Waughtal: Men must stop making laws affecting women’s bodies

Haley Waughtal

Dear men, why do you believe you have any say over women’s bodies, let alone their pregnancies? 

Wake up. It’s not the 18th century. We aren’t your property anymore.

Throughout 2020 and early 2021, a wave of unnecessary anti-abortion bills were passed. The 1973 Roe v. Wade landmark decision, which gave women the constitutional right to safe and legal abortions, has come under fire. 

Ten states, including Ohio, Texas and Missouri, passed legislation in the past three years that could seriously affect abortion rights if Roe v. Wade is overturned. 

One of the most strict laws was passed by abhorrent misogynist Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on May 19. He signed off on a grotesque law that will ban abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected. 

A fetal heartbeat can happen as early as six weeks. 

This is outrageous because women may not find out about their pregnancy until seven or eight weeks — or even later. 

It’s a harsh law, and it was signed by a man who will never truly understand the arduous process of carrying, birthing and raising a child. 

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine signed a heartbeat bill in May 2019. Once again a man signed a bill that keeps women from getting an abortion after a fetal heartbeat was detected. It has no exceptions for rape or incest. 

Loophole laws are also being created, including those that allow for the prosecution of women for stillbirths and miscarriages. 

In 2018, a black woman was shot in the stomach while pregnant, and the 5-month-old fetus died. The person who shot her was not charged due to self-defense laws. However, the victim was indicted on manslaughter laws for getting in a fight while pregnant. Though the charges were dropped, this is insane. She was not the one who shot the fetus nor meant to get it killed. 

A woman was sentenced to five months in prison after a stillbirth in 2016. The fetus had died at 30 weeks, but the woman did not know. When she went to the hospital to receive medical help, she was arrested. 

Men, you think we are incubators. You think we are sex objects. You think we have no power. You think we are born for you. We aren’t. 

Before you think you have the right to make laws on my uterus, check if you even have one first.