Support the Female Troops

As has been previously mentioned in this space, it is illegal for military hospitals to provide abortion services to female soldiers, with exceptions for life endangerment and rape/incest (and soldiers must foot the bill for the latter), but that may be changing:
[T]ucked into the same 852-page Pentagon policy bill as the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" is a little-noticed amendment that takes on another emotionally charged issue: making abortion easier for military women in war zones.

In a vote that advocates of abortion rights sought beforehand to keep quiet, the Senate Armed Services Committee passed a provision on May 27 to allow privately financed abortions at military hospitals and bases. Current law bans abortions in most cases at military facilities, even if women pay themselves, meaning they must go outside to private hospitals and clinics — an impossibility for many of the estimated 100,000 American servicewomen in foreign countries, particularly in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The result, the advocates say, is that military women serving overseas do not have the same access to basic health care that other American women do, or that is ensured by the laws of the country they are fighting to protect. "It's an issue of basic fairness," said Cecile Richards, the president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, one of eight women's advocacy groups that lobbied heavily last month for the amendment's passage.

Opponents say that because the abortions would be performed in government facilities, taxpayer money would still help subsidize the underlying costs — the reason that Senator Ben Nelson, a Nebraska Democrat who is opposed to abortion, voted against the amendment. "He opposes government-provided or funded abortion," said Jake Thompson, a spokesman.
I'll bet he "supports the troops," though, right? Just not the female troops, who are being denied the very equality they're willing to put their lives on the line to defend.

As the article notes, "women have been at war in Iraq and Afghanistan for nearly a decade." It's truly absurd that women risking their lives (ostensibly) to defend their country are not guaranteed access to the same rights, to a legal medical procedure, that women at home (ostensibly) can access.

It would be positively stupendous if we could repeal DADT and the military abortion ban in one fell swoop.

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