A new Arkansas law bans one of the safest and most common abortion procedures and allows family members to block an abortion by suing the abortion provider.
Arkansas Act 45, signed by Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson last Thursday, bans dilation and evacuation abortions, the most common abortion procedure during the second trimester of pregnancy. Rushed from filing to law in less than two months, the legislation effectively blocks abortions after 14 weeks by making the safest procedure a felony. The earliest current abortion bans block the procedure after 20 weeks.
With no exception for rape or incest, and a clause that allows a woman’s spouse or parent to sue an abortion provider, the law potentially allows the fetus’s father to sue even in cases of spousal rape or incest, abortion rights activists say. The law could go into effect as early as spring.
Emphasis mine. Looks like Arkansas is going full court biblical, reducing women to mere things, at best, nothing more than chattel. Interestingly enough, the fuckwits in Arkansas are also crusading against Sharia law. Apparently, they are utterly immune from irony poisoning.
State Rep. Brandt Smith (R-Jonesboro) introduced HB 1041, which won approval Thursday from a House judiciary committee, to “American laws for American courts,” reported the Arkansas Times.
He claims the measure was not specifically aimed at Sharia law, although it’s similar to legislation introduced in other states based on the conspiracy theory that Islamic law is creeping into the American legal system.
Yes, you could say Islamic law is creeping in, it’s called American laws for American courts, laws which exist for no other reason than to oppress and grind people down into the dirt, stripping them of their human rights and autonomy. At least Islamic law makes exceptions for rape and incest for 120 days when it comes to abortion, which makes that law better than the “American” one in Arkansas. Getting back to the Arkansas law, they aren’t alone:
When not working in the legislature, Mayberry doubles as the president of Arkansas Right to Life, a subsidiary of the National Right to Life Committee. Introducing the bill before the Arkansas House in January, Mayberry announced that the text was “based on model legislation from National Right to Life that has been passed, or similar legislation has been passed in six states.”
Those six states are Alabama, Kansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Mississippi, and West Virginia. In all but the latter two, which passed their bills in spring 2016, legal challenges have temporarily blocked the laws from taking effect. As in the other states, the Arkansas legislation takes a hard line against dilation and evacuation procedures, making their use a Class D felony, punishable by a $10,000 fine or six years in prison.
But one particularly punishing element of Arkansas’s law has not been tested in court, even in Mississippi and West Virginia, where versions of the bans still stand, reproductive rights activists say.
A clause in the Arkansas law allows a woman’s spouse, parent or guardian, or health care provider to sue an abortion provider for civil damages or injunctive relief that could stop the abortion. And because Act 45 does not provide any exceptions for cases of rape or incest, the clause could allow the fetus’s father to sue an abortion provider even in cases of spousal rape or incest.