In a ploy to get people to take a serious look at the right for a woman to make decisions about her own body, an anti-vasectomy bill was introduced by state representative Yasmin Neal in the early February 2012. She is quoted as saying, “If we legislate women’s bodies, it’s only fair that we legislate men’s,” said Neal, who said she wanted to Write a bill that would generate emotion and conversation the way anti-abortion bills do. “There are too many problems in the state. Why are you under the skirts of women? I’m sure there are other places to be.”
This bill was written in response to a new anti-abortion bill that was introduced in Georgia that contained a prison sentence of 1-10 years for abortions done after 20 weeks of pregnancy. It is currently illegal for abortions to be performed after 20 weeks unless the life or health of the mother will be in jeopardy.
Many people feel that this bill is making light of a very serious topic and are disappointed in the approach of using an anti-vasectomy bill to make a political statement. Even Representative Neal admits that she has no problems with men getting vasectomies. Whether you agree with them or not, you have to admit this is a pretty clever way to make a point. She is definitely getting the attention that she wanted. It is not likely however that this bill will get any serious debate. Other states are also following suit with the same tactic. In the late February, 2012, Rep. Stacey Newman, D-St. Louis, also filed a bill that would prevent men from vasectomies unless needed to avert serious injury or death. We didn’t hear any anti-vasectomy bills in Minnesota.