Sunday, May 2, 2010

For the women in Oklahoma and everywhere

Rarely do I post anything of a political nature on this blog - it's my "happy place" and politics often put me into an unhappy place.  However, that being said, I want to post this OpEd that was in a Florida paper.  It is poignant.  To have a woman subjected to this sort of obscenity is criminal and perverse.  The men who are initiating this sort of war on women need to be shipped to another planet in another solar system and leave us here on Earth, in peace.


Editor's note: State Rep. Scott Randolph, D-Orlando, made the following remarks Friday on the House floor shortly before passage of HB 1143. The bill, which is now headed to the governor's desk, would require all women seeking an abortion to submit to an ultrasound. In nearly all cases, medical personnel would be required to orally describe to the woman the ultrasound image before her abortion is performed.
Members, I like to paraphrase Pedro and say that there is no crying in lawmaking. But I'll try to make it brief today. This amendment is so shortsighted as to be blind. You imagine that this only affects those wishing to terminate the pregnancy for no other reason than because it is their legally protected right to choose what to do with their body. But members, this affects every pregnant woman, including those that are losing their baby because of other reasons.
Last January my wife and I went to the doctor and we had our first ultrasound. At first we thought, 'This is fantastic.' It was just us and the (ultrasound) technician. At first everything looked fine. And all of a sudden, there were three doctors in the room. They tell us, 'The measurements say this fetus has a genetic abnormality.' We go to the next doctor; we get a second opinion, a third opinion. We're told, this fetus is going to die. We don't know if it's two weeks left. The heart will stop beating in eight more weeks, 10 more weeks. It could be there for six months. We are asked, do you terminate the pregnancy now, or do you refuse, and naturally miscarry at some point in time?
We've seen three ultrasounds already at this point. And you act like this ultrasound machine is in another room, that you walk out into and go, oh, there it is. Actually, that ultrasound machine is right next to that bed, where my wife is laying, looking at this fetus. And she's starting to cry. And she asks that that ultrasound machine be turned in the other direction because she can't see it anymore. But this bill right here is saying "no, we're going to demand one more time when you go in to finally terminate that fetus — because God and nature told you 'not this time,' that you be forced to see that screen, or you be told what's on that screen, and that you demand it be turned away, but you're still going to have to listen to the description of what's still there. Members, this is something we're about to do to women in this state.
But we're not alone. Statistics show that about 25 percent of pregnancies are terminated naturally by God and nature. With today's medical care, women don't have to wait for the mother to keep a dying fetus inside their womb until it finally terminates on its own, or it finally miscarries by nature. So my wife and my sister are not alone. There are thousands and thousands of women that will be in the same position.
There are thousands and thousands of women who will be in that same position after this bill passes.
We knew the facts — we knew the heart chamber was slowly filling with fluid; we knew the facts — we didn't need to be told that the fetus was slowly dying inside my wife's womb. So don't stand there and talk about facts.
Members, we constantly hear that this chamber is all about small government. The only thing this body has proven in the last six years is how this Legislature defines small government — six years ago this Legislature wanted government so small that it could fit down a tube into an individual woman's throat named Terri Schiavo; this decade we have shown time and again that you want government so small that it can fit under someone's bedroom door; and members, this year you are showing that you want government so small that it could fit between a woman's leg and into her uterus. It's not the small government that anyone wants.
I know that I have changed no one's vote today because this body is controlled more by ideology than empathy. But I tell my story today because I want you to go home tonight and when you are by yourself and you have closed your eyes to sleep that your mind is filled with the personal pain you have brought to my wife, my sister and the thousands and thousands of women who want nothing more than to have the baby that is growing inside of them, but that unfortunately, God, nature and fate have chosen that it will not happen at that time. When you close your eyes every night, I want you to see their faces and their pain and the trauma you have personally brought them.


Jasmine said...

Oh Kathy, I have very mixed feelings about this issue. Part of me wonders if the insistence of the ultrasound is to correctly date the foetus and to prevent laws from being broken in terms of late terminations? But then, there really would be no need to show the parents the images would there. As a mother, I know the first time i saw my little girl on the ultrasound screen the earth moved. Something inside of me changed. But, as scared as i was, and despite bursting into tears at the consciousness of the death of an old life, I really wanted my little girl.

The poor family in the article. Sounds to me like their baby had T18 just like my little Nina. So heart breaking.

I miscarried again a couple of weeks ago. Thankfully, when I had the ultrasound at 6 weeks, the foetus was too small to see anything. When I had an ultrasound again at 11 weeks, it became clear that the foetus had not survived past 7 weeks, and again, there was no baby to see on the screen. I really think that was a blessing as my grief is not so devastating as the previous two times. Maybe, this was some kindness...

I believe that women have the right to free choice.

Wishing you well Kathy xxJ

(PS, I found it difficult to read the text due to the colour).

Delphyne said...

Jasmine, my heart goes out to you now and when I first read your story. I'm so sorry if I brought back those feelings of despair.

Unfortunately, the men who are enacting these laws in our country want to keep women from exercising their choices about their bodies. They are cruel to the extreme and do not care who they hurt in the process of interfering into the private lives of citizens. They want power and only power over women. It is disgusting to me.

RE: the color. Whenever I quote something, the text color changes to that light green and I can't figure out how to change it. I unquoted it and now it shows up in black.


rebecca said...

seems this sunday many are contemplating and writing about the effects of man on the lives of others.

all important issues...
it is just too painful to remain silent.

rebecca said...

i just added a "missing" sentence to the bottom of The Paradox of Crows. perhaps it will hit home now!

Delphyne said...

Thank you, Rebecca - the "missing" part on your updated post ties it all together now! It's a perfect example of what is happening in your state.