Georgia Republican Gov. Brian Kemp signed a “fetal heartbeat” bill on Tuesday that seeks to outlaw ending pregnancies after about six weeks.
This is the most extreme ban on abortion in the country, and it’s not only because it would impose limitations on women’s reproductive rights, but also because it would subject women who get illegal abortions to life imprisonment and potentially a penalty on their life.
An earlier Georgia law imposing criminal penalties for ending pregnancies illegally does not apply to women who self-terminate, but the new measure lacks such a limitation.
So, once it takes effect, a woman who has self-terminated will have, as a matter of law, taking the life of a human – and the penalty for that is life imprisonment or capital punishment in Georgia.
Yes, you read that right.
While it will presumably be ruled unconstitutional, the fact remains that any woman who has an abortion in Georgia after 6 weeks, when most women don’t even know they’re pregnant, will be the subject to potential life in prison or even worse.
To make things even worse, the horror doesn’t end here.
So, you think that a woman in Georgia would have to drive down to Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, North Carolina or South Carolina, right? Nope.
You would believe that there must be some exceptions for women who have been forced upon by men, or if their health is concerned.
Technically, yes, but in reality, no.
The law only allows for some exceptions, including in cases of forcible intercourse and if a woman files a police report, or when the life of a pregnant woman is threatened.
The problem is that only 31% of the cases when a man has taken advantage of a woman are reported in the first place.
So, if a girl got pregnant by forcible intercourse, and doesn’t realize that she’s pregnant in the first 6 weeks, she can either endure the full pregnancy and give birth to the baby, or get an illegal abortion and risk life in prison or even the worst sentence.