An Alabama Democratic lawmaker is retaliating against the state's pro-life law by introducing a bill that would require all men to get a vasectomy shortly after turning 50 years old, or after the birth of their third child, according to Yellowhammer News.
State Rep. Rolanda Hollis filed House Bill 238 in an attempt to place reproductive restrictions on men since the state voted to criminalize abortion. Because the law in Alabama (which is not in effect due to legal obstacles related to Roe v. Wade) makes the killing of unborn children illegal, Hollis apparently believes that men should not be able to father children after a certain point in life.
"Under existing law, there are no restrictions on the reproductive rights of men," the bill's synopsis reads. "This bill would require a man to undergo a vasectomy within one month of his 50th birthday or the birth of his third biological child, whichever comes first."
The bill specifies that the vasectomy must be obtained at the man's own expense.
The bill is clearly an attempt to make a point about so-called reproductive rights and not a legislative proposal with a serious chance at passage, and the apparent comparison of a vasectomy to an abortion is imperfect, to say the least.
Alabama's law criminalizes the performing of an abortion on the basis that a child in the womb is deserving of the same right to life as a child outside the womb, and that an abortion unjustly ends a human life. The law does not require a woman to pay for an invasive, life-changing procedure. In fact, it does the exact opposite.
In theory, a law requiring men to get vasectomies after a third child or after age 50 would hinder the reproductive rights of women nearly as much as men, considering women may also want large families or may desire to have children with a spouse or partner who is 50 or older.
During debate over Alabama's abortion law last year, Hollis made another comparison when she read a poem titled, "If my Vagina was a Gun," to express her opposition to the law.