Sen. Judy Eason McIntyre held up a sign at the protest Tuesday that said “If I wanted the government in my womb I'd f --- a senator.”Warning: Graphic language in photo: View the full photo.
“When I saw that sign out of all of those signs, I was like, I've got to have a picture of it,” said McIntyre, D-Tulsa. “I thought if my 87-year-old mother sees this, I'm going to get hell this weekend, but it was too late.”
McIntyre was one of hundreds protesting anti-abortion legislation on the north steps of the Capitol.
She said the sign was brought by protesters from the University of Oklahoma and she grabbed it for a photo.
She said that while the language would probably be offensive to some, the real issue is the Republican Party attempting to take away the reproductive rights of women while at the same time preaching less government.
“I would hope they would have that same passion about how offensive it is for the Republican Party of Oklahoma to ramrod, because they have votes to do so, bills that are offensive to women and take away the rights of women,” she said.
Senate Bill 1433 declares that life begins at conception. The bill, introduced by Sen. Brian Crain, R-Tulsa, has passed the Senate and is waiting to be heard in the House.
The personhood bill has evoked strong language from both sides of the issue throughout the process. In a Senate committee hearing Sen. Constance Johnson, D-Oklahoma City, made an amendment to the bill that said it was an act against an unborn child to waste sperm.
Johnson said the amendment used the biologically correct terms “ejaculate” and “semen” to get across the point that men are involved in the process of conception as well as women.
And when the bill was heard on the senate floor, Sen. Ralph Shortey, R-Oklahoma City, described partial birth abortions, saying “as long as that baby is inside a woman it would be OK to go in there and chop up the baby and do whatever you want.”
Crain said holding the sign on the Senate floor would have crossed the line, but holding it at a protest outside the Capitol is probably not a violation of Senate decorum.
“A sign like that diminishes the importance and the seriousness of the issue and it's regrettable,” he said. “You look at Senate Bill 1433 and it says life begins at conception and that the unborn have rights.”
McIntyre said it's an emotional issue that is brought up every year.
“I don't think they understand that they have awakened a sleeping giant,” McIntyre said. “And who are those sleeping giants? Young women who have lived their whole lives with contraception and the right to choose for their body.”