The CDC is “now certain” that sexual transmission of the Zika virus is possible. Since the outbreak, there have been 500 microcephaly cases in Brazil, with 3,900 more suspected cases being investigated. Hey, seems like a good time for the Brazilian government to increase jail time for women who get abortions!
Under current law, women consenting to an abortion face one to three years in prison. The draft law seeks to punish women with up to 15 years in prison for aborting fetuses with “microcephaly or other abnormalities,” Time reports.
Anderson Ferreira, the author of the bill (a representative of Pernambuco, the epicenter of the Zika virus epidemic) says that “feminists” are pushing to liberalize abortion restrictions by riding the Zika crisis bandwagon:
With the crisis that has hit our country a feminist movement has tried to take advantage to change our abortion laws. This movement needs to be confronted. Everyone needs to realize the gravity of the crime that is abortion and that it is not acceptable.
The draft law further outlines their mission: “We intend to regulate once and for all this urgent matter and reject pro-choice movements.” (Because it’s “absolute evil” and “what the Mafia does,” Cool Pope would add.) And who’s in this feminist mafia, aside from the UN? Time:
The movement Ferreira refers to is the Institute of Bioethics, which is preparing a submission to Brazil’s Supreme Court to allow women to abort fetuses with microcephaly, and ensure women have access to contraceptives and Zika tests...
Given the difficulty of identifying microcephaly before near the end of a pregnancy—tests usually don’t work until the third trimester—the group wants to legalize abortion for all women diagnosed with Zika.
Currently, termination of pregnancy is only legal if the fetus has anencephaly (a severe fetal malformation of the brain and skull, similar to microcephaly), if the woman’s life is in danger or if the pregnancy is the result of rape. For now, a rape victim’s word is sufficient to obtain abortion services, if she can afford to travel to one of Brazil’s 37 clinics. (A different pending bill requires they file a police report and undergo a forensic medical examination first.)
Due to this lack of access, an estimated 850,000 women have illegal abortions in Brazil every year; about 200,000 are hospitalized due to complications. While illegal abortions are rarely criminally persecuted, those who get charged are almost exclusively “poor and non-white women and girls who have ended up in the public health system following complications.”