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South Dakota To Require “Crisis Pregnancy Center” Counseling, 72 Hour Wait, Before An Abortion

You fail at life, South Dakota: the state’s senate has passed a bill that requires a woman wait 72 hours and receive “counseling” from so-called “crisis pregnancy centers” before an abortion. SD’s governor, who is anti-abortion, said he is “inclined” to sign the bill into law.Currently South Dakota has a 24-hour waiting period for an abortion; the new legislation would triple that. Anti-abortion supporters say the extra time is needed so women can supposedly think about ending a pregnancy. But abortion rights advocates recognize that claim is B.S.: waiting periods intentionally try to make obtaining an abortion harder for women. Instead of taking one day off of work/school (or finding a babysitter, etc.) for a procedure, the women instead has to take more days. And because 88 percent of counties in America do not have a clinic that provides abortions, according to ProChoice.org, terminating a pregnancy often means a woman has to travel. Since some impoverished women might be getting an abortion because they can’t afford to care for a child, the need for travel and lodging presents an unfair and unnecessary burden.

The “counseling” requirement at so-called “crisis pregnancy centers” is also a joke. There are different types of CPCs, but many are run by anti-abortion extremists which intentionally appear to look like abortion clinics from the outside but in actuality will dissuade women from ending a pregnancy through any tactic at all. CPCs purposefully seem like actual health clinics because they have an ultrasound machine, but they do not have actual doctors on staff. In an HBO documentary about CPCs, “12 & Delaware” (watch the trailer at the link), employees at a CPC did everything from show women grisly anti-abortion videos about the procedure to lie about how far along in her pregnancy she is. Just this week, New York City’s City Council decided that CPCs must be more transparent in their motives. (Baltimore and Austin, Texas, have passed similar bills.) NYC’s city council demanded that CPCs inform women on advertising and signs in entrances and waiting rooms that they do not actually provide abortions, emergency contraceptives or prenatal care. CPC employees will also be required to provide that information if asked about it over the phone or in person. Yet South Dakota decides this is where its female citizens should go for “counseling”!

It boggles the mind.

Anti-abortion extremists claim things like counseling and waiting periods are necessary for women’s safety, however, perhaps because they so often tout the opinion that abortion providers are money-grubbing quacks preying on poor, defenseless women. You know, just like putting a bunny in a blender!

[New York Times]
[KDLT]
[KSFY]
[ProChoice.org: Access To Abortion]

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