Georgia bill will restrict reproductive rights

Drea Weiner

I am not now, nor have I ever been pregnant. For me to predict if I would get an abortion would be preposterous. There are too many factors going into that kind of decision that even a hypothetical situation couldn’t cover.

To have an individual or any form of the government adamantly tell me what I can or cannot do with my body immediately provokes obstinate outrage.

Georgia’s House of Representatives have passed and sent a bill to be signed by Governor Nathan Deal that prohibits abortions and medically-induced miscarriages after 20 weeks, regardless of the fetus being conceived of rape or incest, or the mental and emotional condition of the woman.

Those who violate this could be sentenced to jail for a maximum of 10 years.

If an abortion were to occur, then they must do so in a “manner which, in reasonable medical judgment, provides the best opportunity for the unborn child to survive unless, in reasonable medical judgment, termination of pregnancy in a manner would pose a greater risk either of the death of the pregnant woman or of the substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function of the pregnant woman.” At least they’ve considered the woman’s physical health.

If a woman is suicidal because of the unwanted pregnancy, she is required to carry it to full term. If a woman has mental health issues, she too is required to carry it to full term. This bill cares more for the fetus than the mother, when it should care about them both.

The lawmakers’ reason for choosing 20 weeks is because they believe the fetus can feel pain at this stage. At the federal level, abortions are legal up to 24 weeks. But according to “The Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics,” pain requires both an emotional and psychological response and it hasn’t been scientifically proven for the fetus to have the capacity to feel pain before the third trimester (29 to 30 weeks).

When this bill was first introduced, it also prohibited abortions if the fetus was dead. This has since been amended, much thanks to Terry England, who spoke in support of the bill.

England said, “I’ve had the experiences of delivering calves dead and alive. Delivering pigs dead and alive.” By comparing women to domesticated farm animals, you have demonstrated your strong respect for women across the nation and our history’s feminist movements.

Just because men don’t have the ability to give birth doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t have any say. If I were pregnant, unable to support the child and considering abortion, I would at the very least talk to the father and see where he stood.

I can see why an abortion would be a viable option, especially if the child is certain to have a difficult life.

Children raised in foster care have a 30 percent chance of having severe emotional, behavioral or developmental problems, according to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Georgia joins Nebraska, Indiana, Idaho, Kansas, Oklahoma and Alabama with fetal pain restrictions. North Carolina prohibits abortion after 20 weeks.

Lawmakers have prioritized a successful birth ahead of the pregnant woman and the prospective future of the child by passing this bill.

Regardless of the situation of those involved in this bill, this legislation strips citizens of free will.