Posted Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2012, at 10:15 AM
Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images
Pro-choicers have been accusing conservatives for decades of valuing fetuses more than actual born children (and exponentially more than post-pubescent women), and now state legislators in Michigan are considering proving them right. The legislature held a hearing on Tuesday for House Bill 5684 and 5685, which would "allow taxpayers to claim a dependency exemption for a fetus that has completed at least 12 weeks of gestation as of the last day of the tax year and that has been under the care and observation of a physician since at least 12 weeks of gestation." Yep, tax exemptions for fetuses.
This bill really demonstrates the exciting new extremist direction of anti-choice nuttery—the bill author's Todd Akin-style imagined reality, where OB-GYNs are fetus doctors instead of lady doctors, is particularly charming. But what makes this even more offensive than the norm of offensiveness we've grown used to is that Michigan just slashed a bunch of tax relief for actual children. Michigan Republicans took the hatchet to the Earned Income Tax Credit and child care subsidy, a move that directly hurts families who are trying to house, clothe, and feed children unfortunate enough to have developed beyond the fetal stage into the living, breathing person stage. If Michigan passes this new bill, it can only be taken as a direct statement that fetuses have far more value to Michigan than children.
Clearly, the only solution here is for women to simply stay pregnant. But medical science tells us that, barring some futuristic cryogenic fetus-preserving technology, those pesky and unruly female bodies tend to complete the incubation stage at a predictable pace, turning adorable, tax-exempt fetuses into stupid old money-sucking babies with their never-ending health care and nutrition needs. Needs, or, as Mitt Romney might call them, "gifts."