The Texas abortion law is not only oppressive, it is hypocritical




“My body, my choice” is a phrase embodied by the movement that has spearheaded my political career and empowers me to make safe and informed decisions about my body and my life. I am a woman with a mission to ensure that a person’s choice is trusted, respected, and heard in order to gain self-determination.

The subject has always been the right to make decisions about one’s body based on the best interests of one’s life and only one’s life. This phrase has always meant the right to consent to gender, pregnancy and childbirth and to access medically accurate information and the wide range of reproductive health services – without violence, discrimination and government interference or repercussions.

Inadvertently, this sentence was merged with two completely different problems. People who do not advocate abortion and other reproductive rights laws are declaring “my body, my choice” as if their decision to vaccinate, wear masks and take action to protect our community from the Covid-19 pandemic Precautions necessary to deny, oppression and unconstitutional.

Against reproductive rights politicians use the term as a shield to spread misinformation and fuel public fear of “tyrannical efforts to violate personal freedom” with security mandates while continuing to openly oppose and vote against equitable access to reproductive health.

Last week, Texas passed SB8, the nation’s most restrictive ban on abortion. It prohibits abortions after six weeks of gestation, long before many women even know they are pregnant. The law allows individuals, abortion providers, and anyone else to sue a person who helps a person achieve an abortion, including those who drive a woman to a clinic or provide financial assistance.

Citizens filing these lawsuits are not required to show any connection with those who are suing them, and the law even gives them an incentive to sue them with the prospect of $ 10,000 if they win their case.

There are no exceptions for rape or incest.

The United States Supreme Court made no attempt to block this law, which led to the landmark Roe v. Wade, protected by the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution, is most at risk. Texas Governor Greg Abbott, who banned mask and vaccine mandates in honor of his “personal choice,” celebrates a victory as politics directly attack a woman’s decision to bear and raise a child, regardless of how it could affect them physically, emotionally and financially.

Marginalized groups still suffer most from these laws.

Abbott is not alone in the epitome of false solidarity with “the right to make one’s own personal medical decisions.” He hypocritically hides behind this sentence and contributes to the spread of Covid-19.

I saw this rhetoric here in Hawaii.

Planned Parenthood on Beretania Street in Honolulu. Cory Lum / Civil Beat

I’m not a doctor, but I’m an organizer who successfully took action last April to pass Law 3 to greatly expand access to equitable abortion care in Hawaii for those who need it.

The best thing I’ve learned as a lobbyist is to listen to those who are immersed in the experience, study, and work of a subject. They are the experts, and to move forward effectively we need to create space to learn from and follow their example.

Medical experts have reiterated time and again that the vaccine alone is not the solution, but that all general safety precautions must be followed consistently. Ambivalence about the vaccine is fine and people are allowed to have different views on things, but that doesn’t rule out the consequences of people’s inaction to curb the spread and number of current hospital admissions.

For reference, reproductive rights activists will never tell you what to think about abortion. The point of their advocacy is that no matter how you feel about it, if an abortion doesn’t affect your life, you have no right to control your decision to have an abortion.

Covid-19, on the other hand, is a highly transmittable and deadly virus that has changed the lives of all of us, regardless of whether we got infected with it or not. Medical experts have proven that vaccinations are effective at reducing severe symptoms, reducing hospital stays, relieving clinician burnout, and so on. The experts’ informed appeal to the public is that we must take the initiative now, before things get worse – because they will get worse if we don’t take responsibility for how our actions affect the safety and lives of other people affects.

Note that these two situations are not interchangeable. It is not “my body, my choice” if that choice harms other people. Personal decisions with public implications are public health issues that require collective action.

Each individual’s personal decision to take the recommended safety precautions is essential to eradicating or alleviating Covid-19.

Everyone has their own personal decision when it comes to family planning.

Honolulu Civil Beat is dedicated to educating an informed community who all strive to make Hawaii a better place to live. We achieve this through investigative journalism and watchdog journalism, detailed company coverage, analysis and commentary that give readers a broad overview of topics that are important to our community.


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