It has been 92 days since the Texas Abortion Law went into effect. 92 days that pregnant people have had limitations placed on their reproductive rights and bodily autonomy. In Texas, if you are 92 days pregnant (13 weeks), you are not eligible to get an abortion.
The Texas Abortion Law, also known as S.B. 8, bans abortion in the state after six weeks. This sneaky law gets around Roe V. Wade because it puts the power of the law in the citizens hands, enthusiastically encouraging people that are against abortion to sue anyone that has helped someone receive an abortion, including the pregnant person. Vigilantes are now running around to criminalize abortion and those involved in the procedure while seeking monetary gains at the hands of another person’s pain.
Since this law has been in place, abortion clinics in bordering states have received a massive influx of calls from pregnant people seeking an abortion. According to The New York Times Podcast The Daily, the Trust Women clinic in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma has gone from receiving 15-20 calls a day to 60-80 calls a day since the law went into effect.
At this specific clinic, none of the doctors performing the abortions live in the state, because they are afraid for their safety. Imagine being too scared to drive to work, to live in fear that you are going to be harmed for simply doing your job and helping another human being make the best choice for their life.
On November 1st, the Supreme Court with its conservative majority began hearings and review of S.B. 8. It is the federal government that brought this case to the supreme court because the structure of the law was created to avoid any type of interference from the federal courts.
According to The NPR Politics Podcast, the 9 justices are weary of letting the federal government challenge state laws. The separation of federal and state law allows for a reduced amount of power from the federal government which many are in favor of.
But isn’t it interesting that the Supreme Court is concerned about this one body of power, the federal government, trying to dictate state laws? After all, that is what the United States allows them to do. A court of 9 justices get to decide what is best for 300 million Americans.
Since S.B. 8 gives citizens the power to sue, this case could set a precedent on how laws could be structured in such a restrictive way moving forward. Right now, it is reproductive rights under attack. In the future, these laws could be constructed with gun rights, gay marriage, contraception, or anything else that conservatives believe should be illegal.
What lawmakers do not understand is that restricting abortion rights does not eliminate abortion procedures; it limits the number of safe, legal abortions. Pregnant people that want an abortion will continue to seek an abortion, no matter the circumstances.
Right now, people that can become pregnant all over the country are living in fear. They are living in fear of getting pregnant, of not having a support system, and not being prepared emotionally or financially to have a child.
As a woman, what angers me the most is that people who are against abortion care for the unborn fetus more than the person growing them. They say “How can you kill this unborn child? They have rights!”
What about the pregnant person? Do they not have rights? Once they become pregnant, are they supposed to surrender to the fetus growing inside of them and forget that they have a responsibility to themselves?
What angers me is that they continue to stereotype pregnant people seeking an abortion as irresponsible, as the other half of the biological equation it takes to get pregnant could remain anonymous and blame free for the rest of their lives.
What angers me is that the Supreme Court has let this law stay in effect for 92 days. What angers me is that they have not decided on this case in 30 days. What angers me is that the reality of Roe V. Wade being overturned is becoming a real threat with every passing day.