June 6, 2014


"New Study Exposes Sex-Selective Abortion Bans for What They Are: Just Another Way To Restrict Abortion," Emily Bazelon, Slate's "XX Factor": A new study published this week "exposes banning abortion based on sex-selection for what it is: a way to restrict abortion, not to combat gender discrimination," Bazelon writes. She adds that the study, which "looks at a large and recent data set (called the American Community Survey)," found that "foreign-born Asian-Americans and Indians don't have birth rates that skew toward boys" and that they have more daughters than white Americans. Bazelon cites other findings in the study that debunk abortion-rights opponents' rationale for such bans, concluding that while "the problem of parental preference for boys is a real one" in some countries, it is "a canard" in the U.S. and that there is "nothing feminist about invoking it to make abortions harder to get" (Bazelon, "XX Factor," Slate, 6/3).

What others are saying about abortion restrictions:

~ "The Fight To Take Back Our Health Care System From Junk Science," Tara Culp-Ressler, Center for American Progress' "ThinkProgress."

~ "When Courts Consider Evidence, Abortion Supporters Win," Dorothy Samuels, New York Times' "Taking Note."

~ "Need an Abortion? Get in Line," Amanda Marcotte, Slate's "XX Factor."


"Louisiana Lawmakers Pass Bill to Keep Women on Mechanical Support Against Their Wishes," Teddy Wilson, RH Reality Check: "The Louisiana legislature passed a bill (HB 1274) that requires physicians to keep brain-dead women who are pregnant on mechanical support if the physician determines there is a chance the fetus is viable," Wilson writes, adding that the measure "would invalidate advance directives when a patient is pregnant and prohibit a family" from making end-of-life decisions for the woman. Wilson writes that the bill as finalized would apply if a woman was "at least 20 weeks pregnant" and would not apply "to any woman who has previously specified a 'do not resuscitate' while pregnant instruction in a will." He notes that the bill is now before Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), who is "expected to sign it into law" (Wilson, RH Reality Check, 6/3).


"Pennsylvania Women's Health Caucus Unveils Second Package of Bills," Tara Murtha, RH Reality Check: "Members of Pennsylvania's bipartisan Women's Health Caucus unveiled the second wave of bills aimed at addressing women's health and economic equality at a press conference at the capitol on Tuesday morning," Murtha writes. She explains that this second wave of legislation includes "bills designed to curb interference in a patient's relationship with her doctor, identify health-care gaps for female veterans, fight deep poverty among women and children, ensure widows of state and municipal employees receive fair pensions, and protect more women from sexual harassment." Murtha notes that while some of the measures "are still being drafted," the caucus expects to have them all introduced "within the next few months," while it also continues to advocate "for movement on some of the bills introduced last year as part of the first package" (Murtha, RH Reality Check, 6/3).