On Wednesday, April 1, the South Carolina Senate is going to hear not one, not two, but four anti-abortion bills. This will be the Medical Affairs Subcommittee, at 9 a.m. in 207 Gressette. The bills are: H 3114, S 25, S 28, and S 130. These are all basically the same bill, the 20-week ban that pretends to be science by claiming that fetuses at 20 weeks can feel pain.
Is this a last ditch effort to pass one of these god-awful bills before recess? It has the feel of a back-room plot, with old white men smoking big smelly cigars, doesn't it? Just determined, before the break for the big religious holiday, to do something to get a wink and a back-slap from their Guy in Heaven.
I would like to understand why there are four of the same bills floating around, some with the same sponsors. It makes no sense, which is at least consistent with the content of the bills. Maybe it's a case of dueling egos, but if there is a rationale for flooding the Senate with copies of the same bill, I sure would like to be on top of it.
Let's just hope that a couple of the sane members of this subcommittee are planning some evasive action.
Here's one thing, though. We can't expect our guys to fight this ugly fight without our support. And we need those nasty women-haters to know we aren't going to sit by while they plan to keep us barefoot and pregnant.
So we need to call and email. Every one of them. Once, twice, as often as possible.
You know those anti-abortion wackos that block the Charleston Women's Medical Center? The ones who show up at ACLU meetings, Planned Parenthood events, and pretty much any other place where people might gather to talk about preserving individual freedom? They are tireless. There aren't all that many of them, but the way they show up, Zelig-like, they seem to be everywhere.
That is the presence -- and the passion -- that we need to project. Politicians may be bought, and they may have their own pet projects that disregard the needs of their constituents, but if you make enough noise, they will worry about their futures. And those guys in the Senate who do support women's reproductive freedom and privacy need to know there are gazillions of us behind them, cheering them on.
So here's the thing.
Women of reproductive age, and the men who are also affected by these attempts to control their lives, need to shout the loudest, because they have the most to lose. Be sure to tell these young women and men exactly what is going on this Wednesday. The 20-week abortion ban seeks to prevent women from making critical medical decisions about their welfare and that of their families. After the anti-abortion gang was able to get 24-week abortions banned with their "partial birth" false science, the 20-week abortion ban was next on their checklist. And be assured that if this becomes law, they will be energized and will pursue ever more restrictive measures. The goal is not just total ban on abortion, but a ban on contraception as well.
If you can be there on Wednesday, do it. Your presence at the statehouse will be noticed.
Whether you are there or not, call and / or email the members of the Medical Affairs Committee. You can do that from scstatehouse.gov by going to the Senate link, and then to the email link. You can send individual emails, or an email to all Senate members. I don't think it's possible to overdo your voice or your message.
You can also go to this ACLU link:
Feel free to add your own words to the prepared text. And don't worry about how well you write; it is the message that matters.
If there is enough noise, it is possible that some committee members will be less eager to push these bills through.
Finally, spread this message through Facebook, Twitter, and your email lists. The sad truth is that when these terrible bills do pass, it is a surprise to far too many of us. Let's not let that happen.
And let's not let Lee Bright and Wendy Nanney dictate what happens in our doctors' offices.