GENEVA, October 4, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Pro-life governments around the world must lift their protections of pre-born babies in the name of “fundamental rights,” “gender equality,” and even saving lives, according to so-called “human rights experts” from the United Nations.
On September 28, the U.N. Human Rights Commission released a statement commemorating International Safe Abortion Day, by “experts” Ivana Radačić, Dainius Pūras, Dubravka Simonovic, and Agnes Callamard. It calls on “governments across the world to decriminalise abortion,” which it claims is “at the very core of her fundamental right to equality, privacy and physical and mental integrity,” and a “precondition for the enjoyment of other rights and freedoms.”
The statement claims that preventing mothers from having their pre-born babies killed or placing lesser restrictions on abortion “has a debilitating impact on women’s capacity to claim equal standing in all aspects of life,” and forces women to resort to illegal abortions that allegedly cause 47,000 deaths and 5 million cases of temporary or permanent disability every year. The statement does not acknowledge that every successful abortion, legal or illegal, results in the death of a whole, distinct, living human being.
The claim that pro-life laws don’t significantly reduce abortion rates but only make abortions more “dangerous” is a popular pro-abortion refrain, but not supported by the evidence. In the United States, former Planned Parenthood insiders have admitted to dramatically exaggerating the number of pre-legalization maternal deaths for political gain, while non-partisan fact checkers have acknowledged that medical advances such as new drugs were the real variable reducing maternal abortion deaths.
Similarly, Americans United for Life examined abortion in Latin America in 2012, and concluded that medical standards were once again the true cause of such deaths. The group’s report quoted the World Health Organization as acknowledging that “hospital structure” was the “most important variable” in determining maternal deaths.
The U.N. statement hints at forced subsidizing of abortion by highlighting the “obstacle” of “unaffordability,” declares that “conscientious objection […] cannot be a basis for denying women access to abortion,” calls for the option to “use medical abortion in more private settings,” and says that governments must take action to “ensure” that women who have abortions are treated “without judgment.”
The declaration also recites a number of common pro-abortion talking points against pro-life motives and arguments. It says “legal frameworks for abortion have typically been designed to control women’s decision-making,” that the “idea that abortion is blameworthy” is nothing more than a “cultural construction,” and that the specter of “unsafe” illegal abortions proves that the very label “pro-life” is “misleading.”
“It was well established in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and upheld in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights that international human rights are conferred to those who have been born,” the “experts” claim. “But some propagate a dangerous rhetoric that the rights of a pregnant woman and fetal interests must be equally protected. However, there is no such assertion in international human rights law.”
In 1947, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights’ original authors discussed proposed language that stated, “Everyone has the right to life and physical integrity from the moment of conception regardless of his or her physical or mental condition.” But China and the Soviet Union, along with England, blocked the language. Regardless, long-settled biological criteria reflected in many mainstream scientific and medical textbooks establishes that pre-born children are living human beings.
“The experts […] commend the efforts worldwide of women human rights defenders, who struggle every day, resisting discriminatory legacies supported by religious and cultural norms that embody harmful stereotypes of women’s roles in the family and society and are inherently discriminatory and oppressive to women,” the statement concludes. “No law should be misused as a means to control or curtail women's decision-making about the need for abortion, or access to it, and to punish women for that.”
The Trump administration has worked to oppose abortion on the international stage, from resisting pro-abortion agenda items at the U.N. to defunding foreign abortion groups. Ambassador Michael Kozak has affirmed that abortion is “not a human right” and that international contraception “access” is a non-issue, and USAID adviser Bethany Kozma has called for the U.N.’s Commission on the Status of Women to recognize abstinence education as a part of family planning.