Examiner.com, June 11, 2012 by Robert Sobel
If you ask most Americans, most will say that the economy and jobs will be the defining factor in determining the outcome of the 2012 presidential election. While getting Americans back to work is the number one topic, social issues also dominate much of the political landscape. Republican controlled federal and state governments have tried to push through strict anti-abortion laws that nearly cross the line drawn by the 1973 Supreme Court ruling, Roe v. Wade.
While Michigan is generally considered a “swing state” in a national election, the Michigan House of Representatives is run by a Republican majority. The House Republicans, following the national trend, are overwhelmingly socially conservative and have pushed the anti abortion agenda for some time. According to The Detroit News, the House committee passed a three part bill that would drastically change the abortion laws in the state. Included in the bill are requirements for abortion clinics to be officially licensed as “surgical centers” if they provide more than six abortions a month and it also makes it a crime to persuade a woman into having an abortion. The legislation also bans late term abortions with the lone exception of the mother’s life being on the line. With all of the radical language used in the legislation, it’s the bills’ stance on other possible exceptions that are turning heads.
In the anti abortion bill, it notes that no exceptions will be made even in cases of rape or incest. While this is becoming a common position to take on the extreme evangelical conservative right, the bill also doesn’t make exceptions if there is a fetal defect, including the fetus missing a spine or brain. If passed, the mother would be forced to give birth to a fetus who wasn’t living or would have no chance to survive. With the House committee passing the bill, it will now be headed to the State House and a vote could come as soon as next week.
Forcing a woman to have a child who has no chance of surviving is nothing short of heartbreaking and morally wrong. The Republican party and their representatives have shown through their policies that they’re moving sharply to the right on many social issues, but it’s not just the politicians who are doing so. This past May at an Oklahoma public school, teachers showed students a documentary film that compared having an abortion to Hitler and Nazi Germany. After backlash from some local parents, the film was pulled and the DVDs were confiscated.
Abortion is a personal matter and should be kept between the doctor and the patient. The Republican party and conservatives often use the term “small government” as a badge of honor, a bumper sticker and a political ideology, but when it comes to social issues, Republicans in Michigan and across the United States, continue to dream about a government that can’t stop growing.