Should Iowa Clinic Patients Get The Same Rights As Cows And Chickens?

An Iowa legislator attempts to make a point about animal welfare by comparing women to cows.

As Iowa considers a bill that would forbid taking secret, undercover videos at farms and slaughterhouses, one lawmakers amends the bill to include reproductive health clinics, too, saying “Livestock would be provided more protection from secret taping” than women.

Via the Des Moines Register:

[Sen. Matt McCoy of Des Moines, a Democrat] has filed Senate amendment S-3193, which would extend the secret video ban to “pregnancy termination locations.” Violators would be charged with a Class D felony and sentenced up to five years in prison.

McCoy acknowledged in interview he isn’t serious about winning approval for the abortion clinic amendment. But he said he plans to propose it on the Senate floor as part of his effort to defeat House File 589, which has already passed the Iowa House on a 65-27 vote.

He said he also intends to introduce additional amendments to prohibit secret video surveillance at Iowa nursing homes, hospitals, child care centers and other places which care for people.

“What I was trying to illustrate was that livestock industry is really setting themselves up as a niche industry,”McCoy said.  Livestock would be provided more protection from secret taping than people visiting women’s health centers and other places that work closely with people, he said.

Although I think I understand McCoy’s point, I can’t help but see this position go horribly wrong.  His comparison actually reinforces the idea that there is something wrong and dangerous going on at clinics that should be exposed, and that these clinics need some sort of “whistle-blowing.”  Drawing a parallel between abused farm animals and women going in for health services?  Yikes.

Now, if he had stated that video should be banned because it’s sad that a chicken is afforded more “privacy” than a woman getting birth control pills, then yes, I’m totally on board.