You’ve probably seen the news stories. State legislators who want to make women who suffer ectopic pregnancies undergo a procedure (that is medically impossible and that would be painful, expensive, and dangerous) to re-implant the fetus. Or who want funerals and death certificates for every fertilized egg that dies (despite those eggs being microscopic and undetectable when expelled). Or to put women and doctors to death for abortions.
And it’s tempting to roll your eyes, remark that those who don’t understand biology probably shouldn’t attempt to legislate over it, and assume that no bill that ridiculous would be upheld, even if it does pass.
That would be a mistake and a misunderstanding of what the Right is up to.
What they are doing, and they’re very good at this, is moving the Overton Window. If there are some people out there advocating the death penalty for abortion, well, all of a sudden just making it illegal and taking away the doctor’s license starts to sound positively moderate, doesn’t it? Compared to having a dangerous and pointless operation, a transvaginal ultrasound doesn’t sound so bad, does it? Want to monitor every woman’s periods and make her explain why she isn’t pregnant? Gee, then how about government and church access to her medical records? That sounds much less intrusive.
The Left isn’t as good at this game as the Right. We run away from the people taking “extreme” stances. Of course, we won’t take your gun. Yes, abortion should be safe, legal, and rare. No, no we won’t make you give up your gas guzzler.
But those kind of positions would, if we allowed them and didn’t rush to shut them down before the Right has a chance, move the Overton Window in our direction.
If there were states trying to pass laws to take away everyone’s guns, keeping guns from those on the Terrorist Watch List might be a good compromise. Loud demands for abortion clinics on every corner and for abortion on demand would similarly move the discussion. If we had people advocating seizing the means of production and giving to each according to their need — real socialism — MediCare for All would start to sound awfully moderate.
Meanwhile, yes, they are coming for abortion — and birth control. As I’ve said before, if you have all the children you plan to have (which could well be zero), get sterilized. Now. While you still can. And, speaking of things to do while you still can, buy condoms and Plan B now and store them somewhere safe. Pay cash if you can.
Picture found here.