In Florida, America’s dingleberry, the State House is currently
using wasting taxpayer money on passing a bill that will hopefully fail in the Senate. House Bill 277 would require any woman seeking an abortion to wait 24 hours after having an ultrasound to have the procedure (like many other states have insipidly done before). The provision goes further, HB 277 would also require all clinics providing abortion services to be doctor-owned (unlike clinics in the state that provide any other services, which can be owned by any old person. Including the state’s governor, a non-doctor who himself owns several clinics, oh, and Planned Parenthood). The bill would require any procedure that occurs after 20 weeks to involve administering anesthesia to the fetus (even though it’s never been scientifically established that fetuses at that stage in development are capable of feeling pain). Doctors must additionally undergo three hours of special ethics training per year and collect an excessive amount of data on each procedure, including patient age, race, gestational age of the fetus, number of previous live births, marital status, previous number of abortions, and hometown, which could feasibly be used to identify individual women. Small government!
Georgia has a bomb of a law going through legislation as well. HB 954 would outright ban abortions after 20 weeks unless they threatened the life or health of the mother on the false assumption that fetuses can feel pain at that point in gestation. Opponents argue that in some cases, this will force women to carry stillborn fetuses to term. The bill passed the State House. I don’t think I need to point out the danger for sepsis here.
The debate in Pennsylvania over some really crappy legislation has been postponed indefinitely, thanks to a group of doctors who protested the measure. This bill would have required women to receive an ultrasound before terminating a pregnancy, and instructed doctors to place the viewing screen in the field of vision of the woman. Oh, but fear not, in a generous move the law would have allowed the woman to look away if she wished, however this bill would require the technician to indicate in writing whether the woman looked at the image or refused. You know, just so the state could have a record of whether or not she was an evil babykilling slut or not. The law would have also required transvaginal ultrasounds for women receiving abortions too early in the pregnancy for the typical abdominal device to work. The Pennsylvania Medical Society wrote to state lawmakers, asking if legislators had better things to do with with their time than legislate diagnostic procedure to medical professionals. A vote on the bill has been indefinitely delayed.
Ahh Virginia. As we know, last week, state lawmakers cringed away from a law that would have required transvaginal – or, in the words of Republican Dave Albo, “trans-v” – ultrasounds for many women seeking abortions. Now there’s an exception written into the law that would give rape and incest victims an out, but only if they reported the crime to the police. It’s still pretty goddamn stupid, even though the government is no longer requiring women in Virginia to have a medical wand inserted into them by doctors. And here’s an idea, if you can’t even say the word ‘vagina’, you have absolutely no business trying to make laws about it.
In Alabama they’re spinning their wheels as well. A proposal very similar to the one in Virginia is also in danger of failing (haha, like that danger is a bad thing). The bill, proposed by Republican named Clay Scofield (no relation to Wentworth Miller’s famous character Michael), would have required women to view sonogram images before receiving an abortion and would have required trans-vaginal ultrasounds in early pregnancies. The bill passed out of committee 4-1, but once it got to Republican Governor Robert Bentley, he said, uh, no. Within a day, Scofield promised to change the bill, promising to let women pick what kind of ultrasound they wanted before having an abortion. I choose none. Is that on the table? I know my ovulation schedule and I peed on the stick, so I can confirm the date of conception and the fact that I’m pregnant. Done.
Then there’s Oklahoma. The Personhood bill stating that life begins at conception – not birth – has passed the State Senate. Even though those who constructed the bil swear that it wasn’t designed to outlaw abortion (how could it not be?), a new proposed amendment to the state’s constitution definitely. Personhood USA is now on a signature drive to get a Personhood amendment on the November ballot. They have 90 days to collect more than 150,000 signatures. Have we made it illegal to kill animals? I know, yes, in large-scale investigations (people with 22663 cats in the house and the place is covered in shit), people are punished, but when my friend gave her hamster a heart attack by putting it in one of those balls where they roam the house, and the poor thing found the top of the stairs – you know what happens next (little fuzzball was flat on its back, all four limbs sticking straight out) – no one came to accuse her of murder. How many pets are ‘put down’ each year? I argue that they have more life than a fetus (which, again, by definition, is no nore than a parasite for at least half the gestational period).
You may ask why I’m making the comparison to animals? Well, because in our other favorite moral debate of the decade – homosexual marriage – this is where the hatemongers always go. “If we let two men marry, what’s next, he’ll want to marry his dog?” Um…. no. Because marriage – whether straight or gay – is a consentual contract between two thinking and competent adult humans. No one in the history of ever has pushed for legislation to allow animals and humans to wed. But this is a new topic for a different day.