What roles does abortion play in the American culture?

What roles does abortion play in the American culture?

Abortion can be viewed as a social issue that affects both the economic and political aspects in our society. In defining abortion, it can said to be the act of pregnancy termination. It can an also be defined as the act expelling an embryo or a fetus from the uterus before birth, or before it is able to survive outside the womb (Francome 23). This definition is so because; an embryo or fetus may have attained a certain level of maturity or growth, which in return can allow it to survive outside a uterus. This is as long as the right life support practices are observed (Palmer 32). However, there are other pregnancies that come out of the uterus without any inducement or personal interferences. This is referred to as a miscarriage, since they occur spontaneously without necessarily being induced (McBride 08). However, in cases where a miscarriage is induced, it is also referred to as an abortion since if the pregnancy was not interfered with, it would never come out. Therefore, the term abortion generally means the terminating act of a pregnancy from a human being, and it has come to adopt many roles in the American society.

America has become one of the countries in the world whose high rate of abortion has caused alarm. It has become role player in this country’s culture for there are people who would want it abolished indefinitely, others would want to see it upheld. Others are divided and as they do support it , but on some condition, and also due to a number of reasons. There has been a lot of contention emanating from the federal government, the media, different legal groups and the public on the grounds to which an abortion can be performed and which it cannot (Palmer 12). The governments (both state and federal) have held numerous debates resulting in a political showdown on the matter, as each state feels this matter should be dealt with as a states matter and not as a federal one. Abortion was not legal in this country. This was until its illegality was challenged in the infamous Roe v. Wade in the Supreme Court in 1973. By the 1980s, there were many women who were carrying out abortions all over the United States.

This was the first time that abortion illegality was successfully challenged in court. This saw massive abortions carried out in health facilities all over the United States of America. However, mankind has not gotten away with these abortions. Research statistics indicate shows that every year, more than final million women get admitted in hospitals for abortion. As if that was not enough, the world loses approximately 80, 000 women per year to unsafe abortions (Berlatsky 71). Other than these hospital admissions and maternal deaths, there is also a new study which show that more than 44million pregnancies termination procedures are carried out every year. However, this number is expected to drop, and in deeded it is dropping due to introduction of contraceptives, and family planning methods in the 21st century. As result of this number being this high, the world embarked on legalizing some abortion procedures. This is more so depending on the circumstances under which a woman became pregnant, or her health conditions (Waters, Roberts & Morgen 32). However, research shows that most women seek abortions are as result of unintended pregnancies, and not as victims of sexual abuse or medical problems. As a result, research now rates the percentage of the women with access to legal abortion procedures at 40 percent globally.

The American public has different opinion in regard to this matter. Most of the public still view abortion as privacy right although this point was dismissed after the Planned Parenthood v. Casey case of 1992. These people still feels that a woman reserves the right to have an abortion from a certified and licensed physician. They argue that many people have different reasons as to why they have abortions carried out in the states. Most of them cite economic challenges, especially with the deteriorating economy of this country (McBride 68). As a result, they feel that an American people should not be forced by the government to live in abject poverty just because of another uncertain member in a family. They say that in as much as the act is godly, what would be more ungodly would be to bring another child in the world to suffer from poverty and malnutrition among other challenges (Waters, Roberts & Morgen 56). They feel that is why we have many inmates in our recreational facilities as they involve themselves in life of crime in trying to make ends meet. They argue this is because their mothers brought them to this world without their parents having properly planned for them.

Some members of the public also feels that if a parent was forced to bring forth a child they did not want in this world, they would end up hating the child, pushing him/her away and subjecting them to a life of suffering. This would mean that such a child may also develop hatred feelings towards their parents either resulting into criminal acts like manslaughter and murder. There would also be hatred in our society if we filled it with families who hated one another with passions. This is because they would be blaming each other for their failures and misfortunes in life. The American public feels that even if a poor mother may want to keep her pregnancy, she may not be in a position to feed her child once born (McBride 18). They cite things like how programs like the Social Security and welfare have failed to serve their purpose in the United States of America. These are programs that were established the in the early 1930’s with the intention of keeping the Great Depression that happened then, from ever again attacking the united states of America.



Berlatsky, Noah. Abortion. Detroit, MI: Greenhaven Press, 2011. Print.

Francome, C. (2004). Abortion in the USA and the UK. Aldershot, Hants, England: Ashgate.

McBride, Dorothy E. Abortion in the United States: A Reference Handbook. Santa Barbara, Calif: ABC-CLIO, 2007. Internet resource.

Palmer, Louis J. Encyclopedia of Abortion in the United States. Jefferson, N.C: McFarland, 2002. Print.

Waters, J., Roberts, A. R., & Morgen, K. (September 06, 1997). High Risk Pregnancies: Teenagers, Poverty, and Drug Abuse. Journal of Drug Issues, 27, 3, 541-562.