Texas teen who wanted abortion prevented by state-funded clinic
The Washington Post this week featured Brooke Alexander, 18, a teenager from Corpus Christi, Texas, who found out two days before the state’s fetal heartbeat abortion ban goes into effect on September 1 2021 that she was pregnant.
Alexander sought to terminate her pregnancy, but the abortion clinic two hours away from her in South Texas was full, with women rushing to the center for abortions before the law took effect. law. Alexander was offered the names and addresses of abortion clinics in New Mexico by the clinic in South Texas, more than a 12-hour drive from Corpus Christi.
Under the new Texas law, if a so-called “fetal heartbeat” is detected, those involved in the abortion can be sued for $10,000 each. Since few women know they are pregnant until six weeks, when movement of the undeveloped fetal heart mass first becomes detectable, the law effectively prohibits abortions in Texas, with no exceptions for rape or sexual assault. incest. Abortion clinics in Texas now only accept those with no observable “fetal heartbeat” lest they face a wave of lawsuits from anti-abortion zealots.
Alexander, having been told of this by her then-boyfriend Billy, sought out a clinic where an ultrasound could be performed, unknowingly making an appointment with a religion-affiliated anti-abortion clinic.
The clinic in question, misnamed the Coastal Bend Pregnancy Center, is affiliated with Care Net, an evangelical Christian network of “crisis pregnancy centers” which are set up for the sole purpose of dissuading women from getting abortion with thousands of centers around the country. It is one of two such organizations in the United States with close ties to the Republican Party. A banner on the website asks like-minded religious fanatics to tell their elected officials “we support the overthrow of Roe vs. Wadewhile falsely claiming that the American public supports the cancellation of the right to abortion.
In fact, the ban on abortion and the related attack on deer is extremely unpopular, with a PBS Newshour/NPR/Marist poll showing that 64% oppose overturning the Supreme Court’s 1973 ruling, while those who identify as “pro-choice” are reaching a low near record 55%. A May 2021 Gallup poll showed support for abortion in all or most cases at 80%.
According to a Public Health Watch article, anti-abortion “crisis centers” receive funding from the Texas government under the Alternatives to Abortion program. Funding has jumped 1,900% since the program launched in 2006, from $5 million to $100 million.
Refuting the claim by anti-abortion forces that the program aims to protect life, its funding comes from commensurate cuts to other programs such as $20 million from a clean air program in 2017 and $20 million from dollars from a health technology budget in 2021, according to the Texas Grandstand.
Meanwhile, abortion clinics across the state have been under continuous attack for years, pushing the number of already anemic clinics from 40 in 2013 to 20 in 2022 for a state of 29 million people. At the same time, 200 anti-abortion “crisis centers” exist in Texas, 10 times the number of abortion clinics. In the United States as a whole, there are three times more “crisis centers” than abortion clinics.
According to an October 2021 court filing by Planned Parenthood, a woman, who later filed a lawsuit against one of these crisis centers, was unable to receive treatment for her pregnancy from the center. The woman experienced ‘extreme’ morning sickness during her pregnancy and was forced to seek out-of-state help due to the delay and pay $800 to ‘maintain her privacy with members of her family’. family on his insurance plan.
As detailed in the filing, many more were prevented from aborting, most of them poor and from working class backgrounds, teenagers, students and without sufficient financial means to adequately care for children.
One was 16 and described as a ‘brilliant student’ but from an unstable household. Another worked 55 to 60 hours a week and was in college. Another feared losing her retail job because there were three months of ‘blackout dates’ during which she could not take time off for fear of losing her job. Another already had five children.
While at the anti-abortion crisis center, Alexander received an anti-abortion pamphlet published by the Texas Department of State Health Services titled “A Woman’s Right to Know”.
The pamphlet, a government propaganda article, reads in bold: “No one can force you to have an abortion” and advises women to speak to their “doctor, counselor or spiritual advisor about your feelings” and call 911 if they feel “pressure” from someone to have an abortion. It paints a false picture of abortion as being unsafe and posing physical and mental health risks such as infertility, increased risk of breast cancer and death.
Alexander, following a state-mandated imaging session of what were to be twins, was pressured by center staff and then by his mother, who was apparently influenced by the staff, to not not have an abortion. Facing mounting hardship, the unavailability of abortion, state-funded anti-abortion clinics, and propaganda, Alexander gave birth to the twins.
According to Washington PostJana Pinson, executive director of the Pregnancy Center of the Coastal Bend, later celebrated Alexander’s change of heart to the Coastal Bend Republican Coalition on May 19 as part of her weekly meeting at a local barbecue.
Anti-abortion crisis centers categorize those who visit, labeling those who are considering abortion or have decided to abort as “abortion-prone” or “abortion-vulnerable.”
The Job wrote “Last year, Pinson said, 583 abortion-prone and abortion-vulnerable women chose to continue their pregnancies after visiting their facility. At their banquet in March, with more than 2,800 attendees from across the region, Pinson and his staff lit 583 candles. One of them was for Brooke.
Two weeks after Pinson’s jubilation, the Supreme Court’s draft decision of deer has been disclosed.
“Who can say what I would have done if the law was not in force? Alexander told the Job, noting all the things she couldn’t do anymore like parties at the skate park and going to the mall. “I can’t really be really free,” she said. “I guess that really sums it all up. It’s a big thing that I really miss.
Indeed, the right to abortion is a measure that guarantees equality and freedom to women who otherwise would not have the right to it. The attack on abortion seeks not only to entrench inequality, but also to serve as a springboard for broader attacks on democratic rights.
Like the WSWS Explain:
[Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s] The draft decision goes on to deny the validity of “rights that are not mentioned in the Constitution.
Virtually all modern civil rights are not “mentioned in the Constitution”, for the simple reason that modern society did not exist when the Bill of Rights was signed in 1791. However limited and late, the expansion of constitutional rights in the United States from the aftermath of the American Revolution and Civil War to the period of the civil rights movement – took the form of the recognition in the essential principles of the founding documents of new implications for democratic rights in the modern society.
Alito’s formulas provide a framework not only for dismantling abortion rights, but for putting all modern civil rights on the chopping block.
This attack on abortion has been facilitated by the Democrats, who have done nothing to mobilize opposition to attacks on abortion and are organically unable to do so, fearing a mass movement of the working class that would escape their control and exceed them. Instead, they are cynically working to redirect the deadlocked opposition from the Democratic Party, which has done nothing to enshrine deer over the past almost 50 years.
While posing as abortion rights advocates, Democrats field anti-abortion candidates, such as Texas State Rep. Ryan Guillen, who voted to ban abortion. “fetal heartbeat” abortion in Texas. Nothing is being done by the Democrats, even now, despite the fact that, if they choose, they can undo the filibuster and enshrine abortion protections in law. The criminal inaction of the Democrats illustrates that any real movement to protect democratic rights must necessarily be based on a mass movement of the working class for socialism.