Soon, Very Soon, We Can Finally Criminalize Being a Woman of Reproductive Age

The latest in anti-woman rhetoric, from Louisiana’s governor Bobby Jindal:

Jindal said he was proud to help make his state one that supports a “culture of life,” adding that women will soon be treated similarly to criminals who are read their rights after an arrest.

“When officers arrest criminals today, they are read their rights,” he said, according to a report by Louisiana paper The News-Star. “Now if we’re giving criminals their basic rights and they have to be informed of those rights, it seems to me only common sense we would have to do the same thing for women before they make the choice about whether to get an abortion.”

Fittingly he signed HB 636, which mandates that clinics offering abortion post signs listing “women’s rights” when it comes to abortion, at the First Baptist Church of West Monroe. Interestingly, this list of rights doesn’t include any information about women’s right to choose abortion, such as that it is protected by federal law, that choosing abortion is a private decision between a woman and her doctor, different abortion methods available, and any funding options.

You can find a copy of the bill here.

Jindal said, “There were nearly 9,000 abortions performed in our state last year alone, and that is an awfully humbling statistic. What that tells me is much, much, much more work remains to be done so that everyone is choosing life in our state.”

He also pontificated about how women “deserve to know their legal rights and the protections already afforded to them under the law,” yet the language of the bill and the rest of his speech make it clear that he does not believe this. He has already decided what choice he wants every woman facing unwanted pregnancy to make, and he is only interested in providing information that will induce women to make the choice he wants. The only “women’s right” he is interested in is forced birth. This cynical appropriation of the language of the women’s rights movement to flimsily patch over his true interest of whittling away our rights makes me nauseous. And to do it at a church of a religion whose leadership lobbies hard for the subjugation of women… wow.


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