I’ve been chomping at the bit for a few days now because I’ve wanted to share some big news with you. I am the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit challenging Richard Ziser’s Personhood Initiative! I am being represented by the ACLU and Planned Parenthood of America. (Here’s the two-part docs.)
I must admit that this is not exactly how I pictured the start of my second trimester of my first pregnancy. But it is my belief — and my husband of 12-years shares this belief — that this is the right thing to do.
As many regular Sin City Siren readers know, I believe strongly in a woman’s right to choose and all related family planning and responsible reproductive health care choices. It’s about access. It’s the fact that I don’t want the government coming between me and my doctor or me and my husband in our current and future family planning.
I can’t speak for the other plaintiffs in the case – Pharmacist Mindy Hsu and Dr. William Ramos (an OBGYN) – but I suspect that they share many of the same concerns that I do about Ziser’s intentionally vague initiative.
Like many personhood initiatives cropping up in other states (according to a Google search, 32 states saw personhood initiatives on the ballot in 2009), the language is intentionally sparse and ambiguous. It is designed to leave voters scratching their heads and saying, “Well, duh, a person is a person.”
But that’s by design, folks. It’s a silent, STD-esque insidious little thing. But instead of herpes, what you have is your rights stolen. They want to mislead you into thinking this is an innocuous measure that will have no real impact on your daily life.
Unfortunately, a personhood initiative is a back-door method to attack reproductive rights. And I’m not just talking about abortion, here, although that is part of it. Personhood has an impact on birth control methods, infertility treatments and a wide range of health issues.
And as I already shared with you in a previous post, there are plenty of reasons for a pregnant woman to care about reproductive rights. Because of my access to health care and reproductive choices, my husband and I were able to plan our pregnancy and we’ve never had to be in a situation where we’ve had to consider abortion. That’s not luck. That’s access. And everyone should have it.