Has Texas Finally Gone Too Far?


Kate Bodden, Contributer

Abortion is a hot-button topic, with pro-lifers working their hardest to make sure abortion is abolished. Texas, a state notorious for its conservative views toward abortion, has taken the spotlight recently. The “Heartbeat Bill” enacted May 19, 2021 expresses that abortions are illegal after six weeks of pregnancy. Other political leaders, including the president, have stated their distaste for the bill in question. What other reproductive rights does this bill threaten? And what does this mean for other states to follow?

While abortion is still legal, there are more hoops that women have to jump through in order to receive one. Pregnancies are tracked based on the last day of the women’s menstrual cycle. By the time a woman finds out she is pregnant, the doctor will tell the woman that she is four weeks pregnant and that gives the woman two weeks to decide if they can care for a child in the future. The woman in question has a total of two weeks to decide if they can care for another human being other than themselves.

This new law doesn’t care if you have been raped or if you are a victim of incest. Another thing the new law sets forth allows any person to sue anyone who helps a woman get an abortion after that time, from the provider to the driver who brought her there. While people seeking an abortion won’t be the target of prosecution, any person who helps them seek an abortion in any capacity can be sued for a minimum of $10,000 by any person in Texas.

And what does this mean for other states? In Mississippi, abortion clinics asked the Supreme Court to block the state’s 15-week abortion ban, saying that the law would upend 50 years of precedent and open the door for other states to outlaw abortion completely. If the federal courts ultimately allow this law to stand, it’s very likely that other conservative states will move to pass similar laws.  

This new restrictive bill sets reproductive rights back fifty years. It is the most restrictive abortion law to date. At the end of the day, what happens between a woman and their body is their business. Unless the government will sit in the clinic room with the woman in question and be there for her throughout that baby’s journey into adulthood, it needs to leave the room, and respect that person’s right to privacy.