The War on Women - NJ7 Citizens for Change

The War on Women

The House recently voted in favor of H.R. 36, the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, that would ban abortions later than 20 weeks of pregnancy.

More recently, the Trump Administration expanded the rights of employers to deny women insurance coverage for contraceptives that was established under the Affordable Care Act.

Both of these actions are claimed to be based in support of deep-rooted moral, ethical and religious convictions.

It is easy to draw a line between these two actions and see a broader attack on the reproductive rights of women by squeezing both ends of the conception and pregnancy cycle through a combination of legislation and executive orders.

I know women who have faced the excruciating mental agony of deciding on a late-stage abortion.  No-one who has experienced, even second-hand, that wrenching torment can possibly believe such decisions are taken without the deepest soul-searching about that choice.  And talk that coverage of contraception could lead to more “more risky sexual behavior” among some teenagers and young women sits poorly amidst the extensive media advertising for aids for erectile dysfunction for men.

The hypocritical double standard displayed by legislators such as Representative Tim Murphy of Pennsylvania highlights the obvious.  Many men espouse one set of values on the streets, and another set between the sheets. And that starts at the top, with a President whose attacks on women, physical and verbal, have been all-too-fully documented.

NJ District 7 needs a Representative who does indeed display “deep-rooted moral, ethical and religious convictions” and supports the equal rights of both men and women in our society.

About Merv Turner

Merv Turner was born and educated in England, where he earned a PhD in chemistry.  After a career in UK academic research, he moved to New Jersey in 1985 to take a position in Merck Research Labs, in Rahway.  Merv spent his career with Merck, in drug discovery, licensing and business development, and corporate strategy, and retired in 2011. He continues to consult in the biotechnology and pharma sector. He has lived with his wife in Westfield NJ since 1985.


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  • Patti Heland
    commented 2017-10-09 15:20:39 -0400
    Thank you for bringing these two serious reproductive health care restrictions to our attention. H.R. 36 would prohibit abortions after 20 weeks post-fertilization, regardless of whether the pregnancy would harm the woman’s health or the fetus has severe abnormalities that would make survival unlikely or impossible. The bill also threatens physicians with fines and a harsh penalty of up to five years in prison. Additionally, H.R. 36 also includes a medically unnecessary, mandatory 48-hour waiting period for rape survivors by requiring adult patients to obtain medical care or counseling from a state-licensed counselor or victims’ rights advocate for their assault at least two days prior to receiving abortion services. Minors who have become pregnant after rape or incest are likewise required to report the crime to law enforcement or child protective services before receiving an abortion.
    The executive order on contraception focuses on turning back the clock on women’s health care. Many women use birth control methods for more than pregnancy prevention, including treatment of hormonal imbalances and endometriosis.
    These two acts are an assault on women, men and all those involved in family planning. We must elect a representative to District 7 who will support our equal rights.

    Patti Helfand
    Chairperson, Westfield 20/20 Women’s Action Committee