The American left celebrates Europe as a Platonic ideal society toward which we should strive. They tout the universal healthcare, strict gun laws, generous social welfare, economic progressivism, speech codes, and mass transit infrastructure. So surely Europe must have equally progressive abortion laws (i.e., none at all), right? Wrong. In fact, Europe’s various restrictions on abortion make the proposed law in Texas seem positively laissez-faire in comparison.
Of the 27 European Union nations, 18 permit abortion on demand, but almost all only up to 12 weeks of pregnancy. After that, nearly all require there be a threat to the life, health of the mother, or incurable ailment present in the child. Not a single European nation allows abortion on demand at any point in the pregnancy for any reason.
Ireland allows abortion only to save the life of the mother. Portugal, Spain, and the Czech Republican allow it only to preserve the mother’s life or health. Many other European countries require specific economic or “social” reasons, but still have restrictions on when it can be performed. Malta bans abortion altogether.
More than half of EU nations have restrictions on the reasons abortions are allowed, where they can be performed, and what procedures must be followed beforehand. Five nations, including socialist haven Sweden, require counseling. Germany even requires that counseling to include that the child has the right to be born, and others require providing information about other options to spare his life. Eight, including the UK, require abortions be performed in a hospital or other approved facility. Three require a 7 or 5-day waiting period for reflection before receiving an abortion.
So despite their status as a tiny fringe minority, the American abortion-industrial complex treats the Texas proposal for a 20-week limit (with exceptions further along) and safety regulations as an unprecedented attack on the “rights” of women. In fact, Texas is really just following the example of enlightened Europe.