Mike Pence to Speak at Crisis Pregnancy Center That Falsely Claims Abortions Cause Breast Cancer

Illustration for article titled Mike Pence to Speak at Crisis Pregnancy Center That Falsely Claims Abortions Cause Breast Cancer
Image: Drew Angerer (Getty Images)

Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to visit an anti-abortion crisis pregnancy center in North Carolina later this week, CNN reports, as part of Trump’s reelection campaign, which feels as if it has been going on for the last 57 years. The Gateway Women’s Center, which Pence is scheduled to visit, offers pregnancy and STI testing, ultrasounds, “options counseling,” and after abortion care, according to their website—all services typical of crisis pregnancy centers, which attempt to dissuade women from having abortions. GWC also posts on its website that one of the long-term physical risks of abortion is breast cancer and that the best way to avoid the risk is to carry a pregnancy to full term.

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The website states:

Medical experts continue to debate the association between abortion and breast cancer. Research has shown the following:

Carrying a pregnancy to full term gives a measure of protection against breast cancer, especially a woman’s first pregnancy. Terminating a pregnancy may result in loss of that protection.

The hormones of pregnancy cause breast tissue to grow rapidly in the first 3 months, but it is not until after 32 weeks of pregnancy that breasts are relatively more cancer-resistant due to the maturation that occurs.

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What the website fails to mention is that the study cited has been disproven, and there is no link between abortion and breast cancer, even though it is used as an anti-abortion scare tactic. According to the National Cancer Institute, “in 2009, the Committee on Gynecologic Practice of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists concluded that ‘more rigorous recent studies demonstrate no causal relationship between induced abortion and a subsequent increase in breast cancer risk.’” Conveniently omitting information is so... convenient.

But Pence is likely not interested in misrepresented science and is attending this anti-abortion roundtable to discuss, as the Gateway Women’s Center puts it, the “spiritual consequences” of abortion. In this section of the website, GWC tells abortion seekers to consider three essential questions before requesting service, one of which is, “How does God see your unborn child?” Notably missing from that round of questioning is how God feels about lying about the risks of a medical procedure... but I guess science is not that important when it comes to women’s reproductive health.

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DISCUSSION

kinjasintheoutfield
Kinjas in the Outfield

A lot of people see Pence as a non-entity because he’s not a great public figure but ever since learning about him in early 2016, I have seen him as somebody incredibly dangerous. He harmed a lot of people in Indiana without needing to resort to political theatrics like Trump. This is the guy who approved queer conversion therapy, punishments for miscarriages, and abstinence/incarceration instead of preventive measures against contracting HIV. Him speaking at an anti-abortion clinic might not even be to campaign for Trump but because he considers it a hobby.