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    Friday, October 06, 2006

    Does anyone say 'Ms' anymore?

    I think that 'Ms' is so resonant with the embarrassing 70's, that it is avoided
    today. I have not heard it in a long time.

    Although I still hear 'Mr'.

    Let's see, what else have women lost?

    Not the "Ms" magazine it
    seems. They are still trying to avoid slipping back to 'back alley abortions'
    and “to save lives and to spare other women the pain of socially imposed guilt.” .

    But they have lost
    the babies. Perhaps now that the 70's women are getting up in age, they will
    soon meet those babies face to face. I doubt that God ever lost track of the
    babies or the very slim women who killed them.


    In its 1972 debut issue, Ms. magazine ran a bold petition in which 53 well-known U.S. women declared that they had undergone abortions—despite state laws rendering the procedure illegal. These women were following the example of a 1971 manifesto signed by 343 prominent French women, who also declared they had abortions.

    At the time of the original Ms. petition, illegal abortions were causing untold suffering in the United States, especially for poor women who had to resort to unsafe self-induced or back-alley abortions. Today, in the developing nations each year, approximately 70,000 women and girls die from botched and unsafe abortions and another 500,000 maternal deaths occur—most of this suffering and loss could be prevented. U.S. international family planning policies contribute to this death toll: first, by conditioning its aid on a global gag rule that prevents medical workers from giving even information on abortion; second, by withholding or providing inadequate funds; and finally, by funding abstinence-only education.

    We are now starting a new petition, beginning with the names of some of the original 1972 signers. They signed “to save lives and to spare other women the pain of socially imposed guilt.” Their purpose was “to repeal archaic and inhuman [anti-abortion] laws.”

    We recognize that, still, not every woman will be able to sign today—33 years after Roe—even though abortion is a very common, necessary and important procedure for millions of women in the U.S. But if a multitude of women would step forward publicly—and more and more would continue to join them—we would change the public debate.


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