Louisiana To Require Ultrasounds Before Abortions

It was a unanimous 79-0 vote:

Women seeking abortions in Louisiana will be required to get an ultrasound first, even if they are a victim of rape or incest, under a bill that received final legislative passage Wednesday.

The bill by Democratic state Sen. Sharon Broome of Baton Rouge was sent to the governor’s desk with a 79-0 vote of the state House. Gov. Bobby Jindal supports the measure.

Supporters of the proposal said they hope the ultrasound dissuades some women from getting an abortion at the handful of abortion clinics in Louisiana, by giving them more information about their pregnancies.

“This is a bill that empowers women,” Broome said in committee testimony, adding that at least 15 other states have a similar requirement.

Opponents said requiring a procedure that might not be available at a free clinic nearby will make it more difficult and costly for women to get abortions. No one spoke against the proposal on the House floor Wednesday.

An ultrasound at health care facilities around the state can cost anywhere from $80 to more than $300, depending on the location, according to a review of health care pricing websites for hospitals and clinics in Louisiana.

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About Daniel Fincke

Dr. Daniel Fincke  has his PhD in philosophy from Fordham University and spent 11 years teaching in college classrooms. He wrote his dissertation on Ethics and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. On Camels With Hammers, the careful philosophy blog he writes for a popular audience, Dan argues for atheism and develops a humanistic ethical theory he calls “Empowerment Ethics”. Dan also teaches affordable, non-matriculated, video-conferencing philosophy classes on ethics, Nietzsche, historical philosophy, and philosophy for atheists that anyone around the world can sign up for. (You can learn more about Dan’s online classes here.) Dan is an APPA  (American Philosophical Practitioners Association) certified philosophical counselor who offers philosophical advice services to help people work through the philosophical aspects of their practical problems or to work out their views on philosophical issues. (You can read examples of Dan’s advice here.) Through his blogging, his online teaching, and his philosophical advice services each, Dan specializes in helping people who have recently left a religious tradition work out their constructive answers to questions of ethics, metaphysics, the meaning of life, etc. as part of their process of radical worldview change.

  • http://www.lavenderliberal.com/ Buffy

    “This is a bill that empowers women,”

    Empowers them how? By putting more barriers in their way, making them pay for procedures they neither want nor need, and giving people more opportunities to guilt-trip them into changing their minds?

    This is yet another anti-woman piece of crap bill that strives to make women into brood-sows against their will. As usual it will be the poorest women who are most affected, because they don’t have the resources to pay for the mandated additional procedures.

    • turfkiller

      Buffy, The new faith based health care both withholds care when needed and demands it when not needed.

      Many have forgotten what happened to so many woman when abortion was banned.

      The states protest loudly when federal mandates are unfunded and states turn around damanding unfunded mandates based on sex.

      They have conscripted the government to impose their own personal religious dogma on others under the guise of care for the unborn children.

      This bill is right wing thuggery.

      Is there any doubt they seriously considred placing landmines on the southern border?

  • madman

    Alabama just shut down a clinic in part because of such a measure: “…documents showed that many patients filled out forms indicating they’d been offered an ultrasound or the chance to watch a video called ‘Did You Know’. Some employees admitted they never offered patients the opportunity, while one said the video was offered on the first counseling session.”

    There were other violations including allowing women to choose between rescheduling their visits or going through without availability of sedatives when the RN didn’t have a key to access the medicine locker (all scheduled that day chose to go through with their abortions anyway). Most of the other “violations” would result in administrative penalties rather than closure in any other clinic setting. Opponents of abortion rights use these kinds of things not just to put obstacles before women but also to create a nitpicking bureaucratic environment in which clinics have to cross every T and dot every I. This isn’t just about making life more difficult for women, it’s also about making operation of a clinic more burdensome and easier to shut down for minor “violations” (which the anti-choice people trump up as “little house of horrors” even if it’s for not forcing women to watch videos and having a few things past expiration dates). Mandatory “options counseling,” pro-life videos, ultrasounds, fetal development information, etc., are their brand of intrusive big government.

  • Infidel

    Score one for the American Taliban.
    I wonder if the women in question are forced to view the results of the scans? If it’s in real-time, can she shut her eyes or look away? If the scan results are presented to her later, can she refuse to view them? Or is it like in A Clockwork Orange where her eyelids will be held open such that she’s forced to view the stuff?