Like never before in state history, Colorado needs the collective focus and determination of every lawmaker, leader and resident.
For the next two years — at least — distractions, diversions and needless divisions will endanger Colorado’s ability to preserve lives, health and jobs as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to bear down on the state.
There are fewer noxious and needless diversions than yet another ballot attempt to limit the reproductive rights of women. This failed initiative has been given new life by state officials allowing anti-abortion-rights activists another two weeks to make good on signatures deemed deficient when they turned them into secretary of state officials a few weeks ago.
Colorado voters have regularly and readily turned down these intrusions into the lives of women. Primarily driven by out-of-state money and interests, they keep coming back. While the measures, such as this so-called limit on abortion timing, are normally distractions, it’s much more than that right now.
Voters in the metro area and across the state will face the gravest decisions at the polls any of us have ever made in our lives. We must choose a president and members of Congress who can lead the nation through this unprecedented disaster. We must choose state leaders who can protect public education, public health and jobs that are evaporating faster than a Colorado summer rain. Locally, voters across the state will be faced with hard decisions about how to preserve critical city services.
And now, Colorado voters must brace again for a river of propaganda and outright lies about how limiting access to abortion by choosing an arbitrary week of gestation is a fair “compromise.”
This measure is especially sinister. By leveraging falsehoods about so-called “infanticide” and other baseless myths, proponents will seek to make this request seem reasonable.
It is never reasonable for legislators and the government to impose political will on a woman’s right to control her own body and her life. That’s the basis of the famous Roe v Wade Supreme Court decision and the basis for Colorado’s historic abortion law.
The matters of reproduction, women’s medical treatment and abortion are all issues for a woman and her physician. They are never appropriate for political intervention. The Constitution and decency demand that women have the same right to privacy as do men, who do not permit political whim to dictate their healthcare.
This measure seeks to undermine critical reproductive rights here as cunning leaders in states like Texas abuse the public’s trust by illegally using the deadly pandemic as cover to undermine abortion rights. Women in Texas now must risk their lives to drive to Colorado for health care that is disappearing across Southern states thick with Trump Administration politics.
It’s a brewing disaster Colorado can easily avoid by simply refusing to sign petition cure forms, warding off this empty distraction altogether.
Colorado residents must avoid polarizing and predictably deceptive and destructive issues like this as the state finds its way through the pandemic crisis. Another doomed foray into eroding women’s rights is the virtual definition of a waste of time.