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OT: Mainstreaming Extremism and the War Against Women (and their doctors)

February 16, 2011

This is OT but it’s so outrageous I just have to post it. At what point do women in the US say “enough is enough?”

This is just insane:

A law under consideration in South Dakota would expand the definition of “justifiable homicide” to include killings that are intended to prevent harm to a fetus—a move that could make it legal to kill doctors who perform abortions. The Republican-backed legislation, House Bill 1171, has passed out of committee on a nine-to-three party-line vote, and is expected to face a floor vote in the state’s GOP-dominated House of Representatives soon.
“The bill in South Dakota is an invitation to murder abortion providers.”

The bill, sponsored by state Rep. Phil Jensen, a committed foe of abortion rights, alters the state’s legal definition of justifiable homicide by adding language stating that a homicide is permissible if committed by a person “while resisting an attempt to harm” that person’s unborn child or the unborn child of that person’s spouse, partner, parent, or child. If the bill passes, it could in theory allow a woman’s father, mother, son, daughter, or husband to kill anyone who tried to provide that woman an abortion—even if she wanted one.


“The bill in South Dakota is an invitation to murder abortion providers,” says Vicki Saporta, the president of the National Abortion Federation, the professional association of abortion providers. Since 1993, eight doctors have been assassinated at the hands of anti-abortion extremists, and another 17 have been the victims of murder attempts. Some of the perpetrators of those crimes have tried to use the justifiable homicide defense at their trials. “This is not an abstract bill,” Saporta says. The measure could have major implications if a “misguided extremist invokes this ‘self-defense’ statute to justify the murder of a doctor, nurse or volunteer,” the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families warned in a message to supporters last week.


Sara Rosenbaum, a law professor at George Washington University who frequently testifies before Congress about abortion legislation, says the bill is legally dubious. “It takes my breath away,” she says in an email to Mother Jones. “Constitutionally, a state cannot make it a crime to perform a constitutionally lawful act.”


he law that would legalize killing abortion providers is just one of several measures under consideration in the state that would create more obstacles for a woman seeking an abortion. Another proposed law, House Bill 1217, would force women to undergo counseling at a Crisis Pregnancy Center (CPC) before they can obtain an abortion. CPCs are not regulated and are generally run by anti-abortion Christian groups and staffed by volunteers—not doctors or nurses—with the goal of discouraging women from having abortions.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. February 16, 2011 12:47 pm

    Amazing, isn’t it? Along with potentially legalizing murder of doctors, you have legislation to mandate the women visit a CPC, a 72 hour waiting period, and who knows what else. There is only one clinic now in the state that is a provider, and they fly in the doctor from another state. Because of the size of the state, women may be driving 6 or more hours across state for the service.

  2. Thain permalink
    February 16, 2011 1:30 pm

    What are people thinking when they do stuff like this? What will it take for people to see what’s going on and get pissed off about it. I guess maybe if Roe is overruled then people will notice? But how does the so-called pro-life crowd justify killing a doctor? Not really pro-life is it? If they had any real sense of values they would be the first to condemn this- are they?

    • discourseincsharpminor permalink
      February 16, 2011 1:41 pm

      Killing a doctor, or a nurse, or a former patient is them giving an evil sinner what they deserve according to their interpretation of the religion that they believe is a part of every part of American life even for those who don’t practice said religion. It’s the Christian Right’s honor killing.

    • February 16, 2011 3:21 pm

      Dr Tiller was murdered in his church in 2009. Rachel Maddow did a show on that relatively recently. I watched it online. The “pro-life” folks justify these deaths or attempt to distance themselves from them.

  3. discourseincsharpminor permalink
    February 16, 2011 1:36 pm

    The state Houses of Representatives are going crazy with their anti abortion agendas, but I’m not surprised when the US House of Representatives, the group that was all about jobs, jobs, jobs, has introduced three pieces of anti abortion legislation even though none of the economic issues have been touched. Can anyone else say bait-and-switch. If some of the really out there abortion bills in the states get passed, expect to see incarnations of them show up in the House. The new majority doesn’t care if someone like me ever gets a job againg, just so long as we serve our biological purpose whether we want to or not.

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