By Mary DeTurris Poust
A judge reversed an Oklahoma state law yesterday that required women seeking abortions to receive ultrasounds and a physical description of their "fetus" from their doctors. But that's not all. In overturning the law, Oklahoma County District Judge Vicki Robertson also reversed conscience protections that allowed doctors, nurses and other health care providers to refuse to participate in an abortion on moral or religious grounds.
Although the original law was passed in 2008, legal battles have prevented it from being put into practice. Judge Robertson struck down the law citing "constitutional requirements that a legislative measure deal only with one subject." According to a story in the Los Angeles Times, she did not offer a ruling on "the validity of the ultrasound provisions."
Here's an interview from that story with a representative of one of the usual pro-abortion camps:
"Stephanie Toti, an attorney for the Center for Reproductive Rights, said Oklahoma was the only state to mandate that a physician both conduct an ultrasound and describe the images to the patient.
"'The ultrasound provision takes away a patient's choice about whether or not to view an ultrasound, and it requires physicians to provide information to their patients that the physicians do not believe is medically necessary,' Toti said. 'It's an affront to women's autonomy and decision-making power, and it's also an intrusion to the physician-patient relationship.'"
Try to imagine for a moment the outrage we would hear -- and rightly so -- if, for instance, someone suggested that people undergoing treatment for colon cancer not be burdened with a look at their colonoscopy results, or that it is intrusive for a doctor to suggest a woman look at the films of a questionable mammogram. Or imagine the reaction if pregnant women planning to carry their babies to term were told they didn't need to see their growing children on ultrasound, no less capture 4-D images suitable for framing. Isn't it interesting how what is standard medical procedure in one instance becomes "an affront to women's autonomy and decision-making power" when the procedure in question might remind them -- and the rest of us -- of the baby growing in the womb?
Read the full story HERE.