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American Law: The “Right” to View a Fetus

This week’s Associated Press brings a little noticed new law, signed by Kansas governor Kathleen Sebelius:

March 28, 2009 Topeka, Kan. — Gov. Kathleen Sebelius signed a bill Friday to ensure that women and girls seeking abortions in Kansas are allowed to see ultrasound images or hear their fetus’ heartbeat before the procedure. The bill, which takes effect July 1, amends a state law requiring doctors to obtain a patient’s informed consent before performing an abortion. The measure requires abortion providers who use ultrasound or monitor fetal heartbeats to give their patients access to the images or sound at least 30 minutes before an abortion. Spokeswoman Beth Martino said Sebelius, who is awaiting U.S. Senate confirmation as President Obama’s nominee for secretary of Health and Human Services, concluded that the bill had no constitutional flaws, didn’t jeopardize patient privacy and did not block access to health services…. The law makes Kansas the 13th state to require that abortion providers offer patients a chance to see ultrasound images.
Is it “a chance” that is being offered potential mothers, or is it pressure? Until recently Americans had no right to see the coffins of our soldiers, but for women seeking an abortion the right to see and hear a fetus is now law in 13 states.

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