“There’s a direct connection between a woman’s ability to plan her family, space her pregnancies and give birth safely, and her ability to get an education, work outside the home, support her family and participate fully in the life of her community,” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said yesterday in a speech she made at the State Department, to an audience full of international women’s health advocates.
Over the last few decades, American elections have had an even more profound effect on reproductive rights outside the United States than inside it. In fact, perhaps nowhere else is the difference between recent Democratic and Republican administrations quite so stark. Yesterday, after years in which the United States spread its anti-abortion ideology worldwide, Clinton declared that the United States will once again become a leader in promoting reproductive rights globally. Struggles over abortion and contraception are being waged all over the world, and it matters a lot where the United States comes down. A great many women’s lives are at stake. One woman dies every minute of every day in pregnancy or childbirth, and for every woman who dies, another 20 suffer from injury, infection or disease each minute of every day. Continue reading