On Sept. 1, the state of Texas Senate Bill 8 (SB) prohibited abortion six weeks after conception, including rape and incest.
For most women who do not even know they are six weeks pregnant, SB8 is the equivalent of a total abortion ban. It is the most restrictive law of its kind in the entire United States, where the Supreme Court’s 1 v. Row v. Wade explicitly provides constitutional protection for the right to abortion.
In addition to being criminally offensive, Texas law is completely unchanged. Initially, it was applied not to state agents but to private citizens who could win $ 10,000 or more by filing an abortion lawsuit against doctors, abortion clinic staff, Uber drivers and any other intelligent or unintentional collaborator. Six weeks off.
The plaintiff does not have to be from Texas and has nothing to do with the defendants. Presumably, SB8 will not only encourage American religious extremists to open up their inner police force, but also encourage a diverse population by capitalizing on efforts to undermine the reflection of women’s rights acquired under patriarchal capitalism.
As the NPR notes, the Texas Right to Life organization has already “called it a ‘whistle blower’ website where people can submit anonymous tips about someone they believe is breaking the law.”
Although the judiciary has sued the state of Texas for SB’s alleged unconstitutionality, the U.S. Supreme Court has refused to overturn the law. Reuters reported that “in an unsigned interpretation, the majority of the court held that the unusual construction of Texas law – applied to law enforcement personnel – limited the ability to act.”
The moral of the story, it seems, is that it doesn’t matter whether the law is legal or not unless it’s being enforced by private citizens rather than individuals who are supposed to enforce the law.
In other Texan satires, September 1 also played a role in the birth of a state law that allowed the carrying of secret handguns without permission.
A lot for the “right to life”.
According to Greg Abbott, governor of the right-wing Republican Texas, SB8 “ensures that the life of every unborn child with a heartbeat is protected from the dangers of abortion.”
However, state concern rarely hits the heart outside the womb, where people are instead denied inequality and denied adequate health care, housing, education and other rights that would actually help “save lives.”
It also carries the line that the criminalization of abortion does not want to stop women from conceiving what they do not want or cannot do; This simply forces them to pursue less secure, often life-threatening options.
To be sure, the detrimental effects of SB of will continue unabated on the bodies of poor women – especially black and Latin women – such as the reality of racially socio-economic oppression, where Abbott was declared “the best governor of the state” in 2020, according to his official website.
Indigenous women are also facing hardships. Not only are Native women in the United States “twice as likely as white women to die during pregnancy or overweight,” NBC News reported.
In a 1981 chapter on racism, birth control, and reproductive rights, iconic scholar and activist Angela Davis reflects the contemporary disproportionate rate of forced surgical disinfection of Native American, Chicana, Puerto Rican, and black women – not to mention their poor white counterparts. Through funded programs.
It’s such a trivial matter that suggests that U.S. abortion policy wasn’t really about potentially hurting the heart; Rather, it is about controlling the female body.
In the same chapter, Davis observed that support for the right to abortion between black and Latin women was “less closely related to their desire to be free from pregnancy” and “to a more miserable social condition that prevented them from bringing new life to the“ world ”.
“They’ve had abortions since the first day of slavery,” Davis insisted.
On the other hand, the formal “pro-life” is much more impenetrable to the masses, the historical context, the socio-economic realities, and the reasoning in general.
For me, some of that crowd is uncomfortably close to home. As I read a recent Washington Post article on SB8, I came across a paragraph of anti-abortion demonstrations outside a clinic in Austin, Texas, which had a name that rang a bell: “Sally Harden dirty, rosary hands, and prayer”, exclaimed That it was “extraordinary” that regular citizens now have the ability to sue clinics and others who take advantage of illegal abortions “.
A brief Google investigation confirmed that the questioned Harden was actually the mother of one of my former classmates at a small, almost all-white Catholic elementary school in the Texas capital, where I learned some important life lessons from my youth that my dog was not going to heaven and using tinted lip balm. The first step in a slippery slope for premarital sex.
Meanwhile, some critics of SB8 have also lost the plot. A USA Today opinion column, for example, warned that “gun rights could be lost later”.
In the Chicago Sun-Times, former U.S. presidential candidate Reverend Jesse Jackson criticizes the “Texas Taliban branch of the Republican Party” – “Texas Taliban” – actress-activist Alyssa Milano and Rozana Arquette.
It’s anyone’s guess, of course, why in a country founded on genocide and slavery, bigotry for bigotry is compared to the relatively distant brown foreigners who came to power in the first place, thanks to someone other than the abominations of the United States.
Call it the bloody destruction of imperialism – whatever you remember, it’s not just a Republican thing.
In response to the “Texas Taliban” hooliganism, feminist filmmaker Mar Ahmed surprised on Facebook “on the level of casual Islamophobia on the left”. Defining the Texan abortion ban as “extremely American,” he urged critics to “put it in the American abyss.”
And while America is becoming its own spontaneous, it’s time to cancel the SB8 – and much more when we’re in it.
The opinions expressed in this article do not reflect the author’s own and not necessarily the editorial position of Al Jazeera.