As Mississippi debated then defeated a “personhood” amendment that would have granted legal rights to fertilized human eggs, multiple media outlets reported that GOP presidential contender Mitt Romney refused to clarify whether he supported the measure, which would ban not only abortions but also common forms of birth control and undermine other forms of health care for women.
Like in so many other American home-places, black and white Mississippians see things differently, and, consequently, vote differently. As Mississippians proved last night, when things get really, really bad, together, we get our act together; we overcome. Now we all need to keep working to overcome exclusionary voter ID laws.
Mississippi voters yesterday soundly defeated Initiative 26, the so-called Personhood Amendment, by a margin of 58 percent to 42 percent. The vague proposition, which would have defined a fertilized egg as a person, threatened a multitude of untold consequences.
The defeat of Mississippi Initiative 26 and the gains for reproductive choice today in Mississippi–while critical–may in the long run be seen as pyrrhic victories given the ominous implications of Initiative 27, the exclusionary voter ID initiative that will disenfranchise thousands of African Americans, immigrants, married women, transgendered people, and Native Americans.
In a decisive and resounding victory in one of the most conservative states in the country, Mississippi voters defeated–by a margin of 57 percent to 43 percent as of this writing–the dangerous Initiative 26, which would have defined a fertilized egg as a person with full human rights.
I wonder if you can imagine what it feels like to be told, again and again, what it means to be a girl. You’re not really a full human being: you’re a sexualized baby-making organism who, once we are post-menopausal and no longer attractive, there really is no use for.
Religious zealots form a symbiotic relationship with politicians to pass draconian legislation sacrificing the rights of women. The zealots get to walk away having successfully implemented a cog in their overall attempt to implement a Christian worldview system of governing and politicians in return get tons of fundraising cash and a committed group of one-issue voters that can propel them into office.
The polling has the Mississippi amendment to define fertilized eggs as people in a virtual tie.
Mississippi voters will be determining more than the direct rights of women in Mississippi when they vote on a personhood amendment on Tuesday. The vote will also measure how far the Christian right’s misogyny will go.
If I had lived in Mississippi in 1996, would I have dared go to the hospital when I suffered a miscarriage? And if I had, would I be facing prison?