Proponents of the law say fetuses can feel pain after five months of development. Governor Jan Brewer said in an official statement that the new law “strengthens Arizona’s laws protecting the health and safety of women, and recognizes the precious life of the preborn baby.”
Abortion rights groups have attacked the law as political interference in personal matters. Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America issued a statement mentioning, “Politicians should not be involved in a woman’s personal medical decisions about her pregnancy … It is important that abortion remains a safe and legal medical procedure for a woman to consider if and when she needs it.”
But that is the question. It’s all about the boundary of time when the ‘rights of the mother’ to terminate the life of a fetus ends, and when the ‘rights of a pre-born baby to life’ come into existence.
It’s also pertinent to mention that the new law clearly states that the 20-week ban would not apply in the case of a medical emergency.
The new law in Arizona requires authorities to launch and host a website with images of fetuses at different developmental stages, so that women may be aware of the growth of life within their wombs.
However detractors hold that the new law endangers both the fetus and the mother. The Center for Reproductive Rights issued a statement saying women “will be forced to decide whether to proceed with their pregnancies in the dark, before they have all the information they need to arrive at their choices.” However, it is difficult to find what endangers a fetus more than the termination of its life through abortion – well, the new law.
Planned Parenthood warned that now in Arizona pregnant women would face a crisis similar to that faced by women in Nebraska who are forced to continue pregnancy even after a health crisis and knowing that she was going to lose her baby. The group cited the case of a woman Danielle Deaver, who was forced to deliver a baby she knew would die within moments of birth because of Nebraska’s similar 20-week abortion ban.
Danielle wrote a letter to the Governor of Arizona appealing, “Because lawmakers in my home state of Nebraska passed this sweeping abortion ban, my family’s personal loss a year and a half ago became a nightmare … That my pregnancy ended, that choice was made by God. How to handle the end of my pregnancy, that should have been private. But the decision that should have remained mine and my husband’s at a very difficult time was decided for us – and it was decided by politicians we’d never met.”