Editorial: Prop 5 and our listening Legislature

by Guy Page

Okay, I admit it – the cartoon is a little over the top.

Most political cartoons are.

Like Tim Newcomb’s Jan. 19 Seven Days depiction of the three women seeking the Democratic nomination for Congress squabbling on a long car ride. Molly Gray in toddler’s car seat? Kesha Ram appearing – if only vaguely – ethnic? Becca Balint looking positively haggard?

Self-professed feminists/anti-agists/anti-racists emitted clouds of aghastation. How dare the male! Today, I couldn’t find the cartoon on the website. Not a good look for the fearless, independent Vermont press.

Good political cartoons fearlessly use hyperbole to tell the truth. Above, JB is telling his truth about the 6 pm, Wednesday hearing at the Vermont State House in which the House Human Services Committee will “listen to” Vermonters’ opinions about Proposition 5, which if approved would be the first ever amendment to the Vermont Constitution’s Chapter One, dealing with individual civil rights.

Except that:

  • The Human Services Committee Chair, Ann Pugh (depicted above), has received awards from Planned Parenthood PAC for her legislative advocacy. She was appointed to her current term as chair by House Speaker Jill Krowinski, former VP and lobbyist for Planned Parenthood. She and the overwhelming majority of the committee have an almost unbroken record of supporting legal abortion and opposing any limitations and restrictions.
  • The number of people allowed to testify in-person on the State House floor will be severely limited because, you know, Covid social distancing. Testifiers who do get to look lawmakers in the eyes won’t get to see their expressions, because, you know, Covid masking policy. As of today, the advertised link to testify via Zoom goes to a page that says, “This Form Is Closed.”

Three years ago, 700 pro-life Vermonters packed the Vermont State House and grounds in opposition to an unrestricted abortion bill. This year, as our Legislature contemplates turning our Constitution into an anything-goes-abortion passport, only a fraction of that crowd will be allowed inside or even to testify via Zoom. They can, of course, watch passively online – something pro-Zoom-only legislators like to call “unprecedented access.”

Tomorrow night, Vermonters will not be heard in large numbers. Tomorrow night, even those who speak inside may wonder if they have truly been heard. In fact the real action may take place in the gatherings, speeches, prayers and vigils likely to occur outside.

But tomorrow night is just one skirmish in the war over enshrining unrestricted abortion in the Vermont Constitution. The real Day of Decision will be November 8, when Prop 5 likely goes before all Vermont voters in a statewide referendum. On the same day, every one of the legislators who will sit enmasked, and hopefully listening, tomorrow night will be up for re-election, if they so choose.

As Donald Trump could tell you, a lot can happen between January and November.

Categories: Commentary

8 replies »

  1. Elected officials like Pugh and Krowinski love to throw around the terms “vulnerable” and “historically disadvantaged” to describe the various victims and victimhoods they so passionately advocate for. They advocate for criminal defendants well above the legal age of adulthood arguing that they are not responsible for their actions because “their brain is still developing” up until the age of 26. There is no human being more vulnerable than an unborn human. To deny their personhood is a total abdication of accepting biological science, and we know how leftists love to lecture their political opponents for being “anti-science”. I am personally pro-choice for reasons too complicated to get into here, but i still feel an urgent need to expose the flagrant hypocrisy that lefties exhibit when it comes to the issue of reproductive choice. Thank you Guy Page for helping to expose this pretense and hypocrisy.

    • Thank you for your intelligent, well-spoken objection to this proposition. We need more and more and more people like you to spread the TRUTH and expose the hypocrisy, double-speak, heavy-handedness, and insanity of this proposal so that it will be soundly defeated in November by an unbelievable majority!!

  2. This cartoon is great. I tried to register to speak by zoom but could not access registration. I have no confidence that the committee will even listen to the concerns of the public. Last Aug. I spoke with hundreds of people about Prop 5 at Franklin County Field Days. The overwhelming majority of the people I spoke with were against Prop 5 for a multitude of reasons. Even people who identified as pro-choice said they did not approve of abortion all nine months. Most agreed that they had no idea what Prop 5 meant even though I had a large sign with the exact wording of Prop 5 and they weren”t going to vote for something they couldn’t understand. Many wondered if men would have the right to reproductive autonomy and just what would that mean. I’ve wondered that myself. Most people agreed that it was outrageous that the Vermont Legislature passed a law allowing abortion all nine months of pregnancy with no regulations or safeguards for women’s health. People were very willing to share their disgust over Prop 5. So I am optimistic that if this goes for a vote in Nov. 22 the people of Vermont will vote it down. However, I am aware that there will be all kinds of funds to promote Prop 5 and I am extremely worried that those promoting Prop 5 will use dirty tricks.

  3. Prop 5 is framing abortion as PRO-CHOICE…the exercise of REPRODUCTIVE FREEDOMS/RIGHTS. Such mendacity is breathtaking. How do our neighbors come to be accused of interfering with the freedom to choose…the freedom to reproduce? These freedoms have never been at issue. We are asked to agree, that once the freedom to reproduce has been exorcized, the elimination of the product of that reproductive freedom, is to be enshrined. It’s asking the community to endorse a “right” to a reproductive mulligan…a do-over. Those in the community, who wish to prevail on you not to eliminate your reproductive mistakes, do not intend to have you relinquish your control over your own bodies. This is a specious accusation — the same as accusing abolitionists of looking to strip planters of their property rights. The abolitionists wanted citizens to change their minds about slaves being people…not property…worthy of the protections recognized for all people. Now we object to this Prop 5 and ask you to change your minds. Reproductive results are people. Don’t lives, once started, also deserve the protections accorded the rest of us?

  4. This legislator will be there in person. I hope folks come and express their outrage at this horrible proposal!

  5. Anyone thinking that this collection of legislators will listen to any dissenting voice is in for another let down. They have made their minds up and are going with it. The only way to stop this is to fire all of these people who chose death over life. I am really concerned that the rest of our Vermont voters are not getting the information they need. If these carpetbaggers and water carriers for Planned Parenthood write this atrocity into our constitution, affirming the state’s obligation to protect anyone killing babies who would naturally be born is an abomination. I hope this is the straw that breaks the back of the Dem/Prog destruction of Vermont. These people have no shame and have apparently never heard of birth control to prevent conception. The state’s new moto: Vermont, The Abortion State.

  6. This Nation is surely Marked for Judgement by The Almighty. This Nation will not…get away with spilling the blood of millions of innocents.

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