Utah House of Representatives Republican, Carl Wimmer
Andrew Jenkins, a writer at the Feminists for
Choice Death blog and “a self-proclaimed queer feminist” is having kittens. He is upset by the introduction of a bill set to be debated in early 2010, into the Utah House of Representatives by Republican Representative Carl Wimmer. Wimmer is a strongly conservative politician with a mission to chip away at Roe v. Wade which he correctly states has legalised “no reason” abortion in the United States. In 2009 Wimmer sponsored two incrementally pro-life bills. The first, HB222 was entitled “The Unborn Child Pain Prevention Act” and requires that doctors who are going to commit an abortion on a child must inform the mother that the child may feel pain, and requires that the doctor offer an anesthetic to alleviate the pain for the foetus. The second bill Wimmer co-sponsored established in law that an unlawful abortion was the equivalent of a 2nd degree homicide. While being strongly pro-life, Wimmer justly supports permission of abortions in extreme cases only. Utah has a population of 2.7 million and, as a largely conservative state, lays claim to a relatively low total of 4,000 abortions being committed each year out of 3 abortion mills. Low perhaps, but still approximately 4,000 too many abortions and 3 too many abortion clinics. The Center for Bio-Ethical Reform states that only 1% of abortions occur because of rape or incest, 6% occur because of potential possible health problems while the vast majority, 93% are committed for social reasons – where it is claimed that an abortion will improve the future of the mother or remove an “inevitable future of pain and poverty” for the foetus.
The latest pro-life bill introduced by Wimmer would require that abortionists must provide an image of the fetus on an ultrasound along with an optional detailed description of what is on the screen. The Salt Lake Tribune explains the situation,
Current law says women planning abortions must be told they have the right to view an ultrasound. Wimmer’s changes go further and say that if an ultrasound is performed, the images must be displayed so that the woman can see them, if she wants. And, if she desires, the person performing the ultrasound must provide a “detailed description” of what is on the screen, including the dimensions of the fetus, description of its heart and presence of other organs and external body parts.
Naturally pro-abortion feminists and those with a vested interest in the continuation of liberal abortion laws are fuming. Wimmer correctly summarises their motivation,
“They’re in the abortion market to make money. The more ultrasounds they show, the fewer abortions they’re going to be able to do.”
Wimmer drafted the bill with the national anti-abortion organization, Americans United for Life. AUL states that by showing the mother an image of her pre-born child, a bond will be established which leads to the woman no longer feeling ambivalence towards the life growing within her. This phenomena is pretty straight-forward. Until a mother sees or touches her child – at any stage in his/her development, the level of responsiblity or love which she feels for the child will be significantly lower than when she does see and hold her child. However Andrew Jenkins of Feminsts for Death lashes out at Wimmer for his part in “making the already difficult decision to have an abortion even harder”.
“Unfortunately for women in the state of Utah, Wimmer is pushing for more invasive restrictions that would dramatically challenge a women’s right to choice. Rep. Carl Wimmer’s bill would require that a doctor provide an image of the fetus on an ultrasound along with a detailed description of what is on the screen. Although this so-called attempt at establishing a “bond” between a mother and her fetus is still optional, the very idea of this legislation is cloaked in anti-choice language that views women as agentless and incapable of coming to their own conclusions about what is best for their bodies and their lives. Despite the fact that this bill remains seemingly optional for women seeking an abortion, it is most certainly a part of a larger anti-choice agenda to coerce women out of choosing abortion.”
Jenkins is incorrect to state that doctors will be required to provide the image and a detailed description, in fact he contradicts himself in the next sentence when he acknowledges that these procedural changes will be optional with the woman determining what she does/does not wish to know about her pre-born child, or the procedure which will tear it to pieces, forcefully sucking it out of her body through a hose. He comments that, “Regardless of how difficult of a decision it may be, it remains a decision that each woman should have the autonomous right to make on her own.” However, ironically – and this is typical of the pro-abortion lobby, he is absolutely opposed to women being given the option of a wider range of information being made available to them to allow them to make a better-informed choice.