Dear Editor,

The 10-year-old girl recently forced to get an abortion in Indiana was raped several times, once by her rapist and twice by Republican legislators and leaders representing those who voted them into office. U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan called the incident a “hoax” and Ohio Attorney General David Yost doubted the girl’s existence on Fox telling host Jesse Waters that it was “hoax” to say she was forced to leave the state for an abortion. Their lack of integrity and credibility was made clear by the dear little girl’s abortion in Indiana. The Republican concocted legislation, signed by Gov. DeWine and made abortion legal in Ohio for that child, has a medical emergency exemption which includes nothing whatsoever regarding age. Are 10-year-olds automatically exempt under Ohio law? Nothing in the law about it. How about 11-year-olds? 12? 13? 14? At what age are children or teens exempted from the law which makes abortion illegal? Shamefully, Attorney General Yost knows the Republican-passed law does not contain, nor will his base accept an abortion exemption based on age. After all, he helped pass that law and now he owns it; same goes for Gov. DeWine and the Republican Party. The reason the little 10-year-old girl was forced out of Ohio for abortion is because doctors here face criminal felony charges if it was performed in this state. Tragically, bad abortion law is about to get worse post-election, much worse.

Ohio is a state where a rapist can plead guilty to a lesser charge and file for custody of the child. The rapist can be granted co-parenting rights if he cooperates by plea bargaining. Ohio abortion law, sick and morally depraved under the current Republican supermajority, is about to denigrate even further under House Bill 598 teed up for post-election. Afraid of losing votes, Republicans won’t pull the trigger on their latest extremist-pleasing legislation until the election has passed. HB 598 will ban abortion in all cases including rape and incest, regardless of age; it will make travel to other states for an abortion illegal; it will criminalize in-vitro fertilization by defining ‘unborn child’ at fertilization; and it will outlaw contraception based on that definition as strained religious beliefs become codified in Ohio law.

During a July 11 interview on 700 WLW, Rep. Jean Schmidt assured Republicans on conservative talk radio that HB 598 will pass after the fall election, and Gov. DeWine plans to sign it. If you believe current law, which forced a 10-year-old to travel to Indiana for an abortion, is immoral and perverted, wait until post-election, because gross distortions of decency under right-wing Republican extremists believing they will bever be held accountable have only begun. Over-reaching government continues taking away our most basic rights and freedoms under right-wing Republican leadership hell-bent on imposing their personal religious beliefs on everyone, and they are deceitfully using Ohio law to accomplish it.

Rolland Myers