Abortion is the ‘miscarriage of an unborn child, whether naturally (a ‘spontaneous abortion’ normally just called a ‘miscarriage’) or artificially caused (an ‘induced abortion’).*
Induced abortion can be either chemically induced, by a morning after pill, RU486, or as is commonly the case in Australia, physician assisted surgical abortion, whereby the child is directly killed and removed by surgical equipment. Other methods include saline abortion, and partial birth abortion.
The commonly prescribed contraceptive pill is also known to at times act as an abortifacient, making the implantation of a healthy embryo on the womb lining less likely, resulting in a miscarriage (that is, a chemically induced abortion).
Abortion has and continues to be a highly controversial topic. It is too commonly viewed simplistically as a fight between the forces of Judeo-Christian reaction on the one hand and feminist progressivism on the other. It is truly an issue of human rights and the unborn deserves protection. A just and civilised society demands it.
* Fisher, Anthony and Buckinngham Jane, Abortion in Australia: Answers and Alternatives. Dove Communications, Blackburn, Victoria, 1985, p.5
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Watch Lila Rose debate abortion on CNN Crossfire
Common arguments made for Abortion
An essentially ‘feminist’ argument, namely that the mother has total sovereign rights over the use, abuse or action of her body, including whether the child of her womb may live or die.
The child was not planned or desired, is not ‘wanted’ by the mother, and will not be loved.
An argument from eugenics; that if the child is deemed ‘imperfect’ or defective in some way by the parents, it may be killed.
Again, the child is an added burden to a mother in difficulty and should be killed to ease this.
The timing of the pregnancy is not agreeable to the parents, who may be otherwise married and/or stable.
And hence reduction methods such as abortion should be encouraged. An ‘altruistic’ argument purporting to be considering the common good of all humanity.
And hence has no rights and its death is not murder. An attempt to argue for the legality of abortion from some modern philosophical thinkers, such as Professor Peter Singer, who give novel arguments for the definition of ‘person’. Singer argues many animals have more of a right to life than humans in the early stages of development.
Which vary significantly. The Crimes Act in states such as NSW and QLD, abortion is unlawful in certain circumstances. In states such as Victoria where there has been specific legislation, abortion is essentially legal, demanding only a few easily fulfilled requirements.
As it is not innocent! A curious claim often made in cases of unwanted pregnancy through rape.
Why Abortion Is Not the Answer
All the arguments favouring abortion are essentially humanist and whose principles redefine established terms such as person, rights, and “common good” along humanist lines. The great danger in applying these principles to society is that the terms and hence laws, are open to constant reinterpretation based on no certain principle which can successfully safeguard the human rights of all members of society. That all human persons are equal in nature and hence in legal and moral rights, is surely the only secure foundation on which to build a safe and just society. Adding exceptions to the basic right of all to life has proven dangerous in many societies: the Nazi’s exempted numerous groups from their list of persons, and these persons lost all legal standing. Other acknowledged tyrannies have done the same. One of the exemptions in our society currently is the pre-born, whose rights are now conditional. Gulags and concentration camps are and were full of people who have been declared by the state to be ‘non-persons’.
The denial of true rights to even one member of society threatens the right of all persons in that society, as there are no inviolable rights for anyone. Abortion, for no matter what the reason, is always a violation of the most basic of human rights – that is, the right to life. If a mother has difficulties, a civilised society must offer assistance which respects the rights of all concerned. Providing stronger deterrents and punishments for rape would be one thing worth considering.
Not one of the arguments favouring abortion, no matter how reasonable they may sound, affirms the existence of the basic and universal right to life for all based on a common human nature. Hence, we cannot proceed from their principles to create just law. The so-called ‘hard’ cases, where the mother’s life may be endangered by the continued pregnancy, are also no true argument for granting an exception, as both lives must be protected, not only the mothers: “Hard cases make bad laws.”
Church Teaching on Abortion
The Catholic Church has taught through all time in agreement with mankind’s nature that all or any abortion is universally wrong. The key principle is found in the fifth commandment not to kill, based on natural moral law. Further, we must not kill the innocent for any reason. This teaching is repeated in the most significant recent teaching document, the Catechism of the Catholic Church. The church is not at liberty to alter any laws or moral codes derived from natural law, as these are defined from intrinsic human nature in accordance with the Divine Mind and Plan.
The Roman Catholic Church and Abortion:
An Historical Perspective – Part I & Part II
“I’ve noticed that everyone who is for abortion has already been born.” ~ Ronald Reagan
“I would now like to say a special word to women who have had an abortion. The Church is aware of the many factors which may have influenced your decision, and she does not doubt that in many cases it was a painful and even shattering decision. The wound in your heart may not yet have healed. Certainly what happened was and remains terribly wrong. But do not give in to discouragement and do not lose hope. Try rather to understand what happened and face it honestly. If you have not already done so, give yourselves over with humility and trust to repentance. The Father of mercies is ready to give you his forgiveness and his peace in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. You will come to understand that nothing is definitively lost and you will also be able to ask forgiveness from your child, who is now living in the Lord.” ~ Saint John Paul II message to aborted women in Evangelium Vitae 
“We know human life is sacred and inviolable.”
“Every civil law is based on the recognition of the first and fundamental right, that to life, which is not subject to any conditions, neither economic nor qualitative nor ideological.” ~ Pope Francis ~ Speaking before the Italian pro-life group Movimento per la Vita
Legislation in your State/Territory
Abortion has a different legal status in different states as it is covered by various Crimes Acts, which are state legislation. For more information, click here:
However, note that the above link is very much out of date. FLI (Australia) will provide a current status of abortion laws in each of the states and territories.
A Story about Life
Abortion is legal in Victoria, Tasmania, Western Australia, South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory. Medical abortion is available through certified medical practitioners. Costs vary between clinics. Medicare covers a portion of the cost. Some clinics provide discounted fees to students, healthcare card holders and others.
Watch this short version of a video entitled ‘A Story About Life’. This short documentary exposes just how bad Victoria’s abortion laws are. Peter Kavanagh of the DLP, who resolutely defended the unborn during the parliamentary debate, sounds this warning in the video to the rest of the Australian states.
“It is hard to imagine a worse bill and a worse model and indeed that was partly why it was passed here – to be a model for other jurisdictions. It is very extreme and I think it is probably the worst in the western world.”
Neither the states legislation which permits abortion in all circumstances, nor the various limited legality or interpretations, such as the Levine ruling (R v Wald [l971] 3 DCR (NSW) 25) or the Superclinics case ((1995) 38 NSWLR 47) have been tested in the High Court of Australia.
Judge Levine extended the R v Davidson ((1969) VR 667) test so that a medical practitioner could take into account non-medical considerations in determining whether or not there existed a serious danger to the woman’s health. In addition, the Levine ruling seems to impose a requirement that an abortion performed by a medical practitioner would be considered lawful.
Justice Menhennitt, in his final direction to the jury, provided the following declaration as to what constitutes a lawful abortion:
“For the use of an instrument with intent to procure a miscarriage to be lawful the accused must have honestly believed on reasonable grounds that the act done by him was (a) necessary to preserve the woman from a serious danger to her life or her physical or mental health (not being merely the normal dangers of pregnancy and childbirth) which the continuance of the pregnancy would entail; and (b) in the circumstances not out of proportion to the danger to be averted.” ((1969) VR 667, 672)
In the 1995 Superclinics case, the Court held unanimously that abortions remain prima facie unlawful in New South Wales. There is no such thing as abortion-on-demand in New South Wales, but rather abortions are only “lawfully available in the limited circumstances described in Wald.” *
The subjective nature of the test for when an abortion will be lawful causes not only much confusion and leaves the abortion providers with much room to manoeuvre and potentially exploit women and the unborn for the sake of commercial gain. At this stage Superclinics may be said by some to represent the law in New South Wales and Queensland. In the absence of a High Court ruling, the Kirby ruling in the New South Wales Court of Appeal seems to represent the legal position on abortion perhaps in that State.
*Superclinics (1995) 38 NSWLR 47, 82 Priestley JA
Dr Suman Sood Sood v R  NSWCCA 252
However, while many women assume that they have a right to abortion on demand in New South Wales, the Suman Sood case shows that this is not the case. The case involved a 20-year-old woman who came to see Dr Sood shortly after she discovered she was 23 weeks pregnant. That night, at home, the woman gave birth into a toilet bowl. Dr Sood was found guilty of two counts of unlawful administration of an abortion drug (taken orally and vaginally) to procure an abortion, but was acquitted of the manslaughter of the premature baby boy.
The Suman Sood case of 2006 created a lot of nervousness among women’s health services and abortion providers as it was going to test the Crimes Act provisions which had not been thoroughly tested since 1971. Presumably, commentary on whether the Levine ruling represented the correct interpretation of when an abortion is lawful in NSW could have been explored but was by and large neglected.
The Sood case in New South Wales is evidence of systemic problems around the abortion industry and medical profession. Arguably, one could conclude that abortionists were protected species until Sood’s conviction and deregistration. Hence, the Sood case is powerful and logical reason to keep abortion provisions within the Crimes Act.
Read Aide-memoire to the High Court Superclinics Litigation
Scientific research clearly defines that the beginning of life is at conception. Immediately after conception each cell has sufficient information in its DNA structure to produce a complete human being.
Yes ~ Over 100,000 babies are killed by surgical abortion every year in Australia.
- At 4 weeks – a heart is beating regularly at 24 days after conception, digestive system, back bone and spinal cord form, arms and legs begin to bud.
- At 8 weeks – at 42 days the skeleton is complete, face, eyes, nose, legs and tongue are formed, brain waves can be recorded.
- At 12 weeks – all internal organs are formed and working; hands, fingers, legs, feet and toes are fully formed. Eyes are almost fully developed; can suck thumb and cry silently; feels pain.
- At 4 months – can grasp with hands and turn somersaults ; skin is transparent and covered with fine hair; mother may feel movement for the first time.
- At 5 months – internal organs maturing at a fast rate, eyebrows and hair have appeared; fingernails and fingerprints are present; can hear and recognise mother’s voice.
- At 6 months – frowns, squints, and opens mouth; can kick and punch; sleeps and wakes randomly; personality begins to develop.
- At 7 months – weighs more than 1kg; can see and open and close eyes; hearing is well developed; experiences REM sleep, an indication of dreaming.
- At 8-9 months – has only to develop lung surfactant and insulating fat, everything else is ready for birth, hormones released by baby trigger labour.
Every ALP candidate without exception pledges to support the whole platform of the party.
Excerpt taken from the ALP National Platform 2011 paragraph 46, Labor will: “support the rights of women to determine their own reproductive lives, particularly the right to choose appropriate fertility control and abortion and ensure that these choices are on the basis of sound social and medical advice.”
The perceived right of all Australian women to so-called ‘safe and legal’ abortion is detailed in Green Party policy.
Note: Different political parties differ on both policy and voting procedures regarding life matters. Check your individual candidate.
Some parties are pro-life in their constitution, such as the DLP and Family First; some allow conscience votes, such as the LNP. Your vote is important, and may be vital: voting for a pro-life candidate helps make abortion a current political issue. It is morally wrong to support a party or candidate which is anti-life or which at least refuses its members a conscience vote or freedom to abstain from voting on life issues. Therefore, check your individual candidate’s position before you vote.
RU486 is the original name for the abortion drug Mifepristone LinepharmaTM. It was developed in France by the drug company Roussel-Uclaf in 1980. It is registered for use in combination with Misoprostol to perform chemical abortions to end a pregnancy up to seven weeks. RU486 is also known as the ‘abortion pill’. For how the drug works and to know more about the side effects, click here
The Therapeutic Goods Administration have allowed Marie Stopes International (MSI), a multi-million dollar international abortion provider to establish a Pharmaceutical company registered as a non-profit organization to distribute the drug and provide training to the medical profession. This arrangement allows MSI to re-funnel profits into whatever they want at the cost of Australian tax-payers. Not only are MSI NOT being taxed on their profits from the drug but by listing RU486 on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, the Australian taxpayer will be subsidising them to the tune of millions of dollars!
The idea that it won’t facilitate any more abortions is ridiculous because a woman with a concession card will be able to access abortion by a medical procedure, for as a little as $12. How is this not an inducement for more women to elect this dangerous procedure as a preference at least, to surgical abortion? This will of course put more taxpayer money in the coffers of Marie Stopes. Already, worldwide, there are 12 recorded deaths, including one in Australia at a Marie Stopes facility that we haven’t been told anything about.
Dr. Ralph Miech, emeritus professor at Brown University’s medical school, has published two peer-reviewed articles describing potentially undesirable effects related to RU-486 and its anti-glucocorticoid properties.
A recent American case regarding Dr. Kermit Gosnell and his disgraced abortion facility in Philadelphia, demonstrates the horror and depravity of so-called safe and legal abortion at its worst, though this case went largely unreported here and initially in the U.S.
Gosnell became infamous for keeping body parts from his abortions in jars in his premises. The squalor of his establishment was so awful it almost defies description and is difficult to believe: “the Grand Jury report reads like a horror novel. So callous and cruel is this page turner that it simply beggars the imagination. In it, the report details how instruments were not sterilized, and were the cheapest disposable instruments reused from patient to patient. In the process, Gosnell spread disease like a fly.” He is generally accepted now as being psychopathic, showing little real remorse, for the danger he subjected his unfortunate customers to. A fuller description of this appalling case can be found here: http://catholiclane.com/why-dr-kermit-gosnells-case-matters/
Also read columnist and author Miranda Divine, The Reality of Abortion is Exposed here.
Partial Birth Abortion refers to the insertion of the hand into the womb of a mother with a dilated cervix to grab the feet of the infant and pull them down through the birth canal. The baby is delivered up to the shoulders then scissors are inserted in through the back of the upper neck and into the gap at the base of the skull to sever the spinal cord and destroy the nervous system. The skull may also be collapsed.
In America, some have attempted to ban this barbaric practice. In 1995, the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act passed both houses but President Clinton vetoed the Act twice in April 1996 and October 1997 respectively. In Nov. 5, 2003, the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act was signed into law by President Bush. The National Abortion Federation challenged the law in court However; the Obama administration has allowed this to be reinstated in a general hands-off approach to anything which threatens the U.S. abortion industry.
Post abortion syndrome is an internationally recognised psychological syndrome which a woman may suffer following and as a consequence of undergoing an abortion. Symptoms include depression, feelings of worthlessness, suicidal ideation and other post-traumatic stress symptoms. [Click here for more information: Need Help? /Post Abortion]
Declared by the U.S. Supreme Court on a majority ruling on 22 January 1973, this was the landmark case which struck down a number of states’ restrictive abortion laws and extended the right of privacy to include the woman’s right to terminate her pregnancy.
In the majority decision, the states were allowed to protect “foetal life after viability,” even though a foetus is not “a person within the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment”. In constitutional terms, there were no categories to judge the question of the unborn and no legal categories that included them. What was ultimately decided was the unconstitutionality of the Texas statute based upon the facts presented, with the judgment that abortion itself was a medical matter, not a constitutional one, and that access to abortion was a private matter between a woman and her doctor. The constitutionality of abortion itself, as the termination of unborn life, was not even considered.
The dissenting Justice Byron R. White describes the justiciability of the decision in Doe v Bolton which was another case decided on the same day as Roe v Wade to overturn the abortion law of Georgia. He described it best when he said; “I find nothing in the language or history of the Constitution to support the Court’s judgement. The Court simply fashioned and announces a new constitutional right for pregnant women and, with scarcely any reason or authority for its action, invests that right with sufficient substance to override most existing state abortion statutes. The upshot is that the people and the legislatures of the 50 States are constitutionally disentitled to weigh the relative importance of the continued existence and development of the fetus, on the one hand, against a spectrum of possible impacts on the woman, on the other hand. As an exercise of raw judicial power, the Court perhaps has authority to do what it does today; but in my view, its judgement is an improvident and extravagant exercise of the power of judicial review that the Constitution extends to this Court.” *
This farcical and manifestly unjust ruling has led to the death of over 50,000,000 Americans by legally sanctioned surgical abortion over the last 40 or so years.
It is interesting to note that Norma Wade, the subject of the Supreme Court case, has since become a committed prolife advocate working to overturn the unjust legal interpretation which she came to realise as was used by more powerful forces for a libertine agenda.
For more information, have a read of Roe v. Wade: The Untold Story of the Landmark Supreme Court Decision That Made Abortion Legal
Since the early 1970’s, the politburo of the communist party of China has supported a draconian policy of trying to ensure only one child is born to all parents in view of a perceived problem of overpopulation.
This is often enforced brutally, with many reports of forced late-term abortions and of quotas being forced upon districts to reduce population numbers. In some factories, women’s menstrual cycles are written on a wall-chart; any missed periods are followed by an examination and if deemed necessary, an abortion is performed with or without consent.
The brutality of the implementation of this policy has been well researched and attested at governmental level by researchers such as American Dr. Steve Mosher, whose Population Research Institute has been at the forefront of attempts to gain exposure of this one-child policy in China and other countries for over 20 years.
Bloodmoney is a shocking documentary that will shake you to the core. This hard-hitting film exposes the truth behind the Abortion Industry, examining the history of abortion in America, from the inception of Planned Parenthood to Roe v. Wade. It will address the denial of when life begins, the fight to save the lives of innocent babies and the devastating effects it has had on the women who have had them. In the pursuit of unmasking the abortion industry what is revealed is the enormous profitability of abortion clinics and the corrupt motives of the abortion providers.
Narrated by Dr. Alveda King – niece of Martin Luther King – this documentary will leave you wanting more copies and anxious that as many people as possible will view it and open their eyes to the scourge that the abortion industry is on our society.
Learn the inconvenient truth about abortion…you need to see this film. To purchase a DVD, Contact Us
Suggested articles for further reading and links
- Abortion before the High Court – What next? Caveat Interventus: a note on Superclinics Australia Pty Ltd v CES by Warwick Neville: Click here
- The life of the mother: Click here
- Abortion Hurts Albury: Click here
- Cancer in Pregnancy p14-19 in Lifelines: Click here
- Abortion facility worker’s quit: Click here