Lately, I’ve been writing a lot about abortion and women’s rights to have them. As I’ve explained many times in the past, I am not necessarily a fan of abortion. I’d like to see them happening less often. I probably wouldn’t make that choice for myself and am getting to the point at which it will never be something I’ll have to face. Still, as a would be public health professional, I think it’s important that women have safe, legal access to abortions and that they have privacy and autonomy over their healthcare.
I have noticed a lot of increasingly restrictive anti-abortion bills being presented. I know what they’re about. Republicans want to make abortion illegal and they pander to their supporters with increasingly ridiculous ideas designed to criminalize abortion and send more people to prison. It’s mainly to force the issue to the Supreme Court, where pro-lifers think they might have a shot at overturning Roe vs. Wade. However, even though American women still have a Constitutional right to abortion at this point and time, that’s not stopping men from trying to pass more laws to gain control over women’s reproductive systems.
This morning, I read about Ohio Republican John Becker’s plan to outlaw abortion. Becker’s bill, which reportedly has the support of one fifth of the representatives in the House, would prohibit most insurance companies from covering abortion services. Becker claims that his bill is intended to save lives and reduce the cost of health insurance. Personally, I fail to see how outlawing insurance to cover abortion would save money for health insurance. Pregnancy is far more expensive and dangerous than abortion is, particularly when abortions are done early. But Becker clearly thinks we have a big money drain in abortion services and he thinks his bill would “fix” that. Alright then. But that’s not what really gave me pause this morning.
In the next bit, I read this:
…the bill also speaks to coverage of ectopic or tubal pregnancies where the fertilized egg attaches outside of the womb.
“Part of that treatment would be removing that embryo from the fallopian tube and reinserting it in the uterus so that is defined as not an abortion under this bill,” Becker explains.
Say WHAT? Ummm… ectopic pregnancies are potentially deadly. I have never in my life heard of an ectopic pregnancy being viable. As far as I know, they have always resulted in medically necessary abortions. A lot of the women who experience ectopic pregnancies want their baby to survive, but must consent to an abortion to save their own lives. I think if the technology existed to simply “reinsert” an embryo into a woman’s uterus, a lot of women would willingly sign up for it. But… as Mr. Becker clearly didn’t learn before he spouted off this nonsense… plug and play embryos are not a thing. What’s more, trying to reinsert an embryo that is the result of an ectopic pregnancy would likely result in very high medical bills. Even if the technology existed, it would probably not be a simple undertaking. Moreover, it sounds like Becker wants to force women with ectopic pregnancies to undertake this non-existent procedure… and he no doubt would expect them to pay for it, too!
Becker insists his bill does not target birth control. He continues with:
“When you get into the contraception and abortifacients, that’s clearly not my area of expertise but I suppose, if it were true that what we typically known as the pill would be classified as an abortifacient, then I would imagine the drug manufacturers would reformulate it so it’s no longer an abortifacient and is strictly a contraceptive,”
So, basically Becker wants women to rely on the rhythm method, hormones, and their men to use condoms… or maybe permanent sterilization. Rhythm is not reliable. Hormones are potentially dangerous and expensive. And we all know that a lot of men don’t want to deal with condoms. Permanent sterilization requires surgery and a lot of doctors don’t want to do them on women unless they have already had children or are at a certain age… and sometimes they even need their husband’s consent! Also, permanent sterilization is meant to be just that– permanent. Although it can be undone, those procedures are invasive, expensive, and aren’t always successful in males or females.
I really think that these idiots– so many of them people who will never be pregnant themselves and lack the knowledge or training to comment intelligently on pregnancy– should NOT be allowed to make healthcare policy laws that affect roughly half the population. It’s an outrage that so many members of Ohio’s House are taking this bill seriously. Mr. Becker should be laughed out of office or, at the very least, take some courses that would familiarize him with how birth control works and how pregnancy works. Or maybe he should make friends with an empathetic doctor who can teach him about things like ectopic pregnancy. A woman’s reproductive system isn’t “plug and play”. You can’t just remove an embryo developing in a fallopian tube and stick it in a uterus.
So many people are against abortion because they claim it’s unbiblical and “playing God”. Well, if pregnancies are gifts from God, isn’t what Becker is proposing sorta playing God, too? I mean, God supposedly doesn’t make mistakes. What gives you the right to move an embryo from the place where God put it? (in case you missed the sarcasm, I am totally being facetious here…)
There are so many issues in the government right now that just seem plain stupid wastes of time to me. We’re wasting time and money on these bills that try to force women to give birth, yet we continue to do so little for the already born people who are being shot in schools, movie theaters, churches, grocery stores, concert venues, and malls. We have 12 year old boys grabbing baseball bats during school shootings so they can “go down fighting”. Frankly, I wouldn’t want to bring a baby into today’s world.
Anyway, no… you can’t fix an ectopic pregnancy by reimplanting it from the fallopian tube to a uterus. That is just plain asinine. I hope Mr. Becker is duly humiliated for even suggesting it.