Why does Georgia’s Bobby Franklin hate women?

Georgia’s Bobby Franklin, previously noteworthy for suggesting the state laws refer to rape victims as “rape accusers,” has now proposed a fetal personhood bill. The gist: The legislature knows for a fact that life begins at conception, so abortion is murder. And if any woman has a miscarriage, there will be an investigation and she will have to explain the circumstances of the case—or the investigator will ask her friends and family.
Yes, a wonderful use of state tax dollars in a tight economy, Rep. Franklin: Harass women who’ve just suffered a miscarriage! Has he the slightest idea how many miscarriages take place (about one in three pregnancies, I’ve read)? Very effective getting government off our backs, Mr. Franklin!
As one of the commenters at the link (to Echidne’s blog) points out, by this logic, Franklin should be targeting companies that produce birth-defect causing chemicals. Anyone want to bet that will happen? If so, I’ll take that bet: This has nothing to do with protecting fetuses and everything to do with keeping women in a subordinate position. The Republican policy is that no woman should be able to have sex without the risk of pregnancy (though a fair number of right-to-life—or as Digby calls them, forced-birth activists—are willing to make an exception for their own families), and if the pregnancy threatens her health, she should just die. Amanda Marcotte discusses that here.
The bill also asserts,that Roe vs. Wade was unconstitutional and that Supreme Court decisions, in general, are only binding on that particular case. E.g., Brown vs. Board of Education couldn’t affect segregated schools outside that particular school district, Roe vs. Wade couldn’t strike down all abortion laws, etc.
Variations of this have been around for years. It’s shown up in several bills in the past decade, for instance, that propose to strip the Supreme Court of authority in prayer-in-school cases or any government endorsement of religion.
I have no idea if Franklin expects this bill to pass, or if he’s just hoping to shift the playing field further to the right. If creating a miscarriage police becomes an acceptable part of the discussion it may happen eventually; even if not, less extreme (but still ugly and anti-woman) measures may look good by comparison. And Dems who want to look bipartisan and wise can accept policies that now look outrageous and hold them up as “compromise.”
Which is a mistake. The forced-birth movement isn’t into compromise, it’s into taking away the rights to abortion, contraception and women’s sexual freedom, step by step.


Filed under Politics

3 responses to “Why does Georgia’s Bobby Franklin hate women?

  1. Pingback: More on Bobby Franklin « Fraser Sherman's Blog

  2. Pingback: And the links shall inherit the Earth « Fraser Sherman's Blog

  3. Pingback: New frontiers in the Republican war on women | Fraser Sherman's Blog

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