Virginia Representative John Cosgrove recently introduced a bill to the VA legislature requiring all women who have a miscarriage at any stage of gestation to report it to their local polic departments within 12 hours of the miscarriage. Failing to report a miscarriage will be a misdemeanor crime, carrying a penalty of up to 12 months in jail and a $2500 fine.
He claims that this bill is intended to prevent people from dumping newborn babies, but there are several huge problems with that argument. The first is that Virginia already has a "safe haven" law protecting anyone who leaves a baby at a hospital. The second is that a newborn baby is not a miscarriage. It's a newborn baby, premature or full-term.
Basically, this guy is going to force women who are in pain, bleeding, and grieving to haul themselves in to their local police stations and tell intimate details of their private parts and reproductive lives to the rosy-cheeked sergeant on duty.
This is not a pro-life or pro-choice or political issue. It's not even a women's issue. It's a common sense and common decency issue. This is the United States of America, not a police state. Please oppose this bill, and Representative Cosgrove.
If you live in Virginia, please scroll to the bottom of Maura's site to see what you can do. If you don't live in Virginia, spread the word about this asinine bill to any online communities you belong to. And consider supporting democratic or independent candidates in the 2005 Virginia representative and senate races. No one ran against Cosgrove in the 2003 election! If you or anyone you know lives in the 78th District of Virginia, please consider running.
Thanks to getupgrrl for the heads up.
And may God help us all.