Maryrose McLaughlin, ’23
Good morning members of the Judiciary Committee.
My name is Maryrose McLaughlin and I am a student and law intern from Sullivan County.
As you know, CACR2 proposes that an additional section on reproductive freedom be added to the New Hampshire Constitution.
CACR2 states “That an individual’s right to personal reproductive autonomy is central to the liberty and dignity to determine one’s own life course and shall not be denied or infringed unless justified by a compelling state interest achieved by the least restrictive means.”
Saying that an individual should have a right to personal reproductive autonomy is completely good and true. However this amendment should not be added to the New Hampshire Constitution because it implies that the current laws against infringing on reproductive freedom are not enough.
The Amendment being proposed implies that abortion will perfectly insure reproductive freedom and the ability to choose one’s course of life.
This is false. CACR2 will have the complete opposite effect.
Reproductive freedom, defined as a person’s freedom to choose when they wish to have a child and who they wish to have it with, is already protected in New Hampshire RSA 632:A.
Abortion takes away another individual person’s reproductive freedom and autonomy, and most importantly another life.
Abortion infringes on liberty, dignity, autonomy, and most especially the future course of life of the fetal human being. Therefore, because this amendment implies the legality of abortion, it should not be added to the New Hampshire Constitution.
Peter Hogan, ’22
House Bill 271 seeks to repeal the “fetal life protection act” which restricts abortion after 24 weeks. If this act is repealed it will allow a woman to have an abortion at any stage of her pregnancy. At 24 weeks a human person is able to survive outside the womb. Their heart has already been beating for 18-19 weeks. By week 7 the baby’s brain begins to take shape. By week 10 the baby already has eyelids, nostrils and a mouth. By week 15 the baby will be able to hear. These are just a handful of the things that a person in the womb can do. The thought of repealing the ‘fetal life protection act’ should be unthinkable. The restrictions that are now in place are not enough to protect a person in the womb so to repeal them would only infringe upon the right to life of an unborn person even more. In 24 of the 50 states in our country abortion is highly restricted, and out of those 24 states, half of them have outlawed abortion completely. There are only 10 states in which abortion completely unrestricted and protected by the law. New Hampshire needs to defend the right of unborn humans and the only way it can start is by upholding the “fetal life protection act.”
HB 88: Relative to Reproductive Rights
Anya Moorehouse, ’23
The proposed House Bill 88 states, “[B]ecause it is vital to the equality and liberty of all individuals, the state shall not restrict or interfere with an individual's exercise of their private decision to terminate a pregnancy except as provided in RSA 329:43 through RSA 329:50 and RSA 132:32 through RSA 132:36.” I would like to focus on the blatant hypocrisy and disparagement toward women implied in the phrase, “vital to the equality and liberty of all individuals.” The very wording used here implies that abortion is necessary for women to be free and equal to men. Nothing could be more belittling. There is an assumption behind this way of thinking that equality lies in what we do, rather than who we are. Women are equal to men in that they are endowed with intrinsic dignity and worth. Preborn babies are equal to already-born men and women in that they are endowed with intrinsic dignity and worth. Women cannot be viewed as equal on the condition that they have the option to kill their preborn child. Preborn children cannot be viewed as equal on the condition that they are wanted or convenient.
If House Bill 88 is passed, New Hampshire will not only promote the violence and barbarity that is abortion, but promote a misogynistic and discriminatory agenda that tells women the only way they can succeed is through ending the life of their child. Rather than make this a reality in our state, I urge you to focus your efforts on creating an environment here where women facing unplanned pregnancies are supported and given the means necessary to lead successful and fulfilling lives without abortion. Reject this bill and promote bills that truly uphold the dignity of all, the equality of all, and the liberty of all. Thank you
HB 224-FN: Repealing the Criminal and Civil Penalties from the Fetal Life Protection Act
Julia Stout, ’23
House Bill 224 which would repeal “the criminal and civil penalties from the fetal life protection act” is a senseless bill which I strongly oppose. Section 329:46 of the Fetal Life Protection Act which would be repealed by this bill, says that any “health care provider” who knowingly performs an abortion after 24 weeks would be guilty of a Class B Felony. What is the point of a law that is not upheld and the criminal penalty not enforced by our judicial system? These so-called “healthcare providers” which should more honestly be referred to as abortionists, are not providing necessary and life saving treatments to pregnant women. Rather, they are taking innocent lives and putting pregnant women at risk of serious health complications. These abortionists, many of whom are working in facilities with the specific purpose of performing abortions, should be held to the same standards of the law and its penalties as any other criminal would. Not only do these abortionists totally violate a human being's dignity and unalienable right to life by performing an abortion, but by doing so after 24 week gestation, they are also in violation of the Fetal Life Protection Act. These abortionists should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law and in order for that to happen, House Bill 224 must be voted down.