North Dakota wingnuts foiled by their own ignorance

19 Feb 2009 02:56 pm
Posted by: Donna

I saw this AP news item this morning about a bill in the ND legislature that would essentially declare a fertilized egg to be a human being with full rights under the law. Naturally, I set off on a search to find the actual bill on the ND legislative website – no small feat since I didn’t have a bill number to work off of. (Note to reporters: It’s not that difficult to include “HR 1572” in the text of the article to aid intrepid bloggers in their searches for the stupid wingnut legislation you’re writing about.) But I did manage to locate the bill:

SECTION 1. References to individual, person, or human being – Legislative
intent. For purposes of interpretation of the constitution and laws of North Dakota, it is the
intent of the legislative assembly that an individual, a person, when the context indicates that a
reference to an individual is intended, or a human being includes any organism with the
genome of homo sapiens.

Zowie. Now there’s a word salad of science-iness if ever there was one. It contains ‘organism’, ‘genome’, AND ‘homo sapiens’! I don’t suppose this brain trust of ND lege wingnuts pondered some of the consequences of granting full rights of citizenship to any old human genome possessing thingamabobby, since that would include IVF embryos. And tumors. Nor have they fully considered the legal and economic ramifications. Are all human genome possessing thingamabobbies entitled to tax deductions? Social Security numbers? If I have a teratoma, can we use the HOV lane?

Geez, it’s bad enough we allowed corporations to be considered people.

There’s some concern that this legislation is a stalking horse for overturning Roe v. Wade and banning many forms of contraception. It’s pretty obvious that’s the intent but I predict this masterstroke of dumbness will die a swift and ignominious death in the courts. I’m rather surprised our own wingnuts haven’t pulled a similar stunt, but the legislative season is young and Nancy Barto is just getting started. Maybe she’ll do ND one better and try to declare gametes human.

And something I’ve long wondered regarding personhood-from-conception: Would that make identical twins legally the same person?

1 Comment(s)

  1. Comment by tes on February 19, 2009 3:32 pm

    Agreed. Our own legislature is not THAT far off with HB2564, which seeks to define abortion as “the use of any means to terminate the *clinically diagnosable pregnancy* of a woman with knowledge that the termination by those means will cause, with reasonable likelihood, the death of the unborn child. …” It does except “birth control devices, oral contraceptives used to inhibit or prevent ovulation or conception” [i.e., the “morning after pill” would constitution abortion] … and also excepts “the use of any means to increase the probability of a live birth, to preserve the life or health of the child after a live birth, to terminate an ectopic pregnancy or to remove a dead fetus.”

    Scary times, here ….

Comments RSS TrackBack Identifier URI

Leave a comment

Democratic Diva is proudly powered by WordPress and WPDesigner.