By Brian Howey
The Hendricks County Flyer
Fri Mar 15, 2013, 02:36 PM EDT
Amidst all the ribald humor, the yuks, and even "Pope LaMarr I" at the Gridiron Dinner the other night, something leaped off the gigantic video screen in the Indiana Roof Ballroom.
It was a photo of a transvaginal probe, or an "ultrasound transducer." It looks sort of like a two-foot-long, hard plastic wand, with a handle and then a long, slender shaft with a round knob on the end.
In practice, the ultrasound transducer is inserted into a woman's vagina and pointed at the uterus. The intent is to produce an image of a fetus in the uterus.
During the stunt at the Gridiron Dinner, the transducer was compared to a mass transit bullet train.
Indiana lawmakers in the General Assembly - mostly men - have voted affirmatively in the Senate on SB371 to require such a probe of pregnant women who are seeking an abortion with the chemical drug RU486.
The bill is sponsored by Sen.Travis Holdman, R-Markle, a man one might presume has had a colonoscopy, which is really his business and not one I care to spend much time thinking about. And while the invasive colonoscopy is recommended in public service campaigns as a strategy against life-threatening colon cancer, Indiana government doesn't mandate the procedure. If Indiana government mandated colonoscopies for men, the colon cancer rate would almost certainly dive and scores of lives would be saved.
Holdman also sponsors SB373, which would prevent whistleblowers from taking photos and videos inside agricultural and food processing facilities, an invasive commercial and fourth estate procedure.
Sue Swayze, the legislative director of Indiana Right to Life, told WBAA-FM the goal of SB371 is to protect the safety of a woman. "I got pregnant vaginally. Something else could come in my vagina for a medical test that wouldn't be that intrusive to me. So I find that argument a little ridiculous," she said.
But that's a decision she makes, and not her government.
This legislation is now headed to the Indiana House where freshman Republican Rep. Sharon Negele, R-Attica, will be the sponsor. That's a brilliant tactical move by the pro-life movement. Have a woman sponsor the bill.
I write because this is a situation every Hoosier should spend some time pondering. What are the limits of government when it comes to life and what happens to your body?
As a young man, I considered myself "pro-choice," but after the birth of my first son I went through a personal transformation into a pro-life realm. But this is still tempered by the reality that if abortion is outlawed, the industry will simply move underground and into the black economy. The Republican Party I grew up in wanted government out of our lives, our bedrooms, and our bodies.
The dilemma facing the pro-life movement is that it is unlikely that Roe v. Wade will be overturned in the foreseeable future. Given the political realities, the movement's tactics have moved into what Curt Smith of the Indiana Family Institute openly acknowledges as "pushing the envelope."
"The courts have constricted the last step," Smith said. "Clearly technology is showing us there's life in the womb. There's a capacity to see the baby, the fetus, in great detail. It's alive, it's smiling, its heart is beating. We are doing surgeries on babies in the womb. And we are aborting babies in the womb."
Of Sen. Holdman and others who are pushing the envelope, Smith added praise. "I'm very proud of our legislators. They are testing the limits," he said.
Thus, we have the potential for government to be ordering procedures on someone seeking a legal abortion. Some might consider them to be high-tech guilt trips with no medical value.
At a Republican roundtable that included Gov. Mike Pence and Republican National Chairman Rience Priebus this past week in Indianapolis, an older white male made this observation: "I am pro-life, but Roe v. Wade is the law of the land and we will never overturn it."
Our candidates should say, "I am pro-life, Roe v. Wade is the law of the land and I am going to work as hard as I can to make life better for our children."
That message will be ignored at the Indiana Statehouse. SB371 will likely be passed and Gov. Pence has said he will sign any pro-life legislation that crosses his desk. But it likely won't save any lives.
Once passed, it will be challenged by the American Civil Liberties Union. That group successfully brought a suit over the defunding of Planned Parenthood and that law was struck down by a federal court. Federal courts have struck down a similar law in Oklahoma and there's an injunction onÊa North Carolina law.
So the question I place before you today is this: At what point does government have a mandate to enter your body? It already does with inoculating shots before you enter school. It used to be able to draft you and send you to war.
Is the government overstepping its bounds when it comes to a female vagina?
- Brian Howey publishes online at www.howeypolitics.com.
March 3, 2014
February 27, 2014
February 26, 2014
There was a wide array of reactions to Seattle DB Richard Sherman’s post-game “interview” with Erin Andrews following the Seahawks’ NFC title win over San Francisco.
Mine? Laughter, as the shout-down was the most entertaining thing I saw all day.
January 28, 2014
Butler is still a long way from saving its 2013-14 men’s basketball season, but if the Bulldogs turn it around fully and reach the NCAA Tournament, it will have started this past Saturday at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
January 21, 2014
A fine season for the Indianapolis Colts ended with a whimper Saturday at New England, but in recent team history, it was far from the most disappointing postseason defeat.
January 14, 2014
The Indianapolis Colts’ miraculous 45-44 wild card victory over Kansas City on Saturday ended just after 8 p.m. After leaving Lucas Oil Stadium, it took until around midnight for the pounding in my head to subside.
January 7, 2014
December 31, 2013
An NPR broadcast examines the question of how communities can better prepare for tornadoes like the one that struck Moore, Okla. on Monday. The broadcast features commentary from Michael Fitzgerald, who reported a five-part disaster series for the CNHI News Service.
May 22, 2013
Part I: Are We Prepared? | Part II: Disaster Dollars Part III: Lessons Learned | Part IV: Warning Signs Part V: The Big One
In a tearful statement that went viral this week, Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway announced that he would not defend his state's ban on gay marriage in court. Conway made the announcement after a federal judge ruled that Kentucky must recognize same sex marriages performed in other states. However, Gov. Steve Beshear said he will hire private attorneys to appeal the judge's order.
March 6, 2014
© 2014 Community Newspaper Holdings, Inc. ·
CNHI Classified Advertising Network ·
CNHI News Service
Associated Press content © 2014. All rights reserved. AP content may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Our site is powered by Zope. Some parts of our site may require
you to download the Flash Player Plugin.
Terms and Conditions
Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN
8109 Kingston St., Suite 500