This is not a good week for my old state. First, we’re even closer to having an amendment to the Indiana constitution banning gay marriage. Because you know, a law isn’t good enough when you’re homophobic.
HB1210, authored by Rep. Eric Turner, R-Marion, was originally drafted as a measure forcing abortion doctors to tell their patients that “the fetus may feel pain” and forcing patients to view an ultrasound picture unless they said in writing that they did not want to.
An amendment by Rep. Mark Messmer, R-Jasper, added many more provisions, including one forcing the health department to produce materials saying abortion can increase the risk of breast cancer, another saying patients must be told about opportunities for child care and child support payments and a provision saying abortions could not be performed after 20 weeks except to save the mother’s life. The amendment was approved 8-5.
[...]Messmer’s amendment says a relative of the woman, a county attorney or the attorney general could file an injunction against a doctor who performs or attempts to perform an abortion after 20 weeks.
“If you have an abortion provider providing post-20 week abortions across the state, it may take the attorney general,” Messmer said. His measure also includes a provision saying that life begins when an egg is fertilized.
What. The. Fuck. I wish I was surprised, but frankly I’m not. At least there are some sane voices in Indiana:
Lawson and other Democrats said the supporters’ testimony was based on faulty medical information. Planned Parenthood representatives said abortion does not increase the risk of breast cancer and that scientists and doctors have found fetuses cannot feel pain until well after 20 weeks.
A representative of the Jewish Community Relations Council testified that Jews do not believe life begins at fertilization — they believe it begins at birth — so codifying Messmer’s definition would write religion into state law.
Opponents questioned whether the purpose of the law was really to make women more informed or more safe.
“I’ve heard it before,” Lawson said. “They’re not going to change my mind. They’re bullies.”
Props to Lawson (who’s a representative from my home town’s congressional district) for calling out these people for who they truly are, Planned Parenthood for actually using science in their arguments, and the Jewish Community Relations Council for supporting the separation of church and state. Some people in Indiana get it. Unfortunately it’s not the majority.