March 4, 2023 Editor

Thoughts On: Worried that women will be prosecuted for using abortion pills? It’s already happening

Privileged women will always be able to get safe terminations but for the rest prosecutions will have a chilling effect


March 4, 2023

WN: While I oppose abortion on principle, abortion should be an ethical, not a criminal issue. When criminalized, it is assault and/or manslaughter, for desperate women are maimed and/or killed indirectly by laws banning abortions.

Such could not be more contrary to the way of Jesus.

Somewhere along the line, political masterminds decided that evangelical Christians could be manipulated into believing abortion and gay marriage are the only two things God cares about.

Friends, that is a lie. You have been hoodwinked.Jennifer Abel (from the first highlighted article to the left)

For alternative Christian understandings, I suggest reading an earlier post: Is abortion the only thing that matters to Jesus? 2020/10/17. In it:

WN: This is powerful!

I also highly recommend another powerful piece addressing the same issues, that I posted about four years ago: White, Conservative, Christian Friend—I Wish You Really Were Pro-Life.

Where you can learn about that “Somewhere along the line . . .” is a thoroughly researched study by Kristin Kobes Du Mez I post about here: The Price of White Evangelical Patriarchy. The book discussed, just published this year, is: Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation. It is thoroughly researched–and deeply disturbing. I wrote a review of it here.

Indeed in the above case, “political masterminds” and “criminal masterminds” are interchangeable.

May God protect all women from such!


South Carolina woman arrested for taking abortion pills

In October 2021 a 33-year-old woman in Greenville, South Carolina, went to the hospital with labor pains. According to a police incident report, the woman told healthcare workers that she’d taken abortion pills to end her pregnancy; her fetus was estimated to be stillborn at 25 weeks. This week she was arrested and charged with performing or soliciting an abortion. Abortion is currently legal in South Carolina until 20 weeks of pregnancy but it is one of just a handful of states with a law explicitly criminalizing self-managed abortions.

This story, which was first reported by the State, a South Carolina paper, is still developing and not all the details are clear. It’s not clear, for example, when exactly the woman took the abortion pills. It’s not clear why authorities waited so long to charge the woman. And it’s not clear who reported the woman to the police. However, it seems likely that it was the medical workers she trusted with her care. What is clear is that this will not be the last instance of a woman being arrested for a self-managed abortion in the US. Also depressingly clear? The fact that stories like this will prevent women from seeking medical care for fear that they might be handed in to the police. Which means more women unnecessarily putting their health in danger.

As the state of reproductive rights in the US grows increasingly dystopian, it’s important to remember that these draconian laws don’t affect women equally. Privileged women will almost always be able to get a safe and effective abortion. The mistresses of anti-abortion Republican politicians will almost always be able to get a safe and effective abortion. It is women from more marginalized backgrounds who will suffer – indeed these women have seen their pregnancies policed long before Roe was overturned. As Jezebel notes, “The [South Carolina] woman is identified in the police report as being Black. Black, brown, Indigenous and other people of color have been disproportionately criminalized for their pregnancy outcomes for decades.”

Please click on: It’s already happening

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Wayne Northey was Director of Man-to-Man/Woman-to-Woman – Restorative Christian Ministries (M2/W2) in British Columbia, Canada from 1998 to 2014, when he retired. He has been active in the criminal justice arena and a keen promoter of Restorative Justice since 1974. He has published widely on peacemaking and justice themes. You will find more about that on this website: a work in progress.

Always appreciate constructive feedback! Thanks.