Passing this bill was an important step for the Oklahoma Legislature given the other kinds of pro-life legislation we must debate and consider.
It’s hard to decide on other issues when you haven’t even established the basis of when life begins. This is something that other legislatures have already done.
As a legislative body, our most important responsibility is to protect and ensure the safety of our citizens, and that includes the unborn.
Legally, it’s important that the Oklahoma Legislature make this strong, clear statement that we will protect our state’s children. This helps lay the foundation to help protect the unborn to the fullest extent permitted under U.S. Supreme Court precedents.
At the time, the Supreme Court stated that they didn’t need to resolve the difficult question of when life begins, but we feel that question is key to addressing this issue. SB 1433 is only a statement, but it is well within the rights of a state legislative body to offer such a counter argument that will hopefully change the cultural acceptance of a practice that has led to the destruction of 54 million U. S. lives since 1973.
This same law has been on the books for 23 years in Missouri, and has helped provide remedies for injuries to children in the womb in contexts other than abortion, such as criminal and civil penalties for assaulting a pregnant woman.
The constitutionality of the Missouri law was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in the 1989 Webster decision.
Having said all of this, the Personhood Act does not outlaw abortion as that is an act protected by the U.S. Supreme Court, and the Supremacy Clause gives that Court the final say over Oklahoma laws. So until the membership of the Supreme Court changes, it’s unlikely that Oklahoma will be able to pass any laws that prevent abortion. The bill also doesn’t prohibit birth control or in vitro fertilization as opponents of the Act have claimed. It doesn’t set any penalties or any kind of enforcements or regulations.
The Personhood Act is simply the Oklahoma Legislatures way of expressing our state’s values.
We want it to be known that Oklahoma values human life prior to birth. We speak and fight for those who don’t have a voice and can’t fight for themselves.
This bill also has great educational value. Most in society relate laws to what is right, and they help guide people’s actions. Laws can shift people’s moral compasses so to speak.
Though essentially this bill doesn’t change any laws in our state, it does bring the issue to the forefront of citizens’ minds.
Those of us who are pro-life want to open the hearts and minds of those who aren’t and make them realize that abortion is not a victimless act. There are many in our society who have become cold to the fact that abortion is indeed ending a life.
I recently heard the procedure eloquently and perfectly described as an act that stops one heart and breaks another. There are two victims in abortions.
Not only does it affect the life that will never be, but it’s a decision that will haunt the mother the rest of her life regardless of the situation that brought about her pregnancy.
To contact me at the Capitol, please write to Senator Josh Brecheen, State Capitol, 2300 N. Lincoln Blvd. Room 513A, Oklahoma City, OK, 73105, email me at email@example.com, or call (405) 521-5586.