Before the Sonogram Law is Born: Abortion, the Nanny State and Right-Wing Hypocrisy

Categories: Get Off My Lawn

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Here's what I don't get. The right-wingers are always sneering about the "nanny state" -- government trampling their sacred rights as individuals by telling them what kind of light bulb they can screw in their lamps. But the same right-wingers want government to guilt-trip women getting abortions by forcing them to watch sonogram movies of their own fetuses.

How is that not nanny? That's like Nanny Get Yer Gun.

Abortion is an awful decision for any woman, and we have to hope it's almost as awful a decision for the male in the situation. But it's also a terribly private and fundamentally lonely choice to make.

It's about a woman, her own body, her conscience, another life, what lies ahead for a child in her life -- all manner of bone-crushingly dire factors the pregnant woman must weigh.

And you want Rick Perry in the room with her? The haircut?

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Think about it. How do you enforce this crap? Are we going to have undercover state troopers posing as orderlies with secret cameras stuck in their hair-nets? It's difficult to imagine a more ugly government invasion of individual rights than this.

This is the case that puts the lie to all of the right-wing platitudes about freedom from government interference. They do not want freedom from government. They want to own the government themselves so they can send the jack-boots out to extinguish the freedom of anybody and everybody who fails to show loyalty and obedience to their orthodoxy.

You know, I am very very concerned about the foods we eat. I suspect the right-wingers of eating way too much red meat and fried foods. I'm just dead set against it. I think we should pass a law requiring people who want to buy steak in the grocery store to watch a full-motion video of their own elimination made by a camera installed in their own toilets.

Just a suggestion. Every once in a while it's a good idea for people to see themselves as others do.

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64 comments
richard schumacher
richard schumacher

Oh good, another unfunded government mandate. How Republican of them.

Likeicare
Likeicare

Thank you for being so sensitive to a time that is very private and distressing, for whatever reason. Ever since GW Bush came into power, we have had more government jumping into our business than ever before.

And you don't see Rick or the rest of the GOP helping to raise those babies, do you? And they want to get rid of any welfare that might help out in the circumstances.

Can you concieve of any more hypocrosy than that?

Joe Roberts
Joe Roberts

Jim, normally I find myself nodding my head with just about everything you publish. Not this.

Whether one agrees with the sonogram bill or not, it was born (pardon the pun) as a reaction to deceptive pro-choice propaganda. Go on any pro-choice blog or web site, and you will see comparisons made between a fetus and a tumor or a kidney that needs removal. You will see the fetus referred to as an "it" (last time I checked, fetuses had either a second X-chromosome or a Y-chromosome). You will read about the fetus merely being "a clump of cells" and a "potential human," or even see him/her describe in parasitic terms, as if he/she decided to take up residence in the mother's womb.

All of these things are refuted by one undeniable, biological fact: the fetus is a completely discrete, living, developing human organism. The only thing differentiating it from an infant (or you) is its location and its stage of development.

Therefore, abortion is putting to death a human life. To get away from the obvious implications of that, the majority of the pro-choice movement resorts to lying about what the fetus actually is.

Let's be real here: if Planned Parenthood told its constituency that abortion is the killing of a human organism (even if they followed with arguments that fetuses do not meet some other test for "personhood") would anyone have even conceived of such a bill? I highly doubt it.

Joshua
Joshua

SIMPLE ENOUGH. They are MORE Pro Life and less nanny state oriented regards preventing women from elective abortions if Possible. The ABORTION mills are already state sanctioned. This is merely a hope step that women, in their wisdom, will elect to give birth than to give death to their unborn baby.

Unglewed
Unglewed

Any other medical procedure - botox, amputation, flu shots - a doctor would be derelict in his duties and at risk of malpractice if he failed to fully inform the patient about his or her condition and advise them of all of the treatment options. If abortion is truly nothing more than the medical procedure that its promoters would have us believe, then why is it that the abortionist should be absolved of his duty to fully inform the patient of her condition, including the gestational status of the fetus?

If that standard applies to abortion, then clearly it should apply to all medical procedures. I, for one, am going to my doctor tomorrow and demanding that she respect my constitutional right to have my spleen removed and replaced with a Stretch Armstrong.

HeidiFran - my wife and I have adopted two children from an unwed mother who chose not to abort. Moral scoreboard.

Justin Julian
Justin Julian

Let me explain some right-wing thinking here. Abortion is an atrocity that we are forced to live with due to a terrible decision 40 years ago that almost everyone agrees should be struck down. (Some think it should then be replaced by better, more stable law, some don't, that's neither here nor there.)

Point is, we're stuck with it. We can't just do what we believe to be right, and say 'stop killing children'.

So -any- legal step we can take to reduce the number of deaths is 100% morally acceptable. Our worries about 'nanny states' and government intrusion pale in comparison to the lives of countless children who are being murdered for the convenience of their mothers. (And no, I'm not talking about the -miniscule- percentage of rape/incest/life of mother abortions.)

To favor such relatively minor political beliefs over the safety of a baby would be hypocrisy, not what you're referring to.

gladnotsad
gladnotsad

Whew! I have no idea why our state legislature is even discussing this. It is intrusive, costly burdensome, and will increase the regulatory responsibilities( and potential penalties)for physicians and their patients. Length of gestation may be determined by other methodology. We should be trying to HELP new mothers not increase their pain and financial burdens. Seems like we have enough problems for the legislature to consider without creating more.

EastDallasResident
EastDallasResident

Dauben - the kind of sonogram being required is INVASIVE - to detect the fetal heart beat it has to be inserted into the woman! You conservatives are not just un-Christian your a bunch of nitwits!

Rick Perry's hoo-ha
Rick Perry's hoo-ha

I would not equate a vaginal sonogram transducer to a "wand". Big, stiff, plastic dildo is more like it--they even put a condom on it for you. I bet none of the male legislators has ever had one up his hoo-ha. And can the state please promise to take care of all these babies it purports to save?

DOUG
DOUG

WHO'S PAYING FOR THE SONOGRAMS?

SteveT
SteveT

The Roe v Wade decision was about government rights vs. individual rights: Does the state have a compelling enough interest in preserving life, potential life, or whatever a fetus is, to override a pregnant woman's right to choose to carry her fetus to term, or not? Regardless of how you weigh those two important concerns against each other, this proposed Texas law is clearly an attempt to force pregnant women to undergo a medical procedure that might cause them to decide not to abort. Just like the state laws prohibiting abortion that existed before Roe, it was government interference in individual's lives. The question was, and is here, is that interference worth the price?

Oak Cliff Townie
Oak Cliff Townie

EVIL Democrats --Have an Abortions

Righteous Republicans Have a Dilation and curettage .....

Amy S.
Amy S.

@ Jay - unless it's your 15 year old daughter.

JB
JB

Ok. So if a gay man wants to have an abortion, is he required to look at the sonogram and hear the results?

"Your face will melt off and your children will weep over your exploded body."-Charlie Sheen

Amy S.
Amy S.

So the premise of this bill is that a pregnant woman has to allow her physical person assaulted and her personal privacy invaded in order to have a procedure performed that has been declared legal by the constitution of the United States? Don't see it holding up in a court. Nope.

Guest
Guest

Interesting that requiring a doctor to offer end-of-life planning options to elderly/dying patients and their families is so abhorrent it has to be given a clever nickname and stricken from the Affordable Care Act by popular demand, but requiring a doctor to perform a procedure, describe what he sees to a potentially unwilling patient and implement a 24-hour waiting period is doing what's right for America.

Rachyeager
Rachyeager

Of course the point of the sonogram is missed by Schutze and the majority of the commenters: By passing this law the state of Texas is actually taking a step to make its laws regarding murder coherent. If one kills a pregnant woman (even if the woman is 1 day into her pregnancy) and the fetus dies, the defendant is charged with two counts of murder; hence, the 1 day old fetus counts as a human being and is thus afforded the rights (and I know how you liberals love "rights") of a human being. Do I need to spell out to where this leads? The upshot is, this isn't about "choice," but rather about what constitutes being a human being. If you can maneuver the definition via legislation, then your that much closer to repealing Roe. Also, Schutze, your argument against the "jack booted" right is not only sophomoric, but is also easily refuted by analogy. I guess you're a prime example of what happens when one lives in an echo chamber.

Sean
Sean

What scares me even more is to think of the people who live amongst us who voted these politicians into office.

Willcdowdy
Willcdowdy

yeah... we're not going to force you to open your eyes, but we are going to force this item into your vagina, just incase.

Bayliss33
Bayliss33

It's an option to view it, it's not an option to have a wand inserted into your vagina for the sonogram. Sounds like force to me.

J. Erik Jonsson
J. Erik Jonsson

Jim, you could probably fill 100 column inches with examples of right wing hypocrisy on limited government. From God to sex to the incarceration industry, there's a lot to criticize. And some jabbering jackboot could fill another hundred with examples of quite transparent left wing attacks on liberty. At least they're honest about wanting more of your income and forcing you into health care programs.

My point is that Left and Right are losing their relevance. A better spectrum might be Statist vs. Individualist. I know free marketeers in the GOP and Democratic civil liberties activists who have started to recognize that they're being held back by the Statists in their respective parties. I hope to live to see them work together to truly limit the size and power of government.

Downtown Resident
Downtown Resident

"Think about it. How do you enforce this crap?"

The prolifers/antichoicers/whatever will probably send in shills to find doctors not in compliance, rat them out and then let the fines and punishments run the docs out of business. You don't need to win the game if you can lawyer ball the other team into forfeiting.

gladnotsad
gladnotsad

Actually to be historically accurate it is ironic that in the term of GHW BUSH(the elder) the regulatory jihad involving medical procedures officially began with MQSA etc.There is something fundamentally wrong (and potentially creepy) with the government mandating elective, unecessary medical procedures.What next?........Also, I agree, the most outspoken people about this topic like Rush Limbaugh, don't even have kids (although they could well afford it), or like Mark Davis are adulterous male cheaters who are divorced! I don't need to hear from such people on this topic.

Jay Jay
Jay Jay

Let me explain some left wing thinking for you. I don’t know anyone who isn’t pro-choice when it comes right down to it. There is always an exception where the choice to abort can be justified, even to a pro-lifer. I also don’t know anyone who is pro-abortion. Every pro-choice person I have ever met wants more than anything to make abortion a rare event. The frustration comes in that the right rails against abortion, then rails against the poor sucking at the public teat, then fights to reduce government assistance to help mothers have healthy babies and to feed them once they are born. They fight tooth and nail for policies that lead to increases in unwanted pregnancies, like abstinence-only education. The great irony is, the pro-life movement, in its so-called fight to save babies, does as much or more to sustain the incidence of abortion than the pro-choice movement ever did, and to ensure a life of struggle in poverty to babies born into it. The day it is conceived it is “precious human life!” and the day it is born, it is a piece of trash, a leach sucking at the public teat.

Welp
Welp

I guess the point of where life begins is the major point of contention - always has been, always will be.

Joe Roberts
Joe Roberts

You do realize that the actual abortion procedure involves "invasion of the hoo-ha" as well, right?

Montemalone
Montemalone

Your name is giving me the giggles, and I peed a little...

Scottba
Scottba

A wand or plastic dildo. I bet it is safe to assume a good portion of our male right wing legislators have had experience with the latter and like it!

DANIEL
DANIEL

THAT'S A VERY GOOD QUESTION.

EDM
EDM

I would guess the patient pays for the sonogram but the bills refer to a list of "geographically indexed locations" that offer free sonograms.

Jay
Jay

Which part? I would hope your 15 yo daughter faced with an unwanted pregnancy would have your support in her decision......or at least the counsel of a trusted physician.

Look, I believe abortion should be legal and rare. There is just too much hypocrisy on both sides of this issue.

Phelps
Phelps

You are aware that a sonogram is a required part of the procedure already, right? That's like complaining that you have to have your mouth drilled in order to perform your protected right to get cavities filled.

Montemalone
Montemalone

Do not, I repeat, do not try to use logic when dealing with wingnut hypocrisy. Just makes'em madder and meaner.

HeidiFran
HeidiFran

EVERY SINGLE person who thinks abortion is murder should be required by law to adopt an unwanted child, and they don't get to pick the age or color.

JimS
JimS

OK, I' can see I'll have to do it for you. Left wingers say they believe in freedom, but they really just want to control the government so that they can wear jack boots. Then once they have the jack boots on, people will think they're right-wingers. Then they'll go out an harrass orthodox people to make the right-wingers look bad, but the right-wingers wil come get their jack-boots back and kick the left wingers' asses.Have I got it?

JimS
JimS

Hey, Rachyeager: O.K. Give us your analogy. Please.

JimS
JimS

I think the wand thing will be required soon for riding DART.

Augie
Augie

No. The right has dominated ALL statewide offices and both houses for more than decade. It is correct to say the Right Wing is full of hypocrisy in this state. It may be true that if the Democratic party was effective enough in getting elected that they would also be hypocritical, but for some time now, they have been irrelevant at the state level.

Jay
Jay

'Bout time someone said it. Party labels are meaningless and have been for some time. Didn't the President and the "liberal" party recently re-enact the dreaded Patriot Act? Did I miss the closing of Guantanamo Bay detention facility? Wasn't the "liberal "president against same sex marriage before he was for it?

JimS - Don't you usually argue for more and more intrusive government, the old cradle to grave type of involvement? News flash - The government is already in the doctors office, has been there for years. Is Perry pandering? Clearly. Waste of health care resources? Clearly. End of the world as we know it? Not.

Beda
Beda

So if it's already a required part of the procedure, why the need to pass this legislation? It appears from where I'm sitting as strictly harassment.

jen
jen

Yup. But I would be consenting to its use for that part of the procedure. I would not be consenting to its use for show and shame purposes.

Montemalone
Montemalone

Do not feed or tease the slow people.

Rachyeager
Rachyeager

Do you know what refutation by analogy is? If so, then apply it to your argument. It's logic 101, Aristotelian stuff. If you don't then I'll be happy to explain. However, you'll have to give me an hour or so because I'm about to go into a meeting.

Bets
Bets

You are the one who says a sonogram is already a required part of the procedure (I've never been pregnant, so I don't know), so how are the women being kept in the dark and not informed? Does a woman who goes in for an abortion already have a sonogram (to check for viability, etc.) and this second sonogram and the "showing and listening to the heartbeat" just an added, unnecessarly layer for what appears to be harassment of an already harassed woman/girl? Why the need to codify it?

Phelps
Phelps

I can't find sense in most of what the legislature does. After thinking about it, a better analogy would be objecting to "having to get irradiated to have a cavity filled". You're already getting the x-ray in order to have the cavity filled. This is like a law that says that the dentist has to offer to show you the x-ray before he can start. (which is actually a pretty good idea in that instance.)

I think this is an argument that the left side is going to lose. I don't even think Bill "legal and rare" Clinton would object to this. You are forced into the position of arguing that women shouldn't be fully informed before a medical procedure. You are going to lose any argument that depends on people being kept in the dark.

Phelps
Phelps

Soooo... by this logic, everyone who calls for gun control is going to replace everything taken from someone else by a criminal with a gun, right?

And everyone who supports welfare is going to give up his check to the less fortunate? And everyone who supports single-payer healthcare is going to go to medical school and become a doctor, right?

It's a stupid argument. You make yourself look stupid when you make it.

JimS
JimS

Rachyeager: gone for an hour, eh? Hittin' the web, ain't you, googling "refutation by analogy." Let me save ypou some time. Here's what I get:" A deductive argument can be refuted (i.e., shown to be invalid, hence unsound) by stating a second argument that has all three of the following features: (1) the same form as the first argument; (2) true premises; and (3) a false conclusion. This is called “refutation by logical analogy” because the arguments have analogous (similar) forms."Great. Do it.

Bets
Bets

Just give us our analogy! We're holding our breaths.

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