It looks like Mississippi is going to become the latest state to pass a Heartbeat Bill, which would limit abortion to the time period where a preborn baby’s heartbeat can be detected. Generally, this should limit abortion to around the sixth week of pregnancy in the state.
In response to this latest pro-life law, abortionists are coming out to argue that most women don’t “even know they’re pregnant” at such an early date. That excuse has been used by everyone from Planned Parenthood’s president to the Mississippi director at Planned Parenthood Southeast Advocates. They consistently argue that such a stringent guideline would make it impossible for women to get abortions.
The statement is inaccurate, and here’s why.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention annual report on abortion, about 23% of women who had an abortion in 2015 did so at six weeks of pregnancy or before. When you bump that time period up by just two weeks, the number of women who have an abortion jumps to 52%.
Clearly, the majority of women are aware of their pregnancies in the early stages, and more than half decide to go ahead and get an abortion. For abortion activists to insinuate that women don’t know that they are pregnant implies that they believe women in this country are either stupid or ignorant, which is not the case. So, what is really going on?
Abortion advocates like to make sure abortion remains legal for as long and with as little oversight as possible. Any threat to that is dangerous, at least to those in the abortion business where every abortion completed is money in the bank. If abortion after six-weeks becomes illegal in a particular state, that means that the more expensive abortion procedures could no longer be performed, and revenue could not be gained. That’s a direct threat to the abortion industry.
A six-week ban is not unrealistic, in fact the United States continues to have some of the most permissive abortion laws in the entire world. To compare, in Germany abortion is only liberally allowed in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, and women must attend mandatory counseling and have a required waiting period before the procedure. In Portugal, abortion is only available on demand until 10 weeks. By comparison, U.S. laws on abortion have more in common with China and North Korea than most Western European countries.
There is no reason why a six-week ban or possibly a 10-week ban is unreasonable. Except in some exceptional circumstances, most women are familiar with when they become pregnant, especially if they are in a long-term relationship. A pregnancy may be unexpected, but not completely out of the realm of possibility. The idea that a woman doesn’t know when she’s pregnant and thus abortion should be legal throughout pregnancy rings false.
It’s not just Mississippi—a Senate committee in Kentucky just passed its own Heartbeat Bill. One of the most powerful testimonies given was by a young woman who survived an abortion attempt.
“My rights were just as important as my birth mother’s,” she said. “My heart beat just as loud as hers. I deserved a chance at life just like any other unborn baby with a beating heart in the womb.”
To recognize the power of a preborn baby’s heart, Focus on the Family will be performing a live 4D ultrasound in Times Square on May 4th.