Patrina Mosley is the Director of Life, Culture, and Women's Advocacy at Family Research Council. This article appeared in The Washington Examiner on September 4, 2019.
The PureFlix film Unplanned just became Amazon’s bestselling DVD, even while it is playing in theaters in Canada and Australia. Despite rejection by the Hollywood establishment, censored advertising, and an R rating, this faith-based movie has grossed almost $19 million since its March release.
The DVD also comes with a companion devotional titled "Planned from the Start: A Healing Devotional" to offer redemption to former workers and abortive mothers healing from the pain of abortion.
Unplanned tells the true story of Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood clinic director who was transformed into a leading pro-life advocate. She started the organization And Then There Were None to help other abortion workers like her to leave the industry.
How does a faith-based movie earn an R rating? By exposing abortion for what it really is: violence. Abby not only worked in the violent abortion industry, but she experienced it firsthand when she had a chemical abortion.
This clip from the movie, shared by the California Family Policy Council, realistically portrays the trauma women who take the abortion pill may endure. California, with Senate Bill 24, is attempting to become the first state to mandate that its college campuses dispense abortion pills, essentially turning a young women’s dorm room into an abortion room.
The vast majority of abortions take place in the first trimester of pregnancy, and over 30% of abortions in 2014 were chemical (by pill). In 2014, chemical abortions (referred to as “medication abortion” in abortion reporting) made up 45% of all abortions obtained up to 9 weeks.
In a chemical abortion, the woman takes two pills, hours apart. The first pill, Mifepristone (also known as RU-486) restricts the release of the hormone progesterone, which is needed to stabilize the uterine wall and nourish the developing baby. By cutting this supply off, Mifepristone starves the baby to death in the womb. The second pill, Misoprostol, then induces labor.
Chemical abortions involve severe cramping, contractions, and bleeding to expel the baby. These symptoms can last from several hours to several days, and they can be very intense and painful. Many women also experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and headache. Maternal deaths have occurred, most frequently due to infection and undiagnosed ectopic pregnancy.
The abortion business makes a chemical abortion sound safe and simple, but this is a multi-day traumatic process that, according to the Mifeprex medication guide, could take up to 30 days to complete. An incomplete abortion can happen up to 10% of the time during chemical abortions, or even more frequently after the ninth week of pregnancy. If this happens, a woman can try taking more doses of Misoprostol or have a surgical abortion by vacuum or suction aspiration to remove the baby's remains through the cervix.
According to the FDA, from 2000 to 2018, the total number of adverse events related to chemical abortion includes 24 deaths, 97 ectopic pregnancies, 1,042 hospitalizations, 599 blood transfusions, and 412 infections (including 69 severe infections), for a total of 4,195 adverse events. And these are just the events reported to the FDA.
Chemical abortions are not safe or simple. In a chemical abortion, the mother will have to see and dispose of the remains of her aborted child on her own.
As seen in the Unplanned movie, Planned Parenthood gave Abby, one of its own members, little to no warning about the dangers of the abortion pill. To this day, they continue to deceive women by saying that “Medication abortion is very safe.”
Abortion is a violent business, but those currently involved in it are not beyond redemption. Abby’s story testifies to that, as Unplanned shows. Now her organization helps others who want out of the business. Her story is a testament to the power of Christ's forgiveness and the impact it can have on others.
And if you have not yet seen Unplanned, you should.