Texas is being sued for an abortion law that puts 'bounties' on people who help patients
via Lorie Shaull

A new provision that passed the Texas State Legislature spring is one of the most aggressive anti-abortion laws in recent history. The provision, which takes effect on September 1, allows just about anyone in the U.S. to sue anyone who helps a woman get an abortion after a doctor detects a fetal heartbeat, usually about six weeks into the pregnancy.

Those who are successful in court will be awarded at least $10,000 from the state.

That means that just about anyone involved in the procedure can face legal consequences. The doctor, parent who gave permission, the abortion clinic, a friend who gave a ride, or the person who paid for the procedure could all be sued for participating.

The only person that can't be sued for the procedure is the patient.

"The state has put a bounty on the head of any person or entity who so much as gives a patient money for an abortion after six weeks of pregnancy, before most people know they are pregnant," Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights, said in a statement. "Worse, it will intimidate loved ones from providing support for fear of being sued."

Suits can be brought up by just about anyone whether it's an anti-abortion activist on the other side of the country or a disapproving parent. The law is especially out-of-the-box because instead of allowing the state to police illegal abortions it deputizes and awards the average citizen to be the enforcer.

"Our creator endowed us with the right to life and yet millions of children lose their right to life every year because of abortion," Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott said when he signed the legislation at a closed-door ceremony in May. "In Texas, we work to save those lives. That's exactly what the Texas Legislature did this session."

The law is also under scrutiny because it deems any abortion that happens after a fetal heartbeat can be heard is determined to be illegal. That's in sharp contrast to federal protections that currently allow abortion to take place until the fetus is able to survive out of the womb, which is at about 23 to 24 weeks.

Six-week bans have been passed in other states but they've all been blocked as they make their way through the court system.

"It's completely inverting the legal system," Stephen Vladeck, a constitutional law professor at the University of Texas at Austin, told The New York Times. "It says the state is not going to be the one to enforce this law. Your neighbors are."

Abortion rights advocates and providers filed a lawsuit in Texas on Tuesday to block the law. The large group of plaintiffs includes the Center for Reproductive Rights, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of Texas, and multiple Texas abortion providers.

The ACLU says that the law encourages "bounty hunters" to enforce the law.

"SB 8 would allow anyone — including anti-abortion activists who have no connection to the patient to act as bounty hunters — to take doctors, health centers, and anyone who helps another person accesses abortion to court to collect at least $10,000 for each abortion if they win," the organization said in a statement.

The lawsuit comes weeks after the Supreme Court announced it would consider the legality of Mississippi's ban on most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. Some abortion advocates believe that this is a signal the conservative bench is eyeing to overturn Rowe v. Wade.


Man uses TikTok to offer 'dinner with dad' to any kid that needs one, even adult ones

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud.

Come for the food, stay for the wholesomeness.

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud. His TikTok channel is dedicated to giving people intimate conversations they might long to have with their own father, but can’t. The most popular is his “Dinner With Dad” segment.

The concept is simple: Clayton, aka Dad, always sets down two plates of food. He always tells you what’s for dinner. He always blesses the food. He always checks in with how you’re doing.

I stress the stability here, because as someone who grew up with a less-than-stable relationship with their parents, it stood out immediately. I found myself breathing a sigh of relief at Clayton’s consistency. I also noticed the immediate emotional connection created just by being asked, “How was your day?” According to relationship coach and couples counselor Don Olund, these two elements—stability and connection—are fundamental cravings that children have of their parents. Perhaps we never really stop needing it from them.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

woman laying on bed

I was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) Inattentive Type about three years ago—I was a fully functioning adult, married with children before finding out that my brain worked a bit differently. Of course I've known that I functioned a bit differently than my friends since childhood. The signs were there early on, but in the '80s diagnosing a girl with ADHD just wasn’t a thing that happened.

Much of the early criteria for ADHD was written based on how it presented in males, more specifically, white male children, and I was neither. Women like me are being diagnosed more and more lately and it’s likely because social media has connected us in a way that was lacking pre- doom scrolling days.

With the help of social media, women can connect with others who share the same symptoms that were once a source of shame. They can learn what testing to ask for and how to advocate for themselves while having an army of supporters that you’ve never met to encourage you along the way. A lot of women that are diagnosed later in life don’t want medication, they just want an answer. Finally having an answer is what nearly brought me to tears. I wasn’t lazy and forgetful because I didn’t care. I had a neurological disorder that severely impacted my ability to pay attention to detail and organize tasks from most important to least. Just having the answer was a game changer, but hearing that untreated ADHD can cause unchecked anxiety, which I had in spades, I decided to listen to my doctor and give medication a try.

Keep Reading Show less

TikTok about '80s childhood is a total Gen X flashback.

As a Gen X parent, it's weird to try to describe my childhood to my kids. We're the generation that didn't grow up with the internet or cell phones, yet are raising kids who have never known a world without them. That difference alone is enough to make our 1980s childhoods feel like a completely different planet, but there are other differences too that often get overlooked.

How do you explain the transition from the brown and orange aesthetic of the '70s to the dusty rose and forest green carpeting of the '80s if you didn't experience it? When I tell my kids there were smoking sections in restaurants and airplanes and ashtrays everywhere, they look horrified (and rightfully so—what were we thinking?!). The fact that we went places with our friends with no quick way to get ahold of our parents? Unbelievable.

One day I described the process of listening to the radio, waiting for my favorite song to come on so I could record it on my tape recorder, and how mad I would get when the deejay talked through the intro of the song until the lyrics started. My Spotify-spoiled kids didn't even understand half of the words I said.

And '80s hair? With the feathered bangs and the terrible perms and the crunchy hair spray? What, why and how?

Keep Reading Show less