New Abortion Restrictions in North Carolina Violate Women in the Worst Way

abortionTuesday the North Carolina House overrode Governor Bev Perdue's veto of a bill that requires women to receive ultrasounds and undergo a 24-hour waiting period before getting an abortion. Oh, the bill also requires women to hear a detailed account of the fetus -- organ and limb size, etc. -- whether she wants to hear it or not, and no, rape and incest victims aren't exempt.

This disgusting bill is called The Abortion-Woman's Right to Know Act, and the senator who sponsored it, Ruth Samuelson, feels that making it more difficult to have an abortion actually shows respect to rape survivors. And she's speaking as someone who was raped.

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My heart goes out to Senator Samuelson, really it does. No woman should ever have to go through the traumatizing thing she went through, but for the life of me, I can't understand her logic.

Rape victims who get abortions do so because they want to erase the haunting memory of what happened to them, right? Or perhaps they simply just aren't ready for a child. Really it doesn't matter. It's not my business or yours. The decision is theirs. And nobody should try to steer them in another direction. Making these women feel bad about getting an abortion -- because that is what this act does (doctors continue to explain the fetus even if the woman asks them to stop) -- is essentially making them feel bad about being raped, and drawing out an already difficult healing process. Why would anybody want to do that? Why would anybody prolong a medical procedure that women just want to get over?

The same applies to women who weren't raped or didn't experience incest. It's their body, their decision. Describing what is inside of them in full detail -- and then having them wait 24 hours -- is a cruel psychological punishment that should by no means be legal.

Every time decisions like this are made, it amazes me. It amazes me that this is where we still are as a society. And it amazes me that there are women actually behind these things. If Senator Samuelson truly feels that describing a fetus in detail will help rape victims, she should make it an option, not a requirement.

Do you think this is right?

 

Image via ElvertBarnes/Flickr

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