It’s never an easy conversation when it comes to topics such as sexuality, political views, or the eternal pro-life versus pro-choice debate. Therefore, it’s not even slightly surprising that many people were left furious after the Republicans of Alabama passed the Alabama Human Life Protection Act last year that makes abortion at any stage of pregnancy a felony that’s punishable by up to 99 years in prison. But Rep. Rolanda Hollis thought she could turn the tables and show how it feels to have your reproductive rights restricted by introducing a bill that would require men to be vasectomized after turning 50 or after having their third child (whichever comes first).
More info: Rep.Rolanda Hollis
Reacting to Alabama’s abortion restriction laws, Rep. Rolanda Hollis proposed a bill last week that would require men to have vasectomies after turning 50 or having their 3rd child
The Alabama Human Life Protection Act states that the only exceptions when abortion can be performed are when there is a serious threat to the health of the expecting mother or when the fetus has serious health problems and the child would die shortly after birth. However, there aren’t any exceptions for rape and incest which infuriated a lot of women in the state including Rep. Rolanda Hollis who had the brilliant idea of introducing a symbolic bill that would allow men to put themselves into women’s shoes and actually feel what it’s like to have others governing your body.
It was done as an attempt to show how outrageous it is to have laws controlling someone’s body and their reproductive health
A federal judge blocked the law in October saying that it violates the Constitution. US district judge Myron Thompson explained that “Alabama’s abortion ban contravenes clear Supreme Case Court precedent. It violates the right of an individual to privacy, to make choices central to personal dignity and autonomy. It diminishes the capacity of women to act in society and to make reproductive decisions. It defies the United States Constitution.” But since Rolanda Hollis saw that there are no laws being made to restrict male reproduction, she made a point by issuing House Bill 238 that would require men to undergo mandatory vasectomies at their own cost “within one month of his 50th birthday or the birth of his third biological child, whichever comes first.”
She wanted to underline that this bill is symbolic and is introduced to highlight and remind everyone of the inextricable role men play in producing unwanted pregnancies
Image credits: RepHollis
Even though Hollis herself thinks it’s outrageous to have laws that restrict people’s reproductive choices, her point is to “neutralize last year’s abortion ban bill, and sends the message that men should not be legislating what women do with their bodies” is still being overlooked and is given a hard time online. Hollis responded to the criticism saying: “Many have seen HB238 as an outrageous overstep; yet, year after year, the majority party continues to introduce new legislation that tries to dictate a woman’s body and her reproductive rights. We should view this as the same outrageous overstep in authority. Just as I would turn to my doctor over my state legislator to make recommendations when deciding whether or not to have a surgery, or whether or not to take a certain type of medicine, it is my doctor with whom I — or any of my loved ones — should consult when it comes to making the incredibly difficult decisions related to my personal reproductive rights.”
Even though there were people who started calling her a communist, many women appreciated her symbolic gesture
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