South Dakota abortion bill

(CNN) — South Dakota Gov. Mike Rounds signed a bill Monday that bans nearly all abortions in the state, legislation in direct conflict with the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion in 1973.

The new law defines life as originating “at the time of conception.”

“In the history of the world, the true test of a civilization is how well people treat the most vulnerable and most helpless in their society,” said a statement released by Rounds, a Republican.

“The sponsors and supporters of this bill believe that abortion is wrong because unborn children are the most vulnerable and most helpless persons in our society. I agree with them.”

Although the law — intended as a constitutional challenge to Roe v. Wade — is set to take effect July 1, Rounds said in the statement that he expects legal action will prevent that. He added that a settlement of the issue could take years and might ultimately be decided by the nation’s highest court.

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Of course, the governor is wrong. The most vulnerable people in our society are not the unborn but yet the born. We have millions of children that are being kicked off of welfare and Medicare payrolls. Tens of thousands of children are being abused and Child protective services are unable to protect these children because of budgetary cutbacks. We have left millions of children behind in education. We have far more important and pressing problems than abortion. But the far right continue to bring it up over and over again to distract us from the real problems.

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Errington C. Thompson, MD

Dr. Thompson is a surgeon, scholar, full-time sports fan and part-time political activist. He is active in a number of community projects and initiatives. Through medicine, he strives to improve the physical health of all he treats.


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