Sunday, May 22, 2016

New on the abortion-rights front

Robert Reich

Today Oklahoma lawmakers enacted a bill criminalizing abortion; anyone performing an abortion would be imprisoned for at least a year, and any physician participating in an abortion would lose his or her license to practice medicine in the state. The bill makes an exception only when the life (but not the health) of the pregnant woman is at risk but makes no exceptions for rape or incest. The vote was along party lines, with almost all Republicans lining up behind it and most Democrats against.

Republicans in Oklahoma, as elsewhere, have morality upside down. The moral problems of our age aren't personal decisions people make about their own bodies; they're public decisions people with power make about what happens to large numbers of other people over whom they have control. Instead of criminalizing a woman’s right to choose, Republicans ought to criminalize CEOs who play fast and loose with their worker’s safety, bankers who defraud their investors, and lawmakers who flout the U.S. Constitution (remember "Roe versus Wade?") by criminalizing constitutional rights.

Update: The governor vetoed it.

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