Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 10th grade September 2001

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Nolan G. Watts English 101/19 9/15/2001 What's Goin' on? Every month our nation's most dangerous killer takes more lives than we lost in the entire Vietnam War. Every six months more die from its relentless onslaught than in all our previous wars combined or in all the fatal automobile accidents of the past twenty years. Every two to three years it claims more victims than the Nazi Holocaust. Incredibly, this monumental devastation is carried out by medical professionals and is completely preventable. The name of this vicious serial killer is "abortion".

Women have abortions for a variety of reasons. In general, women choose to have an abortion because a pregnancy at that time is in some way wrong for them. These situations cause a great deal of distress and an abortion seems to be the best way out of their problems. When a woman learns that her unborn baby has severe abnormalities, such as an undeveloped brain or disabled kidney, she may wish to have an abortion and end the pregnancy.

She chooses to end the pregnancy rather than give birth to a child who will suffer and die in infancy or who will have severe disabilities. What would the world be like now if abortion had been so readily practiced twenty years ago? Would we have the contributions of Stephen Hawking, Hellen Keller, or Ludwig Van Beethoven? Teen pregnancy is a major contributor to abortion. Eleven percent of abortions are decided because the woman is not mature enough, or is too young to have a child. The actual responsibility of a child frightens many women. Maybe we should look at this from a different perspective. The actual responsibility of having sex doesn't frighten many couples and they feel they are mature enough to make the decision. In light of this, most abortion decisions are based on the responsibility the baby will bring. The decisions we make have consequences; it is time for us to live with the responsibilities we are given. That fact has been incorporated and made mandatory in maturity. It maybe time for some of us to examine ourselves.

Abortion is a very violent procedure that is accomplished a variety of ways, all of which are inhumane and obviously murder. The most popular method uses a barbed suction device. The suction dismembers the body of the developing baby and tears the placenta from the wall of the uterus, sucking blood, amniotic fluid, placental tissue, and fetal parts into a collection bottle. Dilatation (Dilation) and Curettage (D&C) is another abortion procedure generally done during the first trimester where a loop shaped steel knife is inserted in the mother's womb. The body of the baby is cut into pieces and removed and the placenta is scraped off the uterine wall.

RU486 is another first trimester abortion procedure. RU486 is sometimes called the "French abortion pill". It uses two powerful synthetic hormones with the generic names of mifepristone and misoprostol to chemically induce abortion during the first trimester or five to nine weeks of pregnancy. This procedure is potentially deadly to the mother, a common myth to many women. Abortion can be deadly to the mother as well. RU486 blocks the action of progesterone, the natural hormone vital to maintaining the rich nutrient lining of the uterus. The developing baby starves as nutrient lining disintegrates. At a second visit, thirty-six to forty-eight hours later, the woman is given a dose of artificial prostaglandins, usually misoprostol, which initiates uterine contractions and usually causes the embryonic baby to be expelled from the uterus. Nausea, vomiting, and pain are also associated with RU486.

Dilation and Evacuation, another abortion technique, is usually done between the second and third trimesters on unborn children as old as twenty-four weeks. Forceps with sharp metal jaws are used to grasp parts of the developing baby, which are twisted and torn away. This continues until the child's entire body is removed from the womb. Because the baby's skull has often hardened to bone by this time, the skull must sometimes be compressed or crushed to facilitate removal. Dilation and Extraction is used to abort women who are twenty to thirty weeks pregnant. Guided by ultrasound, the abortionist reaches into the uterus, grabs the unborn baby's leg with forceps, and pulls the baby into the birth canal, except for the head, which is deliberately kept just inside the womb. The abortionist jams scissors into the back of the baby's skull and spreads the tips of the scissors apart to enlarge the wound. After removing the scissors, a suction catheter is inserted into the skull and the baby's brain is sucked out. The collapsed head is then removed from the uterus.

Saline solution or salt poisoning is an abortion used in the second or third trimesters, when enough fluid has accumulated in the amniotic fluid sac surrounding the baby. A needle is inserted through the mother's abdomen and amniotic fluid is withdrawn and replaced with a solution of concentrated salt. The baby inhales, swallowing the salt, and is poisoned. The chemical solution causes painful burning of the baby's skin. Usually, after about an hour, the child dies. The mother goes into labor about 33 to 35 hours after instillation and delivers a dead, burned, and shriveled baby.

Do I need to go on? You clearly see the brutality incorporated in abortion. It totally sickens me the way people view life. Every third baby dies from abortion. That's one every twenty seconds. My question is, "Why?" Approximately 2,000,000 couples in America are waiting to adopt. 1.6 million babies die from abortion each year. If these women choosing abortions would give their baby up for adoption it would give 1.6 million couples the gift of life they are unable to produce. Our country has the capability to stop this mass murder and give life to millions more. The decision is up to you. That is what makes me frightened.