Term Paper 15 Pages
Term Paper 15 Pages
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Term Paper Sample
Abortion is still prohibited except for medical emergencies in nearly two-thirds of the world, including the Western hemisphere, most of southern and western Europe, Africa and most of Asia. The exceptions are Britain and Scandinavia, which comprise 2 percent of the world's population, and Japan, China and most countries of eastern Europe, accounting for the remaining third of the world's population. Denmark and Sweden liberalized their laws in the 1930's and Britain enacted a liberal law in 1967 which has made it one of the freest countries anywhere in the world for abortions. Britain allows an abortion on the certification of two physicians stating that pregnancy will cause risk to life or the physical or mental health of the pregnant woman, even if the risk is slight. It is also permitted if the birth would imperil the physical or mental health of the woman's existing children, or if there is a risk that the child will be born defective. This law has become, in effect, abortion on demand.
The United States is one of the countries in which abortion, as of 1971, is still restricted. In 32 states it is prohibited except in order to save the life of the mother. In Mississippi it is allowed also in cases of rape. The remaining 17 states and the District of Columbia are more permissive. (Every year more states join those who have passed liberalized laws.) As of early 1971, there were 17 states which had passed some form of abortion law based on the model code suggested by the American Law Institute. This code recommended in 1962 that abortion be permitted under the following circumstances: if the mother's physical or mental health will be impaired; if the child will be born with serious mental or physical defects; or if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest. States that have adopted this legislation are: Arkansas, California, Colorado (the first to do so in 1967), Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, South Carolina, Virginia, Washington, Alaska, Hawaii and New York. The last three states have gone beyond the suggested code allowing abortion for all reasons. The New York abortion-on-demand law passed in April 1970 is the most liberal with virtually no restrictions other than that the abortion must be performed by a licensed physician within the first 24 weeks of pregnancy. In Hawaii and Alaska there are residency requirements and the abortion must be performed in a hospital.
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