Okla. abortion law went too far in targeting doctors
Re “Okla. passes legislation to criminalize most abortions” (Page A2, May 20): As a provider of comprehensive reproductive health care, including abortions, I am professionally insulted by the recent Oklahoma legislation, and I applaud Governor Mary Fallin for vetoing it. Oklahoma was practically a signature away from making abortions illegal in their state.
These laws against providers, also called TRAP laws (for targeted regulation against abortion providers), specifically make the practice of a safe, legal procedure more cumbersome and subsequently more difficult to access by women who need these services. I understand that many people identify as pro-life and would like abortion to be illegal. The hope was that the Oklahoma law would help overturn Roe v. Wade.
But this law goes beyond such barriers to care as mandatory clinic regulations and waiting periods. It would have banned doctors from providing medical care and allowed legislators to decide how doctors care for patients. That would be like preventing teachers from teaching history or stopping lawyers from defending certain groups of people.
Doctors should use evidence to guide them in providing the best care for their patients. We should not let politicians dictate what happens inside the exam room.