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Northern Star

The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

Make abortion constitutional right, like France

Abortion-rights activists protest in pink March 26 outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. On March 8, France inscribed abortion rights in its constitution, and other nations should follow suit. (AP Photo | Jose Luis Magana)

In an historic first, France has made abortion a constitutional right. Other countries, especially the U.S., should follow suit to support women and reproductive rights.

On March 8, France officially inscribed abortion into their Constitution, according to the Associated Press. International Women’s Day occurred on March 8 as well, which made the action more meaningful and marks a positive step toward supporting women.

Abortion has been a hotly contested topic in recent years, especially with the overturn of Roe v. Wade in 2022. Abortion is restricted or eliminated in 21 out of the 50 states and banned in 14 of the 21 states, according to Planned Parenthood. Women should have the right to get an abortion, if they so choose. In cases of domestic violence, additionally, abortion may be a necessity for safety.

Kate Cady, an associate professor in the department of communication, said banning abortion is unacceptable.

“Abortion bans in the U.S. are unacceptable encroachments on people’s rights and their rights to determine their own health care, and determine their own reproductive lives,” Cady said.

As of April 2023, about 62% of respondents of a survey said abortion should be legal in all or most cases, according to the Pew Research Center.

Women should be able to have an abortion in their home state instead of needing to travel across state lines for the procedure. 

Cady said banning abortion also has a negative impact on healthcare and people can lose their lives if they don’t get an abortion.

“The last issue you know, with what are essential abortion bans, is how much impact those things have on parental gestational health just more broadly,” Cady said. “Women who have problems like ectopic pregnancies, where a fertilized egg attaches itself to the wall of the fallopian tube, will die if they don’t get treatment.”

By having the ability to have an abortion, individuals’ lives could be saved if they go through pregnancy-related issues.

Cady said making abortion a constitutional right would benefit people, especially when it comes to health care.

“People could get the appropriate health care they needed. That’s a big benefit, doctors could provide a basic standard of care, in a whole range of pregnancy-related situations,” Cady said.

By solidifying abortion as a constitutional right, countries ensure women feel comfortable making a decision about their pregnancy and feel less scared. Women should be able to make their own decisions regarding abortions, and any government should support women’s choices instead of banning them.

If the U.S. wants to better itself, especially compared to other countries, then abortion should be a constitutional right, instead of being banned.

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