In today’s “whaaaaaaaaaaaat!?” news, fringe anti-abortion group Personhood USA is pushing for a legal redefinition of personhood in which life would begin the very moment sperm fertilizes an egg, even before the embryo would have an opportunity to implant into the woman’s uterus. The effect of such a (ridiculous) redefinition? Contraception, like the Pill, could be outlawed.
Think Progress explains,
These laws would recognize every fertilized egg as an individual and complete human being with full rights, and place millions of women in legal jeopardy. According to 2008 numbers, around 11 million American women use birth control pills and another 2 million use intrauterine devices (IUDs).
Contraceptives like the pill and IUDs not only act to prevent fertilization, but, if fertilization does occur, may prevent that fertilized egg from implanting in a woman’s uterus. Personhood USA considers this tantamount to abortion, and wants to make it a punishable offense for women to control their own fertility. Worse, because the proposed legislation could make any effort to terminate a pregnancy a criminal act, it could also bar doctors from saving the lives of women with ectopic pregnancies, which are never viable and need to be terminated as soon as possible.