Thursday, October 27, 2011

Write It Down, Write It ALL Down. Yep, All Of It. Right Down To The Very End

Mississippi has a constitutional amendment on the ballot for Nov 8 that would “declare a fertilized human egg to be a legal person, effectively branding abortion and some forms of birth control as murder.”

This amendment needs to be passed. Why? Well, when you craft a constitutional amendment, you’ve got to follow up with . . . laws crafted to enforce that amendment, and laws – unless they’re fake laws, hypocritical laws, phony CYA laws only there for political cover –must spell everything out in mind-numbing detail. And that’s where this law will be important in the ongoing abortion discussion.

Americans need to see, in all exactitude, EXACTLY what will happen in Mississippi, for example, when a woman has an abortion. Since she’s killed a “person,” she’ll have to be prosecuted for, what? Murder? Clearly, since the act is willful, the murder charge will have to be first degree, so the murdering Mummy will have to face the death penalty. How could she not?

Or, since causing the death of a “person” is murder, suppose a pregnant woman has a miscarriage and the Doctor suspects she did something that caused the “person” in her womb to die – drank some alcohol, didn’t get a flu shot and got the flu, carelessly exposed herself to a kid with German measles, whatever, surely the law will include a provision that the doctor be required to report the miscarriage to the county corner who will have to start an investigation. After all, without a complete investigation into any and all miscarriages, who could be sure they weren’t homicide? I mean, when fully grown people die of no known immediate cause, there’s an investigation into their deaths. Surely, that will have to be the case with any and all pregnancies that do not end successfully with a live birth.

Or consider, since some forms of birth control will be outlawed, the law must logically require all licensed pharmacists alert the authorities of anyone seeking to buy those outlawed forms of birth control. And if they don’t, they could be convicted of aiding and abetting in a murder of a “person.”

And so forth, all the way down the line. Including increased U.S. Postal monitoring of suspected of seeking to buy certain forms of birth control via interstate mail. And, certainly, the law would also have to include transporting anyone across state lines to secure either forbidden birth controls and/or abortions in another state.

See how far this is Amendment will have to go and why it’s so important to get passed? To date, so many anti-abortion laws are written more for political sound-bites, useful for waving like a flag to get votes. But laws have to be spelled out, each and every detail. They’re like large balls of string. You can’t just hold one end of the string and pose for the cameras as a staunch defender of “personhoods.” No, you’ve got to unspool that huge ball every since inch of the way and spell out EXACTLY how A connects to B and results in C which leads to E, and so on all the way to the end of the alphabet, complete with footnotes.

Then and only then, will voters get a clear idea of exactly what a State must do to control a woman’s body. And when that happens, when that’s spelled out in all the exactitude of The Law, most people mutter, “Uh, nevermind,” as the political gets personal, the general becomes specific and comes to roost on your daughter, your wife, your mom. Then, suddenly the whole idea begins to unravel as exception after exception starts creeping in.

After all, the law is always good when it applies to other people. When it begins to apply to us, ah well, that’s usually when we start changing the subject then change the channel.

Which is why this Mississippi amendment is so important. Go for it, Ole Miss. Write it all down. Every bit of it. Then hand it to your womenfolks. See what they make of the fine print.

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