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Full Reproductive Rights for Women

At a time when many countries of the industrialized, democratic Western world are moving ahead with increasingly progressive socio-political agendas, the US is conspicuous in that it is headed in a diametrically opposite direction.

That has become particularly apparent of late in respect of the growing assault on full reproductive rights for women in the US. Take for example the recent troubling events in Alabama.

The Republican dominated state has found itself in the glare of the world’s media by effectively outlawing abortion and, as is known an open secret, hoping that such appallingly draconian legislation makes its way to a conservative-leaning Supreme Court for final arbitration.

Other states are headed down the same route. Never has Roe -v- Wade, and therefore full female reproductive rights, been as threatened as now.

Of course, the anti-abortion movement has long been hand in glove with the (white) Christian evangelical movement in the US. That has then been grotesquely magnified by Trump and his Machiavellian marriage of convenience with the same evangelical movement that is more than prepared to turn millions of blind eyes to his far from Christian lifestyle, ethics, and misdemeanors.

With that in mind, it’s worth keeping a few things in mind.

First, a woman’s body is her own to do with as she pleases. And that absolutely includes something as fundamental as her reproductive rights.

Second, if, as pro-Second Amendment anti-abortionists and their religious allies so frequently claim, guns should not be regulated in any way by “government” just how then should it be the case that a woman’s womb can be subject to regulation and legal enforcement?

So, gun control is “government over-reach” but “womb control” is not? Yeah right.

Third, the vast majority of Alabama’s Republican lawmakers are men – as are the vast majority of “pro-life” anti-abortionists elsewhere in the US. And the vast majority of that vast majority know next to nothing as to both the intricacies of the female reproductive system and the associated ethical and emotional dynamics that accompany a woman’s birth control rights and decisions.

And it’s not just Republican bigotry at play here. Some Democrat controlled states can hang their heads in shame too. That’s because while Republican states are pressing on with their shameless anti-abortion agendas, some Democrat legislators are actually doing the same.

So it is then that in recent days, Democrat lawmakers in Louisiana have drafted and then signed into law their own highly restrictive “heartbeat bill.”

On Thursday May 30th 2019, Louisiana’s Democratic Governor, John Bel Edwards, signed the bill off, declaring that:

“This is an issue I've been consistent on forever. I am pro-life…" [1]

Like Alabama, Louisiana’s draconian legislation has no exceptions for pregnancies or rapes.

And it’s not just the conservative, religious South where anti-choice sentiment is under attack.

While Edwards and his kind may profess to be Democrats, they are certainly not progressives. Absolutely far from it. Take Democrat dominated Rhode Island as an example.

Despite a Democrat ascendancy, robust legislation to protect the productive rights of women is still in question and Democrat lawmakers are complicit, with:

“…a state Senate committee dominated by Democrats [refusing] to advance a bill protecting the rights established by Roe v Wade.” [2]

The sad reality is that when it comes to full reproductive rights for women, there are not only way too many Republican (predominantly male) lawmakers out there who are seemingly out of the Dark Ages, there are any number of Democrat ones too.

The very fact that women’s reproductive rights are this much of an issue in twenty-first century America is jaw-dropping. Roe -v- Wade has been settled law for decades. And yet the froth-at-the-mouth “pro-lifers” continue to agitate, organize and intimidate, irrespective of party.

No woman attending a Planned Parenthood clinic should have to bear the ignominy of being escorted in both under cover and under protection so as to protect their both their identity and safety. Like mass school shootings and for-profit health-care, such a thing is simply just not a thing in the rest of the industrialized, democratic Western world.

It is time for true progressives to come together, discarding meaningless established party labels, so as to make a resolute stand against the now all-out attack on women’s reproductive rights.



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