The War on Women: coming to a state near you?
Just last month, a bill was introduced in the South Dakota state legislature that would legalize the killing of abortion providers, as reported by Kate Sheppard in Mother Jones. While we’ve been keeping you updated on the war on women being waged by House Republicans, we can’t neglect the fact that outrageous anti-choice, anti-woman legislation is being pushed and sometimes passed in states across the country, severely limiting the rights of women in those states, their access to health care, and their ability to obtain a legal abortion.
We’ll start with some of the stories breaking this week. As Robin Marty writes in RH Reality Check, both Nebraska and Ohio are trying to pass burdensome parental consent laws. In Nebraska, LB690 – the bill that would require women under 18 to receive parental consent before obtaining an abortion – is being touted as a “priority” bill by its sponsor, Sen. Linda Brasch. Brasch’s argument for the bill, that “such requirement would help a minor” so that “she should not find herself alone to decide” is disingenuous at best. It truly takes a wild stretch of the imagination that if a young woman felt comfortable to share this decision with her family, then she’d only do so if ordered by the government – far more likely is that a woman in that situation wouldn’t share her choice because she felt threatened or scared by potential repercussions, including abuse, being ostracized, or being kicked out by her family.
Then we have regulations in Virginia that will be enacted in 2012, as reported by Amanda Hess in TBD. These laws take another tack in making access to abortion as restrictive and difficult as possible for women: 17 out of the 21 providers in the state will not meet the new standards of the legislation, which, as Hess writes, “could severely restrict women's abortion access in Virginia, on a temporary or permanent basis. The move could also present increased financial barriers to women seeking abortions if clinics raise the price of the procedure to defray renovation costs.”
There’s absolutely no question: the war on women is being waged on the federal level, as we’ve been covering, and in our states. We cannot remain silent in the face of these continual attacks on our rights and our health.
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