To the Editor:
The Massachusetts legislature works on many bills, and then some are passed into law without the public having any idea that they were even discussed. I would like to inform the public of a bill the legislature is discussing right now. It is Bill SD 1209, called “An Act to Remove Obstacles and Expand Abortion Access.” It is better known as the Roe Act.
Our country is so divided on pro-life and pro-choice that I know it is difficult for people to discuss any of the facts in a rational way. Most people look at it as all or nothing. I would like to point out some of the aspects of this bill that go beyond just access to abortion.
The law now states that a minor must have parental, guardian, or court consent before an abortion can be performed. This new law eliminates that, so that any minor can go into an abortion facility and get an abortion. No questions asked. Now, by law, anyone who works with children must report any signs of abuse, or they are liable for prosecution. With the Roe Act, a 13-year-old could get an abortion, and no one is accountable to check the circumstances on who or how she became pregnant. This seems to open a wide window for older or adult predators, or even sex trafficking. Is that what we really want for our minor children?
Our abortion laws now state that if an abortion is attempted on a possibly viable child, “the physician performing the abortion shall take all reasonable steps … to preserve the life and health of the aborted child.” The new law eliminates all of that. If a child survives an abortion attempt, it enables passive infanticide (through exposure). If a baby is actually born alive during an abortion, the physician is allowed to just let the baby die. What kind of society leaves a baby on a table to just struggle for its last breath?
Now it is illegal for a woman to get an abortion after 24 weeks, unless the mother’s life is at risk or there is a severe abnormality in the baby. The new law abolishes this, and an abortion could be obtained right up to birth, and it does not need to be in a hospital. What could be more barbaric than to pierce a fully formed baby’s heart with a lethal dose of digoxin to cause a cardiac arrest? The new law does not eliminate any means of an abortion, including partial-birth abortion, where the baby’s head is crushed and then is pulled from the womb limb by limb.
Roe will require that Healthy Start funds to be used to pay for abortions for middle-class women who do not have Medicaid or MassHealth. Ironically, Healthy Start is a program begun to lower infant mortality rates, and serve underprivileged and at-risk mothers.
If you are pro-life, I hope that you would be against such an extreme law, but even if you are pro-choice, I hope that you would think about the saying that abortions should be rare, safe, and legal. This law is not safe, especially for minors, nor is it humane in the way we kill the baby. How can any reasonable society let a law pass that allows us to just let live babies die with no help?
Please contact our representatives and let them know that this law is too extreme even for pro-choice voters. Email, call, or write your representative to let them know you feel this law is too extreme: Senator Julian Cyr, 617-722-1570, email: Julian.Cyr@masenate.gov, and Representative Dylan Fernandes, 617-722-2430, email: Dylan.Fernandes@mahouse.gov. Or you can go to bit.ly/MAabortionbill to sign a petition against Bill SD 1209.