A Texas legislator made a political statement by introducing a bill that would fine men $100 every time they masturbate, and would make them wait 24 hours for colonoscopies, vasectomies and Viagra.
According to the bill, any male emission “outside a woman’s vagina” is to be “considered an act against an unborn child.”
Rep. Jessica Farrar, a Democrat in the Texas state legislature, is aware that her proposal will make little if any headway. Her point is to say that the state laws restricting abortion are no less unreasonable.
“Let’s look at what Texas has done to women,” Farrar told CNN. “What if men had to undergo the same intrusive procedures?”
Called “A Man’s Right to Know Act,” the name of the bill is an allusion to a pamphlet women in Texas are made to read when they are considering abortions.
The pamphlet is called “A Woman’s Right to Know” and has come under fire for being propagandistic and factually incorrect. For example, the pamphlet states that abortions increase the risk of breast cancer, although studies have found no link between the two, according to CNN.
“It is clear this is about manipulation,” Farrar told BBC. “As if every woman has not thought about [abortion]. The fact is, only she knows what has happened in her life.”
Farrar said the tipping point came in August 2016 when Texas lawmakers introduced legislation that would force women to choose between cremating and burying the remains of their fetus after an abortion.
“It got me thinking, maybe what’s good for the goose is good for the gander,” Farrar said. “If we are taking these measures because of the sanctity of life, well, we just cannot waste any seed.”
Texas Republicans were not amused. Rep. Tony Tinderholt, who recently proposed a bill that would charge abortion providers and women who receive abortions with murder, said he was “embarrassed” for Farrar.
“Her attempt to compare to the abortion issue shows a lack of a basic understanding of human biology,” he said. “I would recommend that she consider taking a high school biology class from a local public or charter school before filing another bill on the matter.”
Texas has some of the toughest laws regarding abortion. There is a 20-week cut-off point, after which pregnant women are forced to give birth, even if the fetus is not viable, reports CNN. Women seeking abortions must undergo counseling and an ultrasound. They are also made to listen to a description of the unborn child.
In 2014, the Guttmacher Institute reported that 96 percent of counties in Texas did not contain a single abortion clinic. Since then, the number of clinics throughout the state has dropped from 44 to 18.
“I think the reason we are where we are is because people have tolerated these things,” Farrar told the BBC. “I’m hoping my bill will wake people up.”