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Welcome To The Bitchery

I recently read this, and it was a really interesting take on how stand-alone women’s health clinics, and specifically Planned Parenthood, came to dominate abortion and repro health in America. I know it’s listed as pricey, but you can get a used copy for around $7.


Most interesting was why abortion care was separated from other reproductive health service in the US, but not in the UK or Canada. Was it moral objections? Puritanism? Feminist demands? According to the author, it was the medical establishment, the AMA.


Doctors didn’t want a “condition” that patients (read: women patients) could “self-diagnose” and demand treatment for, rather than requiring their medical knowledge and authority to request treatment for. His assessment is that the doctors’ authority and power in their clinics was prioritized higher in the US than in similar countries due to the lack of nationalized healthcare. The pro-life movement and religious establishment had basically nothing to do with it until after Roe v. Wade.

He’s not as good at spending equal time on the UK and Canada, but that may be because 1. he’s in the US (I took a class with him once on a totally different topic) and 2. because they settled their laws earlier on and they didn’t change much after that, while the US, due to the state level influence, goes back and forth and laws still vary widely from place to place.

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