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Published: March 17, 2012 3:34 am to Opinion Column

Wisconsin pulls the plug on webcam abortions

Last night, Wisconsin made modest yet meaningful strides toward a culture of life as the State Assembly passed a bill to prohibit so-called “webcam abortions.” The legislation, which has already passed the house and is expected to receive pro-life Governor Scott Walker’s signature, forbids doctors from prescribing abortion-inducing drugs without physically examining the patient and requires them to be with the patient when she receives the drugs, as well as requires doctors to ask women if they’re being coerced into aborting their child.

Most state Democrats voted nay, with Madison Representative Mar Pocan complaining that lawmakers “don’t trust the people of Wisconsin to make a decision with their doctor about their own health care.” And Jessica Pieklo of Care2.com is incensed:

In neighboring states like Iowa and Minnesota, patients living in rural areas are able to have mifepristone prescribed via online video conference. This would not be an option for women living in rural Wisconsin.

Finally, the bill requires a woman return to an abortion clinic for a follow-up visit 12 to 18 days after being given the drug. Women who take mifepristone already have a follow-up visit, but most see their primary care physician for that follow-up. This bill forces women to have that follow-up visit at an abortion clinic, putting yet another unnecessary burden on the backs of women trying to access health care services.

Unnecessary? Not quite. Pro-Life Wisconsin explains:

“When a woman is facing an unplanned pregnancy, the reckless use of a toxic abortion drug is the last thing she needs,” said Matt Sande, legislative director for Pro-Life Wisconsin. “The average woman loses four times the amount of blood in a drug-induced medical abortion as compared to a standard surgical abortion. Several deaths have been attributed to mifepristone and therefore its prescription and use ought to be highly restricted, if not banned.”

[…]

The Food and Drug Administration released public documents to Concerned Women of America listing over 600 adverse effects of women taking mifepristone. These included 220 cases of hemorrhage that were either life-threatening or extremely serious, 71 of which required blood transfusions. Women taking mifepristone typically bleed for one to two weeks, with 10% bleeding for more than one month.

Further, it’s extremely telling that seeing a doctor in person before killing your child is now too much to ask of the abortion crowd. First the secular-progressive conception of “fairness” demanded that women be allowed to abort their babies. Then it demanded that abortion be allowed at any stage of pregnancy, for any reason. Then it demanded that abortion be given tax-funded assistance. Then it demanded that we forbid parents from having any say in their daughters’ abortions. Then it demanded that third parties be forced to offer abortive drugs. Now it demands that abortion be treated more like a Netflix subscription than a medical procedure. What’s next, publicly funded abortionist house calls?

Though shocking at first glance, this is really nothing more than the abortion mentality carried to its logical conclusion. Pro-aborts can’t be content to leave abortion as an individual “right” contingent on a handful of modest regulations and requiring some basic effort on the part of the patient because abortion was never an individual right. The very heart of abortionism’s logic is the proposition that some human beings have absolute dominion over others. Therefore, abortionism contains no natural philosophical or moral boundaries to temper its expansion.

It’s not about rights. Or health. Or freedom. Or equality. Greed is abortionism’s sole defining principle, and thankfully, Wisconsin is beginning to say “enough.”

About Calvin Freiburger

Calvin Freiburger is a Wisconsin-based conservative writer and 2011 Hillsdale College graduate, dedicated to the principles of the American Founding—individual liberty, limited government, public virtue, and strong defense—though he believes no issue is more important to a free society’s survival than defending the unalienable rights of society’s most vulnerable members. Calvin was previously a regular contributor to NewsRealBlog.com and the Hillsdale Forum, and now also writes for PatriotUpdate.com. His work has also appeared on LifeNews.com, LifeSiteNews.com, RightWisconsin.com, AmericanThinker.com, and his personal blog (rightcal.blogspot.com). In high school and beyond, he aided the pro-life cause both as a volunteer for Pro-Life Wisconsin and as a member of HeartBeat Teens, a Fond du Lac County pro-life youth group.


View all posts by Calvin Freiburger

  • Ducats69376

    Hey Calvin.  Congrats on this.  Guess the resignation won’t affect anything.  Finger’s crossed he signs it before that pesky recall.

    On another topic, I guess you didn’t like my last question.  But I’m not a quitter.  You’ll like this:

    This
    was in your article:
    “But
    wait, Sandra Fluke counters, this isn’t ‘just’
    about
    sex—lots of women need contraception pills for other medical
    reasons. Georgetown technically covers such prescriptions, but:
    In
    sixty-five percent of cases, our female students were interrogated by
    insurance representatives and university medical staff about why they
    need these prescriptions and whether they’re lying about their
    symptoms.

    Yes,
    how dare Georgetown attempt to verify the legitimacy of requests for
    a service that could so easily be used for entirely different
    purposes!”

    And
    this is what you wrote in response to me:

    “Whenever
    you expect someone else to pay for something, the reason why IS their
    business”.

    This
    is what you want, this is what you get:

    Imagine
    I am your boss. You visit the doctor to get medication for your
    condition. He prescribes a drug. This drug treats multiple
    conditions, some elective, some not. One thing it treats is HIV,
    which is why you need it. Now I, as your employer, ask you why you
    need this drug. You stall and finally say ‘I don’t want to tell
    you’. I respond ‘you have to. Whenever you expect someone else to
    pay for something, the reason why you’re using it IS their business.
    I have to make sure I’m not morally against what you’re doing. I
    have to “verify the legitimacy of requests for a service that could
    so easily be used for entirely different purposes!” So, Calvin, I
    ask again, why are you taking this? (You know full well that if you tell your boss you have HIV, doctor/patient
    confidentiality will not apply. Your illness is officially outed.
    And you get to look forward to the prejudice and bigotry that come
    with this disease). Again you say, ‘I can’t tell you’. Fine, I say.
    ‘I’m not approving it’.

    Say
    what you want, but this is exactly how you want this to play out.
    Your writing supports this scenario perfectly. No ambiguity at all.
    Your only defense is to change your words.

    The
    question is: will you tell me, your boss, your illness?

    • http://twitter.com/CalFreiburger Calvin Freiburger

      If the terms I knowingly agreed to when I took the job say I have to tell my boss, then of course I’d tell him. If they say a doctor’s verification that I do need the drug will suffice, then I wouldn’t.

      • Ducats69376

        Thanks for the reply, Calvin.

        The quotes:
        “Yes, how dare Georgetown attempt to verify the legitimacy of requests fora service that could so easily be used for entirely different purposes!” 
        and
        “Whenever you expect someone else to pay for something, the reason why IS their
        business”.Are the focus here.  Everyone with a job, right now, did not agree to terms, when hired, that included telling their boss about the drugs they are prescribed.  This did not exist.  Now the law is passed–and all working people must tell their bosses.  Verification will not suffice.  We all must adhere or lose our jobs.  The facts in my previous post still hold true, but now the employee is a homosexual.  He acquired HIV before the law took affect and has kept it private–for which he has deeply personal reasons.  Only his doctor and partner know.  It’s clear to all at work that his boss is prejudiced against gays; he is of the opinion, as many still are, HIV/AIDS is a gay disease.

        Now the boss comes to the employee and asks why he needs this drug.  Keeping in mind that, under this law, the employer can base his decision on being morally offended, and also keeping in mind we do have civil and doctor/patient confidentiality rights in this country, what should this employee do?

        • http://twitter.com/CalFreiburger Calvin Freiburger

          So now we’re debating completely hypothetical laws and fictional jobs? I’ve gotta say, I don’t know if I’ve ever encountered anyone who’s gone to so much trouble to *not* discuss the issue he’s objecting to my opinion on.

          • Ducats69376

            Hey,
            Calvin-

            What
            you call a debate, I call a question.  A question you deftly
            avoided answering by the way.

            I’m
            actually confronting the issue head on.  I’m merely taking the
            macro view, which is what we should all expect of our lawmakers.

            “Hypothetical
            laws” you say?

            The
            Blunt Amendment: Allows employers to withhold insurance coverage for
            any health care service that violates their “religious beliefs”.

            Senator
            Blunt: “Employers would be required to prove that their
            objection was rooted in long held moral or religious convictions”.

            I
            think you’ll agree a long held moral or religious conviction by
            most Christians and Catholics has been:

            Lev.
            20:13: “If a man also lie with mankind, as he lies with a
            woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely
            be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.”

            Now,
            you’re surely in favor of this amendment, pass or no pass.  After
            all, you said:

            “Yes, how
            dare Georgetown attempt to verify the legitimacy of requests for a
            service that could so easily be used for entirely
            different purposes!” and “Whenever you expect
            someone else to pay for something, the reason why IS their business”.

            I
            wrote “Under this law, the employer can base his decision on
            being morally offended”.  As you can see, clearly not
            hypothetical.

            So
            I ask again: What should this employee do?

            I’d
            appreciate an answer and not a deflection.

          • http://twitter.com/CalFreiburger Calvin Freiburger

            You’re not quoting Blunt’s actual words; you’re quoting CNN anchor Carol Costello’s assessment of him. The actual text of the Blunt Amendment contains nothing that suggests the government would force either employer or employee to violate confidentiality.

            So let’s cut to the chase, shall we? This isn’t about disease treatment or confidentiality rights. This is about your belief in the “right” to be provided with birth control, and your having so little respect for the rights or beliefs of your countrymen that you’re happy to use the full force of the federal government to impose your morality on them.

            That’s a losing proposition for you, so you’re grasping at whatever straws you think will change the subject to more sympathetic ground. Refuting those attempts is a fun exercise, but after 200+ comments of debating the issue with you and others, there’s nothing more about the ACTUAL issue that can or needs to be said.

          • Ducats69376

            Hey,
            Calvin-

            You
            probably won’t respond to me anymore so I’ll have to make this my
            last post, even though I didn’t want to.

            Your
            question ‘Why should the federal government mandate elective services
            in a health policy?’ Is understood by me. It has been from the
            beginning. But I can’t answer in brief concerning a topic like this.
            I had to build a narrative. To show how it would play-out to back
            up my position. But since I couldn’t get you to answer my question,
            I’m forced to jump to the end.

            The
            only way to avoid a government mandate on a health policy is to pass
            a law that lets employers opt-out of undesirable services. I am
            against this, you are for it. This is the issue, regardless of your
            accusations. This led to the Blunt Amendment:

            (A)
            FOR HEALTH PLANS.–A health plan shall not be considered to have
            failed to provide the essential health benefits package described in
            subsection (a) (or preventive health services described in section
            2713 of the Public Health Service Act), to fail to be a qualified
            health plan, or to fail to fulfill any other requirement under this
            title on the basis that it declines to provide coverage of specific
            items or services because–

            “(i)
            providing coverage (or, in the case of a sponsor of a group health
            plan, paying for coverage) of such specific items or services is
            contrary to the religious beliefs or moral convictions of the
            sponsor, issuer, or other entity offering the plan; or

            “(ii)
            such coverage (in the case of individual coverage) is contrary to the
            religious beliefs or moral convictions of the purchaser or
            beneficiary of the coverage.

            I
            can paste the whole thing but I’m sure you’ve read it.

            There
            is a law in Florida which some believe gave justification for a man
            to shoot and kill an unarmed black teen. He will use this law to
            defend himself in court. When it passed in 2005, The governor, NRA
            and other proponents saw it as nothing but positive for the
            community. A common sense way to protect oneself. But a few said
            ‘this will lead to problems’. Now after the shooting, new scrutiny
            is being heaped on this law. And the former governor is doing his
            best to distance himself from a law he once touted. What kind of
            legislation leads to such ridiculous ambiguity? A law that wasn’t
            ‘fleshed-out’, so to speak, before it’s passage.

            A
            responsible person looks at the consequences of proposed legislation
            to see how it can affect unintended situations. Birth control
            happens to be the intended situation. It didn’t have to be, but
            after Obama brought it up it became the official jumping-off point.
            Since you can’t write a bill that affects only one class of people,
            you have to make it broad to potentially include everyone. Hence,
            ‘birth control’ does not appear above.

            The
            scenario I laid out about the gay worker is a work
            situation—worker-boss relationship—which is true all over this
            country, like it or not. No one wants my example to happen, but it
            can and likely will under a law like this. We have a responsibility
            to examine the fallout, which is what I’m doing and asking you to do.

            The
            bill does not mention confidentiality, true. Therefore, if an
            employee is forced to tell his/her employer his/her condition in
            order to get medication, is the employer bound by the same
            confidentiality as the doctor/patient? What recourse does the
            employee have if the employer tells coworkers? Does the employee
            still have the same right to privacy as before? Please, don’t say
            ‘this will never happen’. It’s the bill’s obligation to address this
            and it does not.

            By
            allowing an ‘opt-out’ of a requirement on a policy, which you must do
            in order to avoid a mandate, you force employees to discuss their
            condition with someone other than their doctor and provider. It is a
            fundamentally flawed concept to allow someone’s biases and prejudices
            to get between a patient and their doctor. The only way to avoid
            this mandate, as you promote, is to allow this flaw. That is the
            issue. Accuse me of avoidance if you must, but that is the issue and
            you know it.

            This
            is the hard part of the issue. Something tells me you don’t want to
            confront this aspect. It’s much easier to claim ‘religious liberty’
            and let the chips fall. After all, it won’t affect you, right?
            You’ll just move on to the next commentary. A responsible person
            doesn’t do that. I can’t do that. Florida shouldn’t have done that.
            If you don’t understand my answer, I feel for you.

            My
            question still stands, for the third time. I guess I’m a dreamer.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jeep.obsessed Brooke Mehr

      Just so you know, the spacing on your post is incredibly painful to read.

      Comparing the diseases that can be ‘treated’ by birth control pills to HIV is a bit out there. Somehow, I think the diseases these women are prescribed birth control for aren’t likely to come with much “prejudice and bigotry” in the work place. 

      • Ducats69376

        Hey Brooke-
        Just so I’m clear, you want a law written that discriminates against women of child-bearing age.  Whereby all other groups are excluded from the affects of the law.  Do I have that right?

        • Ginger

          No we want the laws to apply equally to all of us. My doctors have to tell the insurance company about my treatments and medications – even if it is an embarrassing condition.  They do not have to pay if I refuse to provide them the info. The pro-abortion crowd seems to think they are privileged and should get whatever they want, whether needed or or simply wanted – no questions asked.

          • Ginger

            We also want minors protected from pedophiles to take them in for abortions to cover up their crimes and continue abusing their victims

          • Ducats69376

            Hey, Ginger.  In what country do you live?  If US, what state?

    • Guest

      Attack the argument, not the person please!

      • Ducats69376

        Hey, Guest.  I have no idea what this means or what you’re implying.

        Have a good day.

    • Ginger

      It is not your boss who requires the information, but the insurance company running under Medicare part D or Medical Assistance, etc.
      They require this information if you are perscribed cold medicine or pain pills for backache or heart meds or any other medication or medical service.
      Why is it only birth control and termination that is secret?
      Could it be because in 99% of the cases it is unecessary and only a convenience thing?

      • Ducats69376

        Hello Gingersnap-

        The procedure is irrelevant.  The doctor tells insurance that the patient needs a certain service.  Ins. will then approve and pay for the service.  The Blunt bill says the patient’s boss can insert him/herself between these two parties if he/she is offended.  The bill says this, not me.  If you’re okay with this, you haven’t thought it through to the bitter end.
        Take care.

  • Guest

    Several institutions in Wisconsin, including Gundersen Lutheran, Children’s Hospital, and the University of Wisconsin, use telemedicine for a number of different things, including stroke treatment, pediatric care, and urgent care.  What accounts for Wisconsin pro-lifers’ hypocritical silence on those uses of telemed?

    Several hundred people die each year from taking Tylenol.  Does Pro-Life Wisconsin believe that its use should be highly restricted, if not banned, or do they just not care because the people taking it have already been born?

    • http://twitter.com/CalFreiburger Calvin Freiburger

      Because in this case, Pro-Life Wisconsin knows the docs on the other end of the webcam can’t be trusted. More from the linked press release:

      “In
      2010, Pro-Life Wisconsin warned of the likelihood of RU-486 web cam
      abortions in Wisconsin and the health dangers of mifepristone. We
      reported that Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin dispenses birth control,
      which can act as an abortifacient, via teleconferencing. At the time, video phones, which are the size of a
      laptop computer, were at 10 Planned Parenthood locations, chosen because
      they are the organization’s Title X family planning clinics and receive
      funding from the federal government.

      “Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin has the videoconference infrastructure in place to dispense mifepristone,” said Virginia Zignego,
      communications director for Pro-Life Wisconsin. “Senate Bill 306 closes
      the door on the real possibility of RU-486 abortions in our state. We
      thank Senator Lazich and Representative Litjens for their vision in introducing this preemptive legislation.”

      Besides, why should any issue group opine on matters beyond their scope (in this case, not pertaining to the rights of the unborn and/or pregnancy)? Would you consider the National Rifle Association not talking about global warming to be a sign they hate the environment?

    • Ginger

      Because we can’t put five hundred different topics together in on bill. That’s our politicians who attatch unrelated issues onto popular bills to get them passed in secret. Each issue is dealt with as a separate issue.  Acetaminophen, and ibuprofen are a separate issue.  They cause deaths when misused just like children’s cough syrup causes deaths when misused.These issues are being addressed – separately. 

  • Joanneis4Jesus

    Anyone, especially a doctor, who wants to use a webcam for medical treatment is a moron!!! I don’t care what the issue. Not to mention, this is just another example of the hypocritical pro-abortion voice. They scream “Women’s health!” but overlook how dangerous these drugs are. But hey, as long as the baby was aborted, who cares if the mother bleeds to death, right? Maybe they’re ok with these women dying since they can twist it for their stupid “we told you pregnancy was dangerous” arguments.

  • Gail Finke

    Read Bernard Nathanson’s books. From the very first, feminist abortion advocates fought to get doctors taken out of the picture. They wanted it to be a “women helping women” thing that had nothing at all to do with the medical profession. And it looks as if they are now getting their way in some cases.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/VSG4ZINXB5WKWEZZMN7O5ELFFI Ric

    As a republican I want the government our of my businesses and my life. I’m against abortion but I refuse to have a doctor probe any woman. If you are for doctors probing woman, call yourself a conservative, but don’t you dare call yourself a republican.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/VSG4ZINXB5WKWEZZMN7O5ELFFI Ric

    As a republican I want the government our of my businesses and my life. I’m against abortion but I refuse to have a doctor probe any woman. If you are for doctors probing woman, call yourself a conservative, but don’t you dare call yourself a republican.

    • http://twitter.com/CalFreiburger Calvin Freiburger

      What are you referring to?