This is a bit of a musing based in part on the Arizona abortion bill thread. Abortion procedures (D&C's, etc) are generally medical procedures (or in some cases are done through prescription medications such as Plan B). In general, there is an active public dialog about the safety, efficacy, and pros/cons of various procedures -- there has been vigorous public discussion in the past two years over... the value of prostate cancer screening, the benefits of aggressively pursuing spinal surgeries, the benefits of cardiac stent placement, etc. This public dialog plays an important oversight role in our culture, and in many of these cases, has led or is leading to changes in the way medicine and surgical arts are being practiced. Sometimes, these debates are polarized and include people who have extremely strong pre-motivated views that are not very open to debate (e.g. that autism or ADHD are not real disorders, that vaccines cause autism, that all psychiatric treatment is extremely subjective, or more personally, that the surgery they underwent is highly advisable or inadvisable because they did or did not benefit from it), but mostly these debates end up being fairly active and productive. My question is whether, because of the extent of polarity in discussing the legality abortion, an important oversight function that would normally exist in public health -- the people overseeing the safety, efficacy, and best practice of a surgical or medical treatment or procedure -- is lacking when it comes to abortion, and if so, what the risks are of this and how they can be managed. This isn't a rhetorical question, and I myself (if not obviously) support choice as well as a healthcare provider (also if not obviously, who does not perform D&C's). As I did mention, this was brought on to some extent by the Arizona legislation -- without getting into the issue of whether any of the regulations on abortion practices outlined in that bill were reasonable to me, the question that came to mind was, what if there were a regulation on abortion that was proposed that I thought was scientifically rigorous and well advised? Would we even be able to know it when we see it, and would we endorse it as proponents of choice?