Bette Midler says women should ‘refuse to have sex with men’ to protest Texas abortion law
AUSTIN, Texas - Bette Midler is calling on women to sing a different tune.
The Golden Globe winner recently took to Twitter and offered one approach to protesting Senate Bill 8, a strict and controversial law that bans most abortions. It was passed through the Texas legislature in May and took effect on Wednesday.
"I suggest that all women refuse to have sex with men until they are guaranteed the right to choose by Congress," the 75-year-old tweeted.
But someone else may have already come up with that idea.
"My dad actually suggested that decades ago," replied Frank Sinatra’s daughter, Nancy Sinatra.
The star has used the social media platform to speak out against the decision that allowed the bill to take effect. It prohibits abortions after six weeks of pregnancy, which is before most people know they’re expecting. It does not allow exceptions for pregnancies that are the result of incest or rape.
Rather than be enforced by government authorities, the law gives citizens the right to file civil suits and collect damages against anyone aiding an abortion.
"Why do #antivaxxers and #antimaskers get to live the ‘my body, my choice’ life, but pregnant women are not allowed to?" wrote Midler. "How is this fair? Some say it's Texas' way of keeping black and brown women poor. I say it's also because they want WHITE women to keep replenishing the stock."
"The cruelty of the #GOP is endless," Midler continued. "We are suffering COVID-19, hurricanes, apocalyptic flooding, wildfires from hell, joblessness, homelessness, evictions, racial strife, and they pick this hideous time to pile on yet another shock to women, by taking away their right to choose."
"This isn’t about guns, speech, money or war. It’s about women, their lives, their bodies and their autonomy," she also tweeted. "That’s what allowed the court to do shoddy work, with careless disregard, because who’s going to stop it? They only did the thing in the dead of night, without care or effort, because they believe women are so used to being gaslit that of course, they’ll just tolerate it. They did the thing in the dead of night without care or effort because they genuinely believe that they’re only women, and they deserve what they get."
The new Texas law represents the most significant threat yet to the Supreme Court’s 1973 decision establishing the right to an abortion. Surveys suggest that ruling still has broad support — 69% of voters in last year’s elections said Roe v. Wade should be left as is, compared with just 29% saying it should be overturned, according to AP VoteCast, a poll of the electorate.
A June poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found that most Americans think abortion should be limited after the first trimester, but about six in 10 said it should usually be legal in the first three months of pregnancy. More than eight in 10 said it should be legal in cases of rape or incest.
The poll found that younger adults are especially likely to support legal abortion. Sixty-three percent of those under age 45 said abortion should usually be legal, compared with 51% of those 45 and older. Still, even young adults support some limits on abortion based on the time of pregnancy, with majorities across all age groups saying most abortions should be illegal by the third trimester.
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The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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