Jan. 15th, 2010

[identity profile] lynn82md.livejournal.com
I've been reading "Legends, Lies, and Cherished Myths of American History" by Richard Shenkman for the last couple days. One thing they talk about is some history regarding abortion before Roe vs. Wade. Some facts you might know, others you may not (I certainly didn't know some of these facts).

*Before Roe vs.Wade, the assumption that abortion had always been illegal in the US is wrong.
-There weren't any laws against abortion until the 1820s. Even many years after that, most states permitted abortion in the first four months of pregnancy.
-Abortion began to be generally outlawed only in the mid 19th century.
-Women continued to have abortions because they provided a guaranteed method of birth control.
-Abortions were generally outlawed during the mid to late 19th century and early 20th century, however Americans seem not to have been terribly bothered by the widespread resort to the practice.
-Between 1849 to 1858 in Massachusetts, of thirty-two accused "abortionists", not one was convicted. The juries composed solely of men freed every one of the suspects.
-Women seemed less inclined than men to condemn abortion.
-A doctor's obversation from 1896: "Many otherwise good and exemplary women, who would rather part with their right hands or let their tongues cleave to the roof of the mouth than commit a crime, seem to believe that prior to quickening it is no more harm to cause the evacuation of the contents of their wombs than it is that of their bladders or their bowels."

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lynn82md: (history)
[personal profile] lynn82md
I've been reading "Legends, Lies, and Cherished Myths of American History" by Richard Shenkman for the last couple days. One thing they talk about is some history regarding abortion before Roe vs. Wade. Some facts you might know, others you may not (I certainly didn't know some of these facts).

*Before Roe vs.Wade, the assumption that abortion had always been illegal in the US is wrong.
-There weren't any laws against abortion until the 1820s. Even many years after that, most states permitted abortion in the first four months of pregnancy.
-Abortion began to be generally outlawed only in the mid 19th century.
-Women continued to have abortions because they provided a guaranteed method of birth control.
-Abortions were generally outlawed during the mid to late 19th century and early 20th century, however Americans seem not to have been terribly bothered by the widespread resort to the practice.
-Between 1849 to 1858 in Massachusetts, of thirty-two accused "abortionists", not one was convicted. The juries composed solely of men freed every one of the suspects.
-Women seemed less inclined than men to condemn abortion.
-A doctor's obversation from 1896: "Many otherwise good and exemplary women, who would rather part with their right hands or let their tongues cleave to the roof of the mouth than commit a crime, seem to believe that prior to quickening it is no more harm to cause the evacuation of the contents of their wombs than it is that of their bladders or their bowels."

More )

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