"The term 'person' or 'persons' shall include every human being from the moment of fertilization."
If the majority of anti-abortion zelot’s in the state of Mississippi have their way with an upcoming November ballot initiative, and they surely will, their state’s constitution will be amended to include the above provision which mandates that fertilized eggs are people too.
The Mississippi Supreme Court has refused to block the initiative, holding that any challenges to the constitutionality of the so-called ‘Personhood Amendment’ will be allowed only after it is enacted or approved by voters.
That’s perfectly fine with Mississippi’s 80% majority of anti-abortion statists who hope the law will ultimately be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court, anyway, providing another opportunity for the current majority of Catholic justices there to overturn the landmark 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade, legalizing a woman’s right to an abortion. They want to eventually make abortion illegal everywhere in America.
History should remind the folks from Mississippi it wasn’t all that long ago in the United States of America that women were considered the legal property of men. Emancipated male slaves in America, including Mississippi, after the Civil War, acquired a complete set of constitutional rights and full equality as persons long before our nation’s women acquired the same liberty and constitutional status as equal persons with men.
Perhaps the good people of Mississippi, both men and women, don’t realize the potential consequences of elevating eggs to people. Never in the entire history of human civilization has a fertilized egg enjoyed the same legal status of a ‘person’ – not in the far off distant era of antiquity; not in biblical times; not during the superstitious dark and middle ages; not in modern times anywhere – ever!
That’s because this radical delusional concept of equal rights for eggs defies all logic, reason and common sense. It’s one thing to make a law prohibiting abortions, which, while draconian and anti-liberty in my opinion, at least has some rational basis; but quite another thing to define an egg as a person equal in law to other persons.
Try to imagine fertilized eggs as ‘persons.’ Think of the legal complications, pitfalls, and hopelessly conflicting constitutional rights associated with one person living inside the body of another for nine months.
The state would have a lawful interest in protecting the ‘person’ inside the body of another person from the very moment of conception, yet I’m not aware of any scientific method available today to determine that precise moment, apart perhaps from monitoring the movements of every egg and sperm with a powerful endoscope following intercourse.
Moment of conception is not quite so easy to determine as moment of birth. One must wonder then how to determine all the necessary information with which to complete the “conception certificate,” since birth certificates would be superfluous and obsolete.
Moreover, if eggs turn into persons at the moment of conception giving the state a lawful interest in protecting them, then the state would also have a legitimate corresponding legal interest in the sex lives and reproductive status of every woman of child bearing age and every man who copulates with her.
Such a woman might be required by law then to report to the state pregnancy authorities every month on the status of her menstrual cycle. If she misses a period, that would indicate the possibility of a new person inside her in need of the state’s protection, and the state could then act accordingly to protect that person by means of force.
Once a woman’s pregnancy was determined, the state office of child protective services would necessarily become involved to preserve and protect the best interests of the new persons and the new person’s constitutional rights. This would require state monitoring of every pregnancy from the moment of conception until birth and beyond.
In practice, and as a practical matter, the mother’s constitutional rights would be subordinate to those of the new person. She would essentially become a slave to the new person inside her sucking the nutrients from her body whether she liked it or not. The state pregnancy authorities could dictate virtually every aspect and activity of her life during the entire pregnancy.
Every miscarriage would require a formal coroner’s inquest and judicial investigation into the cause of the ‘person’s’ death to determine whether it was a homicide, an accident, or by natural means. The hapless woman would be potentially liable both criminally and civilly for any possible harm or untoward result to the little person occupying her body, and be legally required to bring the pregnancy to term regardless of how her own health and welfare might be affected from the ordeal.
Of course, the little egg would acquire the right to a lawyer and the right sue from the moment of conception. After all, it has constitutional rights.
A poor innocent woman, or perhaps even a helpless nine year old child, might be forcibly raped and impregnated by a criminally insane and genetically impaired stranger. Never mind that, saith the law; the new person inside her, conceived by the heinously criminal act, would have its constitutional rights from the moment of conception.
The innocent victim of the crime would be duly required by law to bring it fully to term as an unwilling human vessel, and at the expense of her own body, well being, and psychological state of mind – not to mention the irreconcilable conflict with her own personal constitutional rights.
Victims of incest would likewise be forced by the law to bear their iniquity. A fetus with demonstrable genetic or developmental defects rendering it the equivalent of a vegetable would enjoy it’s constitutional rights the same as anyone else from the exact moment of conception. One simply cannot abort a ‘person’ possessing constitutional rights.
Infertile couples who might want to utilize commonly practiced invitro fertilization methods to achieve a pregnancy would be denied permission by the state. Test tube embryo’s would be banned. The freezing of fertilized eggs would be banned. All of that would conflict with the constitutional rights of eggs.
Forget about methods of birth control such as the morning after pill or IUD’s which might restrict a fertilized egg from attaching to the uterus, thus aborting it early. That egg has constitutional rights which must be respected and protected by the law of Mississippi. The list of averse consequences goes on and on.
Yes, the fundamental rights of life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness, for real people in the United States of America, and the state of Mississippi, will suffer greatly at the hands of the state when it should ever come to pass that eggs are people too.