Dear Rep. Franklin: I Submit My Used Tampons as Evidence


As Amie reported earlier today, Representative Bobby Franklin is pushing legislation in Georgia that would criminalize miscarriage. Jill Filipovic suggests we all help him by sending him the attached letter and offering up our used tampons.

Dear Rep. Franklin,

I applaud your efforts to support the rights of zygote citizens of Georgia by criminalizing miscarriages and investigating every instance of fetal death as a potential crime. The bill you are trying to pass is clear that the Georgia State Assembly knows that life begins at the moment of conception, and that any fertilized egg that dies is a human death that we should all grieve. I couldn’t agree more, and I would like to help.

As I’m sure you know, more than 50% of fertilized eggs –Georgia citizens! — naturally don’t implant, and are flushed out of the body during menstruation. I am personally concerned that my own murdering woman-body may have flushed out some human beings, and I may have flushed them down the toilet without knowing that I was disposing of Georgia citizens in such an undignified way. This must be remedied. I would like to be sure that I am not killing any more Georgia citizens — and that if I am, they are able to receive a proper funeral and not a burial at sea, and that our state police can dedicate valuable time and resources to investigating their deaths.

To that end, I attach a picture of my latest used tampon. I am preserving this tampon, as well as all of my other tampons, pads, feminine hygiene products and soiled panties from my current menstrual cycle, so that the Georgia State Police can come collect them as evidence. I would also be happy to drop the specimens off at your office, should you want to examine them yourself.

Please let me know if I can make an appointment to give you these items. Or, since I appreciate that you are a very busy man, please let me know when the police will be by my home to collect them, as my next cycle is rapidly approaching and they are starting to smell. I cannot keep them in my refrigerator for much longer.

Thanks for all the work you do to further the pro-life cause.

Sincerely,
[name]

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  • violinwidow

    OH YES!!!! this is awesome!!!!! I wish I had my cycle back from my last baby so I could send mine!

  • invalid-0

    Criminal liability requires mens rea.  Just thought you should know that.

     

    You have a JD from NYU, huh?  What’s it take to practice there, a pulse?

  • jill-filipovic

    A lot of women intentionally make their uteri inhospitable to fertilized eggs (see: birth control pills).

     

    See also the concept of “negligent homicide.”

  • foxykate

    I would totally advise against flushing tampons.  When that nonsense (and a couple of un-flushable wipes) get all tangled up under your sidewalk and it comes gushing up out into the street and backflows into your basement, it is both nasty AND expensive AND takes a while for the neighbors to stop looking at you sideways.

     

    You could always collect what’s in your Keeper or Diva & send it along, though!

  • rev4choice

    Perfect!! Gross response to a far more gross invasion of privacy!

  • amie-newman

    If the GOP wants to criminalize the bodies of women and girls, then they’d better be prepared. This will hopefully help them understand what’s involved in this kind of an investigation. In my own case, they may need to also interrogate my oldest child, who is now 11 years old, about when his mother had a miscarriage. Not sure if he remembers it but we certainly have discussed it…he needs to understand that he may be an accessory to murder. My husband likely is too. My poor 8 year old daughter – if this bill passes, she may see her entire family hauled off to jail. But at least we’ll be punishing women for having human bodies, right?! She’ll have to learn the hard way that if her body does something that the male, Republican leadership doesn’t personally like, she WILL pay.

  • rebellious-grrl

    Jill great article and great idea! I love it!

    I would be happy so save my used tampons and menstrual blood and send them off to Rep. Franklin.

  • rebellious-grrl

    Jealous much? Arex you are sooooooo petty.

  • beenthere72

    This is awesome!   Heck, I’ve got it good right now myself and can provide plenty of evidence (we have a septic system so no flushing for us!)

  • jill-filipovic

    Mailing biohazardous material to elected officials is probably not a great idea and might get you arrested(!), so I would suggest sending only photographs along with this letter.

  • forced-birth-rape

    He does not worship Jesus Christ, he like all pro-forced-birther men worship their own penis.

    Jesus would never have posted the post, he did. But then Jesus never said or did anything to hurt women either.

  • beenthere72

    You forget what bleeding like a stuck pig, cramps, bloating, the works, every month does to some women’s otherwise good moods?     Can make us downright murderous.

  • nonsense-nonsense

    Histrionics, much?

  • invalid-0

    Ah yes, birth control, because it can be argued that those women specifically intending to avoid conception can be found, by that act, to have intended to remove a conceived person.

    Negligent homicide still satisfies the mens rea requirement.  Are you suggesting that birth control pills can often act as abortifacents?  I would think that several authors on this site might have words with you about that.

  • invalid-0

    Man, you totally have my number.

  • cc

    Ladies, if you miscarry and the content of this end up in the toilet, you better scoop it up in a bucket because if you don’t, you could be heading for some hard time.

  • plume-assassine

    Okay, wait… do you or do you not think that women should be charged with negligent homicide for miscarriage during any point in a pregnancy? Considering all of the myriad complex reasons for miscarriage, how would you ever prove there was an “intent” to miscarry? Is horseback riding suspicious? Not taking enough folic acid supplements? Not eating health foods? Tripping and falling? Rollercoaster riding? Every activity that does not include lying in bed 24/7?

  • ldan

    So…women having miscarriages should be investigated to see if they meet that requirement? I mean, it isn’t as if they could suss that out without an investigation.

     

    How about hurrying along my late period with high doses of ascorbic acid? Because I’ll tell you right now that I have done precisely that when nervous about it showing up a few days late. Might be it was just late, might be there was a briefly attached embryo to shake loose. I won’t even deny that my express purpose was to be sure that in the latter case, it shook loose, which makes me a murderer by the above law.

     

    Only way to tell is to investigate all those late periods…which requires enough policing to even know that they were late in the first place.

  • ecr319

    I just looked back through the notes from my D&C and the doctor never once recorded that there was no heartbeat present before he started surgery. Looks like I’m headed to prison, folks. Hope I can find someone else to nurse my son…he won’t sleep without nursing.

  • squirrely-girl

    … would you support arresting the men in that woman’s life as well for inducing stress?

  • squirrely-girl

    … who makes light of raping and hitting women to “prove” his point. :/

  • arekushieru

    I think you’re confusing contraception with birth control.  All contraception is birth control but not all birth control is contraception.  So, yes, some forms of birth control are abortifacients.  No form of contraception is, however.

    In any case, many anti-choicers claim that all forms of contraception can be used as an abortifacient, by weakening the ovum or the walls of the uterus, suggesting that negligent homicide could refer to an unfertilized egg as well as either a fertilized egg or unattached zygote flushed from the woman’s body.  Which reduces the ease with which the mens rea requirement is investigated, after all, unless you factor in a number of the elements already mentioned by some of the other posters. 

  • crowepps

    contraception [ˌkɒntrəˈsɛpʃən]

    n

    (Sociology) the intentional prevention of conception by artificial or natural means. Artificial methods in common use include preventing the sperm from reaching the ovum (using condoms, diaphragms, etc.), inhibiting ovulation (using oral contraceptive pills), preventing implantation (using intrauterine devices), killing the sperm (using spermicides), and preventing the sperm from entering the seminal fluid (by vasectomy). Natural methods include the rhythm method and coitus interruptus

    birth control

    n.

    1. Voluntary limitation or control of the number of children conceived, especially by planned use of contraceptive techniques.
    2. A contraceptive technique.
  • arekushieru

    But, then, conception can and has been used to refer to the process of implantation or the start of pregnancy.

  • amanda-marcotte

    Sneezing. It has to hurt the little people that must be filling my murderous uterus, right?

  • invalid-0

    Well, first go back and read the bill.  I’m fairly certain it specifically excludes miscarriage, or ‘spontaeous abortion’.

    As for what I personally believe, I would absolutely not consider miscarriage to be negligent homicide.  And it’s never ever been a simple thing to prove intent in any murder case – I wouldn’t expect anything different if we simply extended our definition of a victim.

    Murder has always and will always include as an element a provable intent to bring about the death of another.  That goes for the men as well – many states already hold men criminally responsible for the intentional killing of a fetus.

    I understand that you and I will disagree on this.  I’m sure I seem ridiculous to want to make it potentially a crime for a woman to ride a roller-coaster.  That’s the magic of reductio ad absurdum.  If you’d like to change my mind, you need to understand my perspective.  In my case, I see no difference between a pregnant woman riding a roller coaster and a woman bringing a newborn onto a rollercoaster.  Certainly you agree the latter, if that brought along the death of the baby, could be held criminally negligent?

  • forced-birth-rape

    Heartless and vile to women, you are arex christian taliban.

    You scare and hurt me, but you do not care.

  • invalid-0

    Gesundheit! I think you should go get a tissue and go wipe all that nonsense off your keyboard.

  • ldan

    So a woman taking herself and her 8 wk zygote on a rollercoaster is the same as her bringing her toddler on a rollercoaster?

     

    You’re right, I’m really likely to understand your perspective, because it makes no sense. Following your line of ‘logic’ also means treating all women between menarche and menopause as potentially pregnant. If you don’t see a huge problem with that, we’re frankly living on different planets.

  • rebellious-grrl

    bullpucky! Have you read the bill? I have. If passed the bill would criminalize miscarriages.

    The bill states;

    (3) When a spontaneous fetal death required to be reported by this Code section occurs
    211 without medical attendance at or immediately after the delivery or when inquiry is
    212 required by Article 2 of Chapter 16 of Title 45, the ‘Georgia Death Investigation Act,’ the
    213 proper investigating official shall investigate the cause of fetal death and shall prepare
    214 and file the report within 30 days; and
    215 (4) When a spontaneous fetal death occurs in a moving conveyance and the fetus is first
    216 removed from the conveyance in this state or when a dead fetus is found in this state and
    217 the place of fetal death is unknown, the fetal death shall be reported in this state. The
    218 place where the fetus was first removed from the conveyance or the dead fetus was found
    219 shall be considered the place of fetal death.”

    235 Said title is further amended by revising subsection (a) of Code Section 31-10-29, relating
    236 to privileged nature of disclosures, notification of local registrar of institutional deaths and
    237 fetal deaths, and notification of the board of voting registrars of adult deaths, as follows:
    238 “(a) Any person having knowledge or facts concerning any birth, death, spontaneous fetal
    239 death, marriage, induced termination of pregnancy, divorce, dissolution of marriage, or
    240 annulment may disclose such facts to the state registrar, and such disclosure shall be
    241 absolutely privileged and no cause or action may be brought or maintained against such
    242 person for such disclosure.”

     

    The bill deems personhood to fertilized eggs and if that fertilize egg dies, under the proposed bill by Rep. Franklin it would be considered murder. 60% to 70% of all pregnancies are spontaneously aborted — Guess that’s a damn high murder rate.

    This bill is idiotic and extremely insulting to women.

    Researchers have been able to show that around 60% to 70% of all pregnancies (recognized and unrecognized) are lost (miscarried).
    http://www.medicinenet.com/miscarriage/article.htm

  • saltyc

    Wow how I hate arex’s fatuous pendatics. He uses jargon like Mens rea to show off, but has zero follow-through.

    What is a guilty mind (mens rea)? Are women who, against their cultural inhibitions and eons of anti-vagina history, want to feel fantastic pleasure via penile stimulation of their vaginas and clitori, yet refuse to the rest of the misogynist bargain that they be shackled to whatever consequences follow, including the risky and intense burden of developing and bearing a child, are many of these women not acting with a guilty mind? If such a woman acts in a way that isn’t cheerfully encouraging a new life to spring from her womb, like she’s supposed to, will she not feel the disapproval of centuries, not feel wrong for enjoying the sweet delights of the tingle that brought the despair of being trapped in a pregnant body? Yes many women feel wrong even for using contraception.  If you can’t imagine the anxiety associated with sexual pleasure in the minds of women, that are caused by your brand of twisting the moral screws on pregnancy, then you’re even dumber than I first thought. And I haven’t had a good impression of you arex since you couldn’t tell how some women might have gotten pregnant by rape, when I said that most unintendedly pregnant women I talk to got that way from sex, you actually asked “and the rest…?”

  • nonsense-nonsense

    Straw mwn are bad. Very bad indeed, folks. What’s the point in responding to someone if you’re just going to take what they said out of context and twist it to suit your agenda.

  • nonsense-nonsense

    Well, that right there is the biggest lie ever told.

  • invalid-0

    If this bill passes, and a woman goes to jail for an unintentional miscarriage, I will buy you a steak dinner.

  • ahunt

    So NIN…the reductio ad absurdum doesn’t work for you?

     

    Let us try this…do you have any idea, any idea at all, of the impact on bzef development of normal, everyday activities?

    I know we’ve been down this road before…but that was in one of your prior incarnations.

     

    So…what do you know about hot tubs?

     

     

  • invalid-0

    Following your line of ‘logic’ also means treating all women between menarche and menopause as potentially pregnant.

    Well, if they’re sexually active and in child-bearing ages, I guess that’s correct.  Is that bad?

    If you don’t see a huge problem with that, we’re frankly living on different planets.

    And hence, dialogue.  I’m not here to convince, really.  (Give me some credit, I’m not that stupid.) I’m here to learn. Teen and young adult groups often ask me to come speak to explain common pro-choice arguments, and it helps to get that perspective here.

    Finally, yes, I consider the woman bringing a zygote, an infant, or a teenager to all be similar situations, save for the level of development/dependency, the size and the location of the child.  I don’t consider any of those factors determinative in deciding whether or not the child’s death is insignificant.  I think that’s at least a reasonable position to take.

  • saltyc

    arex is SO sure that this bill will only do damage to us filthy sluts who enjoy vaginal intercourse AND purposely get out of a problem pregnancy, and that all the collateral damage will be limited to just short of actually sending a dutifully devout woman whos self-sacrifice fails to guarantee a healthy birth, after she is arrested and tried for said failure and found innocent,  that he’s willing to venture a STEAK DINNER on it. We women, on the other hand, are venturing our lives.

     

    PS I’m glad you didn’t offer me a steak dinner, cause putting bloody murdered mammal flesh in my mouth and chewing would really give me a guilty mind.

  • plume-assassine

    No, it does not exclude spontaneous abortion.

     In my case, I see no difference between a pregnant woman riding a roller coaster and a woman bringing a newborn onto a rollercoaster.

    I’m sorry… this is patently absurd. I understand the point that you are trying to illustrate, but there is a huge physical difference between a 5-week embryo inside of a woman’s body and a newborn carried in a woman’s arms. There is also a big difference between a 23-week fetus and a newborn carried in a woman’s arms. I hope that you will be able to understand this.

     

    Returning to the rollercoaster example… if a woman has a wanted pregnancy and wants to deliver without complications, then it’s probably best to avoid them. But making such activities illegal for pregnant women is discriminatory, invasive (how will we tell who is pregnant or not? or does it only matter if she’s visibly pregnant?), and demeaning to the value of women (since it would essentially be placing more value on the existence of an embryo or fetus.)

  • saltyc

    Teen and young adult groups often ask me to come speak to explain common pro-choice arguments, and it helps to get that perspective here.

    Something tells me those young adult groups are not getting a very good explanation of pro-choice arguments. Why don’t you direct them to actual pro-choicers to speak for themselves???

  • plume-assassine

    Well, if they’re sexually active and in child-bearing ages, I guess that’s correct.  Is that bad?

     

    Yes, that is very bad. It puts women like me in a different class, and it’s sexist and discriminatory. It is also extremely invasive — trying to determine whether someone is pregnant or not, or is sexually active or not, or whether they have reached menarche or menopause or not is a gross intrusion of the government into my private sexual life. 

    I am not a vessel or an incubator. I am not a potential “mother” and my rights should not be restricted because I may or may not be pregnant. If you treat me at all times as though I am pregnant and you are anti-choice, then it’s not that difficult to think of all of the activities that anti-choice lawmakers would immediately bar women from participating in, lest they accidentally “murder” a “person.” 

     

    yes, I consider the woman bringing a zygote, an infant, or a teenager to all be similar situations, save for the level of development/dependency

    I can assure you that one of these only exists inside of a woman’s body and as it is also a fertilized egg cell, it is completely incapable of experiencing pain, suffering, or any kind of emotion.

  • saltyc

    making such activities illegal for pregnant women is discriminatory

    arex’s discrimination extends not just to confirmed pregnant women but to the majority of women. In his post here today at 2:50, he would like society to treat all women in childbearing age like we’re pregnant. Oh, sorry… it needs one more qualifier to discriminate against women and limit our lives and choices: that we enjoy having semen- producing penises in our rapturous vaginas. Then we deserve to let others make choices for us that box us in for the safety of all.

     

    Edited to add: He didn’t say semen-producing penises or rapturous vaginas, that was my flourish. Just wanted to say that he spoke more generally, that any woman having sex in her childbearing years should be subjected to discrimination. I just flourished it to scare him some more.

  • ldan

    Recheck your definition. Poster wants to equate fetuses to an infant/toddler in arms for purposes of defining what is negligent. How is pointing out that this can be ridiculous a straw man?

     

    Do you mean with regard to the original post? I was under the impression that we’d wandered slightly tangent once the statement was made that a pregnant woman was seen as equally culpable in bringing either her pregnant self or her active child onto said rollercoaster.

  • ldan

    Yes, it is bad to consider all sexually active women as potentially pregnant.

    First, as pointed out, it objectifies women into no more than a vessel.

    Second, if this is carried to the extremes that the ‘egg as person’ crowd indicates are appropriate for the level of sanctity that life should have, you’re talking about a society in which we restrict ovulating women’s activities. No alcohol for you without a pregnancy test? How many other risky activities will we bar women of a certain age from? After all, you can’t exactly tell by looking if they’re sexually active, so all women would need to barred from those activities. Could they be prosecuted for not making sure they were getting appropriate nutrition for themselves and their potential fetus? Talk about nanny state!

     

    As has been pointed out many, many times, you and those like you who espouse the ‘zygotes as people’ line don’t actually buy it or there would be a much more massive outcry over the huge numbers of zygotes that never implant. Those ‘deaths’ are, in fact, treated as insignificant by very nearly everyone. Nor will those espousing this line bother to treat seriously questions like whether, given time to only save one, it would be better to save a toddler or a container full of frozen embryoes.

     

    The outcry from both sides with regards to this bill highlight this fact as well. Wouldn’t those who actually think that zygotes are people be using such a bill to say, “criminalizing miscarriage is horrible, but we really should be doing more investigation of early miscarriages because it’s an enormous tragedy.” If all of those early miscarriages were considered the loss of people in the same way that a similar loss of born infants would be, we would have a hell of a lot more research and education around the subject. Look at the ever-evolving rules and technology around car seats alone to see the effort the majority are willing to put into safeguarding actual infants. Now look for the outcry around our lack of understanding of what causes the majority of miscarriages.

     

    So no, I don’t think that’s a reasonable position to take. Women should not be under constant survelliance to make sure they’re taking proper care of their wombs ‘just in case’.

     

  • ldan

    I can see the fine distinction in that abortifacients are, indeed, birth control, but are not contraceptive. That is, they are intended to remove an already conceived z/e/b/f rather than prevent one from existing in the first place. So taking pills for an abortion is birth control without being contraceptive.

     

    Still, for the majority of contraceptives, the terms are used interchangeably.

  • julie-watkins

    The sum total of your comments and replies causes me to believe your world view is that women and poor people are 2nd class because you seem to believe a woman not accepting and voluntarily attempting to end a pregnancy is a larger moral problem than the systemic sexism of nature and the systemic sexism and classism of society. I believe the sexism and classism is systemic because an unwanted pregnancy impacts more on the female than the male; impacts more on poor families than families with more resources.

    I’m trying to understand why you believe women and poor families should be 2nd class, why woman poor people should accept this situation, and how you can be comfortable with such an unfair situation. I write “comfortable” because your comments are often so glib & undoubting when you defend your world-view.

  • acg

    I have an IUD. Is that like beating the little darling with a stick, or am I actually hitting him with a car?

  • ahunt

    Well, if they’re sexually active and in child-bearing ages, I guess that’s correct.  Is that bad?

     

    Snerk.

     

    Thank you, arex. You have just confirmed that which all conservative pro-lifers truly believe…given the latest in assinine state proposals.

     

    Thank you….from the bottom of my heart.

  • invalid-0

    sexually active and in child-bearing ages = potentially pregnant

    Ok seriously, maybe I missed something.  If a woman is sexually active and capable of bearing children, how is that wrong and/or sexist and/or asinine to consider her as someone who is potentially pregnant?

  • ahunt

    Heh…logistics aside, do some research on…I dunno…pregnancy…?

     

    …and then carry your misogyny through to its entirely rational conclusion.

     

    Think! You can do it, arex.

  • plume-assassine

    I explained this to you above.

  • invalid-0

    I’m trying to understand why you believe women and poor families should be 2nd class

    Julie, this is the problem with having honest dialogue.  That is YOUR conclusion based on the things that I have said.  I am under no obligation to defend your characterizations of me.  I’m not sure if it’s part of the training here to do that type of crap, but it’s really a turn-off to engaging in a conversation.

    If you take issue with a particular comment that I make, by all means, please address the comment, not your [twisted] characterization of it. I refuse to engage in this childish mud-slinging. 

  • invalid-0

    Truly, I’m really willing to admit I’m wrong about something here.  If I am introduced to a woman who is sexually active, and is capable of bearing children, is it wrong to say “Hey, she might be pregnant!” (a.k.a. potentially pregnant)

    Plume, I haven’t suggested that any investigations be done to see whether women are sexually active or pregnant or whatever.  I’m responding to L-dan, and speaking from a purely scientific perspective.  L-dan originally stated: “Following your line of ‘logic’ also means treating all women between menarche and menopause as potentially pregnant.”  

    By definition, that would seem like a true statement.  I dunno though, maybe I still haven’t woken up enough yet.  Ahunt?  Can you help with what I’m missing here?

  • invalid-0

    I also didn’t say that society should treat all women in child-bearing age as pregnant.  What I said was that women in child-bearing age who are sexually active are, by definition, potentially pregnant.  (I know, groundbreaking stuff right there.)

    But hey, they’re just words, huh?

  • freetobe

    Here is a safe way to do this. buy a ton of tampons and catsup. Soak the tampons in the catsup(use several diffent types for effect or add  a bit of non-toxic paint)  then if you live nearby just dump them on the jerks lawn on his doorstep throw on the windows for slime effect.

    This way there are no bio-hazards and no DNA. I watch too many crime shows LOL!

    Or they could be mailed to his address. That way no vandalism charges or trespassing. 

    This guy deserves anything he gets thrown at him!!!

     

  • plume-assassine

    Scientifically speaking, if a woman is between menarche and menopause and is sexually active, there is a possibility that she could be pregnant. The problem here is the way that you want to TREAT women, based on your anti-choice worldview, and based on the fact that you see us as “potentially pregnant.” It is not right to restrict women aged 11-48 from certain activities, or treat them any differently, question them about their private sexual life or reproductive functioning, or discriminate against them just because there is a minute possibility that they could be pregnant. Such treatment, based on anti-choice philosophy values the possibility of the existence of an embryo over a woman, and prevents you from treating us like full citizens, like normal human beings with rights. It reduces me to an object, an incubator. And I find it very offensive and more than a bit disturbing.

  • squirrely-girl

    … see, as an educator, when I seek to inform students of a dissenting opinion or perspective that I do not personally believe or practice, I do the morally and ethically responsible thing and get a person who does to speak on behalf of “their side” as opposed to doing crack “research” and speaking for them. 

     

    You do yourself and those students a sincere disservice to pretend to be able to speak on behalf of a position you don’t believe in and outright shun. Shame on you. Seriously.

  • saltyc

    Why would you bring in to a conversation in which you favor increasing discrimination against pregnant women, that all of us shtupping gals are potentially pregnant, what bearing could it possibly have, other than that we should be treated differently from people who couldn’t possibly be pregnant?

  • forced-birth-rape

    If arex talked to me about abortion when I was a little girl or teenager I would go home and cut myself. Think of all the girls he makes hate themselves because they are girls.

  • plume-assassine

    Okay, honestly, based on all of the possible scenarios that we’ve given you of how anti-choicers could follow the “miscarriage-as-murder” philosophy to its logical extreme…. How does restricting/monitoring/questioning the activities of pregnant women (and women of childbearing age) NOT create 2nd class citizens?

  • plume-assassine

    Thanks, Salty, that is exactly what I was trying to get at

  • saltyc

    In what possible context would you say something like

    Hey, she might be pregnant!

       based on the fact that you get introduced to a sexually active woman (“meet Sandy, she’s sexually active you know…”)

     

    Because someone wants to shoot her? 

    “Hey, she might be pregnant!”

    Because someone offers her a cigarrette?

    “Hey, she might be pregnant!”

    Because someone wants to offer her a job?

    “Hey, she might be pregnant!”

    Because she wants to ride a roller-coaster?

    “Hey, she might be pregnant!”

    Because someone wants to marry her?

    “Hey, she might be pregnant!”

    Because she wants to train to be a police officer

    “Hey, she might be pregnant!”

    Because someone thinks she could be a dancer in a strip club?

    “Hey, she might be pregnant!”

    See the trouble I’m having? Perhaps arex can show a scenario where it would be appropriate to say that after being

    introduced to a sexually active woman.

  • plume-assassine

    Yeah, I ain’t gonna lie– imagining this guy in a position as an “educator” for girls and young women makes me feel sort of nauseous. Or maybe he’s only in charge of teaching the boys to be stand-up Christian men and treat their women like good little vessels.

  • crowepps

    How do you know she’s sexually active?  Do you ask her?  Assume it?  Look for overt signs of sluttiness?  Do you do at the very first meeting?

     

    How do you know that she’s capable of bearing children?  Do you ask her?  Assume it?  Is the initial handshake diagnostic?

     

    What exactly is the POINT of considering her “potentially pregnant”.  Is this important to you, a total stranger, because you feel entitled to monitor and scold and report to the possibly pregnant police her violations of healthy diet, smoking or drinking, possibly risky activities, or her intention to escape to some place where women have actual freedom and equality?

     

    The most important thing in the world to YOU about the woman standing in front of you may be whether she presently contains a “real person” that entitles you to ignore every other circumstance in her life and reduce her existence to “uterus support mechanism”.  Do you really not grasp that your attitude is identical to that of a farmer checking over the herd?

  • squirrely-girl

    Seeing as the majority of rapes are committed by men in their reproductive years, should we just start treating all men as potential rapists through some new legislation?

  • squirrely-girl

    I’ll take some time later and hunt down the quotes. But don’t hold your breath too long ’cause I’m planning to get my drink on and enjoy some hedonistic baby-making practice later ;) 

  • ldan

    There is logic in considering that women may be pregnant and you would not know it. Common sensical even.

     

    The problem is in “treating all such women as potentially pregnant.” Without doing further investigation, every woman within a rather broad age range becomes Schrodinger’s womb (occupied/unoccupied), creating a situation where those who believe that women should all be treated as occupied wombs believe that all women should be treated as pregnant. When you additionally opine that pregnant women need to abide by a separate set of rules, simply by dint of being pregnant, this becomes pretty damn annoying to the women who aren’t, but are expected to abide by these rules ‘just in case.’ (also probably pretty damn objectionable to plenty of the women who are pregnant, but that’s somewhat beside the point for this line of argument.)

     

    And then we’re back to roller coasters, and deciding that women can’t ride them unless they can prove they’re not pregnant. Or bars becoming off limits unless you’ve got a current negative pregnancy test. Certain medications…you don’t get to take them unless you agree to sterilization, too risky for a potential fetus dontchyaknow? That is the logical extension of the worldview that both insists that fetuses are full-fledged people, and that all women (of the appropriate (and rather broad) age group) must be treated as possible incubators of full-fledged people.

     

     

     

     

  • ldan

    The phrase, ‘what’s good for the goose,’ comes to mind there.

  • ldan

    You always manage this with a lot less verbiage than I end up throwing at the argument. :)

     

    Which is to say, “spot-on!”

  • ahunt

    Dagnabit crowepps…we may very well be on the cusp of breakthrough…

  • ahunt

    if I am introduced to a woman who is sexually active, and is capable of bearing children, is it wrong to say “Hey, she might be pregnant!” (a.k.a. potentially pregnant)

     

    and then…WHAT? This is not rocket science, Arex. If she is potentially pregnant  (bizarre by any sane standards)…what now? Carry your “potentially pregnant assesment” through to the rational conclusions.

     

    You can do it. Those of us who are happily pregnant do it all the time.

  • rebellious-grrl

    How about red hair dye? When I used to dye my hair red I thought the dye looked like menstrual blood. It’s clumpy like blood too. And as far as testing for DNA I immediately thought about rape kit backlogs. If women send him bloody tampons would the police test it for DNA? To charge her with some sort of domestic terrorism. I think the money would be better spent on testing the backlog of rape kits. But I’m sure those misogynistic legislators would rather see the money spent to jail women for “domestic terrorism” for questioning their authority.

     

    Anyway, just a thought. This has given me lots of ideas for an art project to use of my bloody tampons and menstrual blood as a medium.

     

    Some examples of menstrual art,
    http://community.livejournal.com/blood_art
    http://www.drakenenergie.nl/art_by_women.htm

  • goatini

  • crowepps

    In addition, it is well known that drinking alcohol creates deformed sperm more likely to contribute to genetic errors in zygotes.  It seems to me that the very least the law to fulfil its responsibility to the health of that potential innocent fetus would be to put an additive in alcohol to ensure men who drink can’t get an erection.  That would have useful secondary effect of preventing PROMISCUITY!

  • pamela18335

    As a post-menopausal woman, I’m sorry to say that I can’t save my used tampons for the good congressman.

     

    However, under the circumstances, and given his strong beliefs and position on the subject of conception, I suggest that we request him to sponsor a bill that makes male masturbation equivalent to manslaughter.  This can be reduced to involuntary manslaughter in the case of nocturnal emissions.

     

    If the loss of a zygote requires investigation relative to potential homicide, it makes just as much sense that it can be argued that the deliberate misuse of human sperm would qualify as manslaughter.  Those sperm are one-half a zygote, and men indulging in their misuse are selfishly preventing the creation of that all-important zygote. 

     

    This right-wing idiocy makes my head ache.

  • crowepps

    In addition, he asserts his right to indulge his curiosity about and invade the privacy of women by snooping into the sex life and reproductive functioning of any woman who crosses his path, makes an overt claim that all OTHER men have a compelling interest justifying their interest in the reproductive functioning of ANY woman, and uses his self-appointed position as primary representative of the fetus to assert a right to monitor and scold and control and shame women who are total strangers to him.

     

    This is how things arrive at ”you’re pregnant so even if you’re not drinking alcohol you have to leave the bar”.  Once you are known to be pregnant or suspected of being pregnant, you are no longer a person but just livestock that needs to be herded back into the fence.

  • goatini

    Steps In Overcoming Masturbation:

    http://ldolphin.org/mormon.html

  • princess-rot

    Scientifically speaking, is not entirely unreasonable to assume that a wide portion of the human female community between menarche and menopause is potentially pregnant, assuming they are actually biologically fertile, heterosexually active and not using artificial birth control. That could still be dismissed as being too broad and ill-defined for the purpose of scientific study.

    But…

    Considering all these women and girls as potentially pregnant legally is an entirely different kettle of fish, because that is not a lab study or a dry academic observation – now you are getting into matters of autonomy and personal freedom and government oppression.

    Then explain to us, arex… what business is it of the Georgia legislature to do this if it is not about lusting for power and control?

  • thejjmoody

    You might actually check your sources… Criminal Liability actually requires “actus reus” in addition to mens rea, most of the time, to determine exclusion from legal conduct. You actually have to perform or omit the performance of an action that might have resulted in the criminal action not taking place. You can omit the mens rea requirement, however for a criminal violation to have taken place an action must still have been performed. 

    However, if you want to enter into the realm of strict liablity, criminal acts not requiring mens rea, then this law should be equally applicable to both men and woman. If a woman takes a birth control product and by doing so might perform a criminal act by preventing fertizalization of her egg then should a man not also be guilty of a criminal act any time he has an voluntary emission of semen that is not directly intended to attempt creation of life? Also as far as the idea of policing miscarriages goes, because a miscarriage is usually a spontanous act not one performed with intent, then should not also men be forced to prove that any involuntary emissions on their part also lack intent to prevent the creation of potental life? 

    Of course that’s an insane arguement right? I mean really are men going to be forced to turn their sheets over to the police and undergo an investigation just because something like that happened while they were asleep, it is totally absurd. 

    So is this law.

     


  • thejjmoody

    In the intrests of actual dialoge about this topic let me pose some questions to you. 

    1. Do you assume that all women you meet are sexually active and therefore potentally pregnant?

    2. Under this concept that ‘potentally pregnant’ women should be prevented from activites that might cause harm to a fetus, what would you suggest the requirements be for a woman to prove she is not currently pregnant in order to have access to those activites that are restricted to the ‘potentally pregnant’ population?

    3. Additionally since early stages of pregnancy can be difficult to determine for some women what timeframe do you believe would be acceptable to establish the nonexistance of a pregnancy? 

    The way I see it these are question that would have to be answered before any woman should be considered ‘potentally pregnant’ for the purposes of restricting her ablility to participate in any form of an activity. 

    I would be interested in your answers to these questions and not because I’m trying to pick a fight with anyone, I am honestly interested.

  • invalid-0

    First of all, no one is proposing a Big Brother watch over pregnant women’s activities.  To the extent that our government restricts/monitors/questions parents of newborns, or fathers of unborn children (you know, those guys that can go to jail for killing a fetus?), then that simply extends to the pregnant woman as well, as I read this bill. 

    You somehow equate the restriction of the law with being told that you are a second class citizen.  What is the difference in your mind between a first and second class citizen?  In my job, and (soon) as a father, I will and do have certain laws that apply especially to me.  I don’t consider myself a second class citizen because I am more restricted than others in what I can and cannot do.

  • invalid-0

    I’d love to be able to keep up with all of you.  Hopefully you will consider that’s simply not reasonable.  To address a few points:

    1. I am not an educator by profession.  In my free time, I pray outside clinics, but I do no ‘sidewalk counseling’.  I get asked to speak to these groups because of my (successful, mind you) history of structured debates on the topic, as well as my background in Constitutional Law.  These groups are already pro-life groups that want to know how to address the very good arguments and concerns that your side very often raises.  I really just let them know my responses to many of the arguments, especially from the legal perspective. 

    2. My comments above regarding ‘potentially pregnant’ were limited ONLY to the scientific fact that women of that criteria could, possibly, be pregnant.  I have not made a single comment in this thread about how I think the ‘potentially pregnant’ should be treated, despite the many lies above.  I don’t ‘accuse’ women of being potentially pregnant; I don’t have any inclination to support a law that treats the ‘potentially pregnant’ like Jewish people in Nazi Germany or whatever crazy analogy y’all have in your heads.  While I have defended certain points of this law, I actually would not support it in its current form.

    3. I think many of you need to wake up and realize that there is not just one side to this argument.  Your immediate demonizing of your opponents, mockery, and whatever else was going on above is, at some points, shameful and childish.  (It ‘nauseates’ you that I might be speaking to young people?  Grow up and get off your damned high horse.)  Thank you to those of you that actually reply with reasoned responses.

    4. Enjoy responding to this message with what I’m sure will just be a great number of ‘better than thou’ criticisms and hate speech; I’ll see you later in another thread.

  • therealistmom

    Reading this thread again this morning gave me the determination to head out to the Women’s Walk for Choice today. I was a bit unsure if I was up to driving the 150 miles one-way across the mountains to get there this morning, but you just reminded me how damn important it really is. Thanks!

  • thejjmoody

    Right now our government actually doesn’t impose restrictions on pregnant women preventing them from engaging in behaviors that could be potentally harmful to the fetus. We don’t make it illegal for them to purchase or use tobacco products, wine, beer, whiskey, tuna fish, deli lunch meat, or any other the other millions of things that are known to cause potental harm. As far as your roller coaster example, amusement parks are allowed to decline services to those who they deem as being a potential lawsuit risk (the reason for the posted disclaimers). Example, a woman who suspects she might be pregnant takes a home test that returns a negative response, she then goes on a rides at an amusement park that clearly lists conditions that would make the attraction unsutable for certian people. After leaving and returning home days or a week later and suffers from a miscarriage. After speaking with her doctor she determines that the miscarriage might have been prevented if she had not been on the rides, and wishes to sue the amusement park. However because of the disclaimers posted at the rides her case would be very difficult to win. 

    Testing to determine that a newborn infant has not been exposed to high levels of booze and/or illegal drugs is performed and the parents may be questioned should the results reveal that has happened. However as a rule I don’t believe that the hospitals spend a long time questioning parents, unless there is the appearance of an issue. 

    As far as this law is concerned I believe that forcing an investigation into the circumstances of a miscarriage is both harmful and dehumanizing to the woman subject to the investigation. There seems to be a presumption of guilt until proven innocent. Women I know who have suffered miscarriages either as a result of fertility issues, or for one of the unknown reasons have been traumatized enough, I can’t imagine additional pain and suffering this bill would cause them. The same applies to their friends and family who might also be interviewed for an investigation. 

    I am actually not aware of a case of the father of an unborn fetus actually being proscucuted for the, I’m assuming you mean, murder of the fetus. All the cases I am aware of are actually cases of either assault of the woman led to the premature birth of a viable fetus which was then murdered, or cases in which both the mother and the child died as a result of the actions of the father. If you can provide examples and links to the cases I would be intrested in that information.

    Honestly, I don’t relate a restriction under the law to being treated as a second-class citizen, nor do I view myself as a second-class citizen. I also am placed under restrictions by my job, both ethical and legal, that normal citizens are not, and those do not make me a second-class citizen either. You ask what I see as the difference between first and second-class citizens and I believe it is this, when restrictions are placed upon a group of citizens that exceed those placed upon other like groups of citizens, or placed upon half of society in a way that cannot and does not place a similar restriction upon the other half of society, or places a potental burden on half of society that it doesn’t exist for the other half, then the restricted group is no longer being treated as first-class citizens. 

    I’m not man bashing with this, I am aware that there are men that are responsible, caring, involved fathers, however restricting access to abortion does place a burden on women that it does not place on men. Once a women becomes pregnant and is forced to carry the child to term and deliver she is subject to an economic burden that a man is not required to shoulder, unless he chooses to be subject. I do not believe that abortion should be used as the only method of birth control, but it shouldn’t be restricted either. Unfortunatly, people in our society make bad choices that lead to a pregnancy and until there is a way to force the fathers, in all cases not just those of good men who know they are half responsible, to accept the responsiblity and shoulder an equal burden when an unexpected pregnancy happens then laws restricting access to abortion do nothing but penalize women and disregard men. 

    I don’t expect you to agree with me, I’m just responding to your post. Also, congratulations to you on the upcoming birth of your child. 

  • crowepps

    I think your explanation is accurate and really clear.  I’ll add a simpler one – second class citizens are the ones who are expected to step off the sidewalk so the first class citizens don’t have to slow down to step around them.

     

    This law clearly criminalizes unsuccessful gestation, adds as an element of the offense “unwilling to be pregnant while female” and clearly leaves women second class citizens inferior to their own zygotes, without even the right to self-defense if the ZBEF is killing her.  The fact that restrictions on her could be justified to protect the ZBEF’s rights would give men an enormous economic and social advantage is just icing on the cake for the reactionaries.

  • julie-watkins

    Others have already answered much of this.

    If you take issue with a particular comment that I make, by all means, please address the comment, not your [twisted] characterization of it. I refuse to engage in this childish mud-slinging. 

    OK, I skipped steps. My “2nd class” conclusion was based on conversations in general and with many posters including you, which I believe have similar views. Instead of going backwards, I’ll take this step by step.

    If a woman has voluntary sex and a pregnancy results, do you believe she is obligated to attempt to bring the pregnancy to term?

    If yes, do you think there would be an ethical/moral problem if an unexpected pregnancy systemically impacts some people/families more than others?

  • crowepps

    Right now our government actually doesn’t impose restrictions on pregnant women preventing them from engaging in behaviors that could be potentally harmful to the fetus. We don’t make it illegal for them

    They have not, yet, passed any specific laws which list specific restrictions, HOWEVER, a woman has been arrested and jailed for falling down the stairs after having been unsure she wanted to stay pregnant:

    http://news.change.org/stories/pregnant-iowa-woman-arrested-for-falling-down

    pregnant women have been arrested and jailed for illegal drug use and for alcohol use,

    http://www.womensenews.org/story/health/060920/jailing-pregnant-women-raises-health-risks

    and doctors and hospitals have gone to Court and gotten judges who are representatives of our government to give them them orders which ‘imprison’ women in hospitals for bed rest

    http://abcnews.go.com/Health/florida-court-orders-pregnant-woman-bed-rest-medical/story?id=9561460

    and many orders allowing them to do ceasarian sections on unwilling women. 

    http://www.lifescapes.org/Papers/COCS%20Hahn%201987.htm

    Our government may not be “imposing restrictions” but I’m not sure whether that makes a whole lot of difference when without having imposed any restrictions in the first place, our government is going right ahead and punishing women as though it already had.

  • ahunt
  • gwmchstudents

    Thanks Jill for such a thought provoking post. It is important for everyone to understand that its the mother’s decision to decide on pregnancy and child birth. Especially in this age when the government ceased thinking before cutting the funding to planned parenthood programs, lets either leave the choice to mothers or provide them with a better option if we can.

     

    Vishnu Priya Navuluri

  • wendy-banks

    You don’t have a clue at all do you Arex?

  • saltyc

      I have not made a single comment in this thread about how I think the ‘potentially pregnant’ should be treated,

    So how do you think we should be treated? You stated something to the effect that you’d treat a pregnant woman the same as a woman carrying a born child in her arms.  So how would you treat a woman you couldn’t tell was pregnant? Why do you think you’d have any business knowing whether she was having sex? You know, it’s your responsibility to fill in the voids that you try to squirrel out of after making many statements that do favor the blastocyst over the woman it’s in.

     I don’t have any inclination to support a law that treats the ‘potentially pregnant’ like Jewish people in Nazi Germany or whatever crazy analogy y’all have in your heads.  While I have defended certain points of this law, I actually would not support it in its current form.

    Please address arguments and accusations actually made, rather than ones you placed “in our heads,” thanks much.

    What parts of the law in its current form do you like and what parts do you not like? Stop being vague.

    Enjoy responding to this message with what I’m sure will just be a great number of ‘better than thou’ criticisms and hate speech; I’ll see you later in another thread.

    Ya, hey, big brave man, you think this is a joke? Some of us here are on the ground trying damn hard to help women and families manage their lives against armies of intruders, self-righteous bigots and liars who are exerting extreme control over other people’s lives, based mostly on ignorance. You expect politeness against false witness and accusations of fillicide? Get a grip, son, when you play with fire sometimes you get burned.

  • mklitt

    So this means Scarlett would have gone to jail, rather than Rhett?

  • alliwantforxmas

    Arex, really…there is something seriously skewed with your thinking. When you meet a woman, a stranger of reproductive age who could be sexually active, you say or think “hey, she might be pregnant!”? Really? Why? What kind of women have you been around? I haven’t met one woman yet who thinks all the time “gee, am I pregnant? do I wanna get pregnant? better not eat that, I might get pregnant. better not do that, i might be pregnant.” Women have all kinds of things on their mind that have nothing to do with babies or pregnancy. Forgive me but it sounds like you spend way too much time thinking about other people’s sex lives and reproductive lives. There’s a lot more to life than sex and babies. Besides, it’s really none of your business.

  • susmart3

    …please just give up on women. Most- if not all- of us, have very strong opinions on such, because, well.. all such legislation directly affects us, even if we are medically unable to even have children.

    Used to be, I could safely say, “At least when I’m <fill-in-the-blank> I won’t have to worry about becoming pregnant.” And every year, That Age keeps going up. (What’s the record now? 86 year old woman gives birth..?)

    Fact is, it is entirely possible to now combine the worst of all medical and legal worlds. Let’s say..

    I’m 65 years old, I’m raped. But medical science now says, it can keep the unborn alive within me. And the “father” can find a lawyer to save his unborn child. Medical science says the pregnancy won’t do me a world of good (I may die) and, hey, the unborn won’t be in much better physical/mental shape, either. But! We guarantee we can keep it alive.

    This whole debate targets women and only women.

    Let’s go after the men. Why wouldn’t we? Why aren’t we? Half the population. Entirely and equally responsible for any resulting kid. (No matter what scenario: consensual, rape, in vitro fertilization.)

    ALL MEN CAN STOP ABORTIONS. All men can end pregnancy. And yes, we can find ways to make and enforce such laws restricting male behavior.

    Men may find this… inconvenient, invasive, whatever. Why should I care? Really?

    If you so much want to protect the unborn, go after the men.

     

  • gwynhefar

    It depends on what you do with that ‘consideration’.  Laws like this basically say if a woman is “potentially pregnant” then it should be assumed that she *is* pregnant and the health of the possible fetus is placed above the woman’s rights as an individual.

     

    As an example of how damaging this thinking can be, even when not backed by law:

    My sister has epilepsy.  The drug she was placed on to control her seizures had horrible side effects – extreme nausea, lightheadedness and dizziness, short-term memory loss, etc.  While on this medication she was incapable of working, or, in fact, of doing much of anything.  There was another medication that could also control her seizures that had less severe side effects.  But my sister could not find a doctor who was willing to prescribe that medication.  The reason they gave?  That medication was known to cause birth defects in pregnant users.  Despite the fact that my sister had assured her doctors that she was on birth control and had no intention of getting pregnant, because she was of child-bearing age and married (and therefore presumably sexually active) they would not prescribe her the medication.  They were putting the well being of the “potential” fetus that may or may not ever exist above my sister’s immediate and current health.  

     

    This kind of thinking denegrates women, denying them individual rights and essentially treating them as nothing more than walking wombs.

  • lawdawgatl

    Last week the Georgia House did something extraordinary. In an almost unanimous vote, the House passed a bill that would severely increase the penalties of adults who sexually exploit children. “Almost unanimously” – in that one legislator voted against it. Guess who. That’s right – Franklin.

  • beenthere72

    OMFG, I had to look that up:

     

    http://www.ajc.com/news/georgia-politics-elections/sex-trafficking-bill-passes-858231.html

     

    It passed the House with bipartisan support, 168-1. The lone dissenter, Rep. Bobby Franklin, R-Marietta, said he objected only because of constitutional questions about how many features the bill contained. He said he did not oppose the bill’s goals.

  • colleen

    The fund has worked for at least three years to tackle the issue of underage prostitution, noting that more than 28,000 men in Georgia have sex with prostituted adolescent girls every year.

    Why not arrest them? (‘Them’ = the 28,000+ men.