Letter to the Editor: HB 1613 insults a woman’s decision

The bill will triple the waiting period for an abortion.

Last week, I joined hundreds of people in Jefferson City to attend the Rally for Women’s Lives event. This march and rally centered on several issues that impact women, including pay equality and reproductive rights. That same day, Rep. Chuck Gatschenberger’s House Bill 1613 was heard in committee. This hearing attracted national attention from multiple media outlets like The Huffington Post, Mother Jones, Cosmo and MSNBC. Missouri makes national headlines again — reminds me of the Todd Akin Senate race.

HB 1613 would triple the waiting period for a woman to access her legal right to an abortion. In addition to a required ultrasound, this bill would also force providers to tell women medically inaccurate information including false claims that abortion increases the risk of breast cancer. The National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have all debunked such myths.

During the hearing, Gatschenberger compared the complex decision of abortion to the purchase of a car or carpeting for his home. This flawed analogy is an insult to the complex decision making that women and their families go through.

Most of the anti-choice “advocates” in the Missouri legislature tend to be men. Funny that they take so much time pushing restrictions on a choice that they will be in the position to make. It’s too bad that during an election year, women’s legal rights, upheld by the Supreme Court, are used as talking points for their campaign stops.

Emma Bagnardi,

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