“This bill is so horrendous that I could not believe it when it was first brought up,” Representative Judy Chu of California told The Guardian. “It is a nightmare. This is a piece of legislation that would impose criminal penalties on providers and limit the reproductive choices of women of color and all women.”
Those who are in support of the bill argue that a fetus must be protected from discrimination.
“It took the civil war to make the state-sanctioned practice of human slavery come to an end,” said Representative Trent Franks, the bill’s sponsor, at a House judiciary subcommittee hearing on Thursday. He claimed there is an exception for racial discrimination against the fetus, declaring, “one glaring exception is life itself, the most foundational civil right of all.”
The committee, it turns out, is comprised entirely of men.
“It’s so upside-down,” Chu said. “This shows that this is a male-dominated effort and actually points to the fact that there are men who are trying to stop choice for women.”
Opponents argue that those proposing this bill do not care about black lives once they are out of the womb, asserting that a hot button issue is being used to pass legislation against women’s rights.
“These kinds of anti-choicers, or pro-birthers as I like to call them, don’t care about the conditions of our lives like the schools we’re going to, the food we are eating, the environment we are living in,” Monica Simpson, the executive director of SisterSong, the National Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective, told The Guardian.