Anytime a restrictive new law is passed on abortion, Planned Parenthood and pro-choice advocates start screaming about how thousands of women will die if we go back to pre-Roe times.
Before Roe v. Wade, thousands of women died every year — and because of extreme attacks on safe, legal abortion care, this could happen again right here in America. #WeWontGoBack https://t.co/9orqLaif0J
— Leana Wen, M.D. (@DrLeanaWen) April 24, 2019
But it would seem that they are lying to you, just like they lied about performing mammograms, failed to report rape and sexual abuse and even tried to cover up the mistreatment of pregnant employees.
So it should come as no surprise that they are lying about that statistic that thousands of women died before Roe.
The Washington Post decided to fact check that claim, looking at reports referred to them by Planned Parenthood and NARAL that were from 1958 and 1935. Yes, you read that correctly. The data that Planned Parenthood is relying on to spread that number is nearly 100 years old.
When they dug deeper, they found better numbers from the director of Planned Parenthood in 1959. Read what she wrote.
By 1959, a leading researcher wrote: “Abortion is no longer a dangerous procedure. This applies not just to therapeutic abortions as performed in hospitals but also to so-called illegal abortions as done by physicians. In 1957, there were only 260 deaths in the whole country attributed to abortions of any kind. In New York City in 1921, there were 144 abortion deaths, in 1951 there were only 15.”
The writer was Mary Steichen Calderone, at the time medical director of Planned Parenthood. She attributed the decline in the mortality rate to antibiotics and the fact that 90 percent of illegal abortions were done by trained physicians.
They also looked at CDC data from 1972, and found ‘the number of deaths in the United States from legal abortions was 24 and from illegal abortions 39.”
That’s not thousands of women.
The Washington Post assigned Planned Parenthood four pinocchos and stated:
Wen’s repeated use of this number reminds us of the shoddy data used by human trafficking opponents. Unsafe abortion is certainly a serious issue, especially in countries with inadequate medical facilities. But advocates hurt their cause when they use figures that do not withstand scrutiny. These numbers were debunked in 1969 — 50 years ago — by a statistician celebrated by Planned Parenthood. There’s no reason to use them today.