The lawmakers in Texas are trying to punish abortion with the death penalty. How? They’re pushing an anti-abortion bill that was first proposed two years ago, reports The Cut. It is now being debated again.
Read more: How to Get a Safe Abortion in South Africa
What Would This Bill Mean for Women?
If the bill comes to pass, it would criminalise abortion. This means that women who get abortions could be charged with homicide (so could their doctors). In Texas, if you’re charged with homicide, you face a potential death penalty (because the death penalty still exists in Texas). So, it would mean that if you get an abortion in Texas, you could be sentenced to death.
How Much Support Does it Have?
Do people support it? There were over 446 witnesses who registered their support for this bill last week, some of them compared abortion to genocide. It was first introduced by Republican representative, Tony Tinderholt to “protect the rights of an unborn child”. How seriously should we take this? Last Monday was the first time in Texas’ history that “public testimony had been heard on a measure holding women criminally liable for their abortions” – The Cut.
Fortunately, It Looks Like It Won’t Happen (Right Now)
The bill was recently debated in front of the Texas House’s Committee on Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence. It is not expected to pass and the bill was left pending.
But this is bigger than Texas. Other states, including Georgia and Alabama have tried to implement similar laws. So this does indicate a worrying movement in the U.S. where lawmakers are trying to police women’s bodies and reproductive rights.
Should We Be Worried Over Here?
The Trump administration does have global anti-abortion plans, with their anti-choice Mexico City policy being one example. They are looking to ban funding for abortion services overseas. And Ivanka Trump is coming to Africa this month. So, it can’t hurt to keep an eye on this.
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