On September 1st 2021, a law was passed in Texas warning that abortions would be banned 6 weeks after you have become pregnant. This law is also widely known as the “heartbeat law” because it prevents people from having abortions if a heartbeat is detected from the fetus.
Texas is known to have some of the most restrictive laws on abortion in all of the United States, but this law crossed a line. To begin with, there should be absolutely no reason why men should make laws controlling what women or people with female genitalia should be doing with their bodies. Men will never understand how difficult pregnancy is, and if they cannot empathize they cannot be the people making these laws for them.
My biggest issue with this law is the 6 week policy. According to health records, going without your period for as long as 35 days is completely normal, and it is not until a month or so that a woman begins to consider the chance of a pregnancy. This law gives women 42 days to be aware of the pregnancy and have the opportunity to have an abortion which is not nearly enough time to even consider one.. According to a New York Times article, “Abortion providers in Texas said that 85 to 90 percent of the procedures they previously performed were after the six-week mark…” which indicates that women need to be fully aware of their bodies in order to receive the health care they deserve.
Considering the fact that our Declaration of Independence clearly states that we have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, restricting abortion in any form is an infringement on our rights. Women in Texas have to worry that if they do not know when they are pregnant soon enough, they cannot get an abortion. There is no mercy against those who were raped, are too young to bear children, or just not ready to begin a family. Having a child is undeniably one of the biggest responsibilities a person can have in their lifetime, and not being able to control that is utterly wrong.
I understand that many people are not in support of abortion because of the ethics involved in the issue, but at the end of the day, what you choose to do with your body should be nobody’s concern but yours. Of course, there are different options, besides abortion, for not keeping the child, such as adoption and foster care systems, but the process of having kids is something that will change a woman’s body and mentality for the rest of their life. Additionally, many children subject to these conditions end up in foster systems where they feel neglected and mistreated throughout their youth. I know that if abortions continue to be criminalized, people will continue to get abortions, and likely in ways that are a lot more dangerous than receiving one in a professional clinic.
Pregnancy is such a beautiful process of life. Again, I understand why abortion is viewed negatively, but that should not defend the restrictions being put on abortion. Instead of punishing women, we should push the education of sex-ed and birth control to our youth. We need to enlighten kids at a young age of the risks of sex and pregnancy in order to prevent the demands of abortion. I truly believe, that no matter what, abortions should be tangible and free to anyone who needs it.
Going through a life changing process against your will is not fair even in the slightest. I cannot imagine being obligated to carry a child that might have been created due to a terrible experience or an accident, which could be incredibly traumatizing. Women who literally produce other humans should have the most autonomy over their bodies. It is absolutely unacceptable that these laws are being passed, especially by those who will never understand what this oppression feels like.