Cognitive dissonance affects reading comprehension

by sassywho

Faux News reports that some study (which I can’t find right now – just take my word for it) purportedly shows that people who cannot reconcile their own personal beliefs with contradictory circumstance have difficulty reading.

It appears a recent post of mine caught the attention of some wingnuts. The first response was a Big Blue “Oh, no you didn’t, quickly followed by a hearty “Fo’ realz grrl!” from fellow fetus fetishist Jill Stanek.

I know, you are asking yourself the same question as I: “Who the hell is Jill Stanek?

Grab your gut folks – she’s a columnist for WingNutDaily, the author of theocon agitprop fair and balanced opinion pieces like “March Of Dimes marches for death”:

Tomorrow, April 28, the March of Dimes will launch its 2007 WalkAmerica fund-raisers around the country.

MOD’s stated mission is “to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects and infant mortality.”

In the interest of full disclosure, MOD should add, “… in politically correct ways.”

MOD has been at odds with the pro-life community since the 1970s for its inexplicable love affair with the pro-death movement in many areas.

One is that MOD turns a blind eye toward the link between induced abortion and premature delivery.

(h/t Feministe)

For a refresher, I was speculating that the death of Laura Smith, a young woman who underwent a 2nd trimester abortion, was possibly a result of less safe procedure being performed by her physician (covering his ass due to the SCOTUS ban on D&X). These procedures could include the use of drugs such as Digoxin and/or not dilating the cervix enough.

The primary bone of contention (other than my being an unrepentant infanticidal feminazi) seems to be that I said there was no way of knowing what kind of procedure she had. Let’s recap: the article only reported that her mother said she had a “suction-type” abortion. I may be missing something, but I’m pretty sure that is not a name for standard therapeutic abortions; there are medical (ie, drug-induced) and surgical, with all surgical abortions (and, apparently, the arguments of most pro-life bloggers) utilizing some variation of sucking:

Vacuum Aspiration:
In the first trimester, usually 6 to 13 weeks, vacuum aspiration is the procedure used to empty the uterus. This traditional first trimester abortion involves three main steps: (1) an injection to numb the cervix, (2) insertion of a soft flexible tube through the cervix into the uterus, (3) suction created by an aspirating machine to remove the pregnancy from the uterus. It is done in an outpatient clinic, doctor’s office or hospital and takes less than five minutes to complete the actual procedure.

IPAS Syringe – Early Abortion with Manual Vacuum Aspiration (MVA):
As soon as the pregnancy can be detected by ultrasound (typically 4-5 weeks), an abortion can be performed using a manual aspiration device called the IPAS Syringe. Similar to the suction aspiration procedure, the IPAS system consists of thin flexible tubing, but instead of using a machine to create suction, the suction is created by a handheld syringe. The procedure usually takes less than 5 minutes to complete. Aftercare is the same as with suction aspiration. Availability of this procedure is based upon doctor’s discretion. Abortion by syringe is sometimes referred to as the quiet abortion.

D & E (Dilate and Evacuate):
From 13 to 24 weeks, Cedar River Clinics use the Dilation and Evacuation (D&E) procedure. Appointments are made for 2-3 consecutive days. On the first day, an ultrasound (sonogram) is performed to determine the size of the fetus. Then, the abortion procedure is begun by numbing the cervix with injections and inserting dilators into the cervix. Overnight these dilators gently expand, opening the entrance to the uterus. The next day, the cervix is again numbed, the dilators are removed, and the doctor uses special instruments to evacuate the uterus and remove the pregnancy. The final step is suction using the aspirating machine. In more advanced pregnancies, additional dilators are inserted on the second day and the fetus is removed on the third day. The medical procedure lasts about 10-15 minutes.

Don’t get me wrong: it’s tragic that Laura Smith died. My heart sincerely goes out to her family and friends. But perhaps the main reason baby-worshipping wingnuts are so disturbed by her death is not because abortions inevitably kill teh wimmins, but because she was one of them.

Once again, mere speculation.

(And it’s Stacy, without the gratuitous ‘E’. Maybe you should stick with ‘sassywho’ – it’s easier.)

Recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers

Advertisements

U.S. Supreme Court Abortion Ban: Death Toll 1?

by sassywho

22 year old Laura Smith died last month:

HYANNIS — Eileen and Tom Smith had just sat down to watch the evening news when they received a call no parent ever wants to get. The woman on the other end of the line was hysterical. She said the Smiths’ 22-year-old daughter, Laura, was in the emergency room at Cape Cod Hospital. The doctors were looking for next of kin.

And there was more. Laura Smith had been pregnant for 13 weeks. And, earlier that day, she had been at a clinic that provides abortions.

Her death is still being investigated:

The state medical examiner hasn’t determined the cause of Smith’s death, a state spokesman said. And Cape & Islands District Attorney Michael O’Keefe is awaiting those results before determining whether further action should be taken, he said.

Eileen Smith met with Osathanondh in the lobby of the Boston Harbor Hotel in Boston about 10 days after Laura’s death.

Smith said she learned from Osathanondh that her daughter had a suction-type abortion, and that she was anesthetized during the procedure. She saw the waiver her daughter signed, the permissions she gave and the list of drugs she was given, Smith said.

She declined to give further details, citing the court case.

Abortion-related death is rare in the United States, according to government statistics.

The Supreme Court ruling earlier this year, fraught with paternal condescension and obfuscating language, was unpopular with physicians and pro-choicers for a reason: women’s safety was at risk. This was widely known!

The Supreme Court’s decision to uphold a federal ban on so- called partial-birth abortion in April is causing medical practitioners to explore alternate second-trimester abortion methods, placing them in uncharted legal and medical waters that could compromise women’s health.

The ban is expected to bring more risky abortion methods — with little clinical data on safety — into wider use for the sole purpose of legally protecting providers, doctors and experts say.

These alternative second-trimester abortion methods include fetalcide — killing the fetus while it is still in the womb — and hysterotomy, opening the uterus through an abdominal incision.

I have no way of knowing what specific procedure Dr. Osathanondh used, but one doubts that, facing a potential a 2 year jail term, he would choose the safer–but legally riskier–option to terminate a 2nd trimester pregnancy.

While practitioners can continue to perform D&Es, they must now be careful about their methods, Drey said.

Dilating a woman’s cervix too far could show intent to perform a D&X — a violation of the law. Even the way clinicians hold forceps could show intent, Drey said.

“This is where it becomes frightening for physicians,” she said. “To do a safe D&E, you like to have more dilators. Now we are being told that more dilation means you have intent to do a criminal procedure.”

Not dilating a woman’s cervix far enough can result in discomfort, pain and medical risk, she said.

Because there are so many gray areas in the law, it is yet unknown what the parameters will be for prosecuting physicians, said Beth Parker, partner with Bingham McCutchen, who represented Planned Parenthood in the San Francisco case challenging the law.

Women’s health is directly tied to restrictions on abortion, as a study published in the Lancet this month is telling:

“We now have a global picture of induced abortion in the world, covering both countries where it is legal and countries where laws are very restrictive,” Dr. Paul Van Look, director of the W.H.O. Department of Reproductive Health and Research, said in a telephone interview. “What we see is that the law does not influence a woman’s decision to have an abortion. If there’s an unplanned pregnancy, it does not matter if the law is restrictive or liberal.”

But the legal status of abortion did greatly affect the dangers involved, the researchers said. “Generally, where abortion is legal it will be provided in a safe manner,” Dr. Van Look said. “And the opposite is also true: where it is illegal, it is likely to be unsafe, performed under unsafe conditions by poorly trained providers.”

It’s actually quite simple: restrict abortion, women die. Ultimately, Dr. Kennedy has compromised women’s health by turning medical practice into a crapshoot. Perhaps Laura Smith is the first casualty.

Recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers