Texas might have just provided a glimpse of the U.S.’s Handmaid’s Tale future.
With Roe v. Wade on the chopping block in the country this summer, anxiety and questions about what will happen if/when abortion rights slip away are filling the headlines. And a recent arrest in Texas is that pro-choice nightmare realized.
26-year-old Lizelle Herrera was pregnant, and then she wasn’t. The details of how that happened are unclear (whether it was a self-induced abortion or a miscarriage or something in between), but it looks like the hospital she ended up in reported her to the police. She was then thrown in jail.
She went in last Thursday and didn’t leave until Sunday, when charges were dropped. They were dropped because, as the DA said, “Ms Herrera did not commit a criminal act under the laws of the state of Texas.”
The state’s controversial SB 8 specifically targets people doing abortions, not those having abortions. But it’s a slippery slope that brings up all sorts of bodily integrity and equal protection issues, as well as questions about how safe people who have miscarriages are.
People have strong opinions about abortions, but the U.S. is supposedly the land of the free, where individuals have a right to their own personhood under the 14th amendment. Maybe the chipping away of that right is part of how authoritarianism will take over.
Many people who fought hard for their bodily integrity rights when it came to wearing masks or getting vaccinated for Covid (a lack of which has the potential to kill people) seem to forget about it when it comes to abortion. Where will the restrictions stop? First abortion then contraception then… miscarriage? And then they’re coming for the vasectomies.
No. That’s the end of the slope. No one is coming for vasectomies.