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Opinion: South Dakota abortion ban goes too far

Chas Jewett is a member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe.

"Recently, volunteers from the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families announced they had collected more than 38,000 signatures on a petition to repeal the extreme abortion ban signed by Gov. Rounds on March 21. The fact that almost 5 percent of the state's population signed the petition strongly suggests that South Dakotans believe in compassion, mercy, and the rights of women, families, and communities to make decisions for themselves. Many of those who signed the petition no doubt did so in reaction to an abortion ban that does not even make an exception for women who are victims of rape or incest.

Many people already know that rape and incest are not the primary reason why most women have abortions. Nevertheless, people are deeply offended because the ban sends the message that the state does not take seriously the pervasive violence in women's lives. The state has, in effect, said that rather than working to understand and end that violence, the state will make it worse for those women who happen to get pregnant as a result of it. The ban then, isn't just about abortion; it is about a state that makes violence against women a sideshow to the abortion controversy."

Get the Story:
Chas Jewett: S.D. Abortion Ban Misses The Mark (The Yankton Press & Dakotan 7/14)

Relevant Links:
Oglala Sioux Tribe -

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