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Mean Because We Can Be: Abortion Waiting Period Can’t Include Weekends, Holidays

The South Dakota Legislature has already done almost all it legally can to make getting an abortion harder here than anywhere else in the country. To make any further splash on the anti-abortion crusade radar, our legislators now must resort to blatant and petty meanness.

Current South Dakota law punishes a woman for seeking an abortion by forcing her to wait 72 hours between the time she asks a doctor to perform an abortion and the time the doctor can legally perform said abortion. During that time, the state further punishes the woman by forcing her to an anti-abortion crusader's clinic to hear rank lies and propaganda.

Since South Dakota has just one abortion provider, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota's abortion restrictions effectively require women seeking abortions to miss at least a couple days of work. Women who work regular jobs can minimize their costs by scheduling their abortion appointments around a weekend or a holiday. They still face the cost of lodging in Sioux Falls for three nights, but at least they save on the cost of one long drive back and forth across the state. If the woman already has children, a weekend or holiday appointment may make childcare cheaper, since she may have more relatives or friends who have time off to care for her kids while she's away on her unpleasant trip.

Rep. Jon Hansen (R-25/Dell Rapids) says nuts to that. He and several other outright mean Republicans offer House Bill 1237, which says that no weekend or holiday may count in that 72-hour waiting period. By God, lady, until we overturn Roe v. Wade, if you're going to get an abortion, we're going to make you miss work. We're going to make you pay!

The South Dakota Legislature picks and chooses which parts of the Constitution to respect. They will consider a host of bills and resolutions to make the Second Amendment inviolate. But they treat the bodily autonomy guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment and the equal citizenship guaranteed by the Fourteenth as a simple mistake to be rectified by whatever legislative tricks and lies they can come up with.


  1. WayneB 2013.01.30


    I'm no fan of what our Legislature is doing, but it seems we all get to share the blame in picking & choosing which parts of the Constitution to follow.

    Earlier you were proposing forcing gun owners to buy insurance and pay taxes for their right to bear arms... Yet you would scream to the top of Atlantic Mt. if South Dakota implemented a tax on anyone who had an abortion... or mandated all sexually active residents carry pregnancy insurance... (those sound so preposterous and unpalatable even as I type them)

    Roe v. Wade & other court rulings have helped set the boundaries of where the interest of the state and the interest of the woman rest, and where they blend. It'd be nice if we'd focus more on how to make demand for abortions lower, rather than figure out ways to make it harder to get one...

    Just as I wish we'd focus not on how to make owning a firearm tougher, but rather on how to make sure people don't go off on killing benders.

  2. larry kurtz 2013.01.30

    Somebody tweeted today that Planned Parenthood should consider buying the licenses then opening gun shops.

  3. Jana 2013.01.30

    It's gone beyond mean and straight into sadistic.

  4. grudznick 2013.01.30

    They sell pregnancy insurance? I certainly don't need that any more but it sounds interesting for certain groups.

  5. larry kurtz 2013.01.30

    what a bunch of wankers. history: be merciful.

  6. Bruce C. Boatwright 2013.01.31

    Is this the smaller government these clowns are promoting? Small enough be fit in a woman s womb?

  7. Jana 2013.01.31

    Dana, I think we need to tie guns to abortion and have the same rules apply to each of them.

    72 hour waiting period.

    Mandated counseling.

    Physicians forced to lie and let the state come between them and their patient.

    Telling gun buyers that they are making a decision that could end many lives.

    Organized church protests outside of gun sellers.

    Personal harassment of gun sellers and buyers.

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