Beginning yesterday, France will provide access to free birth control for teenaged girls ages 15 to 18 without parental notification, as well as reimburse the cost of abortions to all women over age 18.
Pinch me. Am I dreaming? It’s not still April Fools’ Day, right? Keep reading »
Former three-term Senator Alan Simpson of Wyoming is an equal opportunity critic, throwing judgement at both President Obama and his own Republican party. He’s known to be blunt with his opinions (regardless of hate mail) and this past week was no exception. He spoke frankly to a reporter at a local Chamber of Commerce in his hometown of Cody, Wyoming about gay rights, abortion, and why Republicans should stay out of social issues.
In a surprisingly candid comment, Simpson said, “[Abortion] is a hideous thing. It’s terrible. … But it’s a deeply intimate and personal thing. … Men legislators shouldn’t even vote on it.” Wow, that’s not even an opinion that man liberal politicians espouse!
More good Simpson-isms after the jump: Keep reading »
In 2011, Idaho banned abortions after 20 weeks based on the medically unproven claim that at that point in gestation a fetus can feel pain. Back in December 2010, Jennie Linn McCormack purchased RU-486, the abortion pill, online and terminated her pregnancy at 20 or 21 weeks. McCormack was initially charged for breaking a 1972 Idaho law which said a woman couldn’t terminate her own pregnancy; the case against her was dismissed and she won a court order blocking the law from being enforced. She then took up the state’s ban on abortions after 20 weeks. Keep reading »
Texas State Representatives Jodie Laubenberg (
D R) and Jeff Leach (R) have introduced a so-called “fetal pain” bill called The Preborn Pain Act, which would ban abortions after 20 weeks, claiming that a fetus, which is called an “unborn child” in the bill, can feel pain. The bill, if passed, would shorten the window of time that a woman can terminate an unwanted pregnancy by seven weeks.
The Texas Right To Life has claimed that fetuses feel “torturous pain” in abortion. But that claim holds no ground in, well, science. The Journal of The American Medical Association‘s 2005 review doesn’t show evidence of fetuses feeling any pain before the third trimester at the earliest. Additionally, the bill doesn’t require a woman to be absolutely positively 20 weeks pregnant. If the woman is unsure of how many weeks along she is, but it’s probable it could be 20 weeks, she will still be unable to terminate her pregnancy.
And that’s not even the worst part of the bill. Keep reading »
This is how anti-abortion extremists try to control women’s bodies: they use state legislatures to create bogus and medically unnecessary laws that make it very, very difficult for a woman to have an abortion.
Case in point? South Dakota, which already requires a 72-hour waiting period before an abortion, advanced a bill in its state Senate yesterday to remove weekends and holidays from those 72 hours, meaning women have to wait even longer.
Why do anti-abortion extremists do this? Because South Dakota only has one abortion clinic and it’s a medium-sized state, meaning many women have to travel in order to get the procedure. And traveling means finding childcare, taking time off work, and dealing with other responsibilities. Waiting periods — especially loooong waiting periods which require at least two trips to the doctor — are intended to make it hella difficult for women to get to the clinic. If the governor signs this bill into law, South Dakota would have the longest waiting periods for abortion in the country. Keep reading »
Mostly when we discuss the “right to choose,” we focus on the right to safe and legal access to abortion. We mostly focus abortion as the “choice” because a woman’s right to make her own family planning decisions is constantly under attack from conservative politicians and the anti-abortion movement, both of which are pickled with the Religious Right.
But a woman’s right to make her own family planning decisions also includes the choice make a family — even, in a recent case out of Texas, if the woman in question is a pregnant 16-year-old girl whose parents were trying to force her to have an abortion. Keep reading »