As of January 2017 women residing in the state of Oklahoma can only obtain public funding for an abortion under specific circumstances; when the woman’s life is in danger or if the conception was the result of rape or incest. Yesterday, Justin Humphrey, a state representative proposed a new bill, which if passed would encourage and heighten patriarchal society, meaning that all past efforts of equity and equality will result as null.
Mr. Humphrey has claimed that aim of House Bill 1441 aims to “bring fathers back into their role”. Humphrey conveniently leaves out the negative effects this ‘participation’ will have on women’s mental, social and physical well-being. Although the bill exempts cases of rape and incest it strips away any rights and dignity women hold. Humphrey goes on to crudely liken a woman’s body to a passive host to a man’s offspring, as if a woman’s sole job in the 21st century is to provide him with an heir.
A NARAL (an American, non-profit organisation which works towards broadening reproductive freedom) representative, James Owens, argued that “These fringe politicians are painting a macabre picture of what they want America to look like — where women are merely vessels for childbirth and men have veto power over all of life’s decisions.” It seems that Margret Atwood’s dystopian novel A Handmaid’s Tale might resonate now more than ever.
Personally, I find it horrifying and almost unbelievable that in 2017 we are regressing as a species rather than advancing. This is perhaps the fear which haunts anti-Trump protestors today as they live in a topsy-turvy Trump nation. Having a closed minded leader inevitably breeds apathy towards common sense. Regardless of being pro-life, as a woman, unless you are a masochist,you should desire to retain your rights and not have to answer to a man in what should be a contemporary society.