I had to drag myself away from the Donald Trump reality show to get back to reality today. The reality being that here in South Carolina, officials are continuing to sneak in changes to abortion regulations that restrict women's rights and demean the dignity of us all.
It was the Post and Courier, as well as other state newspapers, that highlighted that state health officials are considering requiring a husband's consent before a married woman could get an abortion. When this incredible piece of information hit the news, DHEC quickly walked it back. They claim that this stipulation was included in error. Apparently because a husband's consent is only required during the third trimester.
At this point I am feeling like I have been hit with so much shit that I don't even know where to go next.
First of all, I can't believe that we have a law that requires a husband's consent to an abortion under any circumstance. When did that happen??? How do we allow that to go unchallenged?
But then, read on. In addition to the "errant" husband's consent requirement, there are restrictions on who can perform the abortion: this simple procedure would require a board certified OB/GYN, prohibiting qualified medical professionals from performing an abortion.
And for those women who weren't yet feeling assaulted and discredited by the system, there is mandated testing for syphilis, gonorhea and chlamydia. That's right, our government is going to make sure you women feel dirty, or at least know that they think you are. And they would require a Pap smear, a test no longer recommended for women under 21. Of course, the added punishment is the cost of all the unnecessary tests.
It is egregious that government continues to hammer away at women's right to access reproductive health care, and it takes my breath away that so many pieces of South Carolina's government are involved in the process. I am thankful that Planned Parenthood South Atlantic has its eyes open to alert us to these abuses. And I am glad to see our own Post & Courier keeping us informed.
But being informed isn't enough. We need to strike back each time a proposed regulation would seek to erode our rights. As we know, each step leads to another step, with the goal being a ban on women's right to abortion, and eventually contraception.
DHEC is accepting comments on these outrageous proposed regulations until Monday. That doesn't leave much time. You can fill out their comment form via this link:
At the top of the form select proposed regulation. Under that choose "Notice of proposed regulation." Complete personal information and then add your comment. Here are some sample comments from Planned Parenthood.
Don't let them get away with taking away our freedoms. Reproductive rights mean better health for women and their families, and reproductive rights mean economic freedom.
And vote! Vote these misogynistic hypocrites out of office, so we can get down to improving the quality of life in South Carolina and in the U.S.
I know all this is hard work, so take a break on twitter at #TrumpBookReport . You'll be glad you did.