Friday, January 07, 2005

Did You Ejaculate Last Night?

Was it while you were asleep? Have you called the police to report the spermal death? You do have twelve hours before your lack of reporting becomes something that might be punishable by a jail term or a fine, so you have time to read the rest of this post. Relax.

Relax even more. This will not apply to your ejaculations, but it might apply to your wife's or girlfriend's delayed period, because such a period may be a sign of fetal death! Yes, fetal death. At least in the mind of delegate John Cosgrove of Virginia. He's a Republican, of course, and he's also busy trying to ban same-sex marriage. The other thing he is trying to ban is the tremendous underreporting of fetal death, and he is doing this by introducing a proposal to make such underreporting illegal. Maura on Daily Kos has an excellent diary on the issue and its likely consequences. Go and read it.

If the world decided to obey John Cosgrove, every miscarriage would be studied as a potential crime, my dears. If it wasn't promptly reported, the woman who just suffered the miscarriage might go to prison or suffer a large fine or perhaps even both. You know, this sounds so very much like something from the Taliban era in Afghanistan, a place where women go to prison for very similar kinds of reasons.

It also sounds a lot like Margaret Atwood's dystopian replacement of the United States, the imaginary Gilead, a country where women's fertility is under constant observation and manipulation by the state powers. It is the sort of world that Cosgrove is busily building: First, we define various types of miscarriages as death, death of an unborn baby, then we institute control systems that keep on eye on the menstrual cycles of all women, then we declare abortion illegal and there you are! Put on your color-coded fertility bonnets, sisters. The state knows when you ovulate.

If this upsets you (as it should), you can take action:

John Cosgrove
P.O. Box 15483
Chesapeake, Virginia 23328
(757) 547-3422
Thanks to Anne in my comments for first telling me about this.