DEBATE

WANT TO KNOW WHAT I THINK?

 

Does God Control My Body?

By Paige Farber '23 

On September 1st, 2021, the state of Texas commenced the law, 

 

“relating to abortion, including abortions after

detection of an unborn child’s heartbeat;

authorizing a private civil right of action. 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE

OF THE STATE OF TEXAS: SECTIONA1.AA

This Act shall be known as the Texas Heartbeat Act.

SECTIONA2.AA The legislature finds that the State

of Texas never repealed, either expressly or by

implication, the state statutes enacted before

the ruling in Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973),

that prohibit and criminalize abortion unless

the mother’s life is in danger.”

The effects and consequences of this act are leading the United States of America one step closer
to becoming a totalitarian state. By definition, “Totalitarianism is a form of government and a
political system that prohibits all opposition parties, outlaws individual opposition to the State

and its claims, and exercises an extremely high degree of control and regulation over public and
private life. It is regarded as the most extreme and complete form of authoritarianism.” Do we
want our contemporary society to become one where we risk the lives and success of intelligent
women—or all women, for that matter?

On one hand, the religious beliefs of others are taken into consideration, a fact that many citizens
greatly appreciate; however, a line must be drawn when implications are pressed onto others, as
in scenarios like this one. When the act was passed, a twelve-year-old girl who had been raped
multiple times by her father was counseled by The SAFE Alliance, an alliance created to assist
survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence, as well as child abuse. Most women do not
start showing, and may not be aware they are pregnant until sixteen to twenty weeks after
conception, so how can a twelve-year-old girl be expected to notice? Luckily, the young girl was
able to receive help because the rape had occurred before September 1. Had that not been so, her
life would have been in great danger.

We cannot accept the excuse that religion is the reason for this act. The government should not
be allowed to control the bodies of women, especially if this control involves a nonconsensual
pregnancy. The law also mentions that exceptions will not be made for those who are victims of
sexual assault, or rape, regardless of the age of the victim. We can be fooled by arguments that
take a religious perspective. It is impotent (useless, important, or irrelevant) to consider the
Gospel and love your neighbor. This is where pro-choice plays a large role in what should be the
standard for our society. We must keep available the option to have an abortion. If we do not, the
health and lives of women are put at risk. A 1976 report attributed 39 deaths to illegal abortions
because it was so difficult to receive a legal one. During that same year, 130,000 illegal abortions
occurred. We must make a change. We can no longer accept any form of excuse or defense. It is time to let women have control over their own bodies.

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By Julia Hristov '24