Anti-abortion activists will bring their “Voices from the Womb” project to Capital Hill on October 13 when they perform ultrasounds on expectant mothers to “introduce” congressional employees to fetuses at 12 weeks and 18 weeks. Their hope is that politicians will “hear the beating heart” and “clearly see their fingers and toes,” which will make all “pro-choice politics and arguments melt away,” according to the group’s leader, Brandi Swindell. Congress and the public are all invited to see the public ultrasounds, after which the project will begin touring at schools, churches and public hearings around the country. Keep reading »
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. Keep reading »
There’s a now famous spoof from The Onion News Network about a fake Arkansas law that would require women to pick a baby name and paint her nursery pink or blue before having an abortion. Well, Michigan is marching towards making that spoof a reality: a Republican state senator has proposed a bill that would require doctors performing an abortion to do an ultrasound, offer to describe the fetus’ current stage of development, offer an opportunity to listen to any detectable heartbeat, and offer a hard copy of the ultrasound image. (“Keepsake ultrasound” is the macabre, but fitting, moniker of the Michigan Messenger newspaper.)
A woman can refuse any of these intentionally heart-tugging actions, but she would still have to sign a statement acknowledging these offers had been made. Keep reading »
The “Woman’s Right to Know Act” sounds so innocuous, doesn’t it? Of course women have a right to know! Alas, when it comes to restricting abortion access, it’s never innocuous.
The “Woman’s Right to Know Act,” passed by a Florida House subcommittee on Tuesday, would require women to view an ultrasound of her fetus before an abortion, or sign paperwork saying she had been offered the ultrasound but refused to see it. Rape and incest victims would have to provide proof that a crime had been committed against them if they wanted to opt out. Because, you know, making some poor teen girl prove she was impregnanted by her father is so compassionate and all. Keep reading »