Tuesday, September 17, 2013
The Dubious Scientific Claims Behind "Fetal Pain" Abortion Bans
The New York Times: Complex Science at Issue in Politics of Fetal Pain, by Pam Belluck:
It is a new frontier of the anti-abortion movement: laws banning abortion at 20 weeks after conception, contending that fetuses can feel pain then.
Since 2010, a dozen states have enacted them, most recently Texas.Nationally, a bill passed the Republican-dominated House of Representatives in June.
The science of fetal pain is highly complex. Most scientists who have expressed views on the issue have said they believe that if fetuses can feel pain, the neurological wiring is not in place until later, after the time when nearly all abortions occur. . . .
See also: ThinkProgress: Scientists Studying ‘Fetal Pain’ Don’t Actually Want Their Research To Justify Abortion Bans, by Tara Culp-Ressler.