The State of Oklahoma has hit upon a novel solution to the problem of women choosing what to do with their own bodies: Bathroom signage!
Posting signs like this one in women’s restrooms wherever a business is legally regulated by the health department (e.g. hospitals, clinics, and restaurants) will presumably help persuade young women to carry their unwanted pregnancies to term. At least that appears to be the goal, judging by the choices presented—and omitted—from the message, and by the fourfold invocation of “child” to describe an embryonic entity not yet worthy of the term.
AP has the full story:
Oklahoma businesses, others could spend $2.3 million on restroom signs in effort to reduce abortions. https://t.co/ZPJ2dy3xYg
— AP Central U.S. (@APCentralRegion) December 13, 2016
As an unfunded mandate, the burden will fall on private businesses to spread the pro-life message requested by Oklahomans for Life and sponsored by Republican A.J. Griffin of Guthrie. If you’re thinking it sounds a bit invasive and perhaps even anti-American to force someone else to pay for the privilege of advancing your own political views, then you’ve hit upon an important point, aptly addressed by the ACLU:
Our Statement in Response to Requirement that Businesses Post Anti-Abortion Propaganda in Restroomshttps://t.co/mofrkVoAYh
— ACLU of Oklahoma (@ACLUOK) December 13, 2016
One can conceive of an easy fix, though. Simply modify the last line of message to read as follows, “The State of Oklahoma strongly urges you to contact them if you are pregnant and wish to remain so, rather than exercising your legally protected right to terminate a pregnancy.” Surely our state lawmakers would not balk at taking such a fair and balanced approach.