Doctors Can’t Force Texas Women To View Ultrasound Before Abortions, Judge Rules

A federal judge has struck down parts of an extreme Texas law going that would require a doctor to show a woman — including a rape victim — an ultrasound, describe the development of the fetus, and give her headphones to listen to a fetal heartbeat before an abortion. Doctors who refused to do these things to their patients — cruel by any compassionate standard — would have been penalized. An injunction issued yesterday blocks the state from enforcing penalties on both doctors and patients.

The judge ruled aspects of the law, which goes into effect on Thursday, were “unconstitutionally vague” and violate the free speech of both the doctor and the patient by requiring “government-mandated speech.” In his decision, the judge wrote the law “compels physicians to advance an ideological agenda with which they may not agree, regardless of any medical necessity, and irrespective of whether the pregnant women wish to listen.” He continued, “The court is inclined to agree with (the) defendants’ characterization that (the) “plaintiffs have chosen to throw everything at the wall and hope something sticks.” That’s how much respect these anti-abortion extremists have for you, ladies.The Center for Reproductive Rights filed the lawsuit and rejoiced yesterday at the decision. “Today’s ruling is a huge victory for women in Texas and a clear signal to the state legislature that it went too far when it passed this law,” said the center’s president. “Politicians have no business telling doctors how to practice medicine or meddling in women’s private medical decisions.” Damn straight, sister.

Oh, the icing on the cake of this cruel and manipulative law? It was signed into effect by Texas governor/current GOP presidential wannabe Rick Perry, who has claimed women need to hear a heartbeat, etc., 24 hours before the scheduled abortion so they can have “all the facts” before they decide to terminate a pregnancy. What an insult to women.

[Center For Reproductive Rights]
[USA Today]
[My San Antonio]

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