An Update! An Ultrasound!

24 Feb

I would like to first announce, for those of you who read my previous post, that I have successfully obtained my driver’s license.  The ways in which I went about doing this cannot be disclosed in a public forum, but suffice it to say that when me and my New York plate-sporting rental car get pulled over on our drive through Mississippi en route to New Orleans this coming week, I will be in possession of the proper documentation.  And not a moment too soon.

In other news, I am dismayed by an article I read today in the New York Times by Sabrina Tavernise entitled “Virginia Lawmakers Backtrack on Conception Bill.”  As many of you may have been following, Virginia recently introduced a personhood amendment very similar to the one that was defeated by Mississippi voters in mid November.  The initiative essentially defined a person “to include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning, or the functional equivalent thereof.”  So, no more abortion rights.  Serious road blocks to all kinds of contraception.  Really ugly stuff.  Virgina, however, threw in a little bonus by trying to require women seeking an abortion to undergo an involuntary vaginal ultrasound before being allowed to seek an abortion.*  I am, obviously, pleased that this bill has been quashed, for now.  I am not, however, pleased by this particular paragraph in this article where Tavernise says,

The rapid-fire procedural maneuvering came one day after Mr. McDonnell (governor of Virginia) ordered Republicans in the House of Delegates to soften a bill requiring a vaginal ultrasound before an abortion.  The new version, which requires a non-invasive abdominal ultrasound, appeared aimed at defusing a mounting controversy over the bill that included spoofs on television shows. (Italics mine.)

As far as I am concerned, any involuntary ultrasound, whether administered internally or externally, is invasive.  A woman is being forced, against her will, to undergo a procedure that is not of medical necessity.  There is no reason for it other than to shove the religious and “moral” beliefs of some** into the bodies of many.  I understand that, physically, it can easily be argued, and I would tend to agree, that an internal ultrasound is perhaps more physically invasive than an external one, but to say that women are so unthinking that they cannot be trusted to make the “right” decision unless they undergo this procedure is incredibly insulting.  Every woman is full well capable of deciding for herself what is right for her without seeing the development of a blob of cells in her, not the government’s, her uterus.  I was incredibly dismayed that it was a woman who wrote this article and that this acceptance of a required ultrasound of any kind is so unchallenged by so many that it would be mentioned as a return to the reasonable status quo.  There is nothing reasonable about this requirement and there is nothing non-invasive about it.  It is invasive as hell.

*I would love more than anything to go on a rant here about how incredibly unjust and inhumane this is, but I find myself incapable of reining my disgust in enough to write something that will get my point across.  Also, I imagine people who have read this far probably agree with me and therefore I would be preaching to the choir.

**I also would like to interject here my disgust with the all male panel that was slated to decide the issue concerning religious freedom and the mandate that requires health insurers to cover contraception in the United States.  It seems as though, and I think the lovely Republican Representative from California, Darrell Issa, would agree with me, that women don’t really matter when it comes to issues regarding their own health, of which contraception is one such issue.

One Response to “An Update! An Ultrasound!”

  1. Mindy February 25, 2012 at 2:31 pm #

    Yeah! What you said! 😉

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