A new bill currently being given serious consideration by lawmakers in South Dakota would make abortions that “dismember” fetuses illegal and punishable by life in prison.
State Rep. Isaac Latterell (R), who is the bill’s sponsor, told reporters that the point of the law is to stop the “gruesome” termination of “life.”
“It just makes clear that a certain procedure that is totally horrific and gruesome to any reasonable person would not be an acceptable method of ending a child’s life, and that is to dismember or decapitate a living, unborn child,” he said.
Opponents are saying the language of the bill is inflammatory, written to play upon the reader’s emotions rather than scientific fact. According to the Huff Post, South Dakota’s only abortion clinic solely performs abortions in the first 13 weeks of pregnancy, not the late-term procedures that anti-abortion activists refer to as “partial-birth” abortions.
“This doesn’t look like anything I’ve ever seen before,” Elizabeth Nash, state issues manager for the Guttmacher Institute, told HuffPost. “It looks like it’s trying to ban abortion using language that is completely unfamiliar and very inflammatory. If you took medication abortion at eight weeks or nine weeks, does that dismember the fetus when the miscarriage happens? I don’t know,” Nash said. “This is just a really badly drafted bill, because you don’t know what it means.”
For more ham-fisted attempts to limit women’s options with regard to their own bodies, have a look at this article discussing the GOP’s efforts to keep rape victims from having abortions by performing tax audits, and this tea party wack-a-doodle wing-nut Teapublican candidate who says Autism is God’s punishment for abortion and homosexuality.