Sunday, August 12, 2012

Attorney General Cuccinelli Is Not Really Concerned About the Health and Safety of Virginians


“I recall the serious risks facing the environment and the survival of future generations…Do you see signs or phenomena to which we need to be more attentive?”---Pope Benedict speaking to the astronauts on the international space station

Virginia's Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has turned his office into a political police that persecutes climate scientists on behalf of the fossil fuel industry. Cuccinelli, whose office is in charge of human rights, tries to repress climate scientists who tell us that the CO2 from fossil fuels is endangering our health and safety as well as the health and safety of future generations, but Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli doesn't want the EPA to regulate CO2 emissions. At the same time, Cuccinelli is also trying to use "health and safety" regulations to close down abortion clinics by extrajudicial means, supposedly because they endanger the safety of women.

The Washington Post (7-27-12) reports:

[Virginia Governor] McDonnell signed legislation last year to classify abortion clinics like hospitals, which are subject to exacting standards governing the size of treatment rooms, the width of hallways and doorways, the number of parking spaces and so forth. The purpose of the legislation, which does not apply to other outpatient clinics performing plastic or oral surgery, was to force the closure of most of the state’s 21 abortion clinics, which could ill afford the costly retrofitting the regulations would ­require.

...Advocates of the legislation insist its intent is to protect women’s health. But they offered no evidence to suggest that the state’s clinics, where most of Virginia’s 25,000 abortions annually are performed, are dangerous, unsanitary or slipshod in any way.

The law’s real purpose is to use extrajudicial means to roll back abortion rights, conferred by the Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade, by making the procedure inaccessible to most women in the commonwealth.

Perhaps Attorney General wants the Catholic vote, but Catholics also are taught by the Vatican's Pontifical Academy of Sciences that climate change is happening and that it will endanger or destroy the lives of future generations.

Certainly any health facility should be regulated so that it is safe, but Cuccinelli is not applying these regulations to similar out-patient medical facilities. He hopes to misuse Virginia's health and safety codes to get around the law and to close a legal business.

Even people who oppose abortion should be concerned about Cuccinelli's Stalinist tactics. The communists formally closed (purged) churches by taking away their licences or "registration." The legal formality was that the churches were "in disrepair." 

There is nothing "conservative" about abusing Virginia's health and safety regulations to purge abortion clinics. Health and safety regulations can be used to target any organization that Cuccinelli doesn't like. Hypothetically, health and safety regulations could even be used to close Catholic schools---formally because their halls are too narrow---but really because they teach the peer-reviewed science about climate change.

Even if a person is morally opposed to abortion because it takes the life of an innocent child, there is NO MEDICAL PROOF that the health of WOMEN is endangered by legal abortions in Virginia; and that is what Cuccinelli is arguing.

Scientists are telling us that our delicate atmosphere, which nurtures and protects life on our whole planet like a mother's womb protects her developing child, is endangered by climate change. If Cuccinelli is really concerned about the protecting the health and safety of women and about protecting the health and safely of future generations, why isn't he concerned about climate change? Cuccinelli opposes our scientifically-based EPA regulations to limit the carbon dioxide emissions that cause dangerous climate change, but he favors imposing regulations on abortion clinics on the unscientific grounds that the clinics are unsafe for women.

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