Move to legalise killing of abortion providers

Really.

A law under consideration in South Dakota would expand the definition of “justifiable homicide” to include killings that are intended to prevent harm to a fetus—a move that could make it legal to kill doctors who perform abortions. The Republican-backed legislation, House Bill 1171, has passed out of committee on a nine-to-three party-line vote, and is expected to face a floor vote in the state’s GOP-dominated House of Representatives soon.

6 thoughts on “Move to legalise killing of abortion providers

  1. While probably still a bad law*, it seems it’s probably not quite as bad as it seems at first. See the “update” here:

    http://motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2011/02/open-season-abortion-docs

    *If nothing else it’s probably a bad law because it’s almost certainly duplicative- in the case described by the author of the law in the “update” linked above, self defense up to and including lethal force would almost certainly be allowed already in most states. Duplicative laws are not always bad- they can help clarify cases, for example- but they often lead to unintended stretching, or even more confusion than before, and it’s easy to imagine that happening here.

  2. Given that the right to self-defense already exists, I’m not sure what this law is supposed to cover. I’d be more concerned about potential abuses or conflicts (such as attempts to use it to justify harm against doctors) than I am (at present, anyway) but any supposed loopholes it may be meant to close.

  3. I do not buy the ‘update’ at all. The sponsor of the bill can say whatever he likes, but why was the bill amended to include language that says “or to harm the unborn child of such person in a manner and to a degree likely to result in the death of the unborn child” — without ANY reference to whether the harm is legal or illegal? Why the parade of anti-choice lobbyists? It is the modus operandi of organized anti-choice groups to chip away at reproductive freedom with a bill here, an amendment there. This is an invitation to someone to test the law. Given the absolute absence of any abortion providers in the state, I can only hope that the one flown in once a week by PP is not murdered to see how the law holds up.

  4. I think the intent of the law is to make abortion providers require the permission of all the woman’s relatives so that the abortion provider isn’t put at risk. A sneaky, underhanded way to deny a woman the right to choose for herself.

  5. Are there any abortion doctors in South Dakota?

    I saw a chart a couple years back that showed states with NO doctors willing to perform abortions. Seems like South Dakota might be one of them. Statically speaking, I mean… I mean, an abortion would cut South Dakota’s population by like a third, wouldn’t it?

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