Examining Ballot Measure #2
Many years ago now, post Roe v. Wade but prior to more recent Alaska Supreme Court decisions, WC from time-to-time served as a guardian ad litem in a series of children’s cases. One such case involved a 15-year old girl who was pregnant, by her father. Because she was only 15 years old, it took her a while to figure out what was going on. And in addition to being sexually abused by her father, she had been physically abused him. And her mother wasn’t in the picture. Let’s see how that would play out under Ballot Measure #2.
Dad wouldn’t consent to an abortion for “religious reasons,” so parental consent wasn’t possible. Under Ballot Measure #2, a doctor who performs an abortion without parental consent or a court order faces five years in the slammer. So what would this 15 year old victim do? She’d have to work up the courage to either go to court – a process WC’s ward wouldn’t have even known about – or find someone willing to help with the extended sworn affidavit process available as another option.
Most teenagers won’t know about the court option or the affidavit option. Even if they could find a physician who would conduct the procedure under the ambiguously written affidavit procedure.
It comes to this: some parents think their rights as parents outweigh the right of WC’s former ward to avoid adding childbirth to the rape, incest and physical assault she had already suffered. Or the even greater dangers of a back-alley abortion. Or suicide. These are parents who live in a world where rape and incest never happen to teenagers. Where parents and siblings never assault children. WC doesn’t know where that world is, but it’s not in Alaska. And WC is deeply suspicious of any parent who values his or her “rights” as parents over the safety and sanity of children.
WC will be voting “No” on Ballot Measure #2.