From Butterflies and Wheels:
A girl of 16 in the Dominican Republic is in the hospital with acute leukemia. She can’t get life-saving chemotherapy because she’s ten weeks pregnant.
Following a change to the constitution in 2010, abortion in the Dominican Republic is banned under any circumstances, even when the mother’s health or life is in danger.
But wait, you say, chemotherapy is not an abortion. Ah no, but that doesn’t matter, Rafael Romo reports for CNN.
…treatment would very likely terminate the pregnancy, a violation of Dominican anti-abortion laws.
So Dominican “anti-abortion” laws cover even life-saving medical treatment that would very likely end the pregnancy? That’s quite an anti-abortion law.
But all is not lost. Apparently, the Dominican Republic has a bioethics council to rule on the application of the law, and according to the director of the council, Miguel Montalvo, said council is “leaning towards” permitting the treatment.
Leaning towards allowing the treatment.
Have we collectively lost our fucking minds? This is a sixteen year old girl being denied life saving treatment while a group of (presumably) men sit around and debate the ethical implications of letting her die versus possibly ending the pregnancy. It isn’t even a late term pregnancy; the fetus is 10 weeks old. If they let the teen die, doesn’t that kill the fetus as well? What kind of lunacy is it that they are even debating this?
Hopefully, the council finishes leaning and this teen can get the treatment that she needs to live. And maybe the outcry over this case will cause Dominicans to reexamine draconian laws such as this.
Meanwhile, I’m sure at least one state republican party is taking notes to use in crafting their own abortion ban if Roe V. Wade is ever overturned.