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Politics, Religion

Woman Faces Life in Prison for Stillbirth

Back in 2009, I warned about the legal danger of pursuing personhood for fetuses.  I warned that even partial steps in that direction would result in the destruction of women’s lives.  That the ideological agenda to outlaw abortion at any cost would open a Pandora’s Box.

Welcome to Pandora’s Playground, ladies and gentlemen.  Thirty-eight states have some form of “fetal homicide” law on the books.  They were drawn up primarily as a means to prosecute men whose violent assaults on women resulted in loss of a fetus. Unfortunately, under the law, what’s good for the gander is also good for the goose.  To date, hundreds of women — HUNDREDS of women — have found themselves facing prison for the “crime” of having a miscarriage or stillbirth.

The latest is a 15 year old Mississippi teen facing life in prison after a stillbirth.  You see, the prosecutors discovered that Rennie Gibbs had a cocaine habit.  So  they charged her with the “depraved-heart murder” of her child, which carries a mandatory life sentence.

Some commentators are taking a defensive approach to the case.  They mention that there is no proof that the girl’s drug use caused the stillbirth.  And they’re right.  But it’s beside the point.  The point is that there is no good reason for the girl to need to defend herself.  It’s downright psychotic to put a fifteen year old child on the stand and threaten her with life in prison for a stillbirth.




2 thoughts on “Woman Faces Life in Prison for Stillbirth

  1. That’s not just stupid, that’s Southern stupid.

    Posted by cptpineapple | July 5, 2011, 7:46 pm
  2. The goal of religious fascists is, and always has been, to control women’s lives.

    If they were really concerned about the foetuses, why do the theocrats oppose education and better employment opportunities for the poor? Without those things, the babies will grow up starving and malnourished, without much of a hope for the future.

    Posted by P Smith | July 16, 2011, 6:38 am

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