The debate on emergency contraception/morning-after pill in Malta must be confusing all those trying to make sense of the conflicting statements presented in the local media. It is so difficult to analyse facts when they are completely masked in doublespeak and when redefinition of terms come into play. This is grossly unfair to the general public who deserve to know the truth.
Life Network Foundation Malta, as an interested party, recently attempted to give a presentation of facts at the conjoined parliamentary committee discussing this issue. Unfortunately, we were constantly interrupted and most of the committee did not seem to be interested in the facts or the credibility of the science presented. This was most unjust as our only possibility to contribute as an NGO is through these parliamentary committees.
It bears restating that scientific evidence underpinned by all textbooks on embryology, tell us that a new human life starts with the fertilisation of an egg by a sperm. This new single cell organism, called a zygote, starts to multiply and grow as it travels down the fallopian tube to implant itself in the uterus. Implantation of the embryo occurs about the fifth to the 12th day of its life.
In 1965, the American College of Gynaecologists (ACOG) decided to redefine pregnancy as “established only at the conclusion of implantation of a fertilised egg”. According to this definition any drug/device that endangers the life of the embryo in the first two weeks of life is not an abortifacient since according to this definition pregnancy has to be established first.
This definition purposely ignores the first two weeks of human embryonic life. However, in this country, under the Embryo Protection Act, embryonic life is protected from conception.
The ACOG defines abortifacient as “an agent that disturbs an embryo already implanted in the uterine lining, after a pregnancy has been established”. The ACOG is a pro-abortion organisation that sees nothing wrong with aborting a child in utero.
Thankfully, in the US there is also the American Association of Pro-life Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (AAPLOG), who do not accept the new redefinitions of the ACOG. Accordingly, the AAPLOG “reaffirm the unique value and dignity of individual human life in all stages of growth and development from fertilization onward”. The newly conceived life is acknowledged and protected.
The ACOG wrongly defines as contraceptive both “an agent which prevents fertilisation of an egg” and also one that “prevents implantation of a fertilised egg, preventing a pregnancy from taking place”. This is aborting a new life before implantation.
Most institutions see no problem with abortion. When quoting studies, it is imperative to know who is sponsoring the research, what their stand on life is, and what they mean by ‘not abortifacient’.
The Medicines Authority Regulator was more intent on endorsing the emergency contraceptives and mentioning product characteristics than listening to the discussion on the anti-life risks involved.
The authority should have remained impartial, heard all the sides and then pronounced its stance.
At no point was there any acknowledgement of Malta’s Embryo Protection Act or its endorsement.
Life Network Foundation Malta is currently sending printed copies of the presentation and scientific papers attesting to the abortifacient effects of emergency contraception to all members of Parliament.
A dedicated section on MAPs has been set up on http://staging-lifenetwork.stagingcloud.co/index.php/resources/map .
Life Network Foundation Malta acknowledges and thanks Donna Harrison from AAPLOG for her assistance in this presentation. The debate on emergency contraception has been shamelessly camouflaged in deception.
Protection of human embryonic life is not being given centre stage. The public should be aware of this. This devious campaign is a denial of the humanity of the first two weeks of embryonic life.
Its aim is to leave a window open to the trafficking, disposal, selection, donation and freezing of embryonic human beings at will, embarking on the road to abortion. This means altering the stand that Malta has always had in providing a safe haven for the unborn from conception.
This was not in the electoral manifesto of either political party and our parliamentary representatives are urged to take up their responsibility in defending life from conception and to make their stand publicly.
Dr. Miriam Sciberras is chairwoman of Life Network Foundation Malta.