Monday, June 12, 2006

Hey, Ho, Way To Go, Ohio...

Some time ago, round about when South Dakota enacted their abortion ban and Missouri and Louisiana were prepping their own, I wrote something about the far-right giddily bounding up to the line, eager to out-insane each other in the new Alito-Roberts-Scalia-Thomas world. Ohio is the latest entrant and current holder of the yellow jersey in the Tour de Compulsory Birth, courtesy of Tom Brinkman's (R-Cincinnati) little gem of a bill that would criminalize all abortion, no exceptions. No exception for rape, either of the stranger, acquaintance, or incestuous variety--nothing new here, right? But wait. There is so much more. The bill includes no exception for saving the life of the mother.

Read that again.

No exception for the life of the mother.

This isn't South Dakota's refusal to include a "health of the mother" exemption. This is, finally, an honest acknowledgment of what we in the choice camp have been saying louder and louder since South Dakota, since Louisiana: in the view of the anti-choice camp, women are life-support systems for a uterus. Nothing more.

The bill is almost certainly intended more as a Roe v. Wade challenge than as seriously contemplated public policy, more a bit of one-upsmanship designed to appeal to the same ultra-conservative voters who support gay marriage bans, flag-burning amendments, and nuking Iran. As such (and given the short time since it was announced), I haven't been able to dig up too much of the intellectual background behind it. I'm very anxious, though, to hear the ethical reasoning that leads to the conclusion that it's preferable to sacrifice two lives rather than end one to save the other. I wonder if this is a Salvadorean-esque mindset that values even an ectopic implantation of a small clump of cells more than the actual thinking, breathing, living woman carrying it.

Let the red-dress frenzy begin.

1 comment:

Homer said...

Next, hysterectomies will be out-lawed.