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Mar. 26th, 2006

OK, I do have something. I am a South Dakota native. It was a nice place to grow up and I would like to believe it is still a nice place, but as you may know the state legislature recently passed a near-total abortion ban. NO exception is to be made even in cases of rape or incest--only if the woman's life is actually in danger. This ban was passed with the stated intention of forcing the issue all the way to the Supreme Court, which supporters hope will cause Roe v. Wade to be overturned. Currently those of us opposed to the ban are petitioning to have it put to referendum in November. There will probably be no problem gathering the 16,300 or so signatures needed because people from both sides want to know whether South Dakotans in general actually support the ban. At this point it seems likely that if we can get it on the ballot, the ban will be struck down because even those normally opposed to abortion have some qualms about forcing rape and incest victims to carry their aggressors' children to term. You can bet, however, that the state will be the target of some intensive lobbying from religious fundamentalists in coming months, so nothing is certain. If the ban is upheld by a referendum, opponents will then challenge it through the judicial system, and a long and expensive court battle will undoubtedly ensue.

Last week, opponents of the ban formed the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families. This group is currently leading the petition effort and would represent the opposition in court if it came to that. They need money!

If you happen to live in SD, you can find information about other ways to help--particularly by soliciting petition signatures at the moment--here.


Henriette-Julie de Murat
can't fool the queen

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