Remember the Black Lives Matter movement? How there were marches, protests, heaps of donations to bail funds. How you changed your Facebook profile photo so it had a nifty little Black Lives Matter banner at the bottom? How you promised that you totally aren’t a racist and are dedicated to the movement?
Now’s the time to prove it.
Amendment 1, although it will negatively affect every woman in Louisiana, will specifically hurt black and brown women. Black women are 4 times more likely than white women to terminate a pregnancy, while Hispanic women are 2.5 times as likely.
Because one of the most prevalent reasons for getting an abortion is being unable to afford becoming a parent. Just giving birth in a hospital can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $37,000 which is an unmanageable sum for so many people in Louisiana, especially if you don’t have insurance, and of course, white people are more likely to have health insurance than African-American and Hispanic people.
And that’s just what you have to pay BEFORE you even become a parent.
Due to systematic racism, black people are put at a financial disadvantage, making them 2.5 times as likely to live in poverty than white people. For individuals living in poverty, abortion is sometimes the only option because of the exorbitant costs associated with parenting.
In 2013, 42% of women having abortions lived under the poverty line, and an additional 27% had incomes within 200% of the federal poverty line, meaning 69% of abortions were had by low-income women who likely didn’t have access to adequate health care, birth control, or the funds to raise a child.
If you’re “pro-life” and want to make a difference, target changing America’s terrible health care system and the systematic racism that is flush throughout our economy. Consider actually providing aid to people in poverty instead of just putting a blanket over the problem and pretending it’s not there.
Do not convince yourself you’re actually making a significant beneficial change by voting for Amendment 1. As has been proven again and again by research and historical events, abortions will keep happening at the same rate. You just made them less safe, causing women to take more health risks to have one.
In other words, voting for Amendment 1 won’t protect undeveloped fetuses and will lead to more health problems and even deaths amongst women. What’s pro-life about that?
Safety is a huge reason why women get abortions because pregnancy is dangerous, it’s the 6th most common killer of women in the US between the ages of 20 -34. It’s even worse for black women. In Louisiana, black woman are 4.1 times more likely than white women to die while pregnant or within 42 days of childbirth from complications that are often preventable.
You may be thinking, but aren’t abortions dangerous too?
Nope, not even close to as dangerous as childbirth. The risk of death from childbirth is 10x higher than the risk of dying from getting an abortion.
Feel like preserving life?
Then you should be directing just as much energy as you do to terrorizing teens walking into Planned Parenthoods to helping black women survive pregnancies. Backing women into a corner with the option to continue their pregnancy and die, or get an unlawful abortion and maybe die, is the antithesis of “pro-life.”
What you’re “saving”, while completely ignoring the importance of the life of the mother is a fetus that’s so undeveloped it can’t even survive on its own. 91.6% of abortions take place in the 13 week gestation period with just 1.2% happening after the 21-week mark. Late-term termination is very rare and often occurs when medical issues arise for the fetus and mother.
Even the United Nations Human Rights Committee recognized the medical necessity of abortions, releasing a statement in their General Comment on the Right to Life that “Although States parties may adopt measures designed to regulate voluntary terminations of pregnancy, such measures must not result in a violation of the right to life of a pregnant woman or girl, or her other rights under the Covenant. Thus, restrictions on the ability of women or girls to seek abortion must not, inter alia, jeopardize their lives, subject them to physical or mental pain or suffering which violates article 7, discriminate against them or arbitrarily interfere with their privacy.”
Amendment 1 will jeopardize the lives of women, leaving no wiggle room for abortions of any kind. Whether you’re a mother whose life is at risk from continuing the pregnancy, whether you’ve been raped, or whether you and the baby are both predicted to die from the birthing process, you won’t be able to get an abortion.
Due to Republican court-packing, the US Supreme Court is about to become mostly conservative, which has led to many fearing that they will overturn Roe v. Wade. If Roe v. Wade is overturned, states will be able to fully prohibit abortions, specifically those with policies like Amendment 1 already in place.
Amendment 1 isn’t about safety, it’’s not about preserving life, it’s about controlling women and will specifically, negatively affect women of color.