South Boston News & Record
and Mecklenburg Sun
07/28/14 - 9:01 am
The Halifax County Bar Association has been named one of the winners of the 2014 Legal Food Frenzy competition sponsored by the Feedmore Central Virginia Food Bank, a charitable organization…
07/28/14 - 9:00 am
A 54 year old South Boston man has been arrested and charged with the manufacture, possession or use of a fire bomb or explosive material or device. Matthew Hubbard Jr.…
07/24/14 - 7:38 am
Potts Landing, the area’s only gated airpark, touts wonders of flight
07/30/14 - 6:45 am
Park View and Bluestone will begin full football practice schedules Thursday and both schools have been conducting conditioning sessions during the off-season to better prepare their players.
- More A&E
Threatening your rights
SoVaNow.com / October 18, 2012Dear Viewpoint,
The idea of “personhood” for embryos and fetuses has been in the news in recent months, but lost in the discussion has been an explicit accounting of the legal implications of such legislation.
The 2012 Republican Party platform states, “We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children.” This statement is very general for a reason: when you get specific, things get legally complicated and unpopular with voters.
“Unborn children” brings to mind a third trimester fetus that is viable outside the womb. But the generality of this phrase means that all stages of gestational development are included, starting at conception.
This concept has implications that are obvious and others that aren’t: clearly, all abortions would be illegal. Pregnancies resulting from rape and incest would have to be carried to term, as well as pregnancies that threaten the woman’s life. Violating this prohibition would presumably result in a murder charge.
Then there’s oral contraception, “the pill.” Birth control pills work mainly by preventing ovulation from occurring. However, there is also evidence that the pill may prevent implantation of a fertilized egg to the uterine wall. This means “personhood” would likely be the end of the pill. The exact legalities are unclear, but unlike other illegal drugs, taking birth control pills could carry a charge of attempted murder.
In-vitro fertilization involves the loss or “death” of some fertilized eggs, so its legality would be seriously threatened. Frozen fertilized eggs would instantly become American citizens, a legal quandary I can’t even imagine. Stem cell research would be yet another casualty of “personhood.”
This is the official position of the Republican Party.