“NO” to Abortion Restrictions
Background: The Indiana General Assembly is currently in a Special Session, debating several bills, including Senate Bill 1. This bill would change current abortion laws to prevent abortions in nearly all cases, with exceptions for rape, incest, and the life of the mother. JCRC released a statement last week in opposition to the new abortion restrictions and on Monday, Rabbi Aaron Spiegel represented JCRC and testified in front of the Senate Rules committee. The process is moving quickly. Yesterday, the bill was voted out of committee, and tomorrow, the debate begins on the floor. We expect a final vote to take place in the Senate on Friday.
Our stance, that the proposed restrictions are a violation of the separation of religion and state, is making an impact on legislators, but we need your help advocating and convincing them to vote against the restrictions.
Please contact your State Senator and urge them to vote NO on this bill. Post on social media and raise awareness with your friends. Find your legislator
I strongly urge you to reconsider further restrictions on access to abortion in this state. Proposals that ban abortion, including in cases of rape, incest, or undue risk to the pregnant woman infringe on the separation of religion and state, and prohibit members of the Jewish community from freely exercising deeply held religious principles.
Jewish beliefs on when life begins are varied, yet consistent in the view that a fetus is part of the pregnant woman and not an independent human being. Under Jewish law, abortion is not only permissible in certain instances but is required if necessary to protect the physical and mental health of the pregnant woman. I cannot support absolute bans on abortion that would forbid access to abortion in lifesaving situations. Moreover, I believe that the physical and mental health of the pregnant woman is of the utmost importance, and I vigorously oppose any legislation that does not permit access to abortion at a minimum when Jewish law compels it.
The Jewish concept of Pikuach Nefesh, preservation of life, is paramount. Judaism holds that all life is sacred and while a fetus has the potential for life, such potential never supersedes the life of the pregnant woman. The Jewish community regards any absolute ban on abortion as a violation of our rights as Americans to freely exercise our religion and the imposition of one group’s religious beliefs on all. I urge you to vote NO on SB 1.