Focus on the Family has done it again.Â The religious political extremist group, led by father-knows-best-for-every-American-woman talking head James Dobson, is helping anti-abortion hardliners in South Carolina politicize the seemingly innocent issue of ultrasound.
The South Carolina Legislature is considering a bill (S 84) that would force a woman to view an ultrasound image of her pregnancy before having an abortion and certify in writing that she has done so. The state House of Representatives has already approved the bill, and itâ€™s currently being debated by the Senate Medical Affairs Subcommittee.Â
In a recent poll conducted by TheState.com, more than 80 percent of South Carolina residents oppose S 84.Â But the bill is being urged on state politicians by phone calls and e-mails from a vocal minority.
According to TheState.com, we have Focus on the Family to thank for that:
"The turning point came when a leading group opposed to abortions, the Palmetto Family Council, was given a treasure trove of telephone numbers and e-mail addresses for S.C. abortion opponents. The new contacts far exceeded the groupâ€™s existing grass-roots network.
The national conservative organization Focus on the Family had the information and agreed to share it with the Palmetto Family Council."
Do South Carolina women really want a man like Dobson guiding their reproductive health policy â€” a man who believes that â€œwomen are merely waiting for their husbands to assume leadership.â€?
Priorities are out of whack here.Â If the South Carolina Legislatureâ€™s goal is to reduce the number of abortions in the state, it should focus on trying to prevent unintended pregnancies.Â Access to comprehensive sex education and birth control would do far more to reduce the number of abortions than forcing women to view an ultrasound image that is medically unnecessary.
Thankfully, there is a voice of reason.Â Planned Parenthood is at the frontlines trying to get out the message that health care decisions are best made by families and their medical providers â€” not politicians.
You can help in that effort.Â Those of you who live in South Carolina can write a letter-to-the-editor of your local paper, or call your state Senator to express opposition to S 84.