Letter: Waiting period betrays lack of compassion

Gov. Terry Branstad signed into law a 72-hour waiting period for abortions, as well as other restrictions. I have seen many people ask what the big deal is about three days. Some women must travel 4+ hours each way to reach an abortion clinic. Now they have to make that drive twice, and may lack transportation in the first place, so they have to borrow a car. Sixty percent of women who get abortions already have children to care for and will have to find child care. Taking an additional day off work can be the difference that makes families go hungry. Many Iowans have been fortunate enough to never face this kind of poverty, and that’s good. But we need compassionate for those less lucky.

Furthermore, there is only a limited window in which a woman can take the abortion pill, a much cheaper and less invasive method for abortion. Three days can push her out of this window. This bill is going to force women to have abortions later in their pregnancies.

Women do not need to be forced to go to a clinic twice so they can “think it through.” Do people have so little faith in women that they believe women must be told to think? And considering these restrictions are not happening in a vacuum — they are happening while we have also slashed funding for family planning and cut foster care services — I wonder how much these people really care about children or families.

Natalie Harwood

Cedar Rapids

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