Friday, February 25, 2011

Dear Bobby Franklin, women who miscarry are victims, not murderers!

Georgia State Representative Bobby Franklin has sponsored a bill requiring women who miscarry to file police reports...to ensure that they have not purposely killed their own babies.

This man and idea are so loathsome I can barely write about it.

As someone who experienced four miscarriages between 1999 and 2002, I know all too well how agonizing and heartbreaking the experience can be. Women are already prone to blaming themselves when they miscarry. If they are not concerned that they have done something to bring on the miscarriage, they often feel that their bodies have let them down in some way. Women who experience miscarriages, premature babies, or infertility often feel damaged in some way, for their bodies are unable to carry a baby to term. I cannot even begin to imagine the pain and suffering that this kind of bill would incur for the women who would have to comply.

Over on Feministe, Jill recommends the great idea proposed by Devery Doleman that we send actual photographic documentation of our menstrual periods to Dear Bobby Franklin...on the basis of the fact that 50 percent of fertilized eggs do not implant and are flushed out of the body...a natural miscarriage of sorts, unless you are Bobby Franklin. She posts a form letter for our use, with such pearls as this: "I am personally concerned that my own murdering woman-body may have flushed out some human beings, and I may have flushed them down the toilet without knowing that I was disposing of Georgia citizens in such an undignified way."

How do you think Mr. Franklin will react when he receives mail bags full of photos of used tampons and sanitary napkins? However he reacts, it will be nowhere near the grief and distress felt by women, every day, who lose their babies through no fault of their own. Franklin wants to blame the victim and turn them into criminals. Let's bombard him with the evidence of our lost babies (our menstrual periods).

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