After having a miscarriage, I scoured the web for other girl bloggers who had similar experiences, hoping to gain some catharsis from their stories. Some of the best include Babyfruit, Deviant Woman (whose story I read from beginning to end) and my personal favorite, Chez Miscarriage.
It was at Chez Miscarriage that I discovered that Virginia state representative John Cosgrove is attempting to pass a bill that will effectively make it punishable by a year in prison to not report a miscarriage that happens in your home to the police within 12 hours.
Not a doctor...the police. The freaking police!
The first twelve hours after my miscarriage, which happened in my home, outside of medical supervision (which, frustratingly, happens because unless you're waaay far along or have had at least 3 miscarriages already your doctor doesn't really have anything to say to you except "take some Tylenol and call me in the morning"), were spent feverishly weeping in the arms of my husband.
I couldn't even get the words together to tell my parents about what happened. I can't imagine filing some police report like it was my car stereo that got stolen and not all my hopes and dreams.
Democracy for Virginia has the details about the proposed bill here and here.
Delegate Cosgrove is trying to pass this bill off as an attempt to rescue abandoned newborns...but a standard "safe haven" law would have been much more appropriate. Besides, this bill doesn't even mention abandoned newborns or use the phrase "infant death." It mentions "fetal death," and under Virginia law fetal death is defined as:
...death prior to the complete expulsion or extraction from its mother of a product of human conception, regardless of the duration of pregnancy; death is indicated by the fact that after such expulsion or extraction the fetus does not breathe or show any other evidence of life such as beating of the heart, pulsation of the umbilical cord, or definite movement of voluntary muscles.This is what happens when stupid, ignorant politicians act like they know what they're talking about. Just like the non-existent term 'partial-birth abortion,' 'fetal death,' in the state of Virginia is a made-up, non-medical term designed to make you feel all icky inside.
I've said it once, and I'll probably say it again.
Grab your copy of A Handmaid's Tale, and get ready for your trip down the slippery slope, fellow broodmares.
Added: I've noticed the blogging outcry about this nonsense has been pretty huge. NTodd, Dru Blood, Thousand Yard Glare, and Promethus 6, and veiled4allah, and probably a whole bunch of others have write-ups on it.
I'm glad I don't live in Virgina. Although, as New Mexico is apparently now a red state, bullshit like this can't be too far down the pipe.
Whee! Sliding down the slope!