North Dakota, with its deeply rooted conservative politics and piety, may soon pass the most radical anti-abortion legislation in the United States.
In the next few days, the state Senate will vote on a “personhood bill” that would declare a fertilized egg a human being. If passed, it would apply all criminal laws now on the books – from murder to assault and prohibitions on slavery – to an embryo or a fetus. The law would also likely end in-vitro fertilization and embryonic stem-cell research in the state.
WASHINGTON — U.S. President Barack Obama on Friday will lift restrictions on U.S. government funding for groups that provide abortion services or counseling abroad, reversing a policy of his Republican predecessor George W. Bush, an administration official said.
“It will be today. He’s going to make an executive order [lifting the global gag rule],” the official said.
The Democratic president’s decision is a victory for advocates of abortion rights on an issue that in recent years has become a tit-for-tat policy change each time the White House shifts from one party to the other.
I remain far from convinced that outlawing abortion is the way to go. If I had my druthers, we wouldn’t need a law stating that the fetus is a person the same way we don’t need one stating that women are persons too. (Though on the other hand, it did take a fair bit of legal wrangling to get to where we are. This is one of those cases where I’m sorry I don’t have a third hand.) But that’s not what bugs me.
What I find irritating beyond words is the way those stories start. Where, in the story about President Obama lifting funding restrictions do they talk about his entrenched belief that abortion is exclusively a “woman’s right”, which in my mind at least is a lot weirder than a belief (rooted in religion or otherwise) that a human embryo is a human person in development?
Andrea adds: It takes a science text book to see an embryo as the very first stage in human life. It takes…ideology, leaps in logic and a sustained attack against those medical texts to view abortion as a woman’s right. People can and do choose their views on this topic. But that being pro-life is somehow viewed as extreme is very, very strange to me.by