OK Senate Votes Down Bill to Make Abortion a Homicide
The Oklahoma Senate voted against bringing a controversial anti-abortion bill (SB 13) to the floor. The author of the bill, Senator Joseph Silk, describes the bill as an “equal protection bill,” and it would most noteably classify all abortion as homicide.
In an interview with KOCO News 5 ABC, Silk explained further, saying:
“Senate Bill 13…defines life beginning at the moment of conception, offers those lives equal protection under the law, and therefore classifies any intentional killing of unborn children as homicide….
People ask for the rape and incest exception. There is not that…. Rape and incest are horrible things, but you don’t murder a child because of the crimes of the father and mother.
The medical exception is not explicitly oultined, but…the language of the bill does not prevent a doctor from perfoming basic medical triage. It just says that a physician needs to…treat both lives equally. If he is not able to save both…he will not be charged with murder….”
This bill has obvioulsy been denounced by Oklahoma Democrats with the usual emotional and irrational ‘my body, my choice’ type of objections. There’s no surprise there.
What’s significant about the debate over this bill, though, is that it has put on display the growing divide between mainstream pro-life advocates and abortion abolitionists.
Both of these groups are generally anti-abortion, but there are clear differences in strategy and expediency.
The mainstaream pro-life movement is sticking with the strategy of the last 47 years, pushing the incremental and regulatory approach. Meanwhile, the abolitionists believe that the only just strategy is to outright ban the practice and count unborn humans as equal under law to born humans.
Senate Pro Tem Greg Treat takes the more mainstream approach, so he is in opposition to the bill.
Treat explained his opposition saying, “I agree with abolishing abortion….[and] if I thought that Senate Bill 13 would save a single human life, I would be on board fully.” He believes the bill is “fatally flawed” because it lacks consideration for the Roe vs Wade ruling.
Abolitionists would agree that this bill essentially ignores the Roe vs Wade ruling, but they wouldn’t agree that this makes the bill flawed.
The abolitionists (like Silk) who crafted the bill don’t believe the state should even acknowledge the courts Roe vs Wade ruling due to it’s aburd and unconstitutional basis. They see it being the states responsibility to challenge the court with laws such as this.
This bill and others like it are seeing some traction around the US, with a growing abolitionst movement. This is the second time this particular bill has been considered, after having been rejected a hearing in 2019, as well.
This fight between the mainstream pro-life movement and the abolitionist movement is likely to continue in the coming months and years. So, it shouldn’t be surprising if we see this bill eventually get to the Okalahoma Senate floor.