The new abortion law in Texas doesn’t have any exemptions for survivors of rape or incest – banning abortions in the state after six weeks of pregnancy. Governor Greg Abbott defended that portion of the law – saying the state would aggressively go after suspected rapists.
The governor’s comments gained national attention, including thousands of Texans who expressed disagreement.
“Let’s make something very clear, rape is a crime. And Texas will work tirelessly to ensure we eliminate all rapists from the streets of Texas,” Abbott said. “So goal number one in the state of Texas is to eliminate rape, so that no woman, no person will be a victim of rape.”
Lavinia Masters is a rape survivor, she believes the new law forces a rape or incest survivor to carry a pregnancy to term.
“How dare you Texas. And you are going to take that power away from me, as a rape victim at 13, and tell me, ‘You’re going to have that child,'” Masters said. “No, sir. No, ma’am. That is not your position.”
Masters is aware that the law gives six weeks to get an abortion, but she said women need more time.
“Six weeks is not much time at all. We have one living child, my husband and I, and I didn’t find out until eight weeks when I was pregnant,” Masters said. “So, that is not a realistic timeframe.”
Pro-Life Texans are celebrating the new law. Kyleen Wright is the President of Texans for Life Coalition. She said abortion is never the never, even in cases of sexual assault.
“Having an abortion doesn’t undo the pregnancy, it just makes her the mother of a dead baby,” Wright said. “And for most women, that is trauma on top of trauma.”
“As far as being forced to carry a baby to term, we’re talking about women carrying their own children and to suggest that that is somehow being forced, that is sort of a war on nature,” Wright said. “This is what happens, women get pregnant, and they have babies. They aren’t carrying toads or some species they are carrying their own children.”
“What was I going to do with a child at 13? My mom was barely a single mom of four children, barely able to feed us,” Masters said. “So bring another child, don’t even know the father of that child, and have to deal with raising a child. Living that trauma as a child myself, and having to figure things out. That’s ludicrous to even process that in my mind, even speaking it now.”
Masters said people need to give more consideration for the survivors.
“I understand morals, I understand values, I understand your faith, I have all of that,” Master said. “But I also have compassion for others, and I have compassion for their pain, I have compassion for their trauma, the things that happened to them.”