Does HB3326 subject women to the death penalty? Is it unconstitutional?

Some thoughts on HB3326 the Abolition of Abortion through Equal Protection for all unborn children act filed by Rep. Bryan Slaton.

The two big objections we have heard this session were really just the same objections we always hear to abolition. And the objections are made by pro-life politicians and their supporters.

1) This bill targets woman and subjects them to the death penalty
2) This bill is unconstitutional

Former Republican Rep. Byron Cook made those objections. Republican Rep. Jeff Leach made those objections. And now Republican Rep. Stephanie Klick is making the same objections.

Both objections are false. But that doesn’t stop politicians or their supporters from repeating the falsehoods.

Here’s why

On #1: Does HB3326 target women for the death penalty?

No. HB3326 targets only unborn children. It targets them for protection by the same justice system that protects you, the reader of this paragraph.

If your objection is that a mother would be held responsible for the murder of her child, then you have an issue not with HB3326 but with the preexisting Texas laws which classify the murdering of one’s own children as homicide and applies sanctions to those acts of violence.

If you object to those homicide laws, first: what on earth? Why???

Second: Maybe you object to those laws only when they’re used to protect a murdered unborn person and only when the murderer is the unborn person’s mother.

If you’re not willing to give an unborn person the same benefits of the justice system you demand for yourself, then you don’t really consider the unborn person the same sort of person as those who are already born.

Protections for me but not for thee! Your born privilege is showing.

HB3326 does not add any new laws. It does not add any new sanctions. HB3326 does only one thing: the laws that apply to born people in the event they are murdered are also applied to unborn people. That’s all it does.

It is the only bill that would STOP the murder of approximately 28,000 females being butchered every year in Texas.

On #2: Is HB3326 unconstitutional?

No. The US Constitution requires that states provide equal protection for all persons, which Texas currently does not do. HB3326 calls upon Texas to follow the constitution.

Those who say this bill is unconstitutional are those who would give unlimited power to the supreme Court and do not allow the constitution to constrain the SC’s actions. If you are that sort of person, then you don’t really follow what the constitution actually says. So it’s a bit ironic that the objection to HB3326 is on “constitutional” grounds when the constitution actually requires what HB3326 requires.

What politicians mean by this objection is that they’re not willing to hold the federal courts to what the constitution says: equal protection of all persons. But I can guarantee your Republican politicians will talk about how constitutional they are next election season. You must remember their actions and hold them accountable.

The real reasons they oppose abolition

Ultimately, abolition (HB3326) is rejected because politicians are unwilling to follow the constitution and are unwilling to treat unborn persons as humans who are worthy of protection. They prefer to pass pro-life legislation which complies with the supreme Court’s unconstitutional edicts in Roe vs Wade. In so doing their actions and their pro-life bills undermine the humanity of the unborn and reenforce the unconstitutional unlimited judicial supremacy of the supreme Court. Both of these things are exactly the opposite of what your politicians will claim to have done come election time.

Why are they unwilling to stand on the constitution?

The Kabuki Theater of pro-life laws

Politicians are in a tough spot. No matter what they do, someone will be angry with them. This can influence them in a perverse manner. Often, you’ll find them seeking to look like they’re doing something while not doing anything that makes a real lasting change.

That’s how it’s playing out in the Texas house, senate, and governor’s office this session and last and prior sessions. (If you’re not from Texas, it’s probably also playing out in your state government that way as well.)

The play goes like this:

Act 1:
Get elected by saying you believe in ending abortion and the authority of the constitution.

Act 2:
Abdicate state authority to the edicts of the supreme Court.

Act 3:
Pass bills which purport to comply with the supreme Court’s unconstitutional edicts, but which the federal courts will ultimately object to and strike down anyway.

Act 4:
Federal court strikes down your pro-life laws.

Act 5:
Raise funding for reelection based on how pro-life you are for passing bills which aren’t in effect and have saved no one.

And scene!

The theater of the pro-life movement! And they are fully aware of this. That’s why so many of them will support a bill they know will be struck down by a federal court, but they won’t support a bill that calls upon them to enforce the constitution and ignore the federal court’s unconstitutional rulings.

This is what we see in legislation like the heartbeat bill or PreNDA. It is certainly popular and certainly will gain the politicians many pro-life accolades. But when it’s struck down by the federal courts later this year or next, Texas will back down. They always do. Because they’re not willing to stand on the constitutional authority the state has in this matter. But the accolades will not be rescinded.

Don’t take my word for it, ask an abortion clinic in a state like Alabama where a heartbeat bill is currently offering “full protection”. That’s what Cheryl Cali–pastor’s wife and abolitionist–did. She posted a video last week on her own channel where she called an abortion clinic in all the states that are supposedly under the “full protection” of a heartbeat bill. She graciously allowed us to repost the video to share here.

Until the Texas government is willing to stand on the authority of the constitution, no real meaningful change will be seen on the issue of abortion.

This is why abolition is so important. Abolition says with the Apostle Peter “we must obey God, not man.” Abolition says “when the federal courts ignore the constitution, the federal courts should be ignored.” Without that component, the theater will just continue and will do more harm than good in the long run.

We must demand our government officials stand on the authority of the constitution. And if they refuse to do so, we need to find someone who will.

For liberty and justice for all,

Wes Thomas
Abolish Abortion Texas

For a more thorough treatment of the ideas behind equal protection, please see Bradley Pierce’s excellent presentation Abolition, Equal Protection and The Constitution.