Democratic Women Get Snippy About Anti-Abortion Bill

February 22, 2012 10:13 am

by Mike Hassinger · 29 comments

State Rep. Yasmin Neal (D-Jonesboro) will today propose legislation to ban vasectomies in Georgia. Rep. Neal’s bill is a response to HB 954, a so-called “fetal pain” bill sponsored by State Rep. Doug McKillip (D-R-Athens) that would restrict abortions. Some say that this is a “tit-for-tat” move since both pieces of legislation seek to assert state control over human reproductive function, but this is not true. The two bills are very different -in fact there is a vas deferens between them. 

Here’s the news behind the news: HB 954 is Georgia’s example of a law seeking a court challenge that pro-life supporters hope will eventually put a case in front of the US Supreme Court to “settle” the abortion issue. Currently six or seven states have fetal pain laws, including Idaho, where a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Idaho’s abortion law has been filed. So why not wait to see if the Idaho case can make it to the Supreme Court? As one aborto-strategist said: “The facts in that case are bad.” (The plaintiff terminated her own pregnancy using abortifacient drugs, according to a fetal autopsy. Fetal pain bills would restrict legal abortions from no later than 26 weeks post-fertilization to 2o weeks post-fertilization, and require doctors to use procedures that would give “the best opportunity for the unborn child to survive.” So in addition to being “bad,” the facts in the Idaho case don’t fit well with either sides agenda in debate over fetal pain.)

Pro-choice advocates, mostly women and so far only Democrats, have reacted with legislation of their own: In Virginia, a bill requiring men get a digital rectal exam and cardiac stress test before getting a prescription for erectile dysfunction medication was put forward in response to a law requiring an ultrasound before a woman could get an abortion. (It failed to pass.) In Oklahoma, a State Senator tried to amend a “personhood” bill so that “any action in which a man deposits semen anywhere but in a woman’s vagina shall be interpreted and construed as an action against an unborn child.” (The “every sperm is sacred” amendment would have outlawed masturbation and was later tabled, presumably after vocal objections from the Oklahoma Optometrists Association.)

According to Rep. Neal, “Thousands of children are deprived of birth in this state every year because of the lack of state regulation over vasectomies.” House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams (D-Atlanta) added: “…we believe it is the obligation of this General Assembly to assert an equally invasive state interest in the reproductive habits of men…”

Given some of the widely acknowledged (but unspoken) facts and rumors about the living consequences of some state legislators’ behavior, one could make a case that vasectomies should be a prerequisite to elected office, rather than banned outright. It could also be argued that pre-conception laws and post-conception laws are different things, but that would require each side acknowledging the others positions and beliefs in this most contentious debate, and let’s be honest: That ain’t gonna happen.

John Vestal February 22, 2012 at 10:46 am

I have no pre-conceived notions about the positions of others (although I trust there’s an app for that).

Mike Hassinger February 22, 2012 at 10:52 am

+1

NoTeabagging February 22, 2012 at 11:09 am

The group hired Elena Bobbitt as Lobbyist and spokesperson. Unfortunately, she was injured in a car accident on her way to the Capitol. Some prick cut her off.
;)

Doug Deal February 22, 2012 at 11:24 am

Yep, lets turn this election into one about abortion. Isn’t that what the Tea Party was founded for, the right to throw (or was that stop the throwing of) unborn babies into Boston Harbor or something?

Personally I would love an election where instead of Karl Rovian “wedge” issue tactics we focussed on small vs. large government. Maybe then we would once again win Presidential elections by 20% instead of losing by 7% with a best case of winning by 1%.

John Vestal February 22, 2012 at 11:24 am

I’ve been referring my vasectomy-seeking friends in the TV/radio/print trade to Kirk Mellish. After all, he’s Atlanta’s leading media urologist. :-Þ

Mike Hassinger February 22, 2012 at 11:26 am

Hah! I wish I’d thought of that pun.

Doug Deal February 22, 2012 at 11:28 am

I wonder how the “Mellish Meter” is doing today.

SallyForth February 22, 2012 at 11:45 am

Okay guys, you know I have to weigh in on this one – but first, kudos to you Mike for a good humorous style of writing about this sticky subject….

The point is the right to privacy inside our own bodies, whether male or female. Why NOT consider both at the same time? There’s a lot of hoo-hah (mostly by men, sans uterus) about ovum and what goes on inside a woman’s body, but nobody ever talks about or tries to help the gazillions of tiny innocent living sperm, swimming merrily along unless they are murdered by suffocation via a snipped and sealed vas deferens. They are surely life also – without them, there could never be a zygote that might someday grow into a real person.

And while we’re at this double-standard stuff, why is it okay for insurance to pay for Viagra and Livitra for men, but not okay to pay for birth control pills and thereby protect women from getting pregnant by those men? The former is a matter of pleasure, the latter a matter of healthcare. I’m just sayin’…..

Rick Day February 22, 2012 at 3:26 pm

Patriarchy.

Wiki it.

Cassandra February 22, 2012 at 12:30 pm

“… outlawed masturbation and was later tabled, presumably after vocal objections from the Oklahoma Optometrists Association. …”

You owe me a monitor, mine just got splooged with coffee.

Rick Day February 22, 2012 at 3:26 pm

Just keep the cream in the tube there, fella!

ricstewart February 22, 2012 at 1:03 pm

The difference, of course, being that vasectomies prevent conception, while abortions terminate the product of conception.

Representative Neal is one of my favorite Democrats, but I disagree with her on this one. That being said, I also think McKillip’s bill is pointless. For once, can we let another state fall on the sword? Wait until the other six or seven states have their laws settled in the courts. (Same approach should have been taken before Georgia passed HB 87, by the way)

Unless Roe v. Wade is overturned, the best approach to stopping abortion is to promote education and job growth. Women who are better educated and financially stable are less likely to seek an abortion. While I personally would like to see abortion outlawed in Georgia, I think we should also be pragmatic and proactive.

The Last Democrat in Georgia February 22, 2012 at 1:20 pm

“Unless Roe v. Wade is overturned, the best approach to stopping abortion is to promote education and job growth. Women who are better educated and financially stable are less likely to seek an abortion.”

I know that it seemingly may not be en-vogue amongst Conservatives at the moment, but don’t forget the BIRTH CONTROL as birth control helps to totally prevent the unwanted pregnancies that lead to “demand” for abortions, especially amongst those who are either or both financially and emotionally incapable of properly caring for children, hence those improperly cared-for unwanted children end up running up on me at a stoplight or other location and getting shot during a very much ill-advised carjacking, robbery or home invasion attempt.

Three Jack February 22, 2012 at 1:28 pm

D Absurdity responding to R absurdity.

Meanwhile in the real world, Georgia still lags behind most other states in education, can’t find money to solve traffic problems and has hundreds of thousands of its citizens out of work. Maybe we should abort this legislative session and just wait til next year when hopefully a large number of these lobbyist funded, lifelong pols will be at home wondering how they got beat.

Bridget February 22, 2012 at 1:52 pm

“presumably after vocal objections from the Oklahoma Optometrists Association” cracked me up. Entertaining post, Mike.

While I’m not a social conservative in the slightest, I’d like to point out that a vasectomy is more on par with a tubal ligation, not an abortion. I’m pretty sure women can get those at any time.

Disseminating sperm isn’t an action against an unborn child because it’s unfertilized. Sperm will never have a heartbeat. By the same count, women who donate their eggs aren’t abandoning unborn children. I mean, what’s next the headline? Sperm bank convicted of child trafficking? Are they not buying these “unborn children” to be sold to a third-party?

John Konop February 22, 2012 at 1:53 pm

I am trying to get my arms around the rules for being a TRUE social conservative:

1) Vasectomy ok but birth control bad
2) Sex is for appropriation only unless you get a vasectomy (good deal for some doctors)
3) Prenatal examine bad, instead just hope and pray
4) IVI bad vasectomy good
5) Abortion bad and healthcare for baby bad if parents do not have money
6) Unwedded teenage mother good, but giving them welfare or any saftey net after being forced to have the child is bad
7) If you believe in global warming and or science, unless it is in the bible, you are not a Christian. And forget the fact the Pope believes in global warming because Santorum knows more theology them him!
8) Safety net bad unless you are on Medicare and Social Security

Do you guys also have a secrete handshake?

Three Jack February 22, 2012 at 3:06 pm

John,

Actually a social conservative should be defined as someone who opposes over zealous theocratic based government intervention into the private decisions of American citizens.

Your multi-point description is more fitting of a theological based government social liberal with a severe case of schizophrenia.

Todd Rehm February 22, 2012 at 3:23 pm

“Sex is for appropriation…”

Was that a misspelling of “procreation” or a commentary on some lobbying tactics?

John Konop February 22, 2012 at 7:47 pm

It was play on words, it is never funny when you have to…………

kyleinatl February 22, 2012 at 7:37 pm

This. This. A thousand times THIS.

John Konop February 22, 2012 at 7:53 pm

Three Jack,

You should send that memo out, because….

SallyForth February 22, 2012 at 2:00 pm

ric, you’re right on “the best approach to stopping abortion is to promote education and job growth.” But your desire to see it outlawed in Georgia is way off base. Termination of pregnancies have been going on since ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics depiction – there always have been and always will be circumstances under which women do so. It is a very serious personal decision between a woman, her doctor and her God. Who are you or I to make that decision?

I feel sure this has to be one of the hardest things any woman can ever face. Passing laws to prevent her from being able to make this difficult private decision about her body, and if necessary avail sanitary medical care, is downright sinful. Do you really want to run women into the back-alley, coat hanger, death traps that existed before 1972?

US history has shifted back and forth on this issue. Up to about 1900, abortions were legal in the US and various methods were actually advertised in newspapers. In the late 1800′s the American Medical Association did a jam-up lobbying job and got them outlawed in most states by 1900. But public sentiment began to over-rule that special-interest governance, and people had them anyway. In 1959 the American Law Institute drafted a law to legalize again. In 1967 states around the country started repealing their anti-abortion laws – Georgia being one of the first to do so. Many others followed suit between then and 1972, until the Constitutional right to privacy in a woman’s own body was upheld once and for all by the Supreme Court in 1973.

That should have settled the issue once and for all, but nooooo, here we are today debating whether any American should actually have the freedom of the right to privacy in their own body. So-called “less government” people (primarily men) argue strongly to extend government control into a woman’s uterus and turn her into nothing more than an incubator. Really, guys?

I am certainly not pro-abortion (never heard of anyone who is!) and have personally never chosen to do so – but I will defend to the end the right for other women to make that decision for themselves however they must. As one of our great Presidents always said, “Abortion should be legal and rare.”

CobbGOPer February 22, 2012 at 2:36 pm

“Termination of pregnancies have been going on since ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics depiction…”

FACT: Ancient Egyptian women used crocodile – erm – feces as a contraceptive tool. In what may have been an early version of the diaphragm, the crapola was mixed with another substance into a paste and inserted… well you know. It’s believed it then acted as a barrier to the sperm; either that, or the substance altered the pH balance to a level lethal for sperm.

The more you know…

Although, since this was before Jesus, does it count as truth to a social conservative?

Calypso February 22, 2012 at 2:58 pm

I think that when the ‘little swimmers’ got in there, they were confused by what they ran into, thought they were in the wrong place and headed back home.

SallyForth February 22, 2012 at 3:56 pm

LOL :-) +1

Harry February 22, 2012 at 2:36 pm

Some of us support all forms of birth control, right up until the instant the zygote is formed!

Rick Day February 22, 2012 at 3:36 pm

I for one, am sick of this misrepresentation of ‘back alley’ and ‘coathanger’ illegal abortions. No such thing will happen if the Uterus Patrol™ get their way.

Organized crime will take care of women’t reproductive needs. For a price, as always. I had an Uncle that did this for elements of The Family™ in the late 1950s.

Not to worry. If Ms. Conservative Senator’s wife gets ‘oopsies’ with the yardman, Guido will be there to take care of her. For a price. Free Market taking care of consumer needs, yo.

SallyForth February 22, 2012 at 4:05 pm

Tell that to an old family friend, who tells the story of a Free Market “provider” in the 60′s who botched her up, then threw her out of a car on the side of Cheshire Bridge Rd., left to bleed to death – had not a good Samaritan come along and carried her to the hospital.
That guy’s name might have been Guido….

Another thought, with other legislation under consideration this Session, will she be able to carry a gun in to see Guido?

John Konop February 23, 2012 at 7:03 am

Ron Paul had the best line of the night on this issue at the debate. We believe guns do not kill people, but, now we have the opposite view with birth control……….

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