Mississippi is one state that has made great gains towards protecting both preborn babies and women. In March, the state offically banned abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The state has also defunded Planned Parenthood, and banned violent, dismemberment abortions. The state also has made efforts to protect women, by requiring abortionists to be board-certified OB/GYNs, and also required abortionists to have admitting privileges at an area hospital, although the Supreme Court blocked the admitting privileges portion of the law. Women are also required to make two separate trips to the facility — one before the procedure — and must wait 24 hours after receiving counseling.
There is currently only one abortion facility left in Mississippi: Jackson Women’s Health Organization. And this facility is suing to have these common-sense, widely-supported restrictions overturned.
Initially, the facility’s owner, Diane Derzis, only sued to have the 15-week abortion ban overturned. But she has now expanded her challenge, also attacking the laws requiring a waiting period, the two separate trips required to have an abortion, the counseling mandate, and the requirement that abortions be performed by a licensed OB/GYN. “These laws are designed for one purpose only, and that’s to put us out of business as well as removing a woman’s right to decide her future,” said Derzis, who has stated in the past that she believes God wants her to do abortions.
Pro-abortion activists have a vested interest in seeing Mississippi’s 15-week ban fail; if it does, they can use Mississippi as a blueprint on how to attack other states which have banned second or third trimester abortions. According to the Seattle Times, Jackson Women’s Health committed 78 abortions on babies that were 15 weeks or older. These abortions are usually dilation and evacuation, or D&E, procedures, which are violent and gruesome deaths for babies who can feel pain. Dr. Anthony Levatino, a former abortionist, explains the D&E, typically committed between 13 and 24 weeks of pregnancy, in the video below:
Derzis has also fought Mississippi’s abortion regulations tooth and nail, likely because she has a history of failing to meet health and safety standards. Derzis previously owned a facility in Alabama which sent three women to the hospital on one day alone, causing the facility to be forcibly closed; after it was inspected, there were 76 pages in health code violations. Before it was blocked, Derzis did not get into compliance with Mississippi’s admitting privilege law, either. Derzis and her shoddy facilities are exactly who Mississippi’s women need to be protected from.
While the abortion industry wrings its hands over Mississippi’s so-called extremism, it ignores the reality. Mississippi’s abortion laws are in line with existing abortion laws around the world; the United States is the rarity, with its permissiveness towards abortion. Polling also consistently shows that Americans support heavy restrictions on abortion, even if they want it to remain legal. Most people want it to be highly regulated and to happen only in rare circumstances. A majority of Americans think abortion is morally wrong, want it banned after the first trimester except in very rare circumstances, and banned completely after 20 weeks. They also support other restrictions, like waiting periods, counseling, and informed consent laws.
So it seems that Mississippi is only extreme on abortion to the actual extremists in the abortion industry. But their cries to keep abortion out of back alleys and away from butchers mean nothing if they continue to oppose laws like the ones in place in Mississippi. Because without them, what’s the difference?