Abortion Laws in Oklahoma Tell Women They're Stupid

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Abortion opponents must think fertile women are stupid.

At least that's the message I'm getting from the latest abortion laws in Oklahoma.

Why do I say that? Well, where do I start? The law says that before women are permitted to have a procedure to which we have a Constitutional right, we MUST allow the doctor to perform a vaginal ultrasound (whether one is medically needed or not), we MUST be forced to view the ultrasound images, and we MUST be forced to talk with the doctor at length about what a fetus is and what will happen to it as a result of the abortion.

Thank GOODNESS we have those all-knowing, wise (and overwhelmingly male) legislators of Oklahoma to ensure before women have an abortion that they realize that what's growing inside of them might turn into an actual baby!

Oh, and Oklahoma women also no longer have the right to sue their doctor if he or she lies to them about the state of their pregnancy. So, for example, if a fetus has a major birth defect and the woman doesn't learn about it until it's too late in the pregnancy to have an abortion if she wants one, she can't sue the doctor for lying or forgetting to tell her.

So, to sum up -- Oklahoma wants to force certain information on women but withhold other details, depending on how it fits their social and political agendas, regardless of how it impacts the lives of real women and their real families.

For the moment, a court has issued a stay preventing the enforcement of the "forced sonogram/what's a fetus talk" part of the law that its proponents claim is merely there to protect innocent lives. 

As we used to say on the farm, "Do I look like I just fell off the turnip truck?"

Protecting "innocent lives" isn't the real agenda here. If it was, then these same lawmakers would enthusiastically support teaching birth control (other than abstinence) in our schools. Funny thing is, they're usually the same people opposed to that. These are also often the same people who take no legislative or social welfare interest in the children who are born because women weren't permitted to seek abortions. As one abortion opponent told me many years ago when I was a young reporter, "That's not our concern. We don't care what happens once they're born."


So if they don't want girls learning about how to prevent pregnancy and they don't want women to end pregnancies for whatever reason (even incest, rape, or the possible death of the mother), what do they really want?

Maybe the USA Today headline should read "States Seek New Ways to Restrict Women" instead of "States Seek New Ways to Restrict Abortions." Unrelenting efforts by lawmakers (the fact that a court struck down essentially this same law last year in Oklahoma hasn't stopped some from trying to force it through again) to save women from themselves in the guise of saving babies is just as much about keeping women barefoot, pregnant, and out of the workplace to protect their own economic and political power as it is about the sanctity of human life. Because if it wasn't, these same people who insist they know what's best for women would embrace as many opportunities as possible to prevent unwanted pregnancies and to encourage as much health care as possible for women.

Oklahoma (and other states), we're not stupid. We're smart enough to connect the dots and know that despite what you say, you're not looking out for anyone's best interests but your own. And as long as your interests aren't the same as mine, I'll be happy to keep calling you out on it.

Joanne Bamberger can't help herself when it comes to politics and punditry. When she's not hanging out here at The Stir, you can find her at her place, PunditMom.



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nonmember avatar Sue

Isn't this forced rape? Having something stuck up your vagina that you don't want there? That would be traumatic and awful to me and, I can imagine, for other women. Also - what about women who are opposed to ultrasound in general? There are quite a few people who look on ultrasound as something that may have harmful effects. 

In any case, it is a bad law, but those are two objections that popped into my head.

Emmy_... Emmy_Dollface

Dumb, dumb, dumb..... Oklahoma's women should all run, not walk, to another state as soon as possible. Obviously they are second rate fetus carriers to the law makers there.  *sigh* It's 2010 and people still have to put up with this bull crap? It's unreal. Even my uber-conservative state (Alabama) wouldn't even dare to pull something like that.

OoSha... OoShannonoO

I think its a good idea

nonmember avatar annie

It's all about controlling women. It always has been. It astounds me the most when women buy into their own subjugation. 

MomIWant MomIWant

Why not get an ultrasound before aborting?  Besides adding 10 minutes to the procedure, what harm could there be in this?  I really don't understand the anger - they are not saying that you can't have an abortion.  There are so many laws geared towards men in our society which I completely understand being angry about:  rape carries a shorter sentence than animal abuse in most states - pedophiles are allowed to keep their weapons - incest is hard to prosecute because the victims testimony is coming from a scared and confused place often confused with lying, etc. etc. etc. 


29again 29again

Abortion is now a Constitutional Right???  I don't think the FF were really overly concerned when shaping the foundation of our government with reproduction (or the prevention of it).  I am all for health care workers doing whatever they can to try to change women's minds about having abortions.  I don't see that they are trying to keep women barefoot, pregnant, and out of the workforce just to protect their own economic and political power.  Rather, I see someone who might be feeling some guilt about being a working mom???  Abortion should be the absolute last last last resort for any woman.  And it isn't a Constitutional right, either.  No matter how you spin it, it isn't in there.

cutea... cuteandspoiled

This is appaulling. Any woman forced to have any object into their vagina constitutes sexual assault. How this law was ever passed is I have no clue? These woman's rights are being violated and if they're smart they will move to another state. As far as being forced to view the ultrasound that is just cruel especially woman who are having abortions due to rape or incest. This is one of the cruelest laws passed against women!!

lovin... lovinangels

well, 29, lets be fair. Maybe our dear blogger can produce the portion of the Constitution that allows for abortion...

I rather think this law puts in place a measure of reality to the abortion procedure. Whether you are for it or against it, it's a little person in there. There are other outs for unwanted pregnancy.

Jenny... JennyErikson

The comments about women being "forced" to have something something shoved up their vaginas are cracking me up. How do you think abortions are performed? They shove a knife and a vacuum up your hu-ha to cut up that *mass* and suck it out. 

I really don't see the issue of wanting women (or anyone) to understand what's going on in a elective major medical procedure before it happens. 

For what it's worth, I know very few pro-lifers that would deny a woman's right to choose in the 3% of cases where pregnancy results from insest or rape.

As for "controlling" women... I was unaware that women had no ability to keep their knees together, nor the strength or courage to deal with an unplanned pregnancy. 

Pundi... PunditMom

I can't believe someone is trying to make this about working mom guilt.  My goodness -- that has nothing to do with this discussion.  That is a real stretch.  This is about the government trying to control women's personal health decisions and in doing so, keeping women "in their place."  I find it odd that many of these same proponents of thinking it's OK to have government intrusion into this health decisions, were also ones who were against government health care because they didn't want the government sticking its nose into other medical decisions!  Just a TEESNY inconsistent, I'd say.

As for  my Constitutional right, it's still there as long as Roe v. Wade is law.  As I knew when I wrote this, there will never be agreement on this.  But when I see hypocrisy and people trying to lake away my legal rights, I'm going to shout about it.

JennyE -- This is hardly about keeping one's "legs together."  But we all know that, so I'm not going to keep writing.

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