Why the Silence About Abortion and Breast Cancer
Source: Chicago Tribune; May 21, 2001
the Silence About Abortion and Breast Cancer
by Dennis Byrne
Infonet Note: Dennis Byrne is a Chicago-area writer and public
long will this nation sit by as a powerful, well-funded industry
continues to expose women to the No. 1 preventable risk of breast cancer_
long will the industry's political flunkies, who receive millions in
campaign funds from this special interest, be allowed to turn a blind
to a danger that kills thousands of women every year_
long will a biased media keep silent in the face of a hazard that
directly imperils more than 1 million women a year_
I'm not talking about the chemical industry, daily poisoning the
environment with its toxins. Nor the producers of fatty food or alcohol,
also factors suspected of increasing breast cancer.
industry I'm talking about is the abortion business--consisting of
abortion "providers," their clinics, ideological supporters,
foundations and the rest of the political power structure that refuses
even admit that a scientific debate, let along scientific evidence,
about the dangers of induced abortions. They--despite their claims of
superior benevolence and compassion--are threatening thousands of women's
lives with an unspeakably painful disease.
in the month of May, a time of renewal, promise, new life and marches
throughout the country against breast cancer, millions of women are
deceived about this risk, or denied the knowledge of important studies.
out of 34 independent studies conducted throughout the world
(including 13 out of 14 conducted in the United States) have linked
abortion and breast cancer. Seventeen of these studies show a
statistically significant relationship. Five show more than a two-fold
elevation of risk. In turn, the abortion industry says all those studies
are trumped by one study, whose methodology, critics say, is seriously
biological hypothesis is that during pregnancy, a woman's breasts
begin developing a hormone that causes cells--both normal and
pre-cancerous--to multiply dramatically. If the pregnancy is carried
term, those undifferentiated cells are shaped into milk ducts and a
naturally occurring process shuts off the rapid cell multiplication.
induced abortion leaves a women with more undifferentiated cells, and
more cancer-vulnerable cells.
I first wrote about this issue in 1997, the scorn and name-calling
flowed in. Anti-choice fanatic. Ignorant bozo. Misogynist. Since then,
much has happened. The United Kingdom's Royal College of Obstetricians
Gynecologists became the first medical organization to warn its abortion
practitioners that the abortion-breast cancer link "could not be
disregarded." It said that the methodology of the principal ABC
(abortion-breast cancer) researcher, Joel Brind, was sound.
Kindley, an attorney, warned in a 1999 Wisconsin Law Review article
that physicians who do not inform their patients of the ABC link expose
themselves to medical malpractice suits. He concluded that about 1 out
100 women who have had an induced abortion die from breast cancer
attributable to the abortion.
American Cancer Society Web page lists induced abortions (along with
pesticides, chemical exposures, weight gain and other factors) among
elements that may be related to breast cancer, and that the relationship
is being studied.
Dr. Janet Darling and colleagues at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer
Research Center, in a study commissioned by the National Cancer Institute,
found that "among women who had been pregnant at least once, the
breast cancer in those who had . . . an induced abortion was 50 percent
higher than among other women." The risk of breast cancer for women
18 or over 29 who had induced abortions was more than twofold. Women
abort and have a family history of breast cancer increase their risk
percent. The increased risk of women under 18 with that family history
was incalculably high.
pro-choice didn't shield Darling from the usual attacks. She fought
back. "If politics gets involved in science," she then told
Angeles Daily News, "it will really hold back the progress that
we make. I
have three sisters with breast cancer, and I resent people messing with
the scientific data to further their own agenda, be they pro-choice
pro-life. I would have loved to have found no association between breast
cancer and abortion, but our research is rock solid, and our data is
accurate. It's not a matter of believing, it's a matter of what is."
the Web site of the Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization, sponsor
of many marches, fails to mention even the possibility of the ABC
connection in its list of risk factors. Not even under its list of fuzzy,
not "clear-cut" factors. Not even the existence of a scientific
over induced abortion is worth a mention.
if women had no right to know.
you want to know more, look in on the Web page of the Palos
Heights-based Coalition on Abortion/Breast Cancer
You may not agree with everything there
but at least you'll be respected for your intellectual ability to make