Archive for Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Kansas Senate advances bill restricting late-term abortions

March 23, 2011, 2:48 p.m. Updated March 24, 2011, 1:02 a.m.


How they voted

The Kansas Senate approved two bills sought by abortion opponents with a 24-15 vote Wednesday. All senators voted the same way on both measures.

Of the 32 Republicans, 23 voted yes, eight voted no and one did not vote.

Of the eight Democrats, one voted yes and seven voted no.

State Sens. Marci Francisco, D-Lawrence, and Tom Holland, D-Baldwin City, both voted no.

— The Kansas Senate approved a bill Wednesday restricting late-term abortions based on the presumption that a fetus feels pain after the 21st week of pregnancy.

With the 24-15 vote, Kansas follows Nebraska as the second state in the nation to use the fetal pain threshold as grounds for restricting abortion.

“It’s a landmark vote,” said Kathy Ostrowski, lobbyist for Kansans for Life. “We are the first in the pack. Other states are moving in this direction.”

The bill allows an abortion after the 21st week of pregnancy only if the mother’s life is in danger or she faces substantial and permanent harm to “a major bodily function,” which would exclude mental health.

Nebraska’s fetal pain law was passed in 2010 and it took effect in October. The law has yet to face a court challenge, but anti-abortion supporters say it creates another compelling reason for states to restrict abortions and invite further review by the U.S. Supreme Court.

“The court is waving us in,” Ostrowski said.

House members approved the bill earlier in the session and are expected to concur with a minor technical amendment to send the bill to Republican Gov. Sam Brownback to sign.

The legislation ties the restrictions to a legal presumption that a fetus can feel pain after the 21st week. The science behind that presumption is still in dispute, however.

Current state law imposes the same restrictions — with an additional mental health exception — but only when a doctor determines the fetus is viable or able to survive outside the womb.

The bill would take away a physician’s discretion to declare a fetus not viable and move ahead with a late-term abortion with no restrictions.

Sen. David Haley, a Kansas City Democrat, said the measures were “chauvinistic and patronizing” because men were telling women what to do with their bodies.

“I would trust women, for or against, on either side of the issue to argue the pros and cons,” Haley said.

But Republican Sen. Ralph Ostmeyer of Grinnell said his wife, daughters and other women in his western Kansas district are urging him to stand up against abortion. “Protect the unborn. That’s what it’s all about,” he said.

Peter Brownlie, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri, said the legislation jeopardizes the health of a woman and that lawmakers fail to recognize that not all families are healthy or functioning normally.

“While rare, an abortion that takes place after 22 weeks into a pregnancy is most often necessary because of a severe fetal indication or serious medical condition that endangers the life or health of the mother,” Brownlie said. “This bill is an attack on women and families facing wanted pregnancies that have gone terribly wrong.”

Sen. Marci Francisco, a Lawrence Democrat, said the measure does nothing to prevent unwanted pregnancies or reduce the number of abortions in Kansas.

“I want our statutes to be compassionate, both to the unborn child and their families,” she said.

The Senate also passed a second bill adding restrictions to late-term abortions and requiring parental consent for minors to have abortions. The House also approved the bill earlier in the session.

Brownback vowed to sign anti-abortion legislation when he took office in January.

“I do think it’s a good law and I’m happy the governor is anxious to sign the bills,” Ostrowski said.

Brownback spokeswoman Sherriene Jones-Sontag said the governor was pleased with the bipartisan effort on abortion and a variety of issues.

“He’s looking forward to signing pieces of legislation consistent with the vision outlined in the road map for Kansas and endorsed by the people of Kansas in the last election,” she said.

The second bill requires a doctor to obtain the consent of both parents or a guardian in writing before performing an abortion on a girl under 18. The girl could go to court to avoid the requirement.

The law now requires only that a physician notify at least one parent or guardian, and anti-abortion groups have said the law is lax enough that the requirement is easy to avoid.

The measure also includes provisions to strengthen reporting requirements for doctors who perform late-term procedures and to allow lawsuits against them over potentially illegal abortions.

Those changes and others in the bill were vetoed in the past by Govs. Kathleen Sebelius and Mark Parkinson, who both supported abortion rights.

Two other abortions bills are pending, one increasing regulation of abortion clinics to require compliance with state reporting requirements and a second to remove the mandate for private insurance to cover elective abortions.

Abortions could be covered by insurance if a separate rider was purchased in advance, or in the case of extreme medical emergencies, Ostrowski said.


somedude20 7 years, 2 months ago

so I guess it was just lip service when the repubs said they want to stay out of our lives. They make more drugs illegal, tell strippers and business owners how to run their bussiness and also say what can and can't be done to your body. Bravo, you, um jagoffs are tops!!!!

jhawkinsf 7 years, 2 months ago

Freedom and responsibility are like two sides of the same coin. Given the political climate we now live in, when one side yells freedom, the other side yells personal responsibility. With the next issue, their roles reverse, the side that yelled freedom now call for personal responsibility and visa versa. And we keep spinning out wheels, getting nowhere.
It would be nice if both political parties took positions based on principle and then stuck to their principles. But that doesn't happen too often, from either party.

BrianR 7 years, 2 months ago

They just want government to be small enough that it will fit in a woman's uterus.

Kevin Randell 7 years, 2 months ago

Ok, let me get this right. What we are arguing about is a woman's right to choose? Do you think that she can make up her mind within the first 30-45 days if she wants to have the child or not? If it takes you 4-5 months to decide then should have someone make the decision for you.

barlowtl 7 years, 2 months ago

Now that would depend on what happens in that period of time wouldn't it. And of course you think that the person qualified to make that decision should be a legislator...or perhaps a preacher?

SnakeFist 7 years, 2 months ago

Persons, i.e., rational beings, are the only ones qualified to make existential decisions. If your point is that only God can make existential decisions, keep in mind that God is a person.

SnakeFist 7 years, 2 months ago

You're defining persons as "mortal" beings, i.e., things that die? That makes every living thing but God a person - which is absurd. Persons are almost universally defined as rational beings.

But, even accepting your definition, it makes absolutely no sense to say that things that die are not qualified (because they die) to make decisions about death. That's like saying, for example, that chefs are not qualified to make decisions about food because they cook. If anything, it makes them more qualified.

SnakeFist 7 years, 2 months ago

Cute, but irrelevant. I'll leave you to your ignorance.

sleepy33 7 years, 2 months ago

I like how people think a woman INSTANTLY knows the moment she becomes pregnant. Most women who aren't trying to get pregnant wouldn't even know they were pregnant until they were at LEAST 30 days along. Then allow for other things like irregular periods, or periods that continue even while you are pregnant, and you could very easily be 3-4 months pregnant before you started to have any undeniable symptoms.

Kevin Randell 7 years, 2 months ago

Just how I "like" how every person on this message board when then debate comes up wants to give every excuse under the sun. Look, if you are 3-4 months along and you don't know your body enough to know when you are knocked up then you are an idiot. Basically, my whole point is explain to WHY does it take the 6th - 9th month to make the decision to abort the kid. How about this as an idea. We have plans for Tornadoes, Fires, etc. How about you as women have a plan for when you get pregnant?

I mean I would expect this if we lived in some third world country where we are uneducated about the Birds and the Bee's, but we are in America. So stop with the excuses and take some accountability and quit using abortion as a form of birth control.

sleepy33 7 years, 2 months ago

Look, I don't try to tell you what it's like to have a d*ck, so hows about you don't try to tell me what it's like to be pregnant, mmmmk? It is completely possible and not even that uncommon to be 3-4 months pregnant, still be having periods, have no nausea, very little weight gain, and all the while be taking birth control pills. You tell me how, in that scenario, one would know they were pregnant? Go ahead and share with me your intimate and exclusive understanding of the female body, sir.

It's not that women don't understand how to avoid pregnancy, it's just that nothing is foolproof. I personally know someone who got pregnant while taking birth control pills, and her husband is a testicular cancer survivor who was supposedly sterile. Crazy things happen. Why don't we as women have a plan for when we get pregnant?? Why don't YOU as a man, doing 50% of the procreating, have a plan for when YOU get a woman pregnant? Humans are imperfect.

Honestly, I really don't even support late-term abortion except in very, very rare and extreme situations, but your POV was just so myopically male, I really couldn't refrain from commenting.

notanota 7 years, 2 months ago

It's much easier to make decisions for imaginary people than it is to find out your nine year old daughter is pregnant from incest and already 20 weeks along or that the fetus you thought was perfectly healthy turns out to be fatally ill with a disease that will cause nothing but pain and death a few hours after birth. I really hope you're never in the position where the legislators have made that decision for you.

impska 7 years, 1 month ago

One of the big things being removed here is that a woman would not be allowed to choose late term abortion if a doctor declares her fetus non-viable. This information is generally only available late in the pregnancy. Thus, if this bill is passed, a woman who wanted her baby will be forced to carry her non-viable baby to term - knowing that it is not viable, give birth to it, then watch it die. She (and her partner) are forced to endure months of emotional torture instead of being allowed to end it and move on.

I understand that this bill also eliminates late-term abortions for mental reasons. That is a contentious issue, and one I tend to agree with you on. You want to abort your otherwise healthy baby because you're mentally ill? That doesn't seem right. It also seems exceedingly questionable on the part of the doctor - if you're too mentally ill to carry out your pregnancy, how on earth are you competent to make a decision to abort your baby?

But forcing women to carry non-viable fetuses to term is cruel.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 1 month ago

Ms. Stratton, the mental health exception is what permits women to abort nonviable fetuses. The law does not address non-viability, and in fact, can't, as a fetus does not have legal standing. Re: the law it states that late term (post 21 weeks) abortions are only permitted in cases of rape, incest or where the life of the mother is threatened or the mother is threatened with substantial bodily harm. Removing the "mental health" exception will mean women will have no choice but to carry a nonviable fetus either to term or until it spontaneously miscarries. It is the sheer cruelty of this that justifies the mental health exception. To my knowledge (and I have done a ton of research) no woman to date has ever used the mental health exception for any other reason, not even for being suicidal. Your qualification of "otherwise healthy baby" doesn't exist. As I have repeatedly stated, women who abort in the last trimester do it because they have to, not because they want to. How about we trust the women involved in deciding what's right for them?

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Curious to know how many of you "pro choice" folks out there have children? Looking at mine, I can't imagine making a choice to abort one or any of them - my life and so many others around me have been enriched beyond measure by their presence.

Abortion at any term - vile and unthinkable.

Deb Engstrom 7 years, 2 months ago

Of course you can't imagine aborting one or any of your children that you've grown to know and love. Abortion is never a good choice, but sometimes it's the only choice for people in situations that some of us probably could never even imagine. I don't want to take that right away from people in those situations. If there were enough adoptive families/parents to raise all the children born into situations where they can't be cared for, I probably would modify my stance, but until then I will be pro-choice.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

I have four children. My last two were born when I was 37 and 39, respectively. I had genetic testing with both of those pregnancies due to advanced maternal age. Had either tested positive for genetic problems , I would have aborted. I have a friend who aborted at four months when it was discovered her baby's entire spinal cord had developed outside the body. Another friend aborted at five months with the full knowledge that if she didn't, she would die and the baby die with her. I am exceedingly happy for you that your pregnancies were normal and uneventful. That gives you no right to make judgments of or make decisions for those whose pregnancies are not.

jhawkinsf 7 years, 2 months ago

My wife also had genetic testing because of her advanced age (I'll just say she was older than you, Cait.). She too would have chosen to abort had there been genetic problems. Interestingly, by that time we had been married for almost 15 years, having spent the time establishing careers, etc. I was of the opinion that we should not have the testing, because I know I would love and care for this child regardless of the issues the baby might have (or might not have). But even after 15 years, my opinion mattered not at all. It seems as if women really want a full and complete partner, as I believe we should be, the voice of the father should matter for something. Luckily for all, our child arrived perfectly healthy.
But imagine this scenario (it happened about two months ago, in Australia and it happens all the time in China, India, etc.), suppose a woman really wants a child of a certain gender and chooses to abort when told the fetus is not what she wanted. Certainly when we discuss choice, this can't be what's being defended.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Read the comment by jhawkinsf . Honest and open. Thanks for raising the standard here. And congrats on your growing family.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Fail? I asked a question, no more. Happy that you have a child and made the right 'choice'. Can you imagine a life without them?

roverk190 7 years, 2 months ago

"Abortion is advocated only by persons who have themselves been born." - Ronald Reagan

ivalueamerica 7 years, 2 months ago

yes, he said a lot of stupid things.

I have never seen anyone advocate abortion...only advocate for a woman to remain in control of her own body and not be forced by the government to breed.

SnakeFist 7 years, 2 months ago

Eating pizza is advocated only by persons who are not pizza.

Bad logic is promulgated only by persons with no training in philosophy.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

You make some huge assumptions about perfect pregnancies - shame on you. You have no idea how they went and what lasting effects remain today. Any yet I love my children without reservation. Sad. And even knowing of the issues, abortion was not an option. Thank God we did not take the easy way out.

"Not enough adoptive families/parents to raise all the children born into situations where they can't be cared for"? Please. Why do so many couples have to go overseas to have any shot at a child, and then wait months and years? Why are several couples I know still on a waiting list here in the U.S.?

Inconvenience is no excuse to take a life. The time to be responsible is before you get pregnant - and after.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

This is not a "debate" with a winner and a loser. We are talking about the lives of women; women for which you have no right to make decisions. Not even God presumes to make decisions for people. Somehow, I don't think you're greater than God. Obviously your pregnancies weren't life threatening. You're here. If your children were born with congenital anomalies, perhaps you should ask them if it was worth it. But considering you can't even see other adult women as autonomous people, I doubt very seriously you can see your children that way either. I can pretty well guarantee that the vast bulk of women that abort do not do it for "inconvenience" and blathering about "responsibility" firmly puts you in a camp I wouldn't even bother to say hello to on the street, much less debate. Get over yourself, Ms. Schlafly.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Check your facts cait48 - Over half the abortions yearly are due to birth control (contraceptive) failure. Look it up. Inconvenience indeed.

Your comment about God and decisions is a straw man. Come on, you have to be smarter than that.

And if I am in a camp you scorn, then you despise someone who values life. I don't know if you do or not.

And no, I did not say anything about situations that threaten the mother's life. Another bad assumption by those posting here.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

You don't value life. You value your definition of life. Many people don't share that definition. And for you to shove that definition down the throats of people who don't necessarily see it your way is nothing short of hubris. I don't tell you how to define "life". Do not presume to tell me.

aa469285 7 years, 2 months ago

Well you obviously don't value life- not even life you've created.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

To elaborate, I suggest you get a book from the library called "Stories of the Unborn Soul" by Elisabeth Hallett. Go to page 127 and begin reading halfway down. That's me. Then tell me I don't value life I created. I expect an apology.

sleepy33 7 years, 2 months ago

""Not enough adoptive families/parents to raise all the children born into situations where they can't be cared for"? Please. Why do so many couples have to go overseas to have any shot at a child, and then wait months and years? Why are several couples I know still on a waiting list here in the U.S.?"

Fallacy. What reason would a couple HAVE to 'go overseas' to pursue an international adoption? I can't think of one, unless it's simply their wish to adopt internationally or something in their background disqualifies them. Waiting lists do still exist for some who adopt domestically, but the wait typically averages 1 year- not long in the grand scheme of things. And that, of course, doesn't take into account that the couple may be 'on a waiting list' because they are still being cleared as fit and appropriate adoptive parents. Of course, folks who want to adopt a healthy infant of a specific racial background may have to wait longer than someone who is willing to adopt an older child, or one who may have been born exposed to drugs or alcohol.

See the link below to dispel common adoption myths:

somedude20 7 years, 2 months ago

"Thank God we did not take the easy way out." You think making that choice is easy? If so, you are a FOOL!!! Been there, done that and it was not easy ( and I was not even the pregnant one)! Boy you are smug

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Still no answer to my question - for those that support choice - do any of you have children?

deec 7 years, 2 months ago

Five. Four I birthed, one I inherited. Also one spontaneous abortion.

Jeanne Cunningham 7 years, 2 months ago

I have 10. I would NEVER presume to tell another woman what to do with her body, nor would I want her to tell me what to do with mine.

Concerning abortion: If YOU don't want one, don't have one.

jhawkinsf 7 years, 2 months ago

The bill in question and the article here was about abortion restrictions during late term pregnancies. It seems to me that certain restrictions that may be unreasonable during the early stages of pregnancy may be reasonable later on. The discussions about abortion are dominated by the extreme pro-life and extreme pro-choice sides. I'd be more interested in a reasoned discussion by those in the middle. To those on the extreme, I already know your position.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

I don't consider myself extreme. I actually did the research and looked at the numbers to educate myself. (See my 3:14PM below.) Too bad our legislators can't do the same.

notanota 7 years, 2 months ago

I think it's perfectly reasonable to certify that the fetus is not viable and/or that the mother's life is in danger. Wasn't that the law before? Why would we need to be more restrictive?

Scott Drummond 7 years, 2 months ago

More of that "jobs focus" we were promised from the republicans.

Scott Drummond 7 years, 2 months ago

Not quite. They say they don't want the government telling people what they must do with their bodies.

republicans prove almost daily the validity of the assertion.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

No one is "pro-abortion", Tom. The only people that are "abortion" anything are anti-abortionists who will fight it at any cost, even to the extent of murder. There is nothing "pro-life" about being "anti-abortion".

independent_rebel 7 years, 2 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

Margaret Sanger has been dead for forty five years. How many times are we going to dig up that poor woman's moldy corpse?

BigPrune 7 years, 2 months ago

I know someone who got genetic testing for both of her children while she was pregnant and the results were not good. She decided to have the children. BOTH of the children are perfectly normal. I wonder how many perfectly normal children are aborted because of faulty genetic testing?

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

Not to put a fine line on it, BP, but genetic testing never results in a false positive. Three chromosomal bodies when there's only supposed to be two isn't something you see and then disappears. The person may have had other testing done; sonograms, blood testing and such, but I can guarantee they didn't have genetic mapping. So either, you misunderstood, she misunderstood or she lied.

xclusive85 7 years, 2 months ago

Just to dispell this, Cait, there are many more genetic problems than just having 3 chromosome bodies. Also, even if the problem isn't with the actual testing, which there are errors (even though they are few and far between), mix ups at labs happen as well. That happens at a far higher rate than it should. It would shock you how much that happens. It shouldn't ever happen, but you are relying on humans and there is always a degree of human error.

Olympics 7 years, 2 months ago

xclusive, your argument is bs. You have a lot of experience doing karyotypes do you? What's your evidence of rampant human error in using an easy technique done by thousands of labs for over 40 years.

Chromosome problems in early stages of pregnancy are well known.

Note this is not a comprehensive focuses on age of the mother and chromosome problems. BUT one can google search this easily.

xclusive85 7 years, 2 months ago

Maybe I didn't make it quite as clear as I would have liked. In the case that Big Prune described, it would be quite rare for two cases for the same person to be either done wrongly or to be mixed up in the lab. BUT, I probably do have more experience doing karotypes than you think.

What I said was that simple karotype analysis does not cover every genetic disorder possible. Also to Cait's remark that genetic testing is never wrong is patently false. It does provide false positives because you are relying on humans to do the testing. Human error is inevitable. It is a degree of error that is taken into account in every scientific experiment.

Also, I never said that the mixups were rampant, but they do happen far more often than they should. It should NEVER happen, but it does.

xclusive85 7 years, 2 months ago

Also, I went ahead and read the article you linked. It was interesting. As I never stated that there were no chromosome problems in early stages of pregnancy, I can only conclude that you were using this article to show that Cait was right and that genetic testing is never wrong. Also to disprove my assertation of human error. In the article you linked were the folllowing:

Owing to the large number of comparisons carried out, to reduce the risk of a Type 1 statistical error, significance was set at P<0.01.

Two laboratories did not specify items in the standard form and were thus excluded from the analysis.

One shows that there is statistical error, even if it is minor and for most purposes negligible. The other shows human error in not being able to use standard formation.

notanota 7 years, 2 months ago

He probably knew someone who got the triple screen. It's not a genetic test, and it has a high false positive rate, which is why they follow it up with further testing.

jayhawklawrence 7 years, 2 months ago

This is the most difficult of all the political issues.

This is also the most politicized issue.

This issue is the reason that Kansas is controlled by extremist Republican politicians.

They have exploited this issue and it has given them great political power and influence.

Both sides, the conservatives and the liberals have done a poor job of dealing with the source of the problem.

It makes you cynical about the politics of this country.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

As the article is about late term, third trimester abortions, I'm going to address that. Obviously, there are people on this board that haven't the foggiest idea that many conditions that make a fetus unviable aren't; and in fact can't, be diagnosed until the last trimester. The women who undergo third trimester abortions do so for a reason, and believe me, not being able to go to a hockey game or a dance isn't among them, as much as there are posters on this board who would like to believe so. Women who get that far into pregnancy without aborting want their babies. They are aborting, not because they don't want their babies, but because they can't have their babies. Something is so horribly wrong that no matter what, their baby is going to die and they have already grieved and mourned those lost children. Some will deny it and continue to carry the fetus in the vain hope that a miracle will occur. But the miracle doesn't happen. Some women, who make the decision based on the way they love their child and not wanting the baby to suffer, will choose to abort. Frequently, all they do is undergo chemical induction and the baby is still born. Either way, whether at six months or nine months, it's a baby whose fate was chosen by nature, not by the mother, long before it was born. The fact that the state feels perfectly fine with interfering in this is a travesty. They claim they want to limit abortions after the 21st week because "the fetus feels pain". Given the logic of the state, many women who abort after the 21st week do so to actually keep their baby from undergoing pain and suffering. In this instance, the state is the one who is demanding a cruel and horrible fate for an innocent. This is the face of baby torture. It's also the torture of women because the state is forcing them to carry a baby with a death sentence; a baby whose physical structure is such that no one knows what pain and suffering they may be enduring. Try being a pregnant woman and knowing that this is happening to your child on a daily basis. All of this puts the face to the lie the state is perpetrating with this legislation. This legislation has nothing to do with "sparing babies pain". It has to do with limiting abortion, even at the cost of actually causing suffering in those they claim they are trying to protect.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Unfortunately it happens. Hence to desire to prevent it for non-health reasons.

Katara 7 years, 2 months ago

You are going to have to provide some solid non-biased evidence for that.

Considering that late trimester abortions are extremely restricted in the states that they are legal in (such as Kansas) or are completely outlawed altogether (such as New York), it would be next to impossible for a woman to get a late term abortion because she suddenly decided a child would be inconvenient or for any non-health reason.

Kirk Larson 7 years, 2 months ago

God is the greatest abortionist of all. For those who believe life begins at conception, most of the time the embryo does not implant and simply passes out of the body. Of those that implant, about a fourth spontaneously miscarry; probably more since women often don't know they are pregnant when a tiny embryo dislodges and they may mistake it for a heavy period. Choice, it's the American way.

deec 7 years, 2 months ago

I doubt he/she will be back on the thread, since those of us who've answered the question are clearly not a bunch of girl-lovin' manhaters or ugly spinsters.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

I have responsibilities (and a much more interesting life outside of this board) but I am back, so all is right with the world. At ease, sailors.

My question, which has Agnostick in need of a Colonic irrigation, was just a question. No conclusion inferred, just interested in the response and how a trend, if discernable, would play out. The only trend that has surfaced (possibly) is that all who responded appear be pro-choice, even with children, and always have been. That is a data point in itself, but not one that yields any substantial revelations.

There was obviously more assumptions made by me asking a simple question. Assumptions were off the mark again, go figure.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

This is the sentence that made me want to throw up.

xclusive85 7 years, 2 months ago

As much as I am against abortion, I have to agree with you two on this point as well. If a fetus is not viable and/or the woman's life is in danger, then the abortion should be an option.

notanota 7 years, 2 months ago

Precisely. Thank God I've never been in the situation of knowing my baby was doomed to die no matter what they did, but I've had friends that were and chose an abortion. It was peaceful and attended by their family and minister. They held their baby and said goodbye. How dare the state presume to know what's best for a family faced with that tragic situation?

yourworstnightmare 7 years, 2 months ago

How will this create jobs and help the economy?

Oh, I forgot. The GOP lied about that being their priority.

Hong_Kong_Phooey 7 years, 2 months ago

I wonder, how many of the anti-abortion folks are pro-death penalty? I'm sure that some will try to distinguish the two because of crimes and guilt or innocence, but that doesn't take away from the fact that both are depriving someone of their life.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Many may be. However, there is a major difference. One victim is completely helpless with no advocate, and guiltless. The other 'victim' was not aborted, but chose a path that led to consideration of the death penalty. One had no choice, the other made many choices that most certainly led to drastic consequences for one or more people.

And to be clear, and it will be repeated for those that need it, I am not talking about situations where the mother's life is in danger.

ebyrdstarr 7 years, 2 months ago

Or one is a living, breathing human being and one is a parasite, entirely dependent on the body of an actual living, breathing human being.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Wow, do you have children? Parasite? Do you understand biology? Do you have a soul? Or a heart full of dirty socks?

ebyrdstarr 7 years, 2 months ago

How did I know you would ask me that question? The answer is none of your beeswax. Look up the definition of parasite. Sorry, but a human fetus fits the bill as an organism that lives inside another and is entirely dependent on its host for nutrients and survival. So, yes, I understand biology. Do you? Do you understand that there is no way for a woman and the fetus she carries to have equal rights? Just not possible.

Heart full of dirty socks is funny. Really. But I'm sure it's easier for you to write me off as a soulless robot with no compassion whatsoever than to acknowledge that the entire topic of abortion really has more nuance and gray area than you care to admit.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Interesting on the question of children. Your choice to devulge or not. But wondering why it matters to you to keep it private. Don't know you from Adam, just another data point, that's all, nothing sinsiter.

We both understand biology. But the mother holds the cards, and that dependent invader is at the mercy of the mother. So who holds the 'rights'? The mother has the power. the baby is the unwilling victim in the end. (all outside the mother's health, which was noted before).

We should err on the side of the child, but all arguments here shout ME - as in the mother. Butt out all you 'do gooders'. Dole out welfare, pay more taxes, accept me as I am, tolerate my opinions, stuff your own, shut up and sit down. And don't bogart that joint.

ebyrdstarr 7 years, 2 months ago

I don't think there's anything all that interesting in my reluctance to share personal information on a public message board. But more to the point, I refuse to validate your belief that whether a person has children is relevant to this discussion.

Here's a story for you, though. When I was a teen and had my first real discussion with my mother about abortion, she explained to me how it was that she came to be fully and deeply pro-choice. Prior to having her first child, she was somewhat ambivalent on the topic. But it was after going through pregnancy that she came to believe that no woman should have to go through that process unless she truly wanted to. For 9 months, it affects every aspect of your life. Even after birth, there are physical changes that will remain forever.

So I disagree we should err on the side of the "child." We should err on the side of the living, breathing human being, the woman who should not be forced to have her body be forever altered by an invader unless she's completely ok with it. (And before you assume otherwise, the physical changes I'm referring to go far beyond cosmetic.)

sleepy33 7 years, 2 months ago

"One had no choice, the other made many choices that most certainly led to drastic consequences for one or more people."

Made many choices like oh, say, being a minority in the wrong neighborhood at the wrong time? You are aware that 128 individuals have been exonerated of their death penalty convictions, are you not? Do you truly believe that we have never executed an innocent person? How comforting it must be to have such omniscience.

BTW, if you think I'm exaggerating about the 'poor choices' enumerated above, I'd ask you to consider the recent Kansas case of Eddie Lowery, whose only 'poor choice' was to appear to be of Hispanic descent and to get into a minor traffic accident on a nearby street around the same time that someone attacked and raped an elderly woman in her home. Lowery, who was at that time a soldier stationed at Ft Riley, was convicted and spent 9 years behind bars. 21 years after his conviction, after being forced to register every year as a sex offender, Lowery was COMPLETELY exonerated of the crime based on DNA evidence. This kind of potential for error exists within our justice system, and you really feel that confident that we can get it 100% right on death penalty cases?

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Hmmm, sounds like mistakes are being made on both sides of the spectrum. How about a step back on the ends, and less death for all?

I'm in, you?

Jimo 7 years, 2 months ago

I thought we were broke? Why are the taxpayers being asked to foot the bill to be another law school casebook case of unconstitutional laws? It's so confusing trying to keep straight which flip-flop the GOP is pushing each day.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Read my comments above, I have obligations as do you, and can't be at your disposal per your schedule. But I am back with a mint julip and a cookie for you. There there.

I have experienced many sides of this issue. All of them? No. You also need to read what I have submitted as well. I am not talking about situations where the mother's life is in danger. That is a separate issue, and is outside of the vast, vast majority of abortion situations. As usual, the exception becomes the undoing of the rule.

Over half of all abortions are for inconvience, and the world revolves around the imposition of the mother. Who speaks for the helpless - the child that has no rights? For all the welfare state, charity and compassion the left promotes, why do they fall down when protecting the unborn? Two lives here, and the adult decides for the one with no choice. Who will stand up for the child?

deec 7 years, 2 months ago

"Over half of all abortions are for inconvience"-indeoendent source?

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Google it. Over half of abortions are due to contraceptive failure and unwanted pregnancy.

deec 7 years, 2 months ago

You made the statement so you provide the evidence.I am not obligated to research your argument for you.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

I'm not the one questioning it. But here is one link for you:

There are many more if you don't care for this one.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

And you consider contraceptive failure and unwanted pregnancy "frivolous reasons" for having an abortion. Nevermind what the impact of that unwanted pregnancy may have on the woman's life. I see.

Katara 7 years, 2 months ago


And if one is on contraceptives because one needs to avoid a pregnancy due to health reasons, then contraceptive failure is certainly not a "frivolous reason" for an abortion.

Olympics 7 years, 2 months ago

Miscarriage, God's free abortion service.

bevy 7 years, 1 month ago

You know, miscarriage is not something to joke about. I have lost two babies and it is as devastating as any other death in the family. Please consider the feelings of others before spouting off on something about which you know nothing. Jerk.

rhd99 7 years, 2 months ago

Everyone here on this board: I am so sorry that I voted for Brownback. I feel bad about that. I know he has duped all of us. He has no medical expertise/certifications to make such a stupid claim on abortions. If I have been a jerk as of late, I apologize. Now, I hope we all can unite together and do something so that this jerk of a governor we have is a one-termer!

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

Just an interesting fact (and one I have no current links for as I didn't keep them. But If I can Google the research and numbers, you can too). I looked up the percentage chance in the US that a fetus will be found unviable. Then I looked up the percentage of pregnancies in the US that end in late term abortion. Imagine my shock (a little sarcasm there) to find that those numbers correlated. In fact, those numbers even took into account those women who chose to not abort, even though they knew they were carrying an unviable fetus, as the actual number of late term abortions performed was less than the number of unviable fetuses. That wasn't even taking into account those pregnancies terminated to save the mother's life. (Understand that a "late term abortion" does not correlate with viability. A fetus born at 21 weeks has almost no chance of survival. Medical standards place that at 24 weeks. However an abortion at 21 weeks is still termed "late term".)

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

Given that the vast majority of them won't survive 15 minutes, they aren't "future taxpayers". The very very tiny minority that may survive beyond that either won't grow to adulthood or be so malformed they will never be contributing members of society and will be a drain on the state's resources their entire lives.

yourworstnightmare 7 years, 2 months ago

How does this create jobs and help the economy? Oh, that's right. The GOP were lying when they said their priorities were jobs and the economy.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Here's a shocker - full disclosure on this board. I was 'pro-choice', or at least ambivilant about this issue. I participated in a decision to abort a child. That left me feeling very uneasy, and many of the things I leaned on lost their meaning. But I dealt with it and moved on. Suffice it to say, it was 'inconvenient' timing, would have been difficult family-wise, and a financial burden. But none of those issues were insurmountable, and probably overblown by my imagination. It would have worked - I would have had to delay some of my plans, so be it. Moved on regardless, and life unfolded, with the normal ups and downs, but happiness and satisfaction grew over time.

Things got even better, career ramped up, got married, and put down roots. Helped people out, made friends, got involved. Then came kids. Had no desire to be a parent, not part of the lexicon. Listened to my spouse and agreed.

First child - okay, this is new. Interaction: not what I expected, looked forward to something beyond the pure dependence, more of a connection. That happened over time as expected, and my connection and attachment grew. Second child, more awareness of the beginning weeks and months - so much happening here! Had no idea. More kids, more awareness.

The memories crept back in. And the shame and regret. What had I allowed to happen? What child was lost because I was SELFISH and put myself above the one who had NO choice? My children astound and amaze me everyday, and each is profoundly different than the other.

What would my life be like if I had chosen life for my aborted baby? I am disgusted with the choices that were made, and am less of a person, in ways I will never know completely.

The comments here almost all focus on the mother, the rights of the mother; get out of her life; mind your own business. What about that child, who fights to be here, like all living things? Where is the compassion and charity from the rest of us to rescue those children in need? The welfare state has it supporters, and wants to level the playing field for the less fortunate. Why does this not extend to the unborn. Double standard? Yes. Are there multiple double standards on both sides? Sure. But are there any that are more fundemental than protecting the least of us? Few if any.

And before you stab me with your steely knives, I am not talking about situations where the mother's life is in danger. I am talking about the majoriity of frivoulous abortions that we all know make up the bulk of this procedure. How about a little outrage for the rule, rather than the exception? How about the 'village' stepping in and lending a hand to those children that need a better environment when they do survive the abortion clinic?

There you have it. Anybody else have any regrets?

ebyrdstarr 7 years, 2 months ago

"I am talking about the majoriity of frivoulous abortions that we all know make up the bulk of this procedure."

This article is about late-term abortions. The majority of those procedures are most definitely not frivolous. But almost any discussion focused on late-term abortions resorts to the same arguments you're making here, which presupposes that the "majority" of abortions are "frivolous." Which just serves to infuriate those of us who can recognize that the topic of abortion can't be reduced to such a black and white, simple situation. There is so much nuance to this topic and so very many factors to consider. For pete's sake, if you want to talk about reducing "frivolous" abortions, please take that discussion to a story that isn't about late-term abortions. Which really aren't "frivolous" situations.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

I understand your comments, and don't take exception to them. But invariably the conversations move to abortion in general, hence my disclaimers. And most of the violent disagreement centers on choice of the women in all cases.

I do have issues with late-term abortions that are not about the mother's heath. But that gets lost in the din.

Most commenters here a pro-choice under all circumstances. And they focus on the exceptions and not the bulk of abortions that are outside the mother's health. Abortion is good, no matter the situation. Because the mother rules. Of couse she does.

BTW, the abortionists have won, and nothing will change in any substantial way. To think otherwise is folly. The law is there, and it won't be overturned. And once the 'abortion pill' is widely available, the issue will become moot.

So relax, y'all won. A long time ago.

ebyrdstarr 7 years, 2 months ago

Sorry, but from the way I read the conversation, you were the main poster who conflated all abortions into the same thing by saying they are all vile and reprehensible and that inconvenience is never a reason to take a life. Inconvenience really isn't a factor in the topic of late-term abortions and if you want to insist otherwise, I'm really going to insist you provide some support for it.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

" I am talking about the majoriity of frivoulous abortions that we all know make up the bulk of this procedure." This right here is the very heart of your fallacy. I have an understanding of this from a couple of different sides that you haven't experienced or know. I am nearly 60 years old. In July, 1970 I had one of the first legal abortions in Kansas, two weeks after the law went into effect. I had been very brutally assaulted and raped the previous May and became pregnant as a result. In the forty years+ since that event I have never, not for one single minute, regretted it. Nor did I ever feel a single second of shame. One can say that both I and the product of that conception were victims. Bottom line, it was a conception that never should have happened in the first place and, in a perfect world, would not have. Forcing me to carry and bear that baby out of concern for it's "innocence" would have served nothing but to continue to victimize me and under no circumstances would I ever permit a rapist to perpetuate his genetic material through me. If you wish to blame someone for the "murder of a child", blame the rapist. In the early 1980's I went to work in a women's clinic that did first trimester abortions. It was not the only care they gave and in fact was restricted to two days per week. Every woman that underwent the procedure had to have counseling prior to the procedure. If there was any doubt whatsoever they were counseled to forego the procedure until they were absolutely sure. Over the course of my employment there I cared for well over a hundred women. There wasn't a single one that I would ever say did it for "frivolous" reasons and without considering the weight and gravity of what they were doing. It's your very use of that word, the trivializing of these women and their emotions and their lives that angers me so much. You use words that trip my defense triggers; not for myself but for these women who I feel had it hard enough without having to go through the acid you spew at them. Your guilt is your guilt. You serve no useful purpose projecting that guilt onto women and thinking that because you feel guilty that you need to force every woman living to not make what was a "mistake" for you and you alone. Repeatedly, people have said, "This is not a black and white issue." What may be a valid reason to abort for one woman may not be for another. But just because you think it's not a valid reason gives you no right to tell women what they can and cannot do with their bodies. It's not yours to own.

sleepy33 7 years, 2 months ago

Try looking at it this way: if a woman really is going to make the decision to have an abortion based on what you decide is a 'frivolous' reason, is that really the kind of person that you think should be raising a child anyway? Haven't we all seen those 'mothers' dragging their screaming children through the grocery store, snapping at the child to be quiet, perhaps even swatting the child with dire threats to 'behave' ? Haven't we all cringed, wondering if we should intervene? Is that really the life you want for those children who were never truly wanted to begin with?

The problem with your 'it takes a village' speech is that humans have free will; you cannot force a mother to give up her child for adoption unless/until her mistreatment of the child reaches drastic levels. It's all well and good to say, well that woman should just give her child up for adoption rather than having an abortion. But the reality is that, for whatever reason, she'll end up keeping the kid and they'll both be miserable. Maybe she keeps it because she thinks it's 'cute' and 'fun' (until that wears off). Maybe she keeps it because she needs the WIC vouchers. Maybe she keeps it because she felt pressure from people like you not to have an abortion, and then decides it's just too gut-wrenchingly hard to give the baby up when it's born, and suddenly it's 3 years down the road, she's desperately poor, uneducated, with no future and a child to care for. That's a situation no child should feel responsible for.

Maybe it's just because of my occupation; over the years, I've witnessed the truly horrendous things that parents are capable of doing to their children, and I know that sometimes life can be much crueler than death.

Jay Keffer 7 years, 2 months ago

Agnostik sent this taunt to my private email:

Dearest Cowardly One,

You've received several answers to your question. Do you dare come back?"

I'm sorry your head looks like a potato. I really am.

BigPrune 7 years, 2 months ago

"Abortion really is a war against the child, and I hate the killing of the innocent child, murder by the mother herself. And if we accept that the mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another? … This is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion.” - Mother Teresa

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

Mother Theresa was a staunch Catholic and is well on the way to Sainthood. (Actually, hasn't she already been beatified?) I have every belief she died a virgin. Her words are indicative of a mindset dictated by the Church. Her giving advice on pregnancy and abortion is much like a priest giving advice on marriage. I don't deny the woman had a right to an opinion but there is also no denying that opinion was heavily shaped and influenced by her association with the Church, an extremely patriarchal, religious organization that values quantity of life and control of it's women over quality.

notanota 7 years, 2 months ago

"I participated in the decision to abort a child" is the way a man would say it, imo. A woman would say she had an abortion.

sleepy33 7 years, 1 month ago

Oh, HomeSlice is a dude. I saw some post where they were talking about getting into a fistfight with some guy. So either a dude, or super-butch.

notanota 7 years, 1 month ago

"Bully tried to pick a fight wtih me - a couple of quick jabs to the nose took care of it. Didn't have to hit hard - didn't have the muscle back then, but it did the trick. Puss still had had the nerve to claim he won the fight but his black eyes told the story. Nanny asked me about it the next day - the only time he seemed impressed. (Some of you will get this.....)"

pace 7 years, 2 months ago

A lot of tax money spent in developing and regulation of bills to impede a civil right to a personal medical issue. A lot of tax money and government focus to impede a citizens civil right. While they ignore jobs and foreclosures.

rhd99 7 years, 1 month ago

No argument here. Now, how do we get rid of Brownback in the next gubernatorial election?

bevy 7 years, 1 month ago

Can't we get rid of him now and save us all a lot of trouble? Recall election? Get the Pres. to offer him an appointment in Washington...oh wait, that's never gonna happen.

rhd99 7 years, 1 month ago

Well, Bevy, Lawrence is the only town awake in all this crap. We need more people like us around Kansas to wake up. Or will they?

ivalueamerica 7 years, 1 month ago

I just heard on Fox News the Fetuses vote overwhelming Republican and the GOP is issuing tiny citizenship papers because many babies look somewhat alien.

true_patriot 7 years, 1 month ago

One more example of the state intervening into a woman's right to make decisions about her own body and health. We live in an age of increasing ignorance.

I am against abortion but giving the state the power to veto or create a serious hazard to a citizen's decision to protect her health and prevent risk to her ability to be a wife/mother/breadwinner in support of her family is an egregious overreach and violation of the principles this country was founded upon.

notanota 7 years, 1 month ago

The beauty of signing it, however, is that it never actually will get fought. There's no provider who offers the service after Dr Tiller was assassinated, and no provider is likely to step up to the plate, even if this law weren't in place, because terrorists would kill them.

Oh it's perfectly fine in the legislators' minds that they're forcing families to have several more weeks of pain and possible health risks for doomed pregnancies, because they've saved all those imaginary babies from expectant mothers who wake up at 22 weeks and decide they've been kicked in the bladder one time too many.

yourworstnightmare 7 years, 1 month ago

How do these abortion bills create jobs and help the economy?

rhd99 7 years, 1 month ago

They don't. Republicans-"We want less government". What a load of crock!!

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 1 month ago

They don't. And because of all of the legal challenges will end up costing the state tens of thousands (if not hundreds of thousands) of dollars, to be withdrawn from a state treasury already in the red. In the end the money will come from taxes I pay and I, in no way shape or form, support this law. This infuriates me. It should infuriate you.

rhd99 7 years, 1 month ago

Yes, cait48. It infuriates me to no end!! Yes, I was stupid enough to believe in this nimrod's antics in the last gubernatorial election. I feel bad about that. This governor unites alright. He's uniting you and me and everyone on this board to vote him OUT in the next election and protest at the State House in Topeka. This is not over. Not by a long shot!!! Brownback, stuff it where the sun don't shine!

strongarmcrunch 7 years, 1 month ago

Lots of things about the GOP are infuriating me these days.

strongarmcrunch 7 years, 1 month ago

I find it tough to believe that the GOP is interested in Pro-Life conditions with a man yet in the legislature who thought and talked about killing people.

His actions have made the GOP Pro-life issue rather inauthentic, showing that they lack in real Pro-life conviction.

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