Horrifying: New GOP-Backed Bill Will Let Doctors Refuse to Save the Lives of Pregnant Women

Sometimes there really aren’t words for what passes as “pro-life” in the United States. The “Protect Life Act” overrides the requirement that ER doctors treat every patient and do what’s necessary to save the patient’s life, regardless of the patient’s identity or ability to pay — the Act allows doctors to refuse necessary care to a pregnant woman if that care will kill the fetus.

In other words, it gives doctors the green light to let pregnant women die if they have a life-threatening condition and need an emergency abortion. We know that women’s lives have been saved by abortion (and that some number of people don’t approve of the whole life-saving thing). It’s not surprising that a few religious blow-hards think it’s better for women to die instead of receiving therapeutic abortions, but to encode the view that you don’t have to save a pregnant woman’s life into federal law? That is truly sick — and shockingly cruel, even for the usual “pro-life” suspects who regularly use their ideology as a tool to punish women.

Also? It’s not like letting the pregnant woman die saves the fetus, so there’s no “protecting life” here. When the woman dies, the fetus dies too. The entire purpose of this bill is to allow ideologues to refuse necessary, life-saving care to patients, if those patients happen to be pregnant. It’s disgusting. I hope, at the very least, that this will be widely publicized, and will show the rest of the country what a far-right “culture of life” really looks like — it’s not particularly life-affirming to anyone with a uterus.

Feministe / By Jill Filipovic | Sourced from

Posted at February 4, 2011, 5:54am

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