Utah Now Requires That Doctors Lie To You

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Sorta transcript:

As we know, Republicans are traditionally in favor of smaller government. Currently, though, they are in favor of government that is very small when it comes to things like taxing rich people and very big when it comes to mandating its own scientific principles and overruling your doctor concerning your personal medical treatment.

So not small government, really. Just horribly deformed government.

In Utah, they’re about to enact a law that will require your doctor to lie to you and then perform an unnecessary and dangerous procedure on you for no reason. Oh, but only if “you” are a woman. Guys, you can more or less just relax, unless you’re trans of course.

In accordance with this new law, doctors must anesthetize any woman seeking an abortion at 20 weeks or later, telling her that “substantial medical evidence from studies concludes that an unborn child who is at least 20 weeks gestational age may be capable of experiencing pain during an abortion procedure.”

As I’ve mentioned before on this channel, there is zero scientific evidence to support that statement. At best, some research suggests that maybe fetuses can detect pain just prior to birth, but that’s it. Most, if not all, doctors who perform these procedures know that, and so they will have to knowingly lie or else lose their license.

And then, they’ll have to anesthetize the patient for absolutely no reason. Death and other complications from general anesthesia are rare, but they’re greater than zero. About 8 people die for every million that are put under. Imagine that every time you go to the doctor for a relatively minor procedure, you have to push a button that gives you a 1 in a 125,000 chance of dying. There’s no reason for the button. It’s just there to dissuade people from going to the doctor too often. Would you be okay with that?

Luckily for most of us, Utah’s deformed slime monster of a government doesn’t want to control whether we have tumors or kidney stones or appendixes removed, so they haven’t made up any pseudoscientific fantasies about those things, so the random death button is just a hypothetical. But it’s a real situation that thousands of women in Utah will now face every year, becoming more statistics to add to the pile we already have proving that when you block safe and legal access to abortion, you don’t save babies — you kill women.

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca is a writer, speaker, YouTube personality, and unrepentant science nerd. In addition to founding and continuing to run Skepchick, she hosts Quiz-o-Tron, a monthly science-themed quiz show and podcast that pits comedians against nerds. There is an asteroid named in her honor. Twitter @rebeccawatson Mastodon Instagram @actuallyrebeccawatson TikTok @actuallyrebeccawatson YouTube @rebeccawatson BlueSky

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  1. Well, I suppose if you can’t honestly claim that abortion is dangerous to dissuade it, you have to make it dangerous!
    I can’t say I know a great deal about the hippocratic oath, but surely this is a requirement that doctors violate that oath? Surely no law that makes such a requirement can stand?

  2. Rebecca Watson,

    Is there anyway a doctor or a woman in need of an abortion could sue Utah and potentially stop this law from being enforced?

  3. I live in UT and the law actually says that the physician must administer anethsesia to the fetus when an abortion is to be preformed. It gives no instruction on how one is to accomplish this since there is no established procedure for administering anethsesia to a fetus. I listened to the podcast What Do You Think Utah? where two abortion/OBGYN doctors (against the bill) and two legislators (who supported the bill) were on a panel discussing the new bill. Todd Weiler (UT state senator) admits that this bill’s intent is not to prevent fetal pain (which the OBGYNs argue happens during birth or inutero operations), but its intent is to prevent women from having abortions. Dr. Leah Torres (one of the doctors on the panel) has contacted the governor repeatedly, seeking instruction of how to carry out the new law. She has recieved no reply. Todd Weiler told her to just give her patients an aspirin and she’d be covered. He also accused the doctors of doing what their patients requested because “they’re the ones paying you”. Insinuating they perform abortions soley to make money. It’s infuriating to listen to. I’m discussed with my state. That being said, I’m glad we have people like Leah Torres to push back when the state tries to overstep. Follow her on twitter @LeahNTorres, she’s brilliant and fighting for women’s rights!

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