In the state of Texas, if you want to have an abortion you have to do so much more than just locate a clinic and scrounge up a few hundred dollars to pay for the procedure. Here are some of the hoops you have to jump through:
- Listen to lecture on “fetal pain” (although it has been scientifically proven that fetuses cannot feel pain until 23 weeks).
- 24 hour waiting period … so get ready to take not one, but two days off from work, ladies!
- Despite the National Cancer Institute concluding that there is no link between abortion and breast cancer, get ready for a stimulating lecture on the topic.
- Every woman feels different emotions after an abortion – some even feel relief to no longer be pregnant! – but in Texas and five other states, you will be told that you will feel depressed, and may even be suicidal post abortion.
Louisiana leaves out the psycho-babble and breast cancer fiction, but adds in a required ultrasound. Alaska likes to spin a good yarn, and tells women seeking abortions in Sarah Palin’s homeland that they will get breast cancer … right after they cause the fetus (no matter how small) pain while murdering it.
Texas Governor Rick Perry wants to up the ante for women seeking an abortion by requiring them to undergo a sonogram at least 24 hours prior to accessing a legal abortion. He wants it so badly, in fact, that he has made his bill, Senate 16, into “emergency legislation” that the state legislators must decide on within 30 days.
Is there a reason for any of these steps? No. Getting an abortion is not a scavenger hunt, nor is it an application to college or for a summer job.
Getting an abortion is not the prize at the end of an over the top game show. It is a necessity for the millions of women who seek them, which makes it all the more outrageous that anyone, let alone someone who was elected to protect the best interests of his or her constituents, would spend their time, energy, and money throwing up hurdles that are designed to keep women from obtaining the medical procedure they need.
Time and money that should be spent educating children that actually exist, not invading their citizen’s bodies.
Hurdles that keep women from obtaining medical procedures that they need. Hurdles that require women to skip work, undergo invasive procedures, and listen to outright lies, in order to get to the prize: having the abortion that they are entitled to have. This prize does not come free – none of these states are offering women financial assistance to pay for the procedure, childcare, or groceries when they miss work for not one, but two appointments. Appointments made longer thanks to the mandatory story telling segment.
What is most shocking is not the outrageous roadblocks that the states have thrown up to keep women from having abortions, but how many states have jumped on this misogynistic bandwagon. How many states care more about the “pre-born” (also known as the small bundle of cells called a fetus) than about the women who live there. How many states condescend to women by making them wait at least 24 hours to have an abortion, despite not making them wait to have any other medical procedure. There are no laws requiring men to wait to have vasectomies, requiring anyone to wait to get a tattoo, remove a tooth, dye their hair green, or fashion it into a mohawk.
What can you do? Care.
Care when you vote at the next election, care when you think about where to make your next charitable contribution.