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Greta Thunberg shares powerfully honest pie chart listing all the reasons women get abortions

The chart efficiently dismantles the controversy over a woman's right to choose by outlining four reasons women choose to terminate pregnancies.

Greta Thunberg shares powerfully honest pie chart listing all the reasons women get abortions
Image source: Getty Images

Swedish teen climate activist Greta Thunberg weighed in on the dispute over the radical Texas abortion law recently using a pie chart showing the "reasons why women have abortions." Although meant to be satire, the chart efficiently dismantles the controversy over a woman's right to choose by outlining four reasons women choose to terminate pregnancies. "Personal choice" occupied most of the chart with 60% while "Not your Concern" and "Mind Your Business" came in at 10 and 8 percentages respectively. The second-most common reason really drove the message home as "Fu*k off" took over 22% of the chart.



 

Thunberg's tweet came in the wake of the Supreme Court refusing to block Texas' draconian new abortion law that bans abortions as early as six weeks into pregnancy. The bill — the most restrictive anti-abortion legislation in decades — that went into effect last week reads: "A physician may not knowingly perform or induce an abortion on a pregnant woman if the physician detected a fetal heartbeat for the unborn child." According to NPR, the law defines "fetal heartbeat" as "cardiac activity or the steady and repetitive rhythmic contraction of the fetal heart within the gestational sac" and claims that a pregnant woman could use that signal to determine "the likelihood of her unborn child surviving to full-term birth."



 

However, physicians who specialize in reproductive health have called out the legislation's use of the medical-sounding term "fetal heartbeat" as misleading. "When I use a stethoscope to listen to an [adult] patient's heart, the sound that I'm hearing is caused by the opening and closing of the cardiac valves," explained Dr. Nisha Verma, an OB-GYN who specializes in abortion care and works at the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. "At six weeks of gestation, those valves don't exist. The flickering that we're seeing on the ultrasound that early in the development of the pregnancy is actually electrical activity, and the sound that you 'hear' is actually manufactured by the ultrasound machine."



 



 



 

Dr. Jennifer Kerns, an OB-GYN and associate professor at the University of California, San Francisco, supported Dr. Verma's claim that the use of "the term 'fetal heartbeat' is pretty misleading." "What we're really detecting is a grouping of cells that are initiating some electrical activity," she said. "In no way is this detecting a functional cardiovascular system or a functional heart." Kerns clarified that although health care providers might use the term "fetal heartbeat" while talking to patients during this early stage of pregnancy, it isn't an actual clinical term.



 

"This is a term that is not widely used in medicine," Kern said. "I think this is an example of where we are sometimes trying to translate medical lingo in a way that patients can understand, and this is a really unfortunate side effect of this type of translation." She went on to explain that at six weeks of gestation, the same is true for the term "fetus" as well. "Embryo" is the accurate scientific term for that stage of development. Obstetricians don't typically start using the term "fetus" until at least eight weeks into the pregnancy.



 

"The term 'fetus' certainly evokes images of a well-formed baby, so it's advantageous to use that term instead of 'embryo' — which may not be as easy for the public to feel strongly about since embryos don't look like a baby," Kern said. "So those terms are very purposefully used [in these laws] — and are also misleading."