Twenty-four-year-old Tonya Reaves was married with a child. She had an abortion on Friday and never returned home, her death ruled an "accident." Her family is looking for answers and has hired an attorney. Planned Parenthood is working on damage control by assuring people that abortions are safe and pro-life politicians are asking hard questions.
The tragedy has quickly turned into a blame game, as the pro-abortion activists are pointing at the "right-wing" for "exploiting" the young women's death; while pro-life advocates are questioning the safety of the procedure for the mother.
One article accuses the abortion provider of "downplaying the tragedy" by Planned Parenthood spokespersons and the mainstream media, as every statement or article about Tonya Reaves seems to mention the "safety" of abortion, while simultaneously offering condolences. Additionally, the integrity of the data for abortion statistics is horrendous, making it difficult to gain worthwhile data.
Another article claims that the "right-wing" is using the opportunity to attack women's "reproductive rights." The Salon piece reveals that Cliff Stearns (R-FL) said, "...I would like to find out how they spend our half a billion dollars, and I would also like to explore some of the safety aspects, particularly in light of this death, of this tragedy." It is interesting that this statement is considered as "exploiting" a tragedy, but repeatedly touting abortion's safety record is just fine. Ironically, the inevitable calls for gun-control after every high-profile shooting never seems to warrant that same criticism.
Ms. Reaves's death has a strange timeline, as she received her abortion at 11:00 a.m., but was not taken to the hospital until 4:30 p.m., after she began to hemorrhage. She was given an additional abortion (perhaps they did not fully remove the baby the first time?) at the hospital and then a perforation was discovered and was taken back to surgery at 10:12 p.m...she was pronounced dead at 11:20 p.m., 12 hours after the first abortion.
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports that in 2007, (the most recent year for which data were available), six women died as a result of abortions. One repeated criticism about abortion related deaths of the mother is that the death certificates often do not indicate that the death was the result of the abortion.
"It happened so fast," said Tonya's sister, Toni Reaves. "She was just fine one day -- and then the next day she was gone. We're just trying to figure out what happened." If any lessons are to be learned from this tragedy, it is that abortion providers should be accountable for proper documentation of abortions.