Stirring the Hopper Award: HB 1

Today was only Day Two of the 149th Session of the Georgia General Assembly, but already there is a bill worthy of my brand new, arbitrarily bestowed, “Stirring the Hopper Award.” Congratulations to House Bill 1, entitled, “Crimes against public health and morals; abortion; provisions,” for garnishing enough attention to win this yet-to-be-coveted honor.


HB 1 was authored by Rep. Bobby Franklin (R-43) and has already generated a great deal of uproar around the blogosphere. It features a complete ban on abortion and attempts to curtail the controversial Roe v. Wade ruling of 1973.

Here at Peach Pundit, Erick noted Monday that the bill puts “pro-lifers” in “an awkward position.”

And that awkward position got worse Tuesday as the bill began committee hearings.

The Blog for Democracy live blogged the event and basically described a “tent revival” complete with singing, praying, etc.

A post on the Spacey Gracey Review also presents a similar analysis and a few interesting photos.

What really was going on in Room 606 was a freakin’ Jesus rally! An arms-in-the-air, bad music playin’, Jesus worshipping prayer rally by fundamentalist Christian righties, masked as a legislative hearing of course.

Oh hon, believe me when I tell you there were tears and testimony and testifying and fiery God-like righteousness everywhere you looked. Pure theocracy-in-action, certainly not democracy.

That “theocracy-in-action” refers to members of the Christian Coalition who list “protecting life” as their top priority for the 2007 legislative session.

1- Protecting Life

Allow Georgia to vote on a constitutional amendment to restore legal protection for all human beings from the moment of fertilization.

Pass legislation that requires an ultrasound be performed on each unborn child before an abortion. Require the mother of the unborn child to be allowed to review the ultra sound.


In the interest of full-disclosure, I will admit that I am staunchly pro-life with the obvious rape/incest/threat-to-life exceptions. And I agree with many secular pro-lifers that this bill is a bad idea because it constitutes a complete ban on abortion.

But I think an even larger problem with this legislation lies in some of the ridiculous “findings” it prefaces as ground for such a ban.

From Section I of the legislation:

The General Assembly therefore makes the following findings of fact:

(4) As a direct result of three decades of legalized abortion on demand, the nation has seen a dramatic rise in the incidence of child abuse and a dramatic weakening of family ties, with the infamous Roe v. Wade decision pitting mothers against their children and women against men;

(9) Abortion results in increased tobacco smoking, and women who have had an abortion are twice as likely to become heavy smokers and suffer the corresponding health problems as women who have never had an abortion;

(10) Abortion is linked to alcohol and drug abuse, with a two-fold increase in the risk of alcohol abuse among women who have had an abortion and a significant increase in drug abuse;

(11) Most couples find abortion to be an event which shatters their relationship, causing chronic marital troubles and divorce;

(13) Thirty years of abortion on demand have resulted in an increase in breast cancer, and a study has shown that women who had an abortion in the first trimester of pregnancy before experiencing a full-term pregnancy may be at increased risk for breast cancer;

“Findings of Fact?” Divorce, alcoholism, child abuse, breast cancer – all caused by abortion?

These “findings” are more fitting of a humorously nostalgic 1950’s health education film and present, at best, very weak arguments. I want to see life preserved just as badly as the next person, but there are far better and more justifiable reasons for banning abortion that do not appeal to vague findings in random studies.

By inserting these ridiculous claims into a House bill, the overall legitimacy of future pro-life legislation will seriously be in doubt.

I am quite disappointed in Rep. Franklin and the five other co-sponsors of HB 1 and their decision to play wedge politics with abortion. This is a disaster-in-waiting for the Georgia pro-life movement and I hope the House of Representatives has the decency to kill or vote down this bill.

As for the “Stirring the Hopper Award:” I like the name and it’s kind of catchy, so I’ll probably use it at random points in the coming session as I see fit. If you feel strongly that something GGA-related should win the award, let me know.


  1. Rick Day says:

    Jesus should be so very proud of His Holy Clowns today.

    (sigh) I wish I had been there. Can one get arrested for burning a bible during a committee hearing?


  2. Can we outlaw the teaching of evolution in this same bill as well?

    It would make the lord smile & certainly would help the state of ga when we try to get businesses & industries to come to our state.

    48th in the nation for education & annointed by the hand of god! Those are the traits that will help the state replace the thousands of jobs it will lose due to plant closures & corporate mergers.

  3. Know Nothing says:

    What an idiot. It looks like for the sake of Cobb County that I’ll have to beat this fool in the next primary.

  4. Jmac says:

    Allow Georgia to vote on a constitutional amendment to restore legal protection for all human beings from the moment of fertilization.

    Anyone realize how this will drastically affect everyone’s age? If you have legal protection from fertilization, would that mean you have to tack on nine months to your age?

    I remember reading somewhere of language like this posing an unforeseen problem in a similar bill elsewhere.

  5. GOPeach says:

    Know No Thing-

    Beat Bobby Franklin????

    Yeah Right??? You are the idiot!!
    Get over yourself already!

    He is L O V E D in Cobb County more than
    any legislator !!! Why??

    HE is not a weenie moderate!
    with a BRAIN! Bobby Franlkin will have
    more money than anyone for his next
    campaign. Already people are talking
    about throwing money at him for good
    measure as soon as the session is over!

    He has God’s blessings. He is kind to
    everyone and gentle. He is not going
    to cave.

  6. protect life says:

    Those who would dismiss the medical problems listed in HB 1 as mere correlation would do well to read the volumes of research which undergird Franklin’s bill. Most people are unaware of the serious medical problems caused by abortion simply because the pro-choice community endeavors to suppress medical research which might be detrimental or discouraging to the practice of abortion. Numerous concentrated and detailed studies establishing abortion as a cause of the specific physical/psychological issues were examined as evidence for this bill. In addition, there are thousands upon thousands of legal affidavits of women who were 1. hurt in some way by abortion and 2. have express medical problems confirmed by multiple professional diagnoses as caused by abortion.

    One ought not to brush aside the medical statements in this bill without considering the huge quantity of extant research and documentation. Reading even a fraction of what exists would take much time and work: which is exactly what Mr. Franklin and others have expended. Those of you with doubts would do well to read the thousands of aforementioned affidavits. The legitimacy of the research will stand any legal or medical test: and the research for this bill certainly does not qualify as vague findings in random studies. The comprehensiveness of studies and cases used is staggering.

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