As you may well imagine, the following story about the abortion debate in Iran was pretty surprising to read:
TEHRAN (AFP) - A booming business in backstreet abortions has pushed Iran (news - web sites)'s religious conservatives to consider changing the law, which was supposed to have protected the lives of mothers.
...According to local press reports, at least 80,000 illegal abortions are carried out every year. But some believe the real figure could be far higher.
"These cannot be exact figures, as the only statistics we have are based on reported complications. But these have dropped over the past years because there are more professionals doing a clean job," said gynecologist Malek Mansour Aqsa, a member of the states national family planning committee. ...
The Iranian legislature is considering expanding access to abortion, currently allowed in cases where the mother's life is in danger. This is their reasoning:
...But according to the head of the parliamentary health commission, Dr Omidvar Rezai, the issue of unwanted pregnancies may eventually find its way to parliament.
"It is just like our problem with AIDS (news - web sites): finally we chose to provide addicts with free needles in order to prevent HIV (news - web sites) infection. We have to choose between the bad and the worse," Rezai told AFP. ...
Iran's government could safely be placed at the far end of the authoritarian spectrum, and I'm not a fan of theocracy. Still, when faced with the realities of widespread drug abuse and back alley abortions, even Iran's ultra-conservative mullahs can come around in time to looking at solutions. Faced with evidence, they're moving towards admitting that you can't legislate away basic problems of human existence and expect them to just go away.
So what's up with the Republicans? Oh yeah, they learned from their business partners and decided to do them one better.Posted by natasha at March 9, 2005 12:18 AM | Women | Technorati links |