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Idaho's Abortion Ban

“It is unthinkable to allow complete strangers, whether individually or collectively as state legislators or others in government, to make such personal decisions for someone else.”

Sarah Weddington

“Worse than aborting is birthing in instability.”

Abhijit Naskar

“Abortion is legal almost everywhere, not because people all over the world love to kill babies for fun, but because a fetus is not a baby.”

Oliver Markus Malloy

“If you are against abortions, don’t have one.”

Scott Andrew


Introduction

Idaho's Abortion Ban

Idaho’s abortion ban is a legal hypocrisy in the sense that while banning abortions in the state there are no provisions to support the pregnancy of the mother or for the unwanted child that was forced to be born by the state. It is precisely this form of hypocrisy that allows well-to-do women to seek medical abortions from other sources. In contrast, poor women find their solutions in back alleys and unsanitary conditions. This abomination is the direct result of the conservative Supreme Court majority’s disconnect with the will of the people on the one hand. On the other, it raises questions about how independent the Republican justices are in light of their acceptance of lavish gifts by mega-donors and the unethical potential for a quid-pro-quo.

Last year’s Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade had Idaho championing its pro-life stance, emphasizing the need for robust support for women facing unexpected pregnancies. However, the actions that unfolded in the aftermath of this monumental ruling tell a starkly different tale. One marked by a troubling discord between policy and actual support. Idaho’s abortion ban is particularly abhorrent.

Idaho’s Abortion Ban and Empty Promises

Idaho Governor Brad Little’s call for united support for women seemed like a compassionate response to the abortion ban. However, the subsequent legislative actions, or rather, the lack thereof, raise questions about the sincerity of these pro-life promises. It appears that the concern for life extends only to the point of birth.

Maternal Mortality Committee Disbanded

In an unprecedented move, Idaho disbanded its Maternal Mortality Review Committee. It is now the only state in the nation without such a vital body. This committee held unique powers to investigate the root causes of maternal deaths, providing crucial insights to prevent future tragedies. The decision to let it dissolve is perplexing. It leaves Idaho ill-equipped to handle the potential repercussions of the abortion ban.

Idaho’s Abortion Ban: Missed Opportunities for Postpartum Support

Other states with abortion restrictions took steps to enhance safety nets for families during and after birth. Idaho, unfortunately, failed to seize similar opportunities. The state’s refusal to extend postpartum Medicaid coverage and turning down federal grants for childcare is barbaric. It raises serious concerns about the commitment to supporting families through the challenges of parenthood.

A Faith-Based Approach

Advocates for a hands-off, faith-based approach, such as lobbyist Blaine Conzatti, point to pregnancy resource centers as alternatives for support. However, these centers, predominantly faith-oriented and limited in medical capabilities, do not address the diverse needs of families. Thus, raising questions about the sufficiency of such an approach.

Idaho’s Abortion Ban: Legislative Inaction and Reassurances

While lawmakers promise future proposals to bridge the gaps in maternal care and extend Medicaid coverage, the delay in taking tangible actions raises skepticism. The urgency they claim to feel doesn’t align with the legislative pace, leaving families in limbo and questioning the true commitment to ensuring a supportive environment for those who choose life.

The Unseen Consequences

As Idaho grapples with the aftermath of the abortion ban, the lack of support for pregnant individuals and families becomes increasingly evident. The absence of a Maternal Mortality Review Committee leaves a critical gap in understanding and addressing preventable maternal deaths, potentially putting lives at risk.

Idaho’s Abortion Ban: The Urgent Need for Action

Idaho must urgently reevaluate its approach, recognizing that pro-life policies should extend beyond rhetoric. Reinstating the Maternal Mortality Review Committee, extending postpartum Medicaid coverage, and accepting federal grants for childcare are not just policy choices; they are moral imperatives for a state that claims to prioritize the sanctity of life.

Conclusion

Idaho’s abortion ban marked a significant policy shift in the state, but the subsequent lack of support for pregnant individuals and families exposes a troubling disconnect. The pro-life rhetoric must be met with concrete actions that prioritize the well-being of women and children. The state must reconcile its policies with the actual needs of its citizens, ensuring that the ramifications of such decisions are not borne by those already navigating the complex journey of parenthood. It’s time for Idaho to live up to its commitment to life by providing the necessary support structures for those who choose to bring life into the world.

By Politics-as-Usual

Roger is a retired Professor of language and literacy. Over the past 15 years since his retirement, Roger has kept busy with reading, writing, and creating landscape photographs. In this time of National crisis, as Fascist ideas and policies are being introduced to the American people and ignored by the Mainstream Press, he decided to stand up and be counted as a Progressive American with some ideas that should be shared with as many people who care to read and/or participate in discusssions of these issues. He doesn't ask anyone to agree with his point of view, but if entering the conversation he demands civility. No conspiracy theories, no wild accusations, no threats, no disrespect will be tolerated. Roger monitors all comments and email communication. That is the only rule for entering the conversation. One may persuade, argue for a different point of view, or toss out something that has not been discussed so long as the tone remains part of a civil discussion. Only then can we find common ground and meaningful democratic change.

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