So, HB2 passed in the Texas Senate last Friday. I did not watch the live stream or go to the Capitol. I didn’t see the point to be honest. At that point, it was over. I spent that evening feeling depressed and wondering what the realities of this bill mean for Texas women.
I think that House Bill 2 is purely a profit driven bill. It has nothing to do with life. It’s all about money, greed, and ugly power over women in desperate situations.
So, let’s take a look at this and really see what will be the outcome.
Abortions are going to become more expensive. That’s it.
I could be totally wrong, but I think it’s almost guaranteed that they will. And here’s why. The new guidelines are going to cost the clinics more. Not only are the clinics required to upgrade to become ambulatory surgical centers, which will cost millions, but they also must give any woman having an abortion at the clinic access to a physician 24 hours a day. That means more on-call staffing at every clinic.
If the clinics don’t upgrade to become ambulatory surgical centers, what happens then? There are 422 current ambulatory surgical centers in Texas. Will they begin performing abortions? My guess is that at least some of them will. And they will cost a pretty penny.
Take a look at it. And something will suddenly jump out at you. They are for profit centers. I didn’t examine all 422 centers, but it jumps right out at you as you scan the file. Those two ugly words up against Planned Parenthood and any other free/low cost health clinics that are non-profits.
This isn’t about life. This is about money. And it’s a disgusting way to get it, by closing access to health care for poor women and putting a price on an unplanned and unwanted pregnancy. It’s quite despicable.
Honestly, it’s even worse than fighting over ideology. At least that, I can stomach. I can understand that many people abhor the taking of a life. But in this case, Texas legislators aren’t interested in saving lives, they just want to be paid for the ones they help get rid of.
Sitting up late again last night, watching live stream testimony on Texas House Bill 2, which will effectively reduce the number of abortion clinics to five from 42, reduce access to abortions, birth control and all forms of reproductive health for many women.
Initially, I was pretty sick over this whole thing, although, I can’t say I didn’t see it coming. This is the same legislation that’s been passed in a number of states across the country already.
I’ve been glued to this obsessively since last week. I took Annika to the protest on Monday where thousands of people showed up in protest. It probably won’t matter. It’s unlikely that anyone can stop it at this point.
What kills me is the rhetoric.
The lawmakers are so full of shit. They say that HB2 is pro woman. They say they are trying to make sure that abortion clinics are safer. But ironically, their own people sold them out when it came to testimony. Blue shirt after blue shirt filed in talking about murdering babies. They know the score.
The anti-choicers don’t give a shit about women. All they care about it forcing their own religious beliefs down our collective uterus. I wish I could say that I thought the lawmakers were doing what they thought was right. But I can’t even believe that. Cynic that I am, all I can see is their selfishness. Their desire to win votes. Some potential monetary gain and a power grab.
Aside from all that, imho, this is a slippery slope for health care laws. Can we now make laws about what others can do based on religious beliefs? Is this what we’ve come to? Their time will come. Shit always goes both ways folks.
I know there is a big push right now to get the Christian right wingers to have lots of babies in the hope they will overpopulate the conservative side. I can only hope that this tactic backfires. It’s very possible that it will.
Although my parents are Democrats and always have been, I was raised with that way of thinking. Abortion was murder. Sex before marriage was a sin. My parents have since become more open minded and less rigid in their way of thinking, realizing the grey areas.
But aside from my parents, my upbringing involved a lot of religious zealots, narrow minded and uneducated mentors, preachers, youth group leaders, teachers, parents of friends, who all thought this way. This is what scares me. What I grew up with. What I know to be the truth about the way these people think and behave toward youngsters. Even as a teenager, having this bull hockey shoved down my throat, I knew that shit was wrong. It pissed me off to no end the amount of work involved to bring sex education down in the state of Texas. This stuff has been decades in the making. It will take years to undo the damage and by then, many, many lives will have been ruined.
Even if these bills pass, and they almost certainly will, barring a miracle, what we are talking about is happening right now. So what can we do to focus on the future?
Fundraising will need to happen so that we can help abortion clinics get the funds needed to upgrade facilities to stay within the law.
New legislation will need to be written and introduced to force hospitals to give admitting privileges to abortion doctors.
Women in big cities will need to find ways to support women in rural areas who don’t have the support to get to a big city and get an abortion.
There will be a 48 hour period that a woman will have to stay nearby so she can take both doses of RU486 (mifepristone) at the doctor’s office. Some women will not be able to afford the trip, plus a two/three day stay at a hotel.
Not only is abortion under attack, but the even more baffling thing, that nobody’s really talking about is sex education. Not only do they want women to stop having abortions, but they aren’t willing to educate young women and men about how to have safe sex. These religious zealots will stop at nothing to ensure that Texas is filled with young, unsupported, uneducated, pregnant girls.
These are just the things I can think of. I’m sure there will be more. But we can’t just keep fighting this in the legislature. This will affect Texas so much more if we have an explosion of unwanted pregnancies all over the state because women can’t afford to get an abortion or don’t have the support they need to get birth control or perhaps support for their unwanted pregnancy.
I urge everyone in Texas who against this legislation to get involved in whatever way they can to support women and help fight this battle on a local level. Contact your local Planned Parenthood or chapter of Naral. Ask what can be done. Post things to your Facebook feed and Twitter accounts. Let women know that we’re supportive. Teach your kids about sex education. Find some way to help or donate what you can. I don’t know exactly what I’ll be doing, but I am not going to just let this shit slide when I know how it feels to be one of those young unsupported and scared girls with people filling my head with shame and misery. It just doesn’t have to be that way. They might win the legislation. But that doesn’t mean they have to win the war.
There were thousands of us at the Capitol on Monday. Let’s make sure our voices continue to be heard.
Just because someone says something stupid doesn’t mean we need to give it any attention.
I have a bit of an obsession with all the controversy over abortion and birth control lately. From recent statements made by Richard Mourdock and Todd Akin I fear that the controversy is becoming twisted.
So why are we letting these men run the conversation? They are twisting it and turning it away from the conversation about choice. Who gets to choose? Are women going to let men tell us what to think about? What to talk about? Whether or not to have a baby? And when/if we can have an abortion?
Rape and abortion are two different conversations. Rape doesn’t always end in pregnancy. Abortion doesn’t always stem from unwanted and/or violent sexual activity. Why are we twisting up our reproductive rights with abuse?
If we aren’t careful, the choice will be turned into a question about scenarios in which women should be allowed to have an abortion. Instead of the real question of choice.
Reproductive rights and choice in the matter of reproductive rights are getting bogged down in a male chauvinism.
For the record, I’m as liberal as they come and I will vote for Obama in this upcoming election. But I am very concerned that a few comments made by Republicans are being taken and twisted by their opposition in order to get the left riled up against the other party. It’s about to backfire on us and we need to step very carefully.
Rape is rape. And yes, women who get raped sometimes need to get abortions. But let’s not get the two conversations confused.
Rape is a violent atrocity that typically happens to women and children. Many women suffer long-term consequences such as pregnancy, STDs and emotional trauma due to the rapes.
Abortion, birth control, and a woman’s right to choose, however, is under attack in this country. Too many laws are being passed right under our noses taking away our reproductive rights when it comes to abortion and birth control.
When a woman is raped, she needs to be able to have that choice. Her choice was taken away when sex was forced upon her. She must have a choice somewhere in the process.
That should be a given.
That should not even be a question.
It shouldn’t be part of the debate. Time is marching backwards. How can this even be? We fought so hard to instill and enforce laws that gave women choice in the matter of childbirth.
It’s being taken away from us. The choice and option of having birth control was also a hard-fought battle.
Please, let’s not get the two confused. All woman should have choice in being pregnant. Sometimes that choice comes after the fact. Even if a woman is not raped, she gets to choose. That’s what the current law states. We need to start working toward keeping it that way. If we aren’t careful, that’s going to go away. It’s happening already in many states. South Dakota, North Dakota and Mississippi are down to one clinic. They are making it even harder by requiring waiting periods. Many states are now requiring that women be told of all possible “risks” of abortion, of which many are not backed by most scientific communities.
And the biggest fear here, is, if Mitt Romney is elected, we stand a good chance that Roe v. Wade will be overturned, which would allow states to ban abortion. I’m pretty certain that Texas would be one of the first ones running toward that legislation.
Let’s not get bogged down in the what ifs of rape or terminal illness, choosing over the fetus or the mother.
The argument is moving in the wrong direction. The conversation is becoming all glommed up by the technicalities.
Let’s start by saying all women deserve choice. Sometimes that choice starts after a pregnancy begins. And sometimes, it must end. We choose. Women must have choice.
Well, what he said is a big deal, but only because it is such a clear symptom of the female bashing that’s been going on recently in the U.S.
Rush Limbaugh is really just the sideshow freak to take the eyes off of the real problem, which is not just about who’s going to pay for the contraception needed when women have sex with men.
The battles in the war against women have been popping up all over the place.
First of all, we have the Catholic church, which says that they shouldn’t be required to pay for insurance that covers contraception. It’s discriminatory, not to mention socially irresponsible.
Nobody’s forcing Catholic women to use birth control if their religious beliefs are in opposition. But as a business who profits from non-Catholics, hires them, educates them, etc., the business has a social responsibility to provide the contraception option.
No matter what lobbyists say, businesses are not people. They cannot have moral or religious beliefs. However, businesses should have social responsibility. They are not legally allowed to discriminate in hiring practices. Clearly their schools allow non-Catholics to become educated in their institutions. It only makes sense that they should provide options for the non-Catholics.
As a whole, it is in society’s best interest to have options available to prevent unwanted pregnancy so that our nation isn’t burdened with unwanted children, which at best lead to added stress for parents and at worst lead to more abortions, and/or child abuse and neglect.
By trying to force their religious beliefs onto their insurance policy, it forces their religious and moral code onto those using it. And that is not freedom of religion. It is religious oppression, which is why this country has freedom of religion written into the Constitution.
Secondly, we have Rush Limbaugh calling Sandra Fluke a slut because she dared to
protest Georgetown University’s decision not to cover birth control under its university insurance policy. Really, I’m tired of hearing about him. He’s got a fat trap, but he’s not really the worst of our problems. And why isn’t the media focusing on what Sandra Fluke wants to say instead of one stupid thing that Rush Limbaugh said?
I’m sure that he says stupid things all the time. What Sandra Fluke has to say is wayyy more important.
But really, that’s nothing compared to the horrific chauvinistic bills that are literally affecting women’s actual reproductive rights, and their pocketbooks, as we speak.
Bills being introduced and passed across the country limit access to abortion through psychological, and some even say physical, rape.
These bills force women who wish to have an abortion to undergo ultrasounds, some with transvaginal probes, which many call “state sponsored rape.” They requires women to sign affidavits noting they are aware of their other options.
Because, you know, we clearly don’t know how to research these issues on our own.
These bills also typically include waiting periods and other objectionable items.
They are repulsive and demeaning to women, as if women haven’t already given this procedure plenty of thought before getting to the doctor’s office.
I don’t think it’s a big coincidence that the majority of these bills are sponsored by males.
Last year Kansas enacted a law that removed abortion from health coverage, so women in Kansas must now purchase special abortion insurance if they want it to be covered. Rep. Lance Kinzer (R) is the sponsor of the bill.
Her bill requires that men who wish to obtain a prescription for viagra or other erectile dysfunction drugs would undergo similar waiting periods, a stress test, and psychological evaluation.
State Senator Nina Turner, a Cleveland Democrat, has introduced a bill to require that physicians take specific actions before prescribing such drugs (viagra), including giving a cardiac stress test and making a referral to a sex therapist for confirmation that “the patient’s symptoms are not solely attributable to one or more psychological conditions.”
“We want to make sure that men, vulnerable, fragile men, who are not capable of making decisions for themselves, understand all of the side effects and the implications of these types of drugs,” Turner said in a telephone interview.
Yes, I have already started calling her Madame President, in my mind. As I read about this bill, a fantasy formed. When she reaches the White House, I will be invited to visit. We will discuss politics and race-related issues, intermingling with laughter at our children’s poop and fart jokes while we teach them about organic gardening.
Then in the evening after the children are in bed, we will retire to the West Wing where we will drink imported beer and have Rush Limbaugh dance for us in a dress. After all, he’s just an entertainer. He should be willing to do it for some viagra.
Oh and don’t worry, we’ll post it online for everyone to see.