In a previous post I exposed the anti-fertility mindset of an article posted on the PCUSA News Service from an outside source and wondered how it could fulfill the stated mission goals of the PCUSA. The article in question, “Latin America lags on reproductive rights,” was written by the president of Pathfinder International, Purnima Mane. Today, guest blogger Dr. Patricia Lee June, M.D. responds from her expertise as a Pediatrician. Dr. June writes:
This article from Pathfinder abounds in undefined terms and fallacious assumptions resulting in implications and recommendations that are unsupported by fact.
What is included in ‘reproductive health?’
We all agree that it includes a healthy mother and that maternal mortality is one measure of this. But what about the human who results from the act of reproduction? Should not the growth and development of the baby from conception through birth and the neonatal period (if not longer) also be included in “reproductive health”? As a member of the PC(USA) I join with my fellow Christians, both Protestant, Orthodox, and Catholic as well as with Muslims in asserting that this is part of “reproductive health” and as a biologist and physician I know that reproduction occurs with the creation of the zygote and that growth and development of that human takes about 26 years to complete, first in the Fallopian tube, then in the uterus, then assisted by many in the wider family and community. Yet this article appears to include prematurely ending the life of the human who has been reproduced as part of “reproductive health and rights”.
What is ‘safe abortion?’ What is ‘unsafe abortion?’
Neither term is defined. Of course, as earlier pointed out, from the point of view of the baby there is no such thing as “safe” abortion. Does legality make abortion “safe” from the mother’s point of view? Those who promote making abortion legal have often appeared to assert this, and it seems to be an underlying assumption in this article. But what are the facts?