode Dilemma” aired, the Food and Drug Administration approved the first commercial product. Oral contraceptivesEnovid-10.

Various forms of contraception The day before FDA approval for Enovid-10, an oral contraceptive, National debate About family planning and reproductive choices.

The wider accessibility of contraception, commonly known as the “pill,” Early victory Of the early women’s liberation movement.

Abortion has also emerged as a prominent problem in this fast-growing movement. For many feminist activists in the 1960s and 1970s, women’s right to manage their reproductive life is: Larger platform Gender equality.

19th Century Advertising on Abortion-Inducing Items and Abortion Services (Philadelphia Library Company, CC BY-NC).

From unregulated to criminalized

From the founding of the country to the early 1800s Immediate abortion – That is, abortion before a pregnant person feels the movement of the fetus – was fairly common and even advertised.

Women of diverse backgrounds have sought to end unwanted pregnancies before and during this period, both in the United States and around the world.For example, a black woman enslaved in the United States develops an abortion drug (a drug that induces abortion) and practices abortion. Stop pregnancy After rape and forced sexual encounter by a white male slave owner.

In the mid-to-late 1800s, more and more states passed abortion bans stemming from both moral and security concerns. The main motivation is the fear of high risk of injury and death. practitioner In particular, he led the accusation of the abortion law of this era.

By 1860, the American Medical Association end Legal abortion. The Comstock law It is a crime to obtain, create, and disclose information on how to obtain contraception, sexually transmitted diseases and illnesses, and abortion in 1873.

Soaring fear of new things Immigrants The higher proportion of newly released blacks breeding than whites also prompted opposition to legal abortion.

I have Ongoing controversy Whether famous 1800s female activists such as Elizabeth Cadystanton and Susan B. Anthony opposed abortion.

References to the anti-abortion movement statement Made by Anthony, who appears to be blaming abortion.Abortion advocates Reject this understanding Views on abortion by Stanton, Anthony and other early American women’s rights activists. They claim that statements about infanticide and motherhood were misrepresented and were inaccurately attributed to these activists.

These different historical interpretations provide two different frameworks for both historical and contemporary abortion and anti-abortion movements.

A huge and colorful crowd of protesters against abortion along a large boulevard, holding a sign.
Thousands of anti-abortion activists from across the United States gather on the grounds of the Washington Monument on January 22, 1985, during Washington, DC’s annual March for Life (March for Life).Mark Reinstein / Corbis via Getty Images).

Abortion in the 1960s

By the turn of the 20th century All states have classified abortion as a felonyIn some states, there are limited exceptions in the case of emergency medical care, rape and incest.

Despite being criminalized 1930s, Doctors performed almost one million abortions each year. This figure does not take into account abortions performed by non-healthcare professionals or through undocumented channels or methods.

Nevertheless, abortion did not become a fiercely contested political issue until the Women’s Liberation Movement and the sexual revolutions of the 1960s and 1970s. These movements have renewed interest in public debate on reproductive rights, family planning and access to legal and safe abortion services.

1962, Sherry FinkbinLocal Phoenix, the host of the children’s program “Romper Room” in Phoenix, Arizona, has become national news.

Finkbean had four children and was taking a drug called thalidomide before he realized he was pregnant with his fifth child. Worried that her medicine could cause a serious birth defect, she attempted an abortion in her hometown of Arizona, but couldn’t. After that, she traveled to Sweden for a legal abortion.The story of Fink Bean is believed to have helped the shift public opinion It was about abortion and was the center of a national call for an abortion reform law.

Two years after the story of Fink Bean became a hot topic, Geri SantoroA woman who died in Connecticut in search of an illegal abortion ignited a new enthusiasm among those trying to legalize abortion.

The death of Santoro, along with many other reported casualties, led to the establishment of an underground network such as: Jane Collective Providing abortion services to those who are trying to end their pregnancy.

Expansion of abortion

Colorado became the first state in 1967 Legalize abortion in case of rape, incest, or if pregnant It will cause permanent disability to the born parent.

By the time the “Mode Dilemma” was aired, abortion was legal under certain circumstances in 20 states.Rapid growth of numbers Professional- When Against abortion The organization originated in the 1960s and 1970s.

On January 22, 1973, the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court ruling banned abortion and invalidated existing state law providing guidelines on the availability of abortion based on abortion and fetal viability. Did.Subsequent 1992 decision known as Casey At the same time as reaffirming Roe, he allowed the state to impose certain restrictions on the right to abortion. Roe continues to be the most important law on access to abortion in modern American history.

Since Roe, the court battle over abortion has intensified and the focus is on the Supreme Court. If the draft opinion overturning Roe and Casey is upheld, the battle ends there and moves to the state. The state has the authority to ban abortion without fear of violating the Supreme Court. And the long history of abortion conflicts in the United States suggests that this is not the last chapter in the political struggle for legal abortion.

Treva B. Lindsey is a professor of women, gender and sexuality studies at Ohio State University.She wrote this work conversationThe place where it first appeared.
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Abortion has been common in the United States since the 18th century.There is a debate | Opinion

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