Paul Ryan is at it again. He is supporting yet another “personhood” bill that would grant all the legal and constitutional attributes and privileges of personhood to a one-celled human embryo. Previous personhood bills have been soundly defeated in several states, including Montana, North Dakota, Colorado and socially conservative Mississippi. Mr. Ryan also sponsored a bill that was nicknamed “let women die” because it would allow hospitals to refuse to allow a woman emergency abortion care, even if her life were in danger.
Not only would these laws, if passed, prevent abortion in most cases, they would also result in banning some forms of birth control. The birth control pill and the IUD do not prevent eggs from becoming fertilized, they simply prevent the fertilized egg from implanting in the lining of the uterus. Medical science does not consider a woman to be pregnant until the egg is securely implanted in the uterus. Personhood bills would consider a woman pregnant before medical science does. Do these politicians actually believe the know more about medical science that physicians do?
What is being forgotten in this emotionally charged discussion is the rights of the woman. Do women lose their rights the moment an egg is fertilized? Why would a single-celled embryo have more rights that I do?
New Mexico is trying to pass a law that would prosecute rape victims who have an abortion for “tampering with evidence”. Giving birth isn’t evidence of rape, it’s just evidence of pregnancy. Evidence of rape includes bruises, scratches and injuries. Rape kits done at a hospital provide evidence of rape. If they want to determine paternity, you don’t need to carry a pregnancy to term to do that. If a rape victim has an abortion, tissue from that procedure carries the DNA of the rapist. The New Mexico bill would allow prison sentences of up to three years for any rape victim who has an abortion and for the physician who performs it. If the purpose of this “evidence” is to determine paternity, let’s start by putting the DNA of every male in the country into a national database. It will be very easy to determine paternity. Men don’t think the government should have their DNA? Too bad…women don’t think the government should force us to become mothers. If the government is going to control the lives of women, you can be sure we will force it to control the lives of men, too!
Wisconsin lawmakers have imposed restrictions on chemical abortions, including a waiting period. These are abortions caused by taking medication prescribed by a physician. They are performed very early in the pregnancy, can be done at home in privacy, and are extremely safe. Wisconsin is forcing women to wait longer to end a pregnancy, making it necessary to have a surgical abortion. This only adds stress to the woman and her partner. Surgical procedures are still very safe, but slightly riskier than chemical ones, as there is always the chance of infection.
We are quite possibly heading to forced parenthood. Any woman who becomes pregnant, either rape or accident, will be forced to become a mother. There is a flip side to this….men will be forced to become fathers. How many of you men believe the government has the right to force you to be a father? Think about it….every time you have a sexual encounter you will run the risk of your government forcing you to be a father. Birth control fails. IUD’s, the pill, condoms….all have a certain failure rate.
We need to consider not only the rights of women to choose when or if to become a mother, but the rights of men to make a choice to become a father. Will the government force these men to be involved in their child’s life? Will they be strict in forcing them to pay child support? Several states already give rapists the right to sue for visitation rights and even custody. Apparently the rights of men, even rapists, outweigh the rights of their victims, who are women. Now the playing field will be leveled to a certain degree. Will men stand for allowing their government to force them to become fathers? I doubt it. It should be interesting.
The goal of the conservatives in this country is to eliminate abortion. They may succeed in making it illegal, but we all know that desperate women in desperate situations will try to end their pregnancy. What the conservatives will succeed in is causing women to die from unsafe abortions.
Conservatives and liberals alike would like to reduce the number of abortions performed in this country. It has been shown that abstinence only education doesn’t work. The way to reduced unplanned pregnancies and abortions is to provide thorough sex education in schools. The states with the highest rate of teen pregnancies are the ones that teach abstinence only. Teenagers have raging hormones. They think they’re in love. If they have the knowledge to prevent pregnancy, most of them will use it. Sex education and access to birth control. That’s what this country needs. Not politicians forcing parenthood on us against our will. All of us would like to have a less intrusive government. Forcing parenthood on us? That’s incredibly intrusive.