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Old 05-08-2019, 04:49 AM
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Georgia governor signs strictest abortion bill in nation


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On Tuesday, Georgia Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed a “fetal heartbeat” bill that seeks to outlaw abortion after about six weeks. The measure, HB 481, is the most extreme abortion ban in the country—not just because it would impose severe limitations on women’s reproductive rights, but also because it would subject women who get illegal abortions to life imprisonment and the death penalty.

The primary purpose of HB 481 is to prohibit doctors from terminating any pregnancy after they can detect “embryonic or fetal cardiac activity,” which typically occurs at six weeks’ gestation. But the bill does far more than that. In one sweeping provision, it declares that “unborn children are a class of living, distinct person” that deserves “full legal recognition.” Thus, Georgia law must “recognize unborn children as natural persons”—not just for the purposes of abortion, but as a legal rule.
This idiotic law, as the article goes on to state, may have unintended consequences. If fetuses have legal personhood then they are entitled to due process. I look forward to thousands of Habeas Corpus suits for the thousands of fetuses illegally imprisoned across the state. The law defies belief. But will the Supreme Court strike it down? I'd like to think so but I'm not so sure it will.
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Old 05-08-2019, 06:04 AM
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This law seems to be part of a coordinated legal strategy across multiple states in an effort to force a Supreme Court case. But there are intentions beyond strictly legal considerations at work here.

One of these aims is to energize the religious right. After all, it's the theocrats who voted Trump-Pence into power, and they have been rewarded with two very conservative justices, and may very well be rewarded with a third at some point in the near future if Ginsburg goes down. Moreover, the Republicans are currently in the process of trying to radically remake the district and circuit courts, and given more time, that transformation will be complete, and they will have an impact on the courts for decades, regardless of whether a Democrat becomes president and regardless if they control Congress.

The other consideration is that this is about reversing the power and the gains that women have made in society. Don't for a moment believe that giving the middle finger to feminism and putting women back into their place isn't part of the agenda here. Conservatism in the United States comes from a patriarchal place, and this is proof of that. Sure, it's dressed up as a religious bill, but look at what the law does. It doesn't just restrict and regulate how women can respond to pregnancy; it imposes draconian forms of punishment if they violate these restrictions. It sends a very clear message: women are sperm receptacles and baby makers, and not much else.

In terms of the larger political significance, I go back to what I've said before: the extremists in this country need each other. They need Trump to give them access to power, and Trump needs the extremists to stay in power, and to save his ass from jail. This is only going to get more extreme. This country will only become more openly misogynistic, more openly racist, more openly anti-liberal, anti-atheist, anti-immigrant, and anti-everything else. The way that the 30-35% of people control the remaining 65-70% is to form a coalition of extremists. That's what they're doing now, and they've only just begun to march down the road of oppression.

Last edited by asahi; 05-08-2019 at 06:07 AM.
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Old 05-08-2019, 06:37 AM
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The other thing this law accomplishes is ascribing personhood to fetuses. On this board, people have stated that if Roe is overturned, it just goes back to the states. IANAL, but IMO, if this particular law is held up, it could end up leading the way to banning abortion nationwide -- if fetuses are legal persons, then they could get the rights to life, liberty, etc., that the rest of us get. The woman may have a right to privacy (which is where I think the rights in Roe came from), but those may be overcome by the fetuses right to life. Suddenly, the fetus has equal protection rights and so on, and, poof, abortion is illegal in the US.

Hopefully, I'm all wrong about this, of course.
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Old 05-08-2019, 07:21 AM
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The other thing this law accomplishes is ascribing personhood to fetuses. On this board, people have stated that if Roe is overturned, it just goes back to the states. IANAL, but IMO, if this particular law is held up, it could end up leading the way to banning abortion nationwide -- if fetuses are legal persons, then they could get the rights to life, liberty, etc., that the rest of us get. The woman may have a right to privacy (which is where I think the rights in Roe came from), but those may be overcome by the fetuses right to life. Suddenly, the fetus has equal protection rights and so on, and, poof, abortion is illegal in the US.

Hopefully, I'm all wrong about this, of course.
Indeed, which means women could, and almost certainly would, be jailed for miscarriage.
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Old 05-08-2019, 07:21 AM
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And you guys thought it was a bad idea for the guy running for governor to be allowed to oversee the election!
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Old 05-08-2019, 07:36 AM
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While utterly monstrous and misogynistic and terribly harmful to women, politically overturning Roe v Wade would be an incredible boon for Democrats, as it's hard to imagine anything motivating progressives and young people (especially young women) as much as implementing government control over the bodies of pregnant women.
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Old 05-08-2019, 07:46 AM
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While utterly monstrous and misogynistic and terribly harmful to women, politically overturning Roe v Wade would be an incredible boon for Democrats, as it's hard to imagine anything motivating progressives and young people (especially young women) as much as implementing government control over the bodies of pregnant women.
The ends do not justify the means. Letting things turn to shit for a possible political gain isn't right.
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Old 05-08-2019, 07:49 AM
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While utterly monstrous and misogynistic and terribly harmful to women, politically overturning Roe v Wade would be an incredible boon for Democrats, as it's hard to imagine anything motivating progressives and young people (especially young women) as much as implementing government control over the bodies of pregnant women.
And, along the way, thousands of women will be forced to have children they don't want, some will die in childbirth, some will be forced to have babies where the father is a rapist, some will be jailed, some will die because of back alley abortions, some will live in lifelong poverty because they had a child when they weren't ready for it. The whole abortion infrastructure, or what still remains in various red states, will be taken down as abortion clinics disappear and doctors stop studying and practicing it. And, if Trump and climate-change-denying Republicans isn't enough of a motivation to get young progressives to vote in higher numbers, I don't see how this will be any better.

I know you don't want Roe overturned, of course. But I just don't like the thinking that goes with, well, if this disaster happens, then they'll that will really spell the end! Trump happened and Republicans gained seats in the Senate and did fine at the Governor level. It never seems to work out that way.
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Old 05-08-2019, 07:53 AM
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The ends do not justify the means. Letting things turn to shit for a possible political gain isn't right.
Agreed, and I didn't suggest this. This should be fought tooth and nail with every tool available, even if overturning Roe v Wade would help the Democrats, as I think it would.
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Old 05-08-2019, 07:59 AM
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The ends do not justify the means. Letting things turn to shit for a possible political gain isn't right.
I beg to differ. It is the entire MO of the Right.

The frustrating thing of it is, is that progressive voters are always motivated in their reaction to the last terrible thing the Right has done. We saw that during the mid-term election. Progressives might even manage to maintain the momentum through the 2020 election. But sooner, rather than never, they'll call it job done, lose interest and go back to self-satisfied apathy. Never having learned the lesson that evil never sleeps.

Also want to add that Asahi nailed it in post #2. Well said.
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Old 05-08-2019, 08:20 AM
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Every sane woman (and man) should leave the state of Georgia and let the remaining misogynistic assholes jerk themselves into a stupor.
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:23 AM
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And, along the way, thousands of women will be forced to have children they don't want, some will die in childbirth, some will be forced to have babies where the father is a rapist, some will be jailed, some will die because of back alley abortions, some will live in lifelong poverty because they had a child when they weren't ready for it. The whole abortion infrastructure, or what still remains in various red states, will be taken down as abortion clinics disappear and doctors stop studying and practicing it. And, if Trump and climate-change-denying Republicans isn't enough of a motivation to get young progressives to vote in higher numbers, I don't see how this will be any better.
More older children will suffer in foster care while couples wait for babies to adopt, single motherhood will probably go back to being a disgrace, and the people who hae abortion and supposedly favor adoption will probably try next to ban gay adoption. Yeah, we support adoption, but only to the right people.
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:40 AM
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Assuming this makes it all the way to the top, this challenge to Roe is way premature. Conservatives hold only a 5-4 majority on SCOTUS and Roberts likes to vote with the liberals here and there. Very likely, this would be struck down and the Court would further affirm and solidify Roe. Conservatives shouldn't be doing this unless they have a 6-3 or 7-2 majority.
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:47 AM
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Forced births are necessary to replace the children shot in schools.

What a shithole country.
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Old 05-08-2019, 09:55 AM
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While utterly monstrous and misogynistic and terribly harmful to women, politically overturning Roe v Wade would be an incredible boon for Democrats, as it's hard to imagine anything motivating progressives and young people (especially young women) as much as implementing government control over the bodies of pregnant women.
We've seen that before, and it turns out the motivation of young people is a mile wide and an inch deep. Give them something new to worry about and it evaporates. Don't count on it.
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Old 05-08-2019, 10:12 AM
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This idiotic law, as the article goes on to state, may have unintended consequences. If fetuses have legal personhood then they are entitled to due process. I look forward to thousands of Habeas Corpus suits for the thousands of fetuses illegally imprisoned across the state. The law defies belief. But will the Supreme Court strike it down? I'd like to think so but I'm not so sure it will.
It would not be thousands of fetuses imprisoned. There are 3,940 female prisoners in the Georgia state prison system. If the percentage of pregnant prisoners is similar to national numbers then 4% are pregnant. That is a total of 158 total pregnant prisoners.

Since there is no way to incarcerate the mother without incarcerating the baby, I doubt habeas corpus suits will be successful. Especially since from the baby's perspective there location is inside the mother regardless of where the mother is.
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Old 05-08-2019, 10:21 AM
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Yeah, we support adoption, but only to the right people.
Hmmmm... that sounds a lot like their stance on immigration, doesn't it?
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Old 05-08-2019, 12:06 PM
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In his book "Pro-Life answers to Pro-Choice Arguments" every time Randy Alcorn mentions adoption, it's always to "married Christian couples." I emailed him asking his stance on gay, Jewish or single people adopting, but I did not get a reply.
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Old 05-08-2019, 12:41 PM
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If fetuses are persons, will they get to vote? Will the pregnant mom get to cast two votes? Sounds crazy, but I wouldn't put anything past these fanatics.
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Old 05-08-2019, 12:45 PM
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If fetuses are persons, will they get to vote? Will the pregnant mom get to cast two votes? Sounds crazy, but I wouldn't put anything past these fanatics.
Since 2-year-olds don't get to vote--for that matter 17-year-olds don't get to vote--presumably -1-year-olds won't get to vote either.

I mean, this is a horrible law, no need to offer up objections to it that don't really make sense.
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Old 05-08-2019, 12:47 PM
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Since 2-year-olds don't get to vote--for that matter 17-year-olds don't get to vote--presumably -1-year-olds won't get to vote either.

I mean, this is a horrible law, no need to offer up objections to it that don't really make sense.
Okay. That was weird of me. It's just that so many things don't make sense any more, kwim?
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Old 05-08-2019, 12:50 PM
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Yeah, we are pretty much through the looking glass these days, aren't we?
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Old 05-08-2019, 12:50 PM
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If the mother dies in childbirth, should the baby that killed her be tried as an adult?

And if the fetus gets to use a woman's body without her permission, shouldn't other people have the same right? Should marital rape be legal, or even recognized as possible?
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Old 05-08-2019, 01:00 PM
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Indeed, which means women could, and almost certainly would, be jailed for miscarriage.
Why would women "almost certainly" be jailed for miscarriage? Women today aren't generally jailed if their children get sick and die, or die from an accident. Why would miscarriages "almost certainly" result in jailing?
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Old 05-08-2019, 01:11 PM
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Because the mother could have caused the miscarriage that killed the baby by having a drink, drinking coffee, taking an aspirin, or "thinking bad thoughts."

What if a woman miscarriages before she even knows she's pregnant?

Back before abortion was legal, a doctor had to find fetal tissue in the body of any woman claiming to have miscarried. If he didn't, the mother was turned over to the police as a "suspected illegal abortion." GREAT way to treat women who might have had a miscarriage.
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Old 05-08-2019, 01:20 PM
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... Back before abortion was legal, a doctor had to find fetal tissue in the body of any woman claiming to have miscarried. If he didn't, the mother was turned over to the police as a "suspected illegal abortion." GREAT way to treat women who might have had a miscarriage.
Do you have a cite for this?
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Old 05-08-2019, 01:30 PM
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This law is talked about in the book Intern by Doctor X and Choice: A Doctor's Experience With the Abortion Dilemma by Don M. Sloan, a doctot who started performing illegal abortions after seeing the effects of illegal abortions in the emergency room. A doctor could lose his hospital privileges and even his license if he did not turn suspected abortions over to the police.
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Old 05-08-2019, 01:40 PM
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Why would women "almost certainly" be jailed for miscarriage? Women today aren't generally jailed if their children get sick and die, or die from an accident. Why would miscarriages "almost certainly" result in jailing?
Right, not today. And today they're not generally jailed for miscarriages, but under the kinds of laws that some states are proposing, it would be very easy to put the burden of proof on the mother that she did something to induce a miscarriage, which could easily be treated as an abortion.

Last edited by asahi; 05-08-2019 at 01:40 PM.
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Old 05-08-2019, 01:56 PM
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Right, not today. And today they're not generally jailed for miscarriages, but under the kinds of laws that some states are proposing, it would be very easy to put the burden of proof on the mother that she did something to induce a miscarriage, which could easily be treated as an abortion.
The subject of this thread is not "the kinds of laws some states are proposing". It's a particular law, already enacted in the state of Georgia. You said (presumably about this law - at least the post you responded to was about this particular law) that women would "almost certainly" be jailed for miscarriages. Now you're backpedaling. You went from "almost certainly" to long strained hypotheticals about burdens of proof and a vague "could easily be". Do we agree that your "almost certainly" is unwarranted and unsupported by the facts?
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:01 PM
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While utterly monstrous and misogynistic and terribly harmful to women, politically overturning Roe v Wade would be an incredible boon for Democrats, as it's hard to imagine anything motivating progressives and young people (especially young women) as much as implementing government control over the bodies of pregnant women.
The problem is that they're coordinating with other extremists to completely suppress the rights of a broad cross-section of the population. White Christian Nationalism means just that. It means an American government that is run by Whites, for Whites. It means an America that is run by Christians, for Christians. Most importantly, it is a Nation, a society that is based on these criteria. Again, the laws don't just ban abortion - that would be bad enough. They are advocating putting women in prison forever for having one, no matter whether they were suffering from depression or raped by cousin Bubba. This is an attempt to do more than just outlaw abortion, it is an attempt to debase women in society.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:02 PM
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Even ectopic pregnancies may not be terminated, even though it would result in the deaths of both the mother and the fetus. Defenders of the law claim that all you have to do is have surgery to remove the fetus from the fallopian tube and implant it into the uterus. Medical professionals say this is not a thing.

The law also makes it illegal to travel to another jurisdiction to have an abortion, and anyone who facilitates the transfer of the mother to another jurisdiction to have an abortion can also be charged.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:06 PM
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The subject of this thread is not "the kinds of laws some states are proposing". It's a particular law, already enacted in the state of Georgia. You said (presumably about this law - at least the post you responded to was about this particular law) that women would "almost certainly" be jailed for miscarriages. Now you're backpedaling. You went from "almost certainly" to long strained hypotheticals about burdens of proof and a vague "could easily be". Do we agree that your "almost certainly" is unwarranted and unsupported by the facts?
No, not at all. It's completely warranted and supported by facts.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:09 PM
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The law also makes it illegal to travel to another jurisdiction to have an abortion, and anyone who facilitates the transfer of the mother to another jurisdiction to have an abortion can also be charged.
I missed this, but it's not at all surprising. As I said, this so much more than just an anti-abortion law. This is a law intended to intimidate and completely debase women.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:18 PM
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No, not at all. It's completely warranted and supported by facts.
This is the law that Georgia passed. Which portion(s) of that bill will result in women "almost certainly" being jailed for miscarriages? Please cite a line number or section.

I'll help you get started: "miscarriage" is used precisely once in the bill, on line 108.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:25 PM
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Even ectopic pregnancies may not be terminated ...
This is false. The law provides that:

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any such act shall not be considered an abortion if the act is performed with the purpose of: ... (B) Removing an ectopic pregnancy.
It's literally the only mention of "ectopic pregnancy" in the bill.

Last edited by HurricaneDitka; 05-08-2019 at 02:29 PM.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:27 PM
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... The law also makes it illegal to travel to another jurisdiction to have an abortion, and anyone who facilitates the transfer of the mother to another jurisdiction to have an abortion can also be charged.
I couldn't find where in the law this was, so if you can point to the particular line(s) or section of the law that make it "illegal to travel to another jurisdiction to have an abortion", I'd be curious enough to review them. Cite please?
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:31 PM
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I'm reporting on what news reports I've read said. I have to ashamedly, admit to not having read the law.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:34 PM
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This is the law that Georgia passed. Which portion(s) of that bill will result in women "almost certainly" being jailed for miscarriages? Please cite a line number or section.

I'll help you get started: "miscarriage" is used precisely once in the bill, on line 108.
It doesn't matter whether the law mentions miscarriage 1 time, 100 hundred times, or zero times. The effect of this law is that it will inevitably lead some women who have miscarriages to be investigated and even jailed, even if only temporarily. I never said that this will happen frequently or even in a majority cases - I don't care. If a woman is investigated, booked, incarcerated, and later has the charges dropped because of a misunderstanding, that's still a case of a woman being jailed for nothing more than being pregnant. That was my point. My other point is religious zealots have no fucking business making decisions about a woman's healthcare - there's that, too.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:34 PM
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I'm reporting on what news reports I've read said. I have to ashamedly, admit to not having read the law.
I think the news reports you've read are incorrect. If the Slate article from the OP is any indication of the general quality of "reporting" on this law, that's hardly surprising. Liberals appear to be stoking fear among their base about this law with unsupported and counter-factual claims.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:35 PM
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The Slate is liberal? OK.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:37 PM
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Why would women "almost certainly" be jailed for miscarriage? Women today aren't generally jailed if their children get sick and die, or die from an accident. Why would miscarriages "almost certainly" result in jailing?
It doesn't have to be all women. If there's a 1% rate of false accusation, then 1% of women who have a miscarriage become subject to arrest, imprisonment, etc. Sure, it won't generally happen. Probably. Who knows, really, since a law written without rational purpose is not likely to be applied rationally.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:38 PM
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I'm reporting on what news reports I've read said. I have to ashamedly, admit to not having read the law.
I think Ditka's right - I don't think that's accurate.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:38 PM
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It doesn't matter whether the law mentions miscarriage 1 time, 100 hundred times, or zero times. The effect of this law is that it will inevitably lead some women who have miscarriages to be investigated and even jailed, even if only temporarily. I never said that this will happen frequently or even in a majority cases - I don't care. If a woman is investigated, booked, incarcerated, and later has the charges dropped because of a misunderstanding, that's still a case of a woman being jailed for nothing more than being pregnant. That was my point. My other point is religious zealots have no fucking business making decisions about a woman's healthcare - there's that, too.
So you don't have a cite. You just have some petty rage. Gotcha.

Do you know how Georgia law handled second- or third-trimester abortions prior to this law being enacted?
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:44 PM
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The Slate is liberal? OK.
Yes:

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Old 05-08-2019, 02:44 PM
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Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
So you don't have a cite. You just have some petty rage. Gotcha.

Do you know how Georgia law handled second- or third-trimester abortions prior to this law being enacted?
Maybe: history + common sense > cite.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
It's a particular law, already enacted in the state of Georgia.
Over in this thread, you advised liberals: "So do it the right way: get a Constitutional amendment ratified. This gimmicky state law business where you threaten to keep him off the ballot is the wrong way to go about this."

Do you believe Georgia should have passed a gimmicky state law instead of doing it the right way and changing the Constitution?

My guess is no. Only liberals have to change the Constitution, eh?
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Bryan Ekers View Post
It doesn't have to be all women. If there's a 1% rate of false accusation, then 1% of women who have a miscarriage become subject to arrest, imprisonment, etc. Sure, it won't generally happen. Probably. Who knows, really, since a law written without rational purpose is not likely to be applied rationally.
Same question for you: do you know how Georgia law handled second- or third-trimester abortions prior to this law being enacted?
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Rick Kitchen View Post
The law also makes it illegal to travel to another jurisdiction to have an abortion, and anyone who facilitates the transfer of the mother to another jurisdiction to have an abortion can also be charged.
The only mention I can find of this is what looks to me like some rather speculative reasoning in this Slate article by Mark Joseph Stern:
Quote:
Even women who seek lawful abortions out of state may not escape punishment. If a Georgia resident plans to travel elsewhere to obtain an abortion, she may be charged with conspiracy to commit murder, punishable by 10 years’ imprisonment. An individual who helps a woman plan her trip to get an out-of-state abortion, or transports her to the clinic, may also be charged with conspiracy. These individuals, after all, are “conspiring” to end of the life of a “person” with “full legal recognition” under Georgia law.
IANAL, but I'm really wondering if this holds water. Suppose Alice from Georgia travels to Texas and shoots Bob in the face; stipulate she traveled to Texas with the express purpose of doing that. But Texas' reaction is basically Ah, he needed killin'. Can Georgia prosecute Alice here? Is there any precedent for such a prosecution? And if Alice got her friend Chris to give her a ride to Texas, is there any precedent for Georgia trying to prosecute Alice and Chris for conspiracy to murder Bob, where the alleged murder took place entirely in Texas (and which Texas, for whatever reason, has no interest in prosecuting)?

I'm not just JAQing off here; this all sounds very improbable to me--as I said, I am not a lawyer, but my understanding is that "jurisdiction" is a pretty fundamental concept in law. (I know the U.S. has some federal laws criminalizing conduct outside the United States, either because the victims of the crime are U.S. persons or because the perpetrators of the crime are U.S. persons; but the U.S. is a sovereign state; Georgia isn't.)

Even if Roe were totally overturned, I think SCOTUS could very well quash such a (hypothetical) law as this on federalism and jurisdiction grounds.

I wonder if any actual lawyers have said anything about that claim in the Slate article.
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted by asahi View Post
Maybe: history + common sense > cite.
So let's look at history. Georgia passed a 22-week abortion ban in 2012. Since then, how many women who have had miscarriages after 22 weeks have been jailed for it?
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:55 PM
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Do expectant mothers get to claim their fetuses as dependents on their taxes?
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