Unnecessary and undermining

The new Texas Abortion law is unreasonable and harmful


Photo via Creative Commons

Texas legislature has recently put into effect a new law banning all abortions after six  weeks of pregnancy. All government workers are prohibited from enforcing the law, but it allows citizens to sue anyone who aids or performs the abortion, while the patients themselves cannot be sued. If plaintiffs win, they are rewarded $10,000.

The law is unconstitutional, illogical and unnecessary. If these pro-life politicians actually cared about human life and people’s well being, they would not ban abortions completely. They would work on ways to prevent it from being needed in the first place. Abortion isn’t the problem; the problem is men thinking they get to control what someone with a uterus does with their body. 

The law goes against Roe v. Wade, a case that began in Texas, and went to the Supreme Court in 1973, legalizing abortion and recognizing it as a constitutional right. And instead of respecting the case as time went on, the legislature just found a way around it. But surprisingly (it’s not very surprising) enough, the Supreme Court passed it with a 5 to 4 vote. The majority vote, according The New York Times, stated that the abortion providers who challenged the law did not prepare their case in order to answer “complex and novel” procedural questions. They have also made an emphasis that their ruling is not on whether the law is unconstitutional or not, which left me utterly confused. The Supreme Court’s one major job is to make sure that laws passed are constitutional. But in this case they have a law that clearly goes against a Supreme Court ruling, and they’re not only letting it pass, but there is a whole separate upcoming case on whether or not Roe v. Wade should be overturned. 

Let’s also not forget that there is a $10,000 reward for the plaintiffs who win their case, and the state of Texas will cover all additional costs and fees. The state is turning their citizens into bounty hunters by giving them an incentive to persecute their peers. 

The time constraints during which the new law says an abortion may not occur is also problematic. The law states abortions may not occur after six weeks of pregnancy, but that is only two weeks after many people realize their period is late. A two week delay can be caused by stress, a change in medication or a change in diet. Or it can be caused by nothing at all. The law does not give people enough time to figure out they are pregnant, let alone figure out what they are going to do. According to a 2018 study done by the CDC, 92.2% of abortion patients that year in the United States, did not even have abortions until, during or after the thirteenth week. If the legislatures wanted to ban something, at least make the time frame reasonable.

This isn’t going to stop a majority of abortions; it will only put a stop to the safe ones. People will find other ways, and at-home abortions are rarely safe or effective. According to the Guttmacher Institute, 22,800 people die each year world wide due to unsafe abortions. 

Some people cannot carry a child to full term without suffering from serious health issues. But under the new law, they are still forced to follow through with the pregnancy even if that means putting their life on the line, and ethically, how can a politician tell someone to do that? 

The law offers no expectations for victims of rape or incest. These people have already suffered enough, and now they have to carry around a reminder of that incident. It is completely inhumane. 

Additionally, minors are not excluded. Under Texas’ new law, people who aren’t even old enough to drive are forced to carry a pregnancy to term. No child is prepared to care for another. And I have heard enough of the “If they can’t deal with consequences, they shouldn’t be having sex” argument. That is not the only reason a 15-year-old would be seeking an abortion. They could be victims of sexual assault or incest. But even if it is, this still wouldn’t be the way to handle it. If politicians do not want a 15-year-old to get pregnant, work on providing better sexual education to students and resources. Preaching abstinence will not help kids. It’s an easy way out. Instead teach them about different contraceptive measures and encourage safe sex. 

The state of Texas has been wasting time making laws that don’t benefit all of society.