As you may know, today is election day in the United States. There are some ballot issues that have gained national attention, like Ohio's anti-union measure, Issue 2 (Vote no, Ohioans! Vote no!). And there's Mississippi's "personhood" issue, Prop. 26. Both Liss and I have written on the personhood nonsense previously (here and here and here and here, for example). Generally, a group called Personhood USA is out to amend constitutions everywhere to give full-person rights to fertilized eggs. In Mississippi, they have gained enough momentum to get Prop 26 on the ballot to do just that.

Mississippi voters are, apparently according to polling, nearly evenly split on the issue.
According to Public Policy Polling, Initiative 26, the so-called "Personhood" amendment in Mississippi, is currently tied, with 45 percent of voters supporting the measure and 44 percent of voters opposed to it.

That leaves over 10 percent of Mississippi residents unsure of how they will vote, and they could swing the election in either direction.

In the end, it could just come down to who shows up at the polls.
If you're in Mississippi, please go vote!

In my Twitter feed this morning I noticed that NPR reported that Mississippi is the state with the most people who rely on SNAP (nutrition assistance).
The state of Mississippi has the highest percentage of its population — 24 percent — on food stamps of any state in the country.
Now, people who have abortions do so for different reasons, given everyone has individual circumstances that lead to their decision. However, generally speaking, there is a significant commonality (emphasis mine):
• About 61% of abortions are obtained by women who have one or more children.

• Forty-two percent of women obtaining abortions have incomes below 100% of the federal poverty level ($10,830 for a single woman with no children).

• Twenty-seven percent of women obtaining abortions have incomes between 100–199% of the federal poverty level.*

• The reasons women give for having an abortion underscore their understanding of the responsibilities of parenthood and family life. Three-fourths of women cite concern for or responsibility to other individuals; three-fourths say they cannot afford a child; three-fourths say that having a baby would interfere with work, school or the ability to care for dependents; and half say they do not want to be a single parent or are having problems with their husband or partner.
Sometimes people just cannot afford a(nother) child. Period. How the pregnancy occurred is irrelevant (for those who may be inclined to argue only some circumstances are worthy). And, as NPR points out, Mississippi in particular has a lot of people who already need assistance--how is the state going to help these people who they will force to give birth to more children if Prop 26 passes? I'm sure the voters who approve of Prop 26 will totally be on board with paying a tax increase to be able to support a needed increase in the social safety net. Totally. Or not.

The problem with most of these people who support bullshit initiatives like Prop 26 is that they don't fucking THINK. They parade around with blinders on and fingers in their ears yelling about "BAAAAABIES!" and yet don't actually follow any logical process to look at everything else about life beyond a fetus going from conception to birth--like eating (or any of the other questions I raised in my post here or that there will be consequences like this). The rest of the people who support things like Prop 26 have thought it out and generally don't care: "Hey, eat some bootstraps kid--guess your mom should have kept her legs shut!". Bootstrap chastity belts for everyone!

It's not going to stop. Personhood USA's goal is to amend all state constitutions. MoJo has a map of where they're going and how 2012 is shaping up. I am not going to link to Personhood USA but they also have state-by-state listings on their site, if you're so inclined to wade into that cesspool.

As I said before: to Personhood USA and those who support it, I look forward to seeing you be the first one in line (if your measures pass) at the government's new Mandatory Organ Donation & Harvesting Office. After all, everyone should be forced by the government to donate their organs to "give life" to a person who needs said organ(s) to live, right?

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