The Associated Press ran a story Monday sympathizing with women who have traveled across state lines to obtain abortions.
Beth Vial, the woman at the center of the report the AP published, claimed, due to medical conditions, she was unaware of her pregnancy until 26 weeks gestation. The Portland, Oregon, resident didn’t have many options, since most states outlaw abortion that late in pregnancy (after all, a child could survive outside the womb at six months). So in order to get an abortion, she had to travel to a clinic in Albuquerque — one of the only facilities in the U.S. whose doctors will perform abortions close to the third trimester without any actual medical reason.
The AP report lamented the fact some 276,000 women had to travel outside their home state between 2012 and 2017 in order to abort their unborn children, all the while ignoring the plight of the vulnerable young child growing in the womb.
Vial, 22, was very pleased to share her harrowing experience, which fit into an AP story that seems to emphasize the tragedy of being inconvenienced by unexpected pregnancies rather than reporting on the fact that some people have sought abortions more than halfway through their pregnancies simply as a form of birth control.
“This right here is what makes it worth it,” the college student said, noting she’s become a pro-abortion advocate. “Because if I can give back to people the one thing that I wanted more than anything when I was going through this, then I’ve done what I’ve set out to do.”
The Monday report from the AP, as well as legislative efforts by many on the left in recent months, have sought to normalize abortion at increasingly later stages of pregnancy.
Conservative political commentator Autumn Johnson responded to the AP’s video by revealing she was born at 26 weeks — or six months — after her mother developed pre-eclampsia.
“Although I was born months early,” Johnson told Faithwire, “miraculously, everything was fully developed and I was born without any health issues.”
“Seeing the AP story truly broke my heart,” she continued. “Knowing that a woman chose to end the life of her child during the same period of gestation that I was born left me devastated, and it happens every day.”
There’s quite a bit happening by the time an infant hits week 26. At this stage, the baby is about 14 inches long and likely weighs around two pounds. Its eyes are opening for the very first time and neurological activity is really ramping up: not only can the baby begin to hear noises by this point, but it can also respond to them in subtle ways.
Even more than that, the baby’s nervous system has become more developed by the six-month mark and it is starting to get a little restless inside the womb, often kicking, stretching, and pedaling.
So it shouldn’t come as a surprise — given all that information — to learn a baby has around a 70 percent survival rate if it’s born at around six months gestation.
An unborn infant is absolutely viable at 26 weeks. And whether viable outside the womb or not, the baby — both inside and outside the womb at any stage — is fully human and made in the image of God.
“I think of the life and experiences that I have had at just 23 years old, and I mourn those who will never have that chance because their mother chose abortion,” Johnson said. “I hope stories like mine remind expecting mothers that their unborn child is a human being made in the image of God.”
There is, according to Johnson, “always another way” and choosing life “is always the best option.”
While the AP’s report seems to be an effort at normalizing abortion in the second trimester, many polls still indicate Americans become less supportive of termination the further pregnancies progress. A poll from earlier this year, in fact, found 66 percent of adults believe abortion should be banned after 20 weeks and 80 percent said they’d like to see abortion limited to the first three months or the first trimester.