Imagine seeking eternal salvation by joining a church of your choice, but being required by the state to visit a “religion help center” first; submitting to counselling by the state in order to ensure that your decision is "voluntary" and "informed," and then waiting a minimum 72 hours after the counselling before you are allowed inside the church sanctuary.
Suppose your state interposed similar legal restrictions which had to be satisfied before you could marry your sweetheart; read a controversial book; or enroll your child in a private school. Imagine government regulations which require you to justify all of your important private life decisions; forcing your submission to a walk of shame before strangers and government hacks who’s primary mission is to meddle into your private affairs and change your mind – to mess with your liberty.
Can they do that?
Welcome to the Great State of South Dakota, the first in the nation to pass a law requiring a woman seeking an abortion to visit a “pregnancy help center” first and submit to counseling to ensure her decision is "voluntary" and "informed," then to wait at least 72 hours after completing the counseling before she can schedule an abortion. The law also requires the supplicant to meet and consult with the abortion doctor beforehand, another high hurdle for women in South Dakota, since Planned Parenthood's clinic performs abortions only once a week, and the doctors are flown in from Minnesota. (
ABC News; 3/22/11)
"I think everyone agrees with the goal of reducing abortion by encouraging consideration of other alternatives," Gov. Dennis Daugaard, sanctimoniously proclaimed. "I hope that women who are considering an abortion will use this three-day period to make good choices."
He hopes that they’ll change their minds and conform to his religion, is more like it. Governor Daugaard thinks that if someone in his state wants to exercise a right, liberty, for example, the collective authority of South Dakota has a corresponding right by force to try and change her mind.
If that kind of law is constitutional in the United States of America, woe be it to the liberty rights of us all.