Vote NO on 43


This entry is specifically for any Oregon readers I might have (and bless you for being here, too--I love to think that there is someone from home reading this), but also for anybody with a parental notification measure on their ballot, or a possibility of one in the future.

Folks, you have to vote no on these. As much as it may make sense to you that an underage girl should discuss having an abortion with her parents before she does it, you and I both know that legislating that is a bad idea, not in the least because so many girls would have their right to choose negated by having to get parental permission, and also because of the possibility of harm or violence to a girl who has to tell her parents. Not everyone has good parents, understanding parents, reasonable parents, and parental notification legislation assumes they do.

In the specific case of Oregon's ballot Measure 43, things are even a little bit worse. What Measure 43 requires is for doctors to send a form letter via certified mail to the parents of any minor seeking abortion services. There are no exceptions for rape, incest, or abusive homes. This means that in some terrible cases, notification of a girl seeking an abortion could be sent to the very man who made her pregnant against her will. I can't imagine anything more destructive to choice than that, not to mention how dangerous it might be for the girl herself.

Parental consent is both one brick in the wall against choice for everyone and a separate and infuriating slap in the face of body autonomy for teenaged girls. It is incumbent upon all of us who are safe in our abilities to make our own decisions about our bodies to protect the rights of those whose autonomy is threatened, particularly in cases like this, where the young women who would be effected aren't even allowed to cast their votes on the legislation that could so drastically impact their lives.

Please vote NO on Measure 43, and spread the word.

For more on Measure 43, see:
NARAL Oregon
No on 43
Oregon Education Association
League of Women Voters of Oregon
ACLU of Oregon

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April 2012

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