|The Morning-After Pill (RU 486) is Abortive|
A controversy is currently taking place in the British papers about the so
called Morning-After Pill. Is this a contraceptive or abortive?
In a scientific article in the Osservatore Romano of 28th July 1999,
Professor Maria Luisa Di Pietro of the Bioethics Istitute of the Sacro Cuor
University in Rome replies:
"THE MORNING-AFTER PILL IS ABORTIVE"
What is the "morning-after pill"?
"The term morning-after pill indicates a series of preparations based on oestrogens,
aestroprogestogens or progestogens which are given to a woman after but
not more than 72 hours after intercourse that is presumed fertile."
"These are synthetic hormones administered for the purpose of contraception
CONTRACEPTION AND ABORTION
They are being advertised as being "contraceptives" when they are in fact
Both have the same root or origin. They are fruit of the same tree.
That is what Pope John Paul II said in "Evangelium Vitae" (no 13). And
"But despite their differences of nature and moral gravity, contraception and abortion are often closely connected, as fruits of the same tree. It is true that in many cases
contraception and even abortion are practised under the pressure of real-life difficulties, which nonetheless can never exonerate from striving to observe God's law fully.
Still, in very many other instances such practices are rooted in a hedonistic mentality unwilling to accept responsibility in matters of sexuality, and they imply a
self-centered concept of freedom, which regards procreation as an obstacle to personal fulfilment. The life which could result from a sexual encounter thus becomes an
enemy to be avoided at all costs, and abortion becomes the only possible decisive response to failed contraception.
The close connection which exists, in mentality, between the practice of contraception and that of abortion is becoming increasingly obvious." The
connection is not just "cultural" but also "technical".
The Pope continues: "It is being demonstrated in an alarming way by
the development of chemical products, intrauterine devices and vaccines
which, distributed with the same ease as contraceptives, really act as
abortifacients in the very early stages of the development of the life
of the new human being." (Evangelium Vitae n.13)
Objection: Isn't it better to distribute contraceptives? This would
Answer: Maria Luisa replies (the following paragraph
has been translated, I will try to ensure it is the actual words of the
article in English as soon as I find it):
"We cannot fight abortion with contraceptives." And the Professor Di Piero
gives the reason:
"This is because those who try to prevent pregnancy with barrier methods or
hormonal contraceptives - moreover the latter's abortacient action cannot be
ruled out - will seek an abortion if contraception fails."
Did you understand it? When contraceptives fail, they go for abortion just
the same. Thus contraceptives don't reduce abortions, they only lead to
Question: But is the morning-after pill itself an abortifacient?
Maria Luisa Di Piero replies: "The effective action... of the morning-after
pill is abortifacient."
"In 80 to 100 percent of the cases the embryo is prevented from being implanted..."
Objection. But the pill is not abortive because it merely prevents
Maria Luisa Di Piero replies: "Those who say that the morning-after pill
is not abortifacient but prevents implantation do not realize that they
are affirming its abortifacient nature when they say it prevents
implantation. Since this action can only take place after fertilization and
works by preventing the continued development of the embryo, it can
only be abortifacient."
Objection. But what do doctors say about this?
Answer: The same Professor E. Beaulieu (who invented the abortive
pill RU 486) who is no person of religious sentiment, admits and says:
"Interruption of pregnancy after fertilization can be regarded
in the same way as abortion" (in his book "Il punto sul RU 486: Ediz.
Jama. Italian Edition 2, (1990) pag.12.
So the conclusion is one: "a product which prevents implantation is therefore
abortifacient." Thus, the morning-after pill is abortifacient.
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