Saturday, May 30, 2015

No, Scott Walker: Women don’t need “more information” through forced ultrasounds

Scott Walker belittles the intelligence of women to make an important decision on their own

Gov. Scott Walker says a law he signed that forces women seeking an abortion to undergo an ultrasound against their will -- sometimes including using transvaginal ultrasounds -- is strictly to give women “more information” about what they’re doing.

At a campaign stop (but not officially a campaign, guys, really) in New Hampshire, Walker was asked by a woman in the audience about the law.

“I’m pro-life,” Walker said, “but if someone’s pro-choice don’t you want an informed choice?”

The thing is, Wisconsin women were already receiving an informed choice about their options before the law was passed.

Wisconsin law mandated (and still requires) that women seeking abortions receive counseling about their decision before undergoing the procedure. They then have 24 hours before coming back to the clinic. Then, and only then, can they have the abortion procedure performed.

That’s a lot of information already out there to women seeking abortions. But is Walker right? Do women need to be more informed by seeing an ultrasound before making a decision?

The answer is no, they don’t. A recent study that included more than 15,000 subjects asked women whether they wanted to view an ultrasound before receiving an abortion. Of the group that said no, 99 percent went through with the abortion. What about the group that “needed more information,” as Scott Walker likes to call it?

Of the women who saw the ultrasound, 98.4 percent still decided to proceed with the procedure.

So why, then, are we still forcing women to have an ultrasound when their minds are already made up?

It can only be for one of two reasons: either Walker is pandering to a base of constituents who comprise a very important voting bloc in his impending presidential election campaign; or, Walker truly believes that women are too stupid to make an important decision, with the information already in hand, on their own.

Whichever answer it is, Wisconsin women deserve better.

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