There is a bill in Indiana that was quietly passed through the state legislature while we were all busy watching the Trump Circus that tells women that no matter how severe a birth defect is, regardless of how painful a newborn’s death may be from said defects, or how short and painful a child’s life may be – the mother can no longer, for ANY REASON, seek an abortion in Indiana. Senate Bill 313 states that even if carrying said fetus to term might result in the mother’s death, termination is no longer an option. The bill expressly prohibits abortion in the case of ANY defect discovered before birth. The Indiana legislature, in their ongoing mission to prove to the rest of the world just how backwards and bigoted this state is, has forwarded this piece of thinly veiled religious doctrine to Governor Mike Pence for his signature.
In case you can’t sense my outrage, I am OUTRAGED! I am thoroughly and completely pro-choice. I believe that women have the right, indeed the responsibility, to make informed decisions about their health, and the health of their unborn children. And until these Republican elected officials, the vast majority of whom are men, find a way to bear children themselves, I refuse to accept their dominion over me, and not even then. Worse than the Republican men who worked on this bill, a woman is listed as co-author. I understand that many women are anti-choice, and that they have bought into the idea that men know better than women do what’s good for women. Or perhaps it’s a case of “sincerely held” religious belief. If that’s the case, then just don’t have an abortion. It’s really quite simple, and that’s the whole point about pro-choice. Unfortunately, Senator Liz Brown, of District 15, a district that, based on the outline of the map appears to be gerrymandered, has betrayed not only women, but hopelessly ill children as well. Standing by her side is Representative Rhonda Rhoads, District 70 (which appears to be a similarly gerrymandered district) one of the sponsors of the bill. Because we already know that the children who will be born if this bill is signed into law will most likely end up on some sort of public assistance. No GOP member I know of has every stepped up to take responsibility for the consequences of their legislation yet. By the way, they also tightened the laws concerning any sort of public assistance, effectively impoverishing the very children they are now legally mandating must be born.
I don’t know if I would have an abortion if my child was profoundly disabled, and I discovered it before birth. I don’t know if I could make that choice. I do know people who have, and it devastated them. But that’s the point. Prior to this law, there was a choice. After this is signed into law, frankly, there will still be a choice, but it will be – by necessity – an illegal one. I cannot express this more profoundly and emphatically – this is unconsciounable. Women and children will die as a result of this bill, and although Pence has a chance to veto it, he probably won’t.
I tried to send an email to express my thoughts to Pence, but when I clicked submit I got this:
It appears my submission was rejected. So, here’s what I want Pence to read:
I am shocked and appalled that you would even consider signing Senate Bill 313 into law. The bill is clearly intended to render void Roe V. Wade, force women to do what a particular religious group demands, and will put women’s health care back 50 years. Women are not political pawns, nor are their children, or their ability to choose what’s best for them in a given situation. The legality of abortion is not about having abortions whenever it’s convenient, it’s about being able to choose for ourselves.
You have a chance to redeem yourself, somewhat, for the foibles of the past year in terms of GLBT rights, women’s issues, and the environment in vetoing this bill. I strongly urge you to do so.
Send the two women listed here a quick email, expressing your disgust at their actions. Send Pence a quick note, letting him know that a woman’s choice to choose for herself outweighs his need to pander to his religious constituents. Don’t sit by and be a party by proxy to the dismantling of all that our mothers and grandmothers fought and died for – the ability to have dominion over our own minds and bodies.
200 W. Washington St. Rm 206
Indianapolis, IN 46204