The news has been full of pro-life laws over the past few weeks. I recently wrote an article about the reaction of Planned Parenthood to the organization’s loss of a lawsuit against the pro-life law in South Dakota, which mainly involved informed consent regarding the link between abortion and suicide.
Unfortunately, however, this week saw the setback of two pro-life bills. One involved a lawsuit against an Arizona law, which would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy not only based on fetal pain, but also because abortions which occur this late in term can be dangerous for women. Thus, the law was called “The Mother’s Health and Safety Act.”
While the bill was upheld a few days ago by a federal judge in Arizona in order for the bill to go into effect on August 2, it was halted at the last moment by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, only two days later, on August 1. Live Action News has just published a post about this lawsuit.
On July 31, the The D.C. Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 3803) was up for vote in the House, and while it gained a majority, it failed to capture the two-thirds vote. The final vote was 220-154, mostly along party lines. While it failed to acquire the necessary amount of votes, Michael New points out that such a necessity actually benefits the bill because then there is no room to allow for unnecessary amendments.
With the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals striking down the bill in Arizona and the 6 Republicans and 148 Democrats voting against H.R. 3803, is the abortion industry to blame (or commend)? Many pro-abortion organizations think so.
The lawsuit against “The Mother’s Health and Safety Act” was filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). While the ACLU does not focus solely on the issue of abortion, it is a pro-abortion organization. The following is a statement from Nancy Northup, President and CEO of CRR and comes from the organization’s website:
Today’s decision by the Ninth Circuit is a vital reaffirmation of the constitutional protections for reproductive rights that have been upheld by the United States Supreme Court for nearly 40 years.
We have fought to keep all medical options, including abortion, available to every woman facing devastating complications in her pregnancy, and today we have won a critical victory.
We will continue this battle now to ensure that the private and personal decisions of Arizona women are not subject to arbitrary and dangerous restrictions advanced by an extreme anti-choice agenda.
The last sentence is especially telling in showing how pro-aborts really view this bill as a piece of legislation that restricts abortion in any way. In her own words, the primary focus is how it represents “an extreme anti-choice agenda” and has “arbitrary and dangerous restrictions” to advance this so-called agenda. While Ms. Northup may use such choice words to describe this bill, the fact of the matter is that this bill seeks to protect not only the unborn, but women as well. In such a statement it may seem that the only way to stand up for women and for “all medical options” is to include abortion and “reproductive rights.” I don’t think that Ms. Northup much cares that the title of the bill is “The Mother’s Health and Safety Act,” and I doubt that she sees any relevance to its title and how it protects the health and safety of a woman.
What the Center for Reproductive Rights calls “dangerous” in such a statement includes a prohibition on abortion past 20 weeks – not only because of pain felt by the pre-born child, but also because of safety risks to the mother. This comes from evidence that there are greater complications for a mother who has an abortion later in her pregnancy. It also establishes an informed consent website. Yet such a bill is said to be full of “arbitrary and dangerous restrictions” and involve “an extreme anti-choice agenda”? It is a wonder that the Center for Reproductive Rights and the ACLU have even read and are discussing the same bill, then.
In regards to the recently defeated H.R. 3803 bill, the National Organization for Women (NOW) not only is taking credit and claiming victory in defeat of the bill, but makes a political statement in calling for defeat of those who voted in favor. This should be kept in mind next time a person or organization says that it is the GOP or pro-lifers who are acting out of political motivation, just like House Democrat Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) said about this bill.The following is a statement from NOW President Terry O’Neill, which can be found on the organization’s website:
Today, extremists in Congress continued their War on Women by pressing for legislation that would criminalize abortions in the nation’s capital after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Sponsored by Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.), the D.C. 20-Week Abortion Ban would have imposed federal fines and up to two years’ imprisonment for doctors, without exceptions for rape, incest or the pregnant woman’s health.
NOW and its allies worked around the clock to defeat the bill, and I am gratified that we succeeded. The next step is to replace those who voted for it with candidates who respect women’s fundamental right to make their own reproductive health care decisions.
The D.C. 20-week abortion ban is yet another example of House conservatives placing women’s health at risk as they pursue their reckless War on Women. The proposed ban, moreover, was a clear infringement of the District’s right to home rule, and yet another outrageous example of the radical right using D.C.’s lack of statehood as an excuse to set a federal precedent that chips away at Roe v. Wade.
Rep. Franks and the 220 representatives who voted for this divisive anti-woman bill have no business interfering with the private decisions a woman makes with her doctor. More importantly, they have no place in the House of Representatives.
From now to November, NOW activists will be working to defeat those who voted for this appalling bill and replace them with those who support our rights.
This statement is full of potent words to describe this bill and those who supported it, including “extremists,” “reckless,” “radical right,” “divisive anti-woman bill,” and “appalling.” All terms are used to describe what is a bill which is similar to the Arizona bill in that it outlaws abortion after 20 weeks based on scientific testimony that an unborn baby can feel pain at this point. To limit abortions after 20 weeks because of scientific evidence should not be considered extreme. An unborn child at this age appears increasingly more humanized. The unborn child at this age is developing more rapidly and looks even more similar to premature babies who are born. He or she may also be viable outside of the womb in just a few short weeks. Rational pro-choicers I would like to think do not advocate for abortion because it causes pain and suffering for the unborn child. Rather, they seek to provide a woman with options when it comes to whether or not she will carry her pregnancy to term. A bill such as this would not all out end abortion. It would limit abortion past 20 weeks, for the sake of the mother as well, and would still allow a woman to seek out and have an abortion prior to this 20 week period. This law is even in place already in a few states. What Terry O’Neill may not know or may ignore is the fact that the opposite political effect may in fact happen. As Douglas Johnson is said to have mentioned, it is the 154 representatives who will have to explain their vote. The LifeNews article where Johnson is mentioned also includes numbers from a poll taken by the National Right to Life Committee:
A recent poll commissioned by the National Right to Life Committee found that 63 percent of Americans, and 70 percent of women, support legislation to ban abortions past the point at which unborn children feel pain. The NRLC poll also found that American women, by an overwhelming majority of 62-27 percent, would be more likely to vote for lawmakers who support this bill.
Most who are against abortion know that such passage of either of these bills would be a victory. Even if it is not the desired outcome of the overturning of Roe v. Wade just yet, it at least limits abortion based on evidence with a possibility that both sides could hopefully find common ground on if the result is less women dying.
Most pro-lifers believe that abortion at any stage is wrong because it takes the life of an unborn human being. Most pro-choicers disagree on the belief that the mother’s womb contains just a blob of tissue.
The common ground should at least be that abortion can and does hurt women. And it has a greater risk of doing so later in term. Evidence and studies about effects from abortion such as mental health or a suicide link are often disputed. But if a woman dies or has a physical injury from abortion, that cannot so much be disputed.
If such bills went into effect, they would not ban abortion before 20 weeks. Women would still be able to get an abortion. They would just be able to get an abortion only before 20 weeks because of the pain the unborn child would feel after that and out of safety to themselves. How is that “continu[ing] their War on Women”?
Such bills are not continuing a “War on Women.” It’s time to call out the issues here for what they really are. Such bills are a “War on Abortion.” And abortion, in many ways, with the death of girls not yet born and of Ms. Tonya Reaves, has shown to actually be the real “War on Women.” Thus, even if such organizations as the Center for Reproductive Rights and the National Organization for Women, which even has the word “Women” in its name, claim to be fighting for women’s rights, they are really fighting more for abortion rights. And by opposing a bill that a majority of Americans, and of women, support, they are really the extreme and radical ones in this situation.
I would like to hear from an ordinary supporter or volunteer for one of these organizations. I don’t want to hear from the CEO or the president, both of whom stand to gain from such legislation failing. I want to hear from a regular pro-choicer, preferably who has read up on both of the bills. What cause is there to call either of these bills so extreme? What cause is there to consider those who sponsor or voted for either of these bills so extreme? Is it merely because they hold a different viewpoint?
In an ideal world, if these organizations actually fought for the women they claim to fight for in their statements, rather than for abortion, one could maybe even expect such organizations to support either of these bills rather than filing lawsuits and celebrating defeat. Alas, this cannot be expected, because it all comes down to supporting, even worshiping, the altar of abortion on demand and without any restrictions.
CRR, NOW, and other similar organizations are so beholden, and at an extreme level, to this ideology of abortion, which is the real reason why they so strong oppose both of these bills. These are organizations that fight not only for the “right” to abortion, which they certainly do, but as they have shown to do in speaking out against these seemingly common sense bills with a majority in support of them, they will fight against any limitations whatsoever. Both of these bills are dangerous then, certainly. They are dangerous to abortion, though, not to women. Such organizations have to make a decision as to whom and what they are going to really fight for: women or abortion?