Anti-Choice Bills Advance in Kansas
Two abortion bills in Kansas have been rushed to a vote in the House,
with the aim, says Kansas pro-choice activist Julie Burkhart, of
forcing Gov. Kathleen Sebelius to take a stand on choice before she is
confirmed as Health and Human Services Secretary. "The House gave
first-round approval today to two abortion bills that
expand requirements for physicians performing abortions and make it
easier for state regulators to sanction doctors convicted of
misdemeanor crimes," the Topeka Capital-Journal reports.
The Capital-Journal describes the bills:
House Bill 2206 would mandate Kansas physicians performing late-term
abortions to declare the medical diagnosis relied upon to meet the
state’s standard of “substantial and irreversible impairment of a major
bodily function of the mother.” Supporters of the measure say Tiller
has sidestepped the restriction on abortions after 22 weeks of
gestation by submitting vague justifications for the procedure.
In addition, the bill would require the Kansas Board of Healing Arts
to revoke a physician’s license after conviction of any misdemeanor
after July 1 unless two-thirds of the board determined the licensee
would not pose a threat to the public.
Under the second bill advanced in the House, a substitute for Senate
Bill 238, abortion providers would be required to inform a pregnant
woman she could receive a free ultrasound picture of her baby. The
offer would have to be made at least 30 minutes before the scheduled
abortion. Abortion clinics also would need to post signs stating women
cannot be coerced into having an abortion.
Both Kansas senators, Sam Brownback and Pat Roberts, plan to vote in favor of Sebelius’s confirmation, the Kansas City Star reports.
Abortion Clinic Owner Faces Criminal Charges
that criminal charges have been filed against the owner of a Florida
abortion clinic where a teenager, seeking an abortion, instead gave
birth to a baby who was then thrown into the trash. "Belkis Gonzalez, 43, was co-owner of the now-defunct A Gyn Diagnostic Center in Hialeah, Florida. She faces a second-degree felony count of unlicensed practice of a
health care profession resulting in serious bodily injury and a
third-degree felony count of tampering with or fabricating physical
evidence, authorities said Tuesday."
The Greenest Form of Birth Control
"What the greenest form of birth control?" Nina Shen Rastogi asks on Slate. There’s lots of interesting commentary on the environmental impacts of the Pill and condoms, with the conclusion: "All this being said, the Green Lantern has a single piece of advice
when it comes to contraception: Use it. No matter what type you choose,
it’s guaranteed to have less of an impact on the environment than the unwitting creation of a fossil-fuel burning, diaper-wearing
copy of yourself. (For that matter, if you’re absolutely sure you don’t
want children, you might opt for a permanent method of birth control
like tubal ligation or vasectomy.) So if you’re more likely to remember a once-monthly, estrogen-based option like the NuvaRing than you are to keep a condom in your wallet, by all means, choose the hormones."
Pro-, Anti-Choice Groups React to Announcement that Obama Administration Will Rescind HHS Rule
Will Saletan compares reactions of pro- and anti-choice organizations
to the Obama administration’s announcement that it would rescind the
HHS provider conscience expansion. Pro-choice groups seldom mentioned
that the rule relates to abortion; anti-choice groups seldom mentioned
that the rule could compromise access to birth control.
Affording a Bigger Family
The Sacramento Bee‘s Ask Mr. Dad column weighs in on what a family who wants another child but can’t quite afford it should do. The advice: "Since plenty of couples have kids well into their 40, being in your
late 30s shouldn’t be a deciding factor. However, the tough economy is
forcing all of us to reorder our priorities and reconsider a lot of big
decisions. And having a second child certainly qualifies. If you’re
struggling to pay your bills now, imagine how much more difficult it
would be to provide for an additional member of your family."
Planning Families to Avoid Winter Births in Afghanistan
The ability to plan families is critical to women in Afghanistan, too. IRIN News reports "Some
health specialists are suggesting that couples plan pregnancies so that
the mother’s due date does not fall in the cold winter months. This,
they say, will help save lives…Winter poses extra and avoidable health risks to many poor women who
have just given birth and who lack access to fuel for heating and
nutritious food, health experts say."
Other News to Note
March 3: Catholic News Agency: Modified health code would legalize abortion in cases of rape in Mexico
March 3: First Things: The Sebelius Challenge
March 2: About.com: Promising News About the Standard Days Method of Contraception
March 3: Delaware Online: Democrats: Beware of Michael Steele
March 3: Catholic Online: Catholic Professors Cheerleading for Pro-Abortion Obama Pick
March 4: IRIN Asia: AFGHANISTAN: Planning a child? Then avoid the winter months
March 4: Phillipine Star: European Union backs Reproductive Health bill, warns vs rapid population growth
Feb 26: Carnegie Council: The United Nations and Gender: Has Anything Gone Right?
March 3: Catholic Online: Brazil: Archbishop Suspends Priest for Comments on Homosexuality/ Contraception