Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Life Links 5/3/11

At the New York Daily News, Kassi Underwood writes about her post-abortion experience in a piece entitled, "Get your politics off my grief: After my abortion, neither pro-life nor pro-choice forces helped."
At first, I sought refuge in the pro-choice movement. In finding a community, I was coping. Our communication, however, sounded a little more like war rhetoric than sharing in a common bond. I heard myself sounding like a bumper sticker. "Fight for choice!" I hollered, as if war has ever been the answer.

Emotions, I learned, could be regarded as a chink in the pro-choice armor. Pro-lifers have long hyped "post-abortion syndrome," a condition the American Psychological Association continues to refute. As recently as January, a Danish research team reconfirmed that there is no evidence of an increased rate of mental illness after the procedure.

But three years after my abortion, I started having nightmares about babies. Awake, I missed my potential child. It was bewildering that I could feel so mournful about a decision that was supposed to buttress the architecture of my identity.

It felt traitorous to admit that, far from thinking I had expelled a "blob of cells," I now wondered who that person I aborted would have been. Mental illness or not, having the blues seemed to insult my foremothers, who fought not just for my right to end a pregnancy, but for my right to vote, to attend college, to wear a godforsaken pair of pants. I shut up about my feelings because I valued my community, but my community was unsupportive - suspicious, even - of my gloom.

I then attended, of all things, a Catholic retreat called Rachel's Vineyard, one of the few services for people who need to address their terminations. An alumna "leery of religious concepts" had reassured me with her fulsome brochure blurb, but at the retreat, politics again prevailed, this time from the other side.

In Minnesota, a truck driver has been indicted for the deaths of two women and an 8-week unborn child after he drove into the backs of cars stopped by traffic on the freeway.
Prosecutors disclosed Monday that the trucker was reaching down to his cab floor for an energy drink and when he looked up, he saw traffic had stopped for construction and couldn't brake in time.

He also wasn't wearing his corrective lenses, authorities said.

Styrbicky, 37, of Buffalo, Minn., has been indicted in the deaths of Pamela Brinkhaus, 50, of Elko New Market; Kari Rasmussen, 24, St. Anthony, and of her fetus.

Minnesota law recognizes the killing of a fetus at any stage of prenatal development as homicide. It does not address the controversial issue of when a fetus is capable of living outside the womb.

Another man is on trial for allegedly attacking his pregnant girlfriend whose children he didn't want to support.
The way a prosecutor presented her case to a jury Monday, had Shawn Walker-Johnson had his way, Julie Hardy would not be preparing to celebrate her first Mother’s Day on Sunday.

What Walker-Johnson wanted, Assistant District Attorney Priya DeSouza said in an opening statement in his trial on assault charges, was for Hardy, his girlfriend, to give up the twin boys she was pregnant with and which he was father to, either though adoption, abortion, or a forced miscarriage.

He “did not want to be a father,” DeSouza told a jury of eight women and four men at the start of Walker-Johnson’s trail in front of Judge Anthony Sarcione. “And he put Julie and her twins through hell in order to make his wishes come true.”
In addition, in a pre-trial hearing out of the jury’s presence, Hardy said that on April 15, 2010, just after she learned she was pregnant, Walker-Johnson virtually dragged her to the Planned Parenthood office in Coatesville to force her to get an abortion.

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