Accuracy in Media

Cosmopolitan runs an article on the new heroes of the abortion movement, those offering “late-term” abortions. Or, as they put it: “for people seeking pregnancy termination in the latest possible window of 24 to 39 weeks—less than 1 percent of all abortions as of 2019, fewer than 5,000 per year.”

It’s true that the number of such abortions is low as compared to the procedure more generally. But then this is part of the point. That opposition to abortion becomes more vehement as the pregnancy moves to full term (that 39 weeks). Quite naturally too, as opinions converge on what is a human being with rights.

Cosmo has told us that we shouldn’t use the phrase, “late-term abortion” before but that’s just a complaint about language. What they mean there is that the practice should continue we should just call it something different. “Later abortion” seems to be their favorite there but again that’s just language, not acts or laws.

The hypocrisy comes from Cosmopolitan’s own archives. Back when the overturning of Roe as a result of Dobbs was unthought of  (in 2017) we were told this:

Think about this number: 1.3. That’s the percentage of all abortions performed in the United States that occur after 20 weeks. So, who are these politicians trying to save?

That’s what the hypocrisy is. When abortion was generally legal then the number of late-term – or later – abortions was no big thing, something of such triviality in the numbers as to not be worth even thinking about. Now that abortion is – in those late- or later- terms – becoming much more difficult then those providing it are heroes worthy of our support and approval.

The days can be long and exhausting, both physically and mentally. Recalling the times they’ve been burned out, demoralized, and devalued, the PAC founders also intend to create a better environment for employees, including regular anti-oppression training, low-deductible insurance, and a livable wage.

Such heroes.

“Salaries for full-time abortion physicians vary but tend to start in the low six figures,” according to the article.

Cosmopolitan ranks at No. 45 for news and media publishers in the U.S. It gains some 65 million visits a month from that position. It also claims a 10.2 million print audience and 1.6 million Twitter followers, 12.8 million on Facebook. It’s an important media outlet.

When late (late-term, or later) abortions are only part of the landscape they’re no big thing, something not to worry about and certainly not an argument to be used against the practice. When they’re not to be allowed then they’re a vital part of health care and those who provide them are those heroes deserving of a write-up and a call for funding.

Yes, that is hypocrisy, using the same facts, the same events, differently according to the argument being put forward. We all have our views on abortion itself and the terms under which and at which it is to be allowed. We might well disagree on those too. But this bait and switch should still be called out for what it is – hypocrisy on the subject.




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