SC Ultrasound Bill Debate in the Senate - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

03/28/07

SC Ultrasound Bill Debate in the Senate

While some people feel every woman should have to go through the same process. Others say this bill is cruel to women who are already victims of a crime.

Pregnant women who want an abortion would have to view an ultra sound. Then sign a paper saying they saw their fetus. For victims of rape and incest who become pregnant, some believe this picture will only further traumatize their situation." That is really another form of inflicting pain on victims," said Shauw Chin Capps.

Capps is the Executive Director of Hope Haven in Beaufort, and deals directly with these victims on a daily basis. She says the legislature isn't taking into account that most rape victims don't report their crimes. And this bill would take away any rights they would have had to get rid of the unwanted pregnancy. "There's something wrong with that. She never chose to be raped, or the child never chose for her father to have sex with her -- but she's the one who has to pay the price to view the images," explained Capps.

Something not everyone agrees with. Beaufort County resident, Natalee Marick, believes in a woman's right to choose. But says all women who want abortions, regardless of their situation, should have to go through the same process. "Just because I think that they should not have to have the baby, doesn't mean they shouldn't go thru the same steps as someone else because that opens up loop holes."

But Capps hopes there is some sort of grace for rape and incest victims who get pregnant, in the form of an amendment. That would exclude them from the law." We need to make sure we're not causing more harm, unintentionally causing more harm, on a population that has already been harmed."

Right now, no amendment has been made. The South Carolina House has passed the bill, and it doesn't contain any exceptions. Governor Sanford says he supports the bill and will sign it if passed.

Reported By: Melanie A. Ruberti; mruberti@wtoc.com

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