Saturday, January 08, 2005

Have Miscarriage, Go to Jail?

I am so disgusted by this Virginia bill that I am having trouble typing a rational enough entry to get word out. The title is no joke, Republican Delegate John Cosgrove is trying to pass a bill which will essentially criminalize women for having a spontaneous miscarriage and failing to report such a traumatic and intensely private experience to the police.

Failing to report a miscarriage to the police is to be classed as a class 1 misdemeanor. The article linked to above states:

"Does the punishment fit the ?crime??
Suffering a miscarriage is no crime, but Delegate Cosgrove wants to make it a crime for a woman to fail to violate her own privacy in the first 12 hours after a miscarriage, so let?s look at his proposed penalty.

Cosgrove's bill says, ?A violation of this section shall be punishable as a Class 1 misdemeanor.?

Let's see. What other crimes are punishable as Class 1 misdemeanors in Virginia? A cursory Google search reveals just a few...

Please, anyone who reads this... Get the word out, if you know anyone in Virginia, tell them what is trying to be passed and ask them to call their senator. Do not let something like this happen in a country that claims to base itself on principles of freedom of individuals.

Right now I have to go talk to Matt, who was lucky enough to get yelled at for trying to make nice conversation with me when I was busy re-living my own miscarriage of a couple of years ago and filled with inarticulate rage at the state of reproductive rights in this country.

PS - Happy New Year, if the political climate this year keeps going the way it did in 2004...We may just emigrate to Canada.


Kyrwyn said...

Also from the same site:
"This bill places the advancement of the cause of recognizing legal "personhood" for all products of conception far above the concerns of the Commonwealth and of the dignity of individual women whose privacy would be violated."

If the bill itself isn't utterly and completely reprehensible in your mind, consider that they're using it to establish legal precedence for establishing "personhood" for all unborn fetuses, regardless of age or development. The educated might correctly infer that they're trampling women's rights and privacy to further their agenda of degrading our rights further by making abortion akin to murder.

It's not just about how insensitive and crass this bill is in and of itself. It's got an entire mysogynistic agenda behind it that accepting it would further. Once you confer legal "personhood" on the fetus, any directed effort to abort it is murder (premeditated too, if you want to take it to the extreme) and any incidental abortion or miscarriage becomes involuntary manslaughter by definition.

It's offensive from any and every angle. I hope the Virginia community is intelligent enough to see this bill for what it is, and quash it.


Anonymous said...

Radiskull here and scared as all f**k over this.

Aren't there people who don't know they're pregnant then have a huge period, shrug it off and go about their lives?

If America cared about the pre-school as much as the pre-born, the world would be a better place wouldn't it?