Government doesn’t get any bigger than this: a Paraguayan girl, eleven years old, was forced by her country’s laws, against her will, against her mother’s will, and in spite of outcry from every corner of the planet, to deliver her rapist’s baby. Eleven. Years. Old.
At the risk of being absurd, she may be one of the lucky ones, as Paraguayan girls go. You see, Paraguay is a pro-lifer’s dream come true. It is very near to being an abortion-free zone. The United Nations Department of Economics and Social Affairs reports that the sole basis upon which a pregnant woman can legally obtain an abortion there is when she would die without it. So, of course, abortion is almost non-existent there.
Except that it is rampant, and it is killing Paraguay’s girls.
See, here’s the thing no allegedly pro-life person wants to admit to: you don’t save lives when you make abortion a crime, because making abortion a crime doesn’t stop abortions. Paraguay is the proof. In spite of its near total ban on the procedure, Paraguay has an abortion rate of between 100-150 per 1,000 pregnancies (it’s hard to get accurate data, because, you know, people are reluctant to report their own criminal behavior: you can look here for an estimate). For an abortion-free zone, that’s a shocking number. Compare it to the relatively abortion-friendly nation of the United States: the rate here is about 20 per 1,000, or maybe a little less. For a jaw-dropping statistic, look at Sweden: their rate is just over 18 per 1,000, lower, even, than our own. Why is it jaw-dropping? Because, in Sweden, abortion is available on demand. The government (meaning, yes, the Swedish taxpayers) pay for it. Any woman who wants one, gets one. And they have nearly the lowest rate in the world. Read that again: Sweden provides free abortions on demand, and Sweden has nearly the lowest abortion rate in the world. Paraguay? In Paraguay, thanks to making it illegal, abortion is in over five times the demand it is here in the United States.
But it gets worse. Illegal abortions tend to be conducted by unskilled people, in unsafe conditions. That’s why 23 out of 100 deaths of young women in Paraguay are caused by botched illegal abortions. Read that again, too: 23% of young women who die in Paraguay, die because abortion is illegal there. That’s not counting the fetus, which, if one is a pro-lifer, would raise that number to 31 out of 100 (because about half of those 23 abortions would involve a female fetus, raising the female death total to 35 out of 112, or about 31%).
So there you have it. A nation that claims to be utterly pro-life has an abortion epidemic as a result, and that epidemic is a leading killer of its young women. Another nation gives free, safe abortions on demand, and has the lowest rate around.
If you are truly on the side of life, which nation would you say is doing better?