The Hypocrisy of the South Carolina Fetus-Cam Legislation

05/25/2011 12:05 pm ET
  • Adam Hanft Political Columnist, CEO of Hanft Projects

Yesterday, a bill that would force women who want an abortion to view an ultrasound image of the fetus first, took another step forward in the South Carolina legislature.

This is one of many attempts to limit abortion rights by creating new burdens on women seeking abortions; the South Dakota legislature has passed a law that "requires abortion practitioners to tell women that an abortion will destroy a human life of an unborn child."

The strategy of abortion opponents is clear: since they know that the majority of Americans oppose any reversion to the pre Roe vs. Wade dark ages, a better option is to reduce the number of abortions by forcing women to confront the "life-taking" nature of the procedure directly.

I don't where President Bush stands on these specific laws, but his opposition to abortion is unwavering - even as it relates to stem-cell research - so I have to believe he's all for it.

So I'm wondering why this full disclosure moral imperative is being selectively employed. Why is it okay for the White House and the Pentagon to hide images of the coffins and body bags coming home from Iraq, but it's okay to force an 18 year-old who was raped by her neighbor to view an ultrasound image of the fetus?

And while we're at it, how about some legislation that forces every member of Congress about to vote to reduce spending on infant health care to look at images of sick and dying children? And let's require that before every vote on another tax break for corporate America, Congress is forced to see a slide show showing the vacation homes and corporate jets of the CEOs who stand to benefit.

Either we're going to live in a world where we believe it's important to look the nakedly at the consequences of our actions, or not.