Respect for Life has Nothing to do with It
In solidarity with our sisters and brothers,
Debra Schrishuhn for the PDA National Team
Texas Bans Abortions, Local Mask Mandates, Vaccine Passports, and Allows Permitless Carrying of Firearms
It’s not about protecting life—certainly not about protecting the living, breathing residents of Texas who will now seek clandestine and risky illegal abortions. Or those whose health is put at risk for COVID-19 through lack of masking and vaccination. Or law enforcement officers faced with policing an armed, but untrained and unrestrained, population. It’s about power and the triumph of patriarchal so-called personal freedom at the expense of women and communities.
As of September 1, the state of Texas banned all abortions where a fetal heartbeat can be detected—around six weeks, often before a woman knows she is pregnant. In tandem the state abrogated its power of enforcement to citizen vigilantes and “bounty hunters” who may sue anyone aiding and abetting an abortion for a $10,000 judgment plus court costs. Defendants, should they be found not guilty, may not recoup their court costs. Because suits are brought in state courts, plaintiffs need not show standing or proof of harm.
In a 5-4 ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to issue an injunction while the law’s constitutionality is determined. Hiding behind an unsigned opinion, the majority stated, “This order is not based on any conclusion about the constitutionality of Texas’s law, and in no way limits other procedurally proper challenges to the Texas law, including in Texas state courts.” Weasel words of the highest order.
How can progressives slow and reverse this authoritarian trend in state law abetted by conservative judges and justices? Organize, hold elected officials accountable, support progressive candidate up and down the ballot, and vote. Until elected officials at all levels face an electoral price for their actions, they will continue to consolidate power through repressive laws.
PDA fights for women’s reproductive rights by endorsing and supporting pro-choice candidates, demanding accountability from elected officials, and organizing people on the ground to make their voices heard through the ballot box. Join our Congressional Liaison Team, join or form a local chapter, and donate today…for the sake of tomorrow.