“AbortSA.com”

25 02 2010

Looming elections always bring the crazies out of the walls and especially so in Adelaide, notorious for its quiet, rigid, conservatism.  No one else seems to epitomise the more… extreme end of that conservatism than Trevor Grace, self-proclaimed saviour to the ‘unborn’, ‘pro-life’ fanatic who runs the website AbortSA.com.  The website uses bad science, scare tactics and horrific imagery in order to denounce ‘Abortionists’ and implicitly defame any woman who has sought and/or undergone an abortion.  Reading the section on ‘Rape and Abortion’ is so condescending and infuriating but when Mr Grace finally comes to make his point we are provided with the following nugget of wisdom;

“Practically, there are numerous legal problems with rape exception clause in an anti-abortion law; in that rape and incest pregnancies are easy to fake and hard to prove. After considering this problem and the statistics, a New Zealand commission in 1977 (on contraception, abortion and sterilisation) which suggested a significant liberalisation of New Zealand’s abortion law, recommended against allowing abortion for rape because the incidence of such pregnancies was too low, and the likelihood of false reports too high, to warrant a rape exception.

The appropriate response to rape and incest pregnancy is not abortion, but counselling, support and creative caring, to minimise the damage done by the crime rather than adding the evil of taking life to the crime of rape.

Not even sure if I can be bothered explaining why this is, how should we say, ‘bullshit’.  Any talk of ‘minimising’ the ‘harm’ caused by rape is absurd, and especially when, like Mr Grace, you want the woman to give up her life, her time, her youth, her money, her freedom to give birth to, raise and care for the baby of the man who assaulted and raped you.  But then Mr Grace wouldn’t really understand, since he can’t get pregnant if someone decided to force themselves on him.

Anyway, there you have it.  Debunk, ridicule and insult at your leisure.

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17 responses

5 03 2010
Andrew

Haha… reminds me of a candidate we have here in Perth called Mike Ward, the “men’s rights” guy who writes incessantly to the West Australian’s letters page, pickets the Family Court wearing a sandwich board, and every now and then runs as an independent in elections. I showed up to a candidate’s debate and he managed to figure out ways to work his single issue into the answer to any conceivable question. I won’t link it but searching “mike ward men’s confraternity” on Google should turn up his website, and a number of other pages referencing his work.

6 03 2010
Royce Christian

Just goes to show that Politics attracts all sorts of religious crazies — and not all of them are in the major parties either.

8 03 2010
Dieter Fischer

You wrote:
>>>Mr Grace, you want the woman to give up her life, her time, her youth, her money, her freedom to give birth to, raise and care for the baby.<<<

If you read their material properly, you would understand what Mr. Grace is saying – there is an alternative to killing a healthy baby – give it to a mother who can't have a baby, so she won't have to pay a thousands to bring one from overseas. Giving babies up for adoption, unfortunately, would spoil an industry, who makes big money bringing babies in from overseas.

Call them (and all of us) religious crazies. Trevor and his wife are standing for what it right and true. We need more brave minds like them, who stand up as they are doing, to show how far our society has been sliding downhill morally! "God is not mocked, whatever man soweth that he shall also reap."

Dieter, Adelaide

8 03 2010
Royce Christian

Dieter,

Thank you for taking the time to comment.

“If you read their material properly…”

I have read the material. It’s pathetic. There is no ‘post-abortion syndrome’ and most scientific studies performed on the subject found that there a few ‘negative psychological effects’ after a woman has an abortion and there are few practitioners that recognise its existence — any psychological effects are the result of the conservative culture the mother lives in that make her hate herself. The breast cancer hypothesis is rejected by modern science and the World Health Organisation. Foetal pain is moot; later-term abortions involve the foetus being anaesthetised and by itself is no argument against abortion. As for rape, well comparing it to being ‘drafted’ by the army is totally absurd.

“…give it to a mother who can’t have a baby, so she won’t have to pay a thousands to bring one from overseas.”

I would suggest that you haven’t particularly thought through your argument. Maybe you should look into just how effective adoption and foster care systems are, the psychological damage given to children who both know that they are unwanted and that their care is given up to strangers. Life isn’t like Juno. Also, check out how many orphans there are out in the world.

“Call them (and all of us) religious crazies…”

If you insist.

Trevor and his wife are standing for what it right and true. We need more brave minds like them, who stand up as they are doing, to show how far our society has been sliding downhill morally! “God is not mocked, whatever man soweth that he shall also reap.” ‘

Actually, no. “Trevor and his wife” are standing up for what they believe is right and true. It is their truth, and yours, apparently. It is subjective. And how do they do it? With bad science, scare tactics, guilt trips and rhetoric. That is no one to stand up for what is right.

And what of your supposed truth? Of course, in pursuing your truth, you will only end up destroying the morality Mr Grave and yourself champion. You claim to be champions for the moral good, even quoting bible verse to cement just how, ‘holy’ you are. Yet, women will still seek abortions and you will punish them for it. You will force women into dark backrooms in order to undergo risky procedures that may cause death, killing the mother as well as the foetus. Did you know 19 million of these occur every year around the world with 68,000 of these women dying as a result in a horrible manner? You will cause severe psychological harm by reinstating social attitudes that punish women in their daily social interactions for having a abortion. You will have betrayed your morality by making the living suffer to protect some absurd concept of ‘saving the unborn’.

Don’t pretend to be some kind of modern champion. It wouldn’t hurt to simply admit that you want to tell people what to do with their bodies based on your morality, either.

8 03 2010
Damin

There are two Medicare item numbers used for abortion (I am not saying this is completely accurate though): 35643 and 16525.

South Australian statistics:
35643: 96 services per 100,000 population
16525: 7 services per 100,000 population

National statistics:
35643: 666 services per 100,000 population
16525: 7 services per 100,000 population

Those aren’t huge numbers, especially when you compare the South Australian statistics to the national statistics. If you were to think of abortion as being a problem, one would have to say that in comparison to the national average, it is quite a small problem in South Australia.

Assuming Mr Grace’s goal is to minimise women’s access to abortion by further restricting the reasons why the woman may have an abortion, one would have to ask him, “What support will he be offering those women whom he will be forcing to bring their unwanted foetus to term?” “What support will he be offering the parents of the the unwanted babies?” “What support will he be offering not only the severely disabled people (who will need to be supported for their entire life) but also either the families (biological or adoptive) or the state institutions that will actually raise the disabled children?”

This is not only an issue regarding the morality of aborting a foetus. This is also a societal issue regarding the morality of bringing to term and raising unwanted children. Mr Grace needs to show us what his plans are for these unwanted children.

9 03 2010
Dieter Fischer

Damin,
as I understand it, Mrs. Grace has spent 1000’s of Dollars of her money to help mothers, who are forced to abort a pregnancy against her wishes. She is helping overseas students, who find themselves in this predicament – our health system does not assist them with medical bills, so they can’t afford a birth.
Trevor Grace focuses on the unborn, healthy human being, who has nobody to speak up for – it’s called human rights. You and Royce focus on the right of the pregnant mother, it’s her body, right?
We have to agree to disagree – but please, with respect! In tonight’s TV news it is reported that Trevor and Grace have received death threats!
Surely, you don’t agree with this kind of behaviour?

Dieter

9 03 2010
Stevo R

I disgaree with Trevor Grace & I think he is utterly wrong. For starters, since blokes can’t get pregant and will never face the decision I think we need to butt out and leave it to women to decide. I am firmly pro-choice in my views.

That said, I am a firm believer in Voltaire’s statement that :

“I may disagree with what you say but I will fight to the death for your right to say it.”

Grace & his group are totally wrong but they are also entitled to their opinion & on tonight’s ABC-TV news (7 pm) I saw footage of one of his volunteers being attacked by an anti-Grace person who threw rocks at him, physically assualted and threatened him and tore down and stole his posters and I find that utterly appalling and wrong.

Political violence is wrong. Full stop. regardless of how distasteful & offensive we may consider a party or its views – I don’t care if Grace was running on a pro-nazi racist platform – you don’t go assualting and attacking those who are running for election.

I hope we can all at least agree on that and respect people’s rghts to express their views and push them politically. Argue with people sure, offer counter-arguments and vote against them – that’s what I’ll be doing. But don’t resort to physical attacks or destroying their property. That is where the line is crossed and Ithinkeveryone should condemn such actions.

In My Humble Opinion Naturally.

9 03 2010
Royce Christian

Dieter,

as I understand it, Mrs. Grace has spent 1000’s of Dollars of her money to help mothers, who are forced to abort a pregnancy against her wishes.

Forced to abort a pregnancy against their wishes? Are they members of a Scientology cult, perchance? Or are they involved with an abusive boyfriend? Because that’s a whole other can of worms.

She is helping overseas students, who find themselves in this predicament – our health system does not assist them with medical bills, so they can’t afford a birth.

Well, part of the problem is that they come from backgrounds where sex education isn’t provided and contraception is stigmatised or avoided because of misunderstandings. I am informed that Grace has spoken out against sex education and the use of contraception in the past.

Your characterisation of the issue is, well, wrong.

Trevor Grace focuses on the unborn, healthy human being, who has nobody to speak up for – it’s called human rights.

No, the ‘unborn’ are predominately still a foetus and a baby at 20 weeks, when the child is nearly fully developed, is rarely aborted and only done so when the mother’s life is at risk. Trevor Grace appears to have no respect for the rights of women.

You and Royce focus on the right of the pregnant mother, it’s her body, right?

Funnily enough, I think you’d be hard pressed to find a woman who ‘likes’ abortion. As Steveo so rightly pointed out, as a man and not capable of getting pregnant, I really have no grounds to tell a woman what to do one way or the other. From that flows the argument that it is cruel and oppressive to forbid a woman from getting an abortion.

We have to agree to disagree – but please, with respect! In tonight’s TV news it is reported that Trevor and Grace have received death threats!
Surely, you don’t agree with this kind of behaviour?

I have no respect for ideas. I will gladly insult, rebuke and ridicule ideas at my leisure. Further, I will, as a matter of principle, ridicule those that seek to interfere with another’s body by imposing their particular morality via the legal system. This second comment flows from me identifying as an Anarchist. I do not respect anyone that seeks to control an institution which operates on coercive violence.

And secondly, referring to death threats is moot. I have never threatened Grace’s life and neither has anyone here. If you’re going to stand with Grace, in public and put forward an idea or argument than you can expect people to argue back. I think he’s an idiot, but I’m hardly out to kill him and I’d thank you to avoid using the instances of previous threats issued by others to side-track or avoid opposing arguments.

Steveo R,

You raise some interesting issues. Like I have said, no body here has issued threats of violence against Grace and his supporters. That is a red-herring.

However, I don’t actually see much wrong with ripping down/graffing political campaign posters (the cardboard signs you see littered in every suburban neighbour around the place). This is as a much a form of commentary as leaving a comment on a blog, and especially if the ‘posters’ are left to litter streets. They are essentially abandoned and the images these posters present particular images that are intended to stand for something a community may feel are vile. If a neo-nazi group graffed a swastika on a wall, would you be opposed to other graffiti artists painted over it? Or lining it out? (FYI, this has occurred along the Gawler Central train line, near the Bombay Bicycle club restaurant, which I invite you to investigate if you get the chance).

This comes back to my disrespect for ideas, however, of course, I do not advocate physical violence against his supporters. Unless of course that physical violence is directed at a group of neo-nazi’s holding a counter demonstration around a public park intended to intimidate the immigrant families that play there — but that’s a entirely unrelated issue.

10 03 2010
Delawear
10 03 2010
Delawear
10 03 2010
Damin

“as I understand it, Mrs. Grace has spent 1000’s of Dollars of her money to help mothers, who are forced to abort a pregnancy against her wishes”

Robyn Grace is not running for a place in the South Australian Upper House, Trevor Grace is. It is nice that she obviously shares many of her husband’s beliefs but addresses none of the points I have given.

“Trevor Grace focuses on the unborn, healthy human being, who has nobody to speak up for – it’s called human rights.”

Actually, Trevor Grace advocates bringing to term every conception. He wants to force all women to bring to term all conceptions including victims of rape and incest as well as forcing women to give birth to deformed and disabled babies. Mr Grace tries to make the argument that discontinuing a pregnancy with a disabled child is eugenics which implies anyone opposed to his point of view should be seen in the same light as the Nazis. Forcing a woman to bring to term a child with severe disabilities is an act of cruelty, no matter how you try to spin it.

“You and Royce focus on the right of the pregnant mother, it’s her body, right?”

I can’t speak for Royce, but I have not talked about anyone’s “right” to do anything. Every single woman will always be free to do as they wish with their own body. Whether or not that is secured as a “right” has nothing to do with any of the arguments I put forward. You have to understand that “rights” are merely a man-made construct. There is no “right to life,” there is merely an agreement between people (uniquely) that we’ll try not to kill each other.

“We have to agree to disagree – but please, with respect!”

I am sorry if you felt I was disrespectful, but I thought my questions were quite important, they refer to some real-world issues Mr Grace’s policies would raise. Why are any of these issues addressed on his website?

11 03 2010
Barbara Hay

“the crazies out of the walls and especially so in Adelaide” – Please, Adelaide is a nice place – yeh abortSA & Mr Grace are obnoxious – but in a Democracy he’s entitled – what I find OFFENSIVE is his Election posters – no picture of him but
one side a new born & the other a baby in utero – especially when it is facing me at my favorite cafe spot – So taking a leaf out of the 80’s group BUGA UP philosophy – I went down at 10:30 pm, gloves & secateurs in hand & removed it – disposed in the bin – civil disobedience in action

12 03 2010
Reb, Adelaide

I have just read through Mr Graces’ site, and I have read the whole lot.

I filled out his questionaire for women who have had an abortion and wrote some stuff at the bottom which I am pretty sure that he won’t respond to. So I am going to put them here as well.

The link between breast cancer and abortion – the anti-choice movement in American had an ‘expert’ that was touting this theory back in the 90’s. He did visit Australia and on his very first media appearance he was forced to admit that he was being sponsored by the ‘right to life’ group in Victoria.
He also had to admit that the link is actually between women who have never breast fed and cancer. Breast feeding lowers the incidence of breast cancer so the anti-choice groups jumped on that and used it just in conjunction with abortion. However, the increased risk is also a valid point for women who miscarry, or women who bottle feed.
I have had an abortion and know quite a few women who have, and the predominant feeling after an abortion among us has been relief.
If women do feel guilt and shame afterwards, I believe that it would be due to being judged by others.

I noticed that a lot of the words and images on the abortsa site are American, and that a lot of the images shown have been proved to be faked.

So my questions for Mr Grace – which I don’t think I will get answers to – would be;

Why are you using theories that have been disproved?
Why is the majority of data on your site American?
Why do you make assertions like ‘all women who have abortions suffer psychological problems afterwards’?
Why is it that most anti-choice groups seem to be mainly men?
Why is it that anti-choice groups asert that human life is sacred, yet most of them support the death penalty?
Do you mean to imply that athiests don’t have morals?

12 03 2010
Royce Christian

Thank you Reb, that was extremely well put.

17 03 2010
Manda, Adelaide

Recently a friend informed me of a story about this Abortsa.com it goes a little like this.

My friend said “a friend from uni has a child (aged 10) who was traveling on the school bus. When passing a poster of abortsa he asked what abortion was. A student on the bus who was a little older than the child said “When parents don’t want a baby they kill it” The child then went home to my friend (his mum) and said “mum why do parents kill their babies, what did the baby do to deserve it” What was my friend meant to say to her son? Why are these posters up.

So I thought to myself. Ok I have a 10 yr old myself and I want to be prepared if I ever get asked the question, so I went to the site. What I found was disturbing and disgusting. There is freedom of speech but this site takes it a little to far with the graphical nature of the pictures. Apart from the fact, as has been stated the pictures are possibly fake but to a 10 yr old the damage that could be done. Not right.

Now another point. I am a person whom had an abortion. I lived with my mother till I was 13 and moved to live with my dad. The fact he had never raised children meant the sex-ed talk was never had. When I was 16 I fell pregnant. My father not knowing how to cope threw me out of the house where I moved into a Salvation Army Children’s Shelter. Yes, thats right. Children’s Shelter. I had no money was still at school and didn’t have a stable home. My decision was based on the above mentioned things plus also I was a child. I didn’t know how to cook toasted sandwiches without burning them let alone raise a baby.

Now 17 yrs later I have a stable house, good job and a 10 yr old. My mental health has never suffered one single bit over my decision. I feel the decision was the right one. I was fortunate that I had the choice. Some people are not as fortunate and suffer greatly. I have heard of girls performing internal abortions on themselves, friends performing them or unlicensed practitioners who have no clue on what the procedure is about.

Any ways, any one that forces a woman or tries to take away the right for a woman to choose is no better than an abuser.

6 05 2013
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9 01 2014
Victoria Franklin

Manda,

Thank you for sharing your story. Thank goodness for the Salvation Army. They help a lot of people.

It sounds like you have had a hard journey, and you sound like you are quite the survivor.

Like you, many women who have had abortions did so because they felt they had no other choice, because it they don’t have a stable environment in which to bring the child, and/or because there is a lack of support for raising the child, either from their partner/husband or from their parents if they are young girls at the time of falling pregnant.

Unfortunately, what our Australian communities are not providing enough of is tangible support in all the above forms for young (or otherwise) women with unplanned pregnancies.

Consider if you’d had some truly caring warm mother-figures who took you under their wing, let you live with them, helped you raise the baby, helped you get on your feet, finish school and find a job, maybe things could have been different. It might sounds like a fairy-tale ‘what if’ proposition, but if Christians were to put their money where their mouth is, then they would actually reach out and do this.

I am a Christian and I will shout loud and clear that people who call themselves Christian need to put their money where their mouth is.

If we are willing to say that “life starts at the time of conception, and that the life in the womb is human, and that if we care about human life we should seek to protect it”, then we must also reach out and provide not only ‘feelings’ of compassion towards mothers and women with unplanned pregnancies, but also tangible concrete practical forms of help and support.

So many young women have had really hard circumstances in their lives. We need to wrap our arms around them and get real.

Although I don’t know much about Trevor Grace, I do believe that Robyn Grace is doing her best to do just that.

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