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Today’s Lady News: Utah Bill Would Criminalize Miscarriage From “Reckless” Acts

  • Utah’s House of Representatives and Senate have approved a bill which would criminalize miscarriage caused by an “intentional, knowing, or reckless” act, such as drinking while pregnant. The bill is in response to a 17-year-old Utah girl who, while seven months pregnant, paid a man $150 to beat her up and induce a miscarriage. The girl was not successful and gave the child up for adoption. The Utah bill, which would not criminalize abortions obtained legally, is presently awaiting the governor’s signature. [Salt Lake Tribune, Cleveland Leader]
  • Former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin will headline the National Rifle Association’s annual meeting in Charlotte, North Carolina, this May. [CNN]
  • Oh no! Girl Scout Cookie recall! It’s the Lemon Chalet Cremes, I am sorry to report. The cookies are not thought to be dangerous, but have an unusual taste and smell. [Louisville Business First]

  • Not that this is good news, exactly, but Indiana police have narrowed down the number of women who they believe were unknowingly infected with HIV via Tony Perkins’ sexual relations from possibly 100 to 26. Perkins, 47, could face additional charges for not informing any of his past sexual partners of his HIV positive status, as per a 1993 Indiana state law. So far, none of the women have tested positive for the virus. [USA Today]
  • Lawmakers in Nebraska are seeking to ban abortions after 20 weeks (late-term abortions) on the argument that a fetus can feel pain. Six states — Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Minnesota, Oklahoma and Utah — are presently required to tell women that an abortion causes a fetus pain. [Los Angeles Times]
  • Philadelphia released a warning to health care providers yesterday that the STD syphilis is on the rise amongst young women. From 2008 to 2009, new infections of syphilis rose from 150 to 218, which is a 360 percent increase. [Philadelphia Inquirer]
  • Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA), a former secretary for the Navy, has said he supports Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ intention to repeal the ban on women serving on submarines. Last Friday, Gates presented a letter to Congress stating his intention to repeal the ban and retrofit all submarines to include women’s quarters. [Daily Press]
  • A committee within Kentucky’s House of Representatives killed a bill that would require physicians to show ultrasounds to women who are getting an abortion. [WJTV]
  • Wisconsin’s governor signed the Healthy Youth Act into law yesterday, which requires public schools to teach about birth control in sex ed classes. [Fox11]
  • A journalist works through his issues of not finding female comedians, like Sarah Silverman, funny with the help of The Frisky’s friend, Sara Benincasa. [News & Observer]

INTERNATIONAL

  • Malaysia’s government scolded the country’s largest English-speaking newspaper, The Star, after it wrote an article critical of the punishment of caning that three women recently received. The three women were caned after a court found them guilty of having sex out of wedlock. The Malaysian government could possibly revoke The Star‘s publishing license, which needs to be renewed each year. On Wednesday, The Star removed the critical article from their website and said they did not mean to offend the country’s Muslim government. [MSNBC]
  • India’s government will consider a “women’s reservation bill” in Parliament tomorrow, which will require 33 percent of seats in certain areas of governance be reserved for women. [Times of India]
  • The military of Myanmar (also known as Burma), which runs the county’s government, has been accused by a human rights organization of raping and torturing women in the country’s minority Karen ethnic group. [Al-Jazeera]
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