Thursday, March 7, 2013

Arkansas: Crossing the line of decency

Arkansas has finally gone too far when it comes to women.   Really.   This is a new forward advance in the war against women and it's awful.   And it's on abortion.

If you've followed my entries here you know that I think abortion is absolutely despicable and that Canada should have some kind of line drawn at when restrictions kick in (Canada, of course doesn't have any) provided the debate is truly honest and not disingenous as the really out to the right Con backbenchers have attempted.

I reluctantly recognize that it is a right, though, and further to that right women should be given as many options as possible.   To deter abortions, I have also argued for sustantial increases in the child tax credits, making adoption expenses fully refundable (currently it's just a 15% credit with a cap) and ensuring that women have full access to as many pre-natal support programs for free or at very low cost.

The legislature in Arkansas has passed a law overriding the governor's veto banning abortions at just twelve weeks, in many cases past when many women even find out they are pregnant.   Further, it would ban an abortion if a heartbeat is detectible which can happen even before twelve weeks.  This is well short of the US Supreme Court's sense on this more than twenty years ago, when in the Planned Parenthood v. Casey decision it allowed states to put restrictions at viability, between twenty and twenty-eight weeks (and many states merely enforce its laws at the median, twenty-four).   Medically viability means the baby has a chance in the incubator if there is a premature delivery -- and while medical progress may have pushed the line to an earlier point I doubt very much we've pushed it back even to a median of twenty.

There're only two reasons to do this.   One, to take away women's freedom to decide for themselves when to get pregnant or not.   Two, if they're the victims of incest or a rape, to legally eliminate the process which would allow women to try to purge the shame of being victims.

This isn't a game.   Women's lives and integrity are at stake.   And until real solutions are implemented that make abortion so socially undesirable that it's eliminated by choice (pardon the expression), it should remain a right.   The courts should strike this down.  The law is misogynist.  Plain and simple..

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