Thursday, March 10, 2016

Texas v. Women

Ladies, when it comes to the most recent Supreme Court case on abortion, Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, do not worry about the little things! Justices Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg have it covered. While hearing the case, Solicitor General Scott Keller was present to make arguments on behalf of the state of Texas. The arguments, which called for the support of abortion regulations that when put in place for two weeks, led to more than a dozen supporting clinics shutting down. It was no coincidence of course that when the regulation was lifted, the clinics reopened.

Keller argued that these regulations, requiring doctors to obtain admitting privileges from a hospital 30 miles from the clinic where they perform abortions, and requiring abortion clinics to comply with building regulations in order to be considered a “ambulatory surgical center” are quite necessary to protect women’s health. To put this into perspective, women would have to go to a surgical clinic to be prescribed the abortion-inducing pills even though no surgery is required. These new provisions raise a question of constitutionality on the right to abortion, as it may just be that these laws are presenting a burden on something that the female population has a right to do.

Well our ladies on the Supreme Court were just not having it that day. Keller went on to argue that even though abortion clinics tend to be out of the way, 100 miles or more for some, those living in El Paso can easily have access to abortion clinics in New Mexico, where no such regulations exist. He was forced to say bye-bye to the “protecting women’s health” argument, and clearly Mr. Keller wasn’t covering all of his bases, when Justice Ginsburg threw him a curve ball stating, “So if your argument is right, then New Mexico is not an available way out for Texas because Texas says to protect our women, we need these things”.

What I can’t seem to get over is the audacity to even bring such a case up before the Supreme Court. What benefits does the state of Texas stand to gain if these laws are put into place? Of course the conservative wing gains a win, but realistically, the health and well-being of women considering abortion services are more at risk than they’ve ever been. Hear me out Texas! By implementing these regulations, again, don’t you think we’re moving backward?

How much longer can you chastise the women of Texas because of your bias towards abortion? Did you stop to take into account the issues that would arise if these clinics close because of your absurd regulations? For all we know, and I hope this doesn’t occur, we could revert back to the time of botchy abortion jobs, mothers fighting depression and stress because of forced unwanted pregnancies, and even an increase in taxes due to the demand for state-assistance in proper childcare and nourishment. Depending on the Supreme Court’s decision, we may have to face these fears soon.

- Luisa Ibner, Intern