In today’s second On the Square feature, Matthew Hennessey explains what’s wrong with Texas’ new law requiring women seeking an abortion to view a sonogram image:
Unfortunately, however, the Texas law reinforces what I consider a morally repellent notion—that pregnant women carrying a fetus with a diagnosed genetic condition are victims. The law does this by exempting minors, rape victims, and those whose fetuses have an “irreversible medical condition or abnormality” from the counseling it requires.
Few would disagree that a woman who has been raped is a victim. There is a well-rehearsed—if controversial—argument that such women shouldn’t be subjected to a description of little baby fingers and little baby toes. The rationale for exempting minors is less clear to me, but it would be far too easy to get carried away by a discussion of parental notification and consent laws, and I don’t want to lose sight of the exemption that is most troubling: the exemption for an “abnormal” fetus.