Every so often our General Assembly and governor pass legislation that becomes fascinating in the legal sense.
This time, without a doubt, it’s the Living Infants Fairness and Equality (LIFE) Act – HB 481. An omnibus abortion bill that bans abortions once a fetal heartbeat has been detected – approximately 6 weeks – and legislation that recognizes fetuses as natural persons who qualify for state income tax deductions and state population determinations.
There are two questions, not one, in that legislation that is likely to be reviewed. The first question is obvious, does the state have the authority to move the time line for abortions from 24 weeks to six weeks?
The second, which likely will be the first question to be considered, is the state’s new definition of natural born citizen; now being a “heartbeat” – six weeks – and in the “singular sense.”
This new definition, being in the “singular sense,” means that neither gender male nor gender female is a part of the definition. Gender is not determined or discovered until about 20 weeks into the birth process, way past the new six-week heartbeat rule determining a natural person.
The new “heartbeat” rule of life now becomes simple rhetorical questions for debate: For example if gender is not a factor in determining natural born citizen rights, then how can gender be a factor in: marriage applications, college admissions, child custody, job applications or restroom selection. If a “heartbeat” determines life, then what now is the definition of brain dead?
What a perfect piece of legislation, hard core right wing conservatives wanting to scale back abortion in doing so affirm gay rights to marriage; hard core left wing liberals wanting to affirm gay rights and in doing so have to give up time lines for abortion. Now that’s entertainment.
Walter K. Krauth III