Healthcare Hell And Religious Oppression in Post-Roe America

The Supreme Court’s decision to play God and overturn Roe v. Wade and the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision plunged women into the dark ages of healthcare hell.

Fifty years of legal precedent to safe abortion access have been overturned, causing chaos, confusion, and legal battles in red states with harsh restrictions and criminal penalties.

Republican lawmakers who never attended medical school and don’t know the first thing about a woman’s reproductive system are dictating to OBGYN doctors how they can practice medicine.  Doctors can’t give women the medical care they need because of ignorant abortion bans that restricts healthcare and are causing harm and even death to women. This is unacceptable.

Doctors know how to treat emergency pregnancy complications but now need to consult a lawyer before proceeding for fear of potential criminal charges and risks to their medical licenses because of unclear and confusing regulations on abortions. 

These abortion bans are more about controlling and dominating women than protecting embryos because people passing these laws usually don’t care about babies after they’re born. These politicians cut early childhood education, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, and programs that help poor children. 

 It is about male supremacy, sexism, misogyny, and the need to dominate and control women’s bodies, lives, and destiny; to make women second-class citizens with fewer rights and freedom than men. There are too many educated and uppity women for insecure, gun-toting MAGA males, who need women to learn their Biblical place to be subservient handmaids to men.

If it were about eliminating abortions, it would be easier to pass laws requiring men to deposit their sperm in a sperm bank and then be sterilized. Men could withdraw their sperm when they decide they want to become fathers. Men who refuse to be sterilized would face criminal penalties and jail time like doctors and women face today.

WOMEN TELL THEIR  NIGHTMARE HEALTHCARE STORIES

The following true stores are from many different news sources.

A woman with a life-threatening ectopic pregnancy can’t get care from a local doctor because he fears Republican restrictions would make it illegal for him to treat her, even though the fetus could not live and the mother would die. She sought emergency care in another state to save her life.

The cruelty continues as women are forced to hurt, bleed and possibly die from a miscarriage because doctors fear imprisonment. Pharmacists can’t fill prescriptions for drugs that ease miscarriages because those drugs are used to induce abortion. 

A lupus patient must stop taking medications that control her illness because it can cause miscarriages, even though she is not pregnant. 

A woman bled for more than ten days from an incomplete miscarriage after emergency room staff would not remove the remaining fetal tissue amid fear of confusing legal consequences to the hospital.

A woman who started to miscarry developed a dangerous womb infection but could not receive an immediate abortion until the fetal heartbeat stopped. Because of the delay, the woman developed complications, required surgery, lost multiple liters of blood, and was put on a breathing machine. Medical care was delayed because of a Republican-imposed health restriction that almost killed the woman. 

A 10-year-old child was raped, became pregnant, and had to go to another state for an abortion.  Republican lawmakers in most red states don’t have exceptions for rape or incest.

Republican lawmakers are denying women and female children the right to control their reproductive systems and destinies.  The freedom to control one’s body is a human right, and no one has the right to take that right away.

Extreme Republicans in Texas have authorized vigilantes to arrest anyone who tries to get an abortion or assists a woman in getting an abortion.

It will be poor women lacking financial resources who will suffer the most from these draconian abortion bans.  Unlike wealthy women who can travel to a Democratic blue state to receive an abortion, poor women will be forced to have children they can not afford and go deeper into poverty.

THE SUPREME COURT’S MINORITY DISSENTING OPINION

 A state or government controlling women’s freedom of choice about their life and reproductive health is incompatible with a free society. In a democracy, people are multicultural and multi-racial, with many different religions. We have different experiences, values, religious training, beliefs, and opposing views about abortions.

The five Republican Justices (Alito, Thomas, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Barrett) decided to overturn reproductive rights on a single question.  Did the reproductive rights recognized in Roe and Casey exist in 1868 when the 14th Amendment was ratified, and the answer was no.

Justice Breyer, Justice Sotomayor, and Justice Kagan give the dissenting opinion on Roe and Casey in the Dobbs v. Jackson’s Women’s Health Organization case:

The constitutional regime we have lived in for the last 50 years recognized competing interests and sought a balance between them. The constitutional regime we enter today erases the woman’s interest and recognizes only the State’s (or the Federal Government’s). The majority makes this change based on a single question: Did the reproductive right recognized in Roe and Casey exist in “1868, the year when the Fourteenth Amendment was ratified”?  The majority says (and with this much we agree) that the answer to this question is no: In 1868, there was no nationwide right to end a pregnancy and no thought that the Fourteenth Amendment provided one.

The majority’s core legal postulate, then, is that we in the 21st century must read the Fourteenth Amendment just as its ratifiers did. And that is indeed what the majority emphasizes over and over again. See ante, at 47 (“[T]he most important historical fact [is] how the States regulated abortion when the Fourteenth Amendment was adopted”). If the ratifiers did not understand something as central to freedom, then neither can we. Or said more particularly: If those people did not understand reproductive rights as part of the guarantee of liberty conferred in the Fourteenth Amendment, then those rights do not exist.

This Republican-controlled Supreme Court is not done with its work to take away rights and freedoms. The rights Roe and Casey recognized do not stand alone; the Court has linked them to other settled freedoms involving bodily integrity, familial relationships, procreation, same-sex intimacy, and marriage.

Following that logic, the Court may take away birth control, same-sex marriages, and women’s right to vote since it was not recognized in 1868 when the 14th Amendment was ratified. Black men may also be on shaky ground with voting rights with this Supreme Court that wants to take everyone back to 1868 or earlier. 

The alarm over possible loss of birth control has increased women’s and men’s requests for permanent sterilization since Roe v Wade was overturned.  No one wants to be forced by the state to be a parent when they are not ready.

Justice Thomas and his insurrectionist wife may have to divorce because, in 1868, the 14th amendment did not recognize interracial marriages.

SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE 

The Supreme Court claims that from the moment of fertilization, a woman has no freedom of choice regarding her reproductive system or decisions on the direction of her life because the fetus is a living person.  Other religions and even the Bible do not share this fundamentalist belief.

According to Genesis 2:7, a fetus is not a living person with a soul until after drawing its first breath.  Job 33.4 states that the breath of the Almighty gives me life.  Ezekiel 37: 5&6 when breath enters you, you shall live. 

There are many conflicting translations in the Bible; that is why no one interpretation of what a fetus is should be made into law over other interpretations.

When a baby is born, it dies if it does not take its first breath. It is the breath that gives us life, not fertilization.

The Bible in Exodus 21:22 says if a man causes a woman to have a miscarriage, he shall be fined; however if she dies, he will be put to death.  Will the Supreme Court and State lawmakers legislate this Bible interpretation into law? 

The Supreme Court and State lawmakers are cherry-picking and interpreting the 14 Amendment and the Bible to mean what they want it to mean.

In Florida, a lawsuit filed by the Congregation L’Dor Va-Dor contends the abortion bans violate Jewish teachings and prevent religious freedom to practice their religious beliefs that abortion is required to protect the health, mental or physical well-being of the woman.

Rabbi Barry Silver warns that the abortion bans are eroding the separation between religion and government and that every time that wall starts to crack, bad things happen.

The lawsuit contends that no faith is monolithic on the abortion issue. Other religions are shocked that a view held by a minority of Americans could supersede individual rights and religious beliefs. 

Remember, if Republicans gain control of the federal government, they plan to make abortion illegal in every state, including Blue states, where abortion is still legal.

Democrats need 52 Senators in the Senate because Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.VA) and Krysten Sinema (D-AZ) refuse to modify the filibuster or vote for Democratic Bills. 

On November 8, 2022, vote for pro-choice candidates.

Written and photos by Gloria Tatum

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