Less than two years ago, 58% of Mississippi voters rejected a personhood initiative that would define life as beginning at conception. Naturally, that hasn't stopped anti-abortion sponsors from filing paperwork for a brand new but nearly identical initiative on Tuesday. Why do they think it will work this time around? Because all those opposing voters were "confused."
From the AP:
Les Riley, of Pontotoc, who's with Personhood Mississippi, said during a conference call to announce the initiative: "Yes, they have spoken. They spoke and said they were confused. They didn't understand the last amendment."
Completely understandable. I remember, back in 2011, how I misread the initiative as a Parenthood bill, and I was super psyched about keeping everyone's favorite melodramatic TV show about a complicated yet lovable family on the air. You're telling me I voted against zygote rights?? Put that shit back on the ballot immediately.
This year's proposed legislation says: "The right to life begins at conception. All human beings, at every stage of development, are unique, created in God's image and shall have equal rights as persons under the law."
2011's read: "Should the term 'person' be defined to include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning, or the equivalent thereof?"
To be fair, any blogger worth her salt knows that statements make for better headlines than questions.
Opponents are having none of this. "Mississippi voters have already spoken: Health care decisions should be left to a woman, her family, her doctor, and her faith - not politicians," Felicia Brown-Williams, director of public policy for Planned Parenthood Southeast, said in a news release. Personhood legislation could ban most abortions, in vitro fertilization practices and contraception, as well as put doctors at legal risk. DO NOT WANT.
Jennifer Mason, a spokeswoman for Personhood USA, thinks everyone should chillax — she said on a conference call that the proposal would ban some in vitro fertilization practices, but just so doctors would be prevented from "putting just an insane amount of babies into a woman."
We thought all babies were special unique gifts from a holy stork!
The earliest likely date for a vote would be during the congressional elections in November 2014, so get ready to hear a lot about the positive attributes of innocent zygotes before then. In the meantime, Mississippi's sole commercial abortion clinic is still fighting to stay open.