Friday, June 8, 2012

War on Women in Michigan

Sooo.... I started a blog at WordPress, but I think I like blogger better. Good thing I hadn't done much over at WordPress yet. Starting again.

Anyway, I currently live in the state of Michigan. Unfortunately, my state representatives are pushing through legislation that would severely restrict women's right to choose. The decision to have an abortion is, I would imagine, never an easy one. I don't see any reason why we should continue to try to make it a harder one. Often the decision is made on a medical basis, either for the fetus or for the mother. (The woman who live tweeted her abortion was terminating the pregnancy because her last pregnancy nearly killed her.) As Jenni Lane's story from RH Reality Check states:
The vast majority of later abortions are performed for similar medical reasons, because so many serious conditions are impossible to detect until near or after the 20-week point. Far from being an exception to the rule, nearly all of the women affected by a ban on abortions after 20 weeks will be women just like Jenni, who are making the excruciating choice to end a wanted pregnancy in which the fetus cannot possibly survive.
[More after the jump.]

Unfortunately for the ladies of Michigan, this law might make it more difficult for women choosing to terminate for reasons like this in the future. And our representatives aren't even allowing us to testify before they vote. Of course sometimes lawmakers don't have time for long debate, but this is a serious issue that affects women's most basic rights to their bodies. When you read who was denied versus who was permitted the right to speak, the bias becomes abundantly clear:
The American Medical Association, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Planned Parenthood of Mid and South Michigan, the Hospital Association and the Michigan State Medical Society, along with dozens of women who had arrived prepared to speak about their personal experiences, were all denied the opportunity to testify at today's committee meeting. Republican committee chair Gail Haines did permit testimony from Michigan Right to Life.
The groups that were denied testimony were partly interest groups, but The AMA? The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists? Seriously? I love me some Planned Parenthood, but I would understand if they were not permitted to speak due to time restrictions if the medical experts had been allowed over Michigan Right to Life. If our legislature worked like a courtroom on Law & Order, this would be a mistrial. Alas, we must deal with the fact our representatives are likely to vote on HB 5713 next week (It already passed committee). If you live in Michigan, please contact your representatives and let them know how you feel.

To end on a lighter note, here is a video from Michigan college students who support Planned Parenthood.

And an older video that I can't help but still love, from students at the University of Michigan in support of Planned Parenthood.


  1. I sent this email out just now:
    Good Evening Representative XXXX,

    I very concerned about HB 5711, which passed its house committee recently. I'm worried about what this will mean for women who discover a devastating genetic defect that makes continuing a pregnancy a nonviable option. I see in the past you have voted Nay on bills HB 4799, SB 160, and HB 4109. Unfortunately, there are many people in the State House who would deny women the right to control their own bodies. The committee that voted on this bill did not allow experts to testify before voting. This cannot happen when the bill comes up for a vote in the House. Please continue to fight for women's rights and ensure our voices are heard.

    I'm pro-choice and I vote,