Letter to the Editor: Re: Pointers for Life
Jeanna Mielcarek

I would like to dispute false claims that were made in the arti­cle written on the Pointers for Life last week. The Isthmus, a Madison, WI based newspaper, recently wrote an article entitled “Pregnant? Scared? Abortion risks are exagger­ated at Wisconsin’s Crisis Pregnancy Centers.” This article was based on an appalling investigative study done by NARAL Pro-Choice America. Last week Pointers for Life stated that they partner with First Choice, a crisis pregnancy center in Stevens Point.

Upon visiting the web site for First Choice, I encountered numer­ous spelling errors, a lack of refer­ences, and fear-mongering “testimo­nials” on emergency contraception that appear fabricated. First Choice claims that emergency contraception, which is available over the coun­ter in Wisconsin, can cause abortion. According to Princeton University and the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals, none of the FDA-approved emergency con­traceptives can work after an egg is fertilized.

In addition, First Choice states that abortion increases breast cancer risk. This is a long-standing fallacy; there is no association between abor­tion and breast cancer according to the National Cancer Institute. Yet if that is not enough, there is a long list of horrendously exaggerated, medi­cally inaccurate side effects presented on their web site. Again, there are no references listed to support their claims.

Also, the article written by Pointers for Life insinuates that abor­tions can cause PTSD. The American Psychological Association found that the risk of mental health problems in adult women with an unplanned pregnancy is not different if they have a first-trimester abortion or a preg­nancy. In addition, Johns Hopkins University holds that research does not support post-abortion traumatic stress syndrome.

I fear for the vulnerable women that could encounter the inaccurate and incomplete information that this organization provides. This is a faith-based operation and withholding of certain forms of family planning, including emergency contraception is due to religious reasons. I feel that it is deceitful to not present all options in a clear, unbiased, scientifi­cally sound manner. Services are lim­ited at crisis pregnancy centers and fear, guilt and intimidation is used to pressure women into making very sensitive personal decisions.

All legal options should be avail­able in a non-judgmental setting so that women can make well-informed choices without being persuaded or misled. There are several repu­table resources in the campus and community. For resources on cam­pus, you can contact the Women’s Resource Center, in the basement of the DUC. For community resources, Family Planning Health Services is located across Division Street adja­cent to campus. The family planning waiver covers reproductive care and all women and men are eligible to apply for this program through the state of Wisconsin.

Sincerely,

Jeanna Mielcarek