February 5th, 2011
|01:06 pm - Recent House Bills That Make Me Shiver|
Republicans introduced H.R. 358, probably best referred to as the Let Women Die Act, which indicates that women can be denied life-saving treatment because a doctor is unwilling to perform said treatment (and let's face it, it does not matter what type of treatment that is: it's wrong to deny treatment to anyone who needs it). This comes on the heels of H.R. 3, which tried to re-define what counted as "rape," indicating that "forcible" rape was somehow worse than any other kind of rape.
Essentially, in H.R. 3, the Republicans (and several idiot Democrats) tried to sell "rape by being held down" as somehow worse than "rape through roofies" or "statutory rape". . . when, in reality, "non-consent" can be the only valid measure of rape, or there is a risk that we will find ourselves saying, "Oh, well, she was only raped a little bit." That doesn't even make any sense, and even worse, it starts to tell people that rape is only sometimes a crime.
H.R. 358 allows hospitals to outright refuse treatment if they can't find a doctor willing to terminate a pregnancy, even if the woman will die without termination. Not only that, but they also don't have to transfer the patient to another hospital that will do the procedure. Essentially, the law says that they can let the woman die and not be responsible. . . and still get their federal funds.
I was under the impression that everyone voted to get the government out of their personal lives last November. . . This moralizing and hypocrisy (our local effervescent bundle-of-joy "hero-of-a-congressman," John Boehner, referred to this bill as the "will of the people" just about a week ago, tying it to the perceived mandate they got) is pretty much the furthest thing from what people were voting for.
So let's review H.R. 358 in light of "the will of the people" as expressed in the last election. The bill allows the hospital to refuse treatment and let a woman die, and still collect federal funding? I thought we were trying to reduce federal spending here, not give it to people of a "higher moral standard," as decided by Congress. (If you can honestly tell me that letting a woman die and not providing her a different option for treatment is an objectively "higher moral standard" than potentially terminating a pregnancy, you'll win a sucker.) I would be more inclined to buy the argument that the recent election indicated that all federal dollars for hospitals should be pulled than the argument that the recent election indicated that Congress (of all people) should be our moral compass.
It's one thing to have the government's hands in my pockets: that will never change, but it would be nice if they stuck their hands in my pockets a bit less. I'm all for that. But I don't have to let their hands down my wife's pants. That's not where the government's hands belong!
I rarely talk about politics in my journal (and I tend to think of myself as a "Republican who can't find his party" because of stuff just like this), but this circus act is pretty clearly out of line with what the voters want. And I'll admit that I'm a bit upset about it, though I was also pretty much expecting this. Tigers don't change their stripes, after all. This sort of thing isn't a Republican problem, not really: Democrats do some pretty dumb things (like sponsoring these bills, for instance), but I am forced to admit that the Republicans tend to pull this sort of thing a lot more often than the Democrats seem to.
What the hell is a fiscally conservative, socially liberal person supposed to do these days? I think the message is that we should just stay home, because neither party actually cares about us.
This new House of Representatives is failing at representing sanity.
Current Location: Southeast of Disorder
Current Mood: awake
Current Music: "Come Monday", -JB
I've been following abortion rights stuff for years, and I NEVER would have thought they'd go after the "to save the life of the mother" clause. To show just how heinous this bill is, 1% of all pregnancies are ectopic. Ectopics, if they don't miscarry early (slightly higher than the natural miscarriage rate of 15% last I checked), they WILL kill the woman. A burst tube = death if not caught early enough, and one could argue that performing an emergency hysterectomy on a quasi-pregnant woman with a burst tube is abortion. Which of course means more death.
I know too many people who've needed therapeutic abortions to save their life. One, who has named herself the internet poster child for partial birth abortion, almost had a stroke at 22 weeks due to severe pre-eclampsia. Another of my LJ friends had her placenta abrupt at 18 weeks and without an abortion would have bled to death on the table. I believe she needed a transfusion or two. And then there's the handful of friends who've had ectopics. And so on and so forth.
Then there's the health issue. I have another LJ friend who might very well be dead now because of pregnancy. She had 2 kids close together, both unplanned, and both born by emergency c-section before 30 weeks due to severe pre-eclampsia. Pre-eclampsia, in case you were unaware, causes damage to kidneys, amongst other issues, and she's spent much of the past 6 months on dialysis. A few months ago she posted that if she didn't get a new kidney in two weeks she would be dead. ::googles:: Oh, good. According to twitter she got the kidney and as of 1/27 was "almost ready for transplant." And she posted something about going to class a few days ago. so yay, still alive! But it seems pretty damn likely that any future pregnancy (here's hoping they've done something permanent) will kill her.
Then there's my friend who's very pro-life but had a horrific c-section last fall, such that it isn't safe for her to get pregnant again. She couldn't birth it naturally, probably couldn't carry to term due to the damage to her uterus. Thankfully she wants to be "done." But they won't do anything beyond NFP.
And so on and so forth. So many people think of these things as hypothetical, but there are real women attached to these policies. Real lives, real health.
I've been following abortion rights stuff for years, and I NEVER would have thought they'd go after the "to save the life of the mother" clause.
I'm disturbed but not surprised. If the goal is to eliminate all abortions, then they will go after every reason a woman can get an abortion - rape, incest, threat to the life of the woman. I suspect traces of a Puritan philosophy play into it - if a woman is faithful to God then she wouldn't need an abortion to save her life. I hope that clause goes the way of the re-defining rape one.