I could not enjoy a late supper at Vulca last night with two of my colleagues from the paper without being interrupted and ask a legal question about Virginia’s bid to enact a fetal personhood law. The questions came like a shower of brimstone. “Would it pass federal scrutiny?” “Is it legal?” “Could fetuses enter into contracts?” And there were sillier and worse questions that I will not even go into at this time.
By the time Joy Sellinger, a junior partner at Pinchon-Davies, the legal experts retained by The Dis Brimstone Daily Pitchfork, plopped down next to Diane Valencen I looked down at my cold, half eaten leepoo cordon bleu and explained a few things. I set down my knife and fork, wiped my mouth and picked up the wine glass and drained the wonderful Medoc that had been suggested by Claudette Teroux, Vulca’s sommelier. I turned my head and cast my gaze upon Ms Sellinger and I spoke.
“What do you think the purpose of fetal personhood legislation is in the United States?”
Sellinger thought for a oment like any good trial lawyer would do and said, “To use emotion to prevent women from having abortions.”
I cocked my head to the side and replied, “Joy, stop thinking like a member of the Hellac Bar for one minute.” I leaned toward her and whispered, “The purpose is to increase a decreasing dempgraphic. That is the bigger picture. That is what all the anti-contraception law talk is about; demographic shifts which in an age of nearly universal suffrage means voting power which is legislative power that was once held firmly in the hands of a certain group. Seeing the decline in birth rates among this privileged group and the radical increase in birth rates among those who have never held the scepter of power in the United States the States, severally due to conservative turn in state legislatures of recent are trying to slow the March of Time.”
Sellinger looked at me wide eyed. I held up a hand so she would not stop my chain of thought, “Consider an undocumented worker form say, Guatemala, in the Commonwealth of Virginia who is 19 years old and becomes pregnant with twins. According to Virginia HB 1 her fetuses are now free to ‘ enjoy all the rights, privileges, and immunities available to other persons, citizens, and residents of the Commonwealth, subject only to the laws and constitutions of Virginia and the United States, precedents of the United States Supreme Court, and provisions to the contrary in the statutes of the Commonwealth.’ That is they are de jure citizens, the are the ‘Natural Unborn,’ of both the Commonwealth of Virginia and the United States of America, from the moment of conception. This then does more to tear down the hope that the ‘browning of America’ can be slowed because there is no measure that demands non brown women have more pregnancies. Conservatives who write such legislation still believe that there are more of those who think like them and that their women are still getting pregnant, but choosing to abort, and in this they are patently incorrect. If they wanted to pass a rule to increase their number they simply need to mandate that conservative women must get pregnant beofre the age of 21 and never have an abortion.”
“That would be illegal!” Sellinger snapped.
“Precisely,” I said and I picked up my plate and waived a waiter over to reheat my meal.
QWu’ul cuda praedex nihil!
Cavalor Epþiþ, Esquire, O.B.R.E., O.D.A.J.[1er], O.Q.H.[Journ.], D.S.V.J., J.F.
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