Category Archives: The Americas

The Western Hemisphere’s New Drug

By Colin Vaida

A Quiet Inquisition

Last month, New York City’s IFC Center invited locals to view Human Rights Watch’s annual film festival. The festival covered a number of topics, including one film that discovered A Quiet Inquisition in the heart of Central America. The film follows the courageous story of Dr. Carla Cerrato OBGYN and sets out to explore Nicaragua’s recently passed anti-abortion law. The law prohibits abortions in any case, as long as the fetus is still alive. Despite the law, Cerrato decides to perform abortions in order to save pregnant women’s lives. This procedure of inducing pregnancy in order to protect the pregnant woman’s health is medically known as a therapeutic abortion. Though the law has instilled fear in patients and doctors it has not been used in any convictions. Without any convictions since the law was enacted, consequences of breaching the law remain uncertain and ambiguous. Cerrato, despite uncertainty and palpable fear, decidedly acts in favor of both national and international medical standards to protect the life of the pregnant mother. Continue reading The Western Hemisphere’s New Drug