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March 14, 2019

Men Must Report Each ‘Release of Sperm’ Under Proposed GA Law

ATLANTA, GA—Last Thursday, the Georgia state House of Representatives passed what would become one of the United States’ most restrictive anti-abortion laws. The so-called “heartbeat” bill would effectively prohibit women from obtaining abortion after about six weeks of pregnancy, which is supposedly when doctors can detect a faint fetal heartbeat.  The bill would put Georgia law in direct conflict with United States Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision, which has governed U.S. abortion law since 1973. Under that decision, abortion is fully legal through the first trimester—approximately 12 weeks—of pregnancy. Abortion remains legal under Roe v.Wade throughout the second trimester as well, though the court ruled that the government may regulate abortion procedures during that period—but not ban them.  In response to the “heartbeat” abortion bill, several state lawmakers in Georgia, led by House Democratic Whip Dar'shun Kendrick, have introduced their own package of legislation under the heading of a “Testicular Bill of Rights,” that would strictly regulate sexual behavior by men, according to The Washington Post.  “You want some regulation of bodies and choice?” Kendrick wrote on her Twitter account, announcing the bill. “Done!” Among the provisions of the law, any male over 55 years of age would be required to report to local law enforcement authorities any time “such male releases sperm from his testicles." The bill would also require a DNA paternity test on any fetus that reaches the age of six weeks and one day. The proven father would then be required to immediately begin child-support payments to the prospective mother, without waiting the remaining seven-and-half months for the child to be born, CBS News reported.  Vasectomy procedure would be outlawed under the new bill, and any man who engages in sex without using a condom could be charged with “aggravated assault” under the law proposed by Kendrick. Finally, men would require the permission of their sexual partners before they are permitted to purchase erectile dysfunction medication such as Viagra, and there would be a 24-hour ”waiting period” before men are permitted to purchase pornography or sex toys of any kind. Though the proposed “testicular” legislation may seem like a joke, Kendrick told Rolling Stone magazine, “I’m dead serious” about the bill.  But she acknowledged that her purpose in drafting the bill was to “bring awareness to the fact that if you’re going to legislate our bodies, then we have every right to propose legislation to regulate yours.” Kendrick, who represents a district in the Metro-Atlanta region, has long been a vocal proponent of women’s reproductive rights, and she describes the “heartbeat” bill as “unconstitutional on purpose,” saying that the anti-abortion bill’s backers want to bring the bill before the Supreme Court, in an attempt to get the court to overturn the Roe v. Wade precedent. Photo by Wellcome Images/Wikimedia Commons 

 
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