Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by MiamiAce, Nov 8, 2004.
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Interesting. The part implying that Australian doctors regularly perform late term abortions particularly piqued my interest. My twin boys were born at 32 wks and 6 days, and I know of people with kids born much earlier than that. 25 weeks seems to be a threshold for viability.
I'm not anti-abortion for early stages, but certainly any doctor aborting a 32 week old fetus/baby should be jailed for murder, unless there was some freak medical danger to the mom/fetus that necessitated the procedure.
My understanding is that in the states and in Britain, any doctor performing one without dire need would have his/her license to practice revoked.
Doesn't seem to be true in Australia:
"Julian McGauran (Nats,Vic) said late term abortions were common in Australia and an average of 44 late-term abortions had been carried out annually at the Royal Women's Hospital in Melbourne for the past ten years.
"Easy is in the eye of the beholder," Senator McGauran told parliament.
"You should not be ignorant of the fact that in one particular hospital, 44 late terms abortions occur per year and have for the past ten years.
"Under any reasonable person's analysis that's regular.
"Sadly and tragically, it's regular and common and obviously it is easy to access."
A complaint by Senator McGauran about the abortion of a 32-week old foetus is the subject of an investigation by the Victorian Medical Practitioners Board."
"MORE than half of all late-term abortions in South Australia involved mothers carrying healthy babies, figures compiled for The Advertiser show.
From 1998 to 2002, there were 377 late-term abortions – classified as more than 20 weeks – of which 16 were performed at 24 weeks or later.
The mother's mental state was the most common reason for late-term abortions, with 196 recorded in the five years.
Fetal abnormalities led to a further 171 abortions, with the remaining 10 being performed because the mother had developed a medical problem. The head of the Health Department's Pregnancy Outcome Unit, Dr Annabelle Chan, said many late terminations through the mother's mental health were because of late diagnosis of pregnancy.
None of the abortions for mental health reasons occurred beyond 22 weeks' gestation."
It hasn't really been a political issue here.
A couple of catholic Liberal party members, including the health minister, have raised it - and the fact that it is covered by the public Medicare health system. They have pretty much been told to pull their heads in by the Prime Minister and Treasurer (PM in waiting).
Australia is a very very secular country - very unlike the US. Politicians here who admit to being very religious (ie more than just going through the motions) are pretty much treated with suspicion and ridicule - although their have been increases in the "charasmatic" christian churches in some areas - mainly middle class.
That is why the "right to life" religious arguments around abotion won't fly with most people, and hence the late term "guilt and shock" tactic is being tried.
Indeed. Even the Governor-General's statement referenced in the article was in fact pretty tame and not at all politically charged. When he stated that he wanted abortions "reduced to zero" he was just talking generally about encouraging increased awareness, better sex education and greater use of contraceptives.
Curious, how did Australia become secular? What events made it so?
Australia sounds just as openminded as some of the people on these boards.
You don't need to be religious to believe that a five-month old fetus deserves protection from a mother whose "mental health" has been adversely affected by a late diagnosis that she's pregnant.
this is not a post for or against abortion, but just an observation, so please do not get worked up over it.
Many secular states in Europe (West and East) are taking a look at their abortion rates and realizing that high abortion rates are bad for your country, simply because they tend to lower your birth rates, thus lowering population. Many European countries are seeing dramatic drops in their national ethnic population.
For instance, when I lived in Estonia in 1996 for every live birth there were two abortions. Estonia has seen there population (of ethnic Estonians) drop from 1 mil to about 900,000 with projections for that to be cut in half by 2050.
Just an interesting point.
It's less about intolerance and more about the general belief that the leaders of a secular (and multicultural) state shouldn't be overtly religious in their governance. For example, I know of at least one government minister who is a fairly devout Catholic, but he never, ever speaks about it or religion in public. This is pretty much uniform for the major parties - religious belief is tacitly understood to be a private matter and one that it is important to divorce from the public business of politics.
The majority of the Christian references that Bush makes would be seen as pretty inappropriate for an Australian politician, and it is a very, very rare occurrence to hear a politician mention God (usually only in the wake of a tragedy such as September 11 or the Bali bombings, or perhaps on remembrance days).
I'm someone who is very much against organized religion that is pro-life.
true, lots of non-religous people are pro-life and there are many very religous people who could care less about the abortion issue.
there are many non-religous reasons for being pro-life
The debate is not jet for or against abortion.
For example, the debate here in Canada is about the state providing funding for abortions.
Whoohoo! Watch that whole abortion thing "flare" ...
Abortion as a mainstrem issue in Australia is the preserve of the few - the very few - politicians who either fail or refuse to comprehend the basic dynamic that Craig speaks about; namely, that personal religious beliefs are considered to have no business in a politician's public duties. It is a basic sentiment, shared throughout the Anglo-Saxon world, with the notable exception of the US, where such purile confusions persist.