Mississippi may be weeks away from having its only public abortion provider shuttered. For Mississippi Right to Life president Barbara Whitehead, that’s just fine. After all, we should treat women just as well as dogs, right?
Whitehead isn’t surprised that the law is facing legal challenges. But she takes a long view: For one thing, pro-lifers weren’t even able to get the bill passed in previous attempts. And for another, Whitehead sees plenty of progress during the many years she has spent working for the pro-life cause.
“We had a number of abortion facilities in the state,” Whitehead says of Mississippi at the time she became involved in the pro-life movement, almost 30 years ago. “And there were no laws. As we used to say, ‘It’s safer to take your dog to the vet than for a woman to go to an abortion facility, because there are higher standards of cleanliness at the vet’s office.’ There were no standards. And we fought and we fought and we fought, and we finally got some laws through.”
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I suppose the sentiment is meant to be touching, in some way? Putting aside the fact that Mississippi is one of the lowest-ranking states when it comes to laws dealing with dog breeders, and let’s be frank, when you reject a woman’s right to decide not to continue a pregnancy is mostly along the same lines, there’s also the lovely implication of women as pets, property, hey, even “man’s best friend.”
I supposed its a step up from putting TRAP laws through ag committees, but it’s another reminder that as much as anti-choice activists claim to be about protecting the “humanity” of a fertilized egg, the humanity of the woman carrying it doesn’t register at all.