New Arizona Anti-Abortion Bill not Really About Race or Gender

Though we’re quickly approaching the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day, the Republicans seem to be giving women less and less to be celebrating. After a month of delivering their anti-abortion agenda, which has included attempts to defund abortion providers and redefine rape, the Arizona House has offered another hurdle in the quest for reproductive health accessibility. Today, Arizona passed a bill that would ban race- and gender-selective abortions.

The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Steve Montenegro, has defended his legislation on the grounds that this is “an issue of equal protection.” Claiming that this has nothing to do with a woman’s legal right to have an abortion, Montenegro instead insisted that some abortions were taking place because mothers did not want daughters or a minority baby. He continued, “I introduce this bill to put an end to offensive and abhorrent practices which have no place in an egalitarian, multicultural society.”

But Democrats in Arizona have questioned whether race- and gender-selective abortions is even an issue in America, and have called this a bill “in search of a problem.”

In fact, this bill is insidious. If it becomes law, women would be forced to provide justification for wanting an abortion, and then seek the approval of an outside body to do so. In other words, it’s one more barely disguised attempt to slow down or stop all women from having abortions.

Click here to send a message to the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Steve Montenegro, informing him that this bill has nothing to do with so-called “equal protection”.

Photo via Flickr user under Creative Commons 3.0.


Kyle Bachan can dance all day. He's also a feminist from Toronto, Canada who enjoys travelling the world and meeting new people. He currently writes as a Senior Editor over at Gender Across Borders.