Just in case you were thinking that a woman’s right to legal and safe abortion was not under serious siege in the U.S., you need to take a look at a bill that was recently approved in a committee of the South Dakota legislature. According to Mother Jones, the bill, sponsored by state Rep. Phil Jensen, alters the state's legal definition of justifiable homicide by adding language stating that a homicide is permissible if committed by a person “while resisting an attempt to harm” that person's unborn child or the unborn child of that person's spouse, partner, parent, or child. If the bill passes, it could in theory allow a woman's father, mother, son, daughter, or husband to kill anyone who tried to provide that woman an abortion—even if she wanted one.
“The bill in South Dakota is an invitation to murder abortion providers,” says Vicki Saporta, the president of the National Abortion Federation, the professional association of abortion providers. According to various reports, since 1993, eight doctors have been assassinated at the hands of anti-abortion extremists and another 17 have been the victims of murder attempts.
YOOO by Fun Factory
The proposed legislation became national news yesterday. Jensen may have had second thoughts overnight; he told a reporter for The Washington Post today that he’s “looking at” some changes that would protect abortion providers. That’s nice, huh?
And of course, we’re pretty sure the court system would never let South Dakota get away with passing such a law, right? Clearly, if we keep thinking like that, we’re going to wake up someday and find out we’re only “pretty sure” a woman has a right to abortion.