Hear this rape survivor’s message to Alabama lawmakers
Two years ago Sam Blakely had an abortion after she discovered she was pregnant with her rapist’s child.
Now she has a message for Alabama state lawmakers and Gov. Kay Ivey after they passed the most restrictive abortion law in the country -- one that includes no exemptions for victims of incest or rape like herself.
“I have absolutely no words to describe the disgust that I feel and so many women have told me that they feel,” Blakely told CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on “New Day” Thursday morning.
“They’re scared. They’re angry,” she said. “We don’t know what’s going to happen. We are seriously in fear for our lives as women in Alabama.”
Blakely said the moment she was discovered she was pregnant with her rapist’s child was “the worst moment of my life.”
“I can recall being in the bathroom,” she said, “and biting on my shower curtain to keep from screaming so loudly because I was so distraught.”
That experience was incredibly traumatic, Blakely said. As a result, she suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder and major depressive disorder. If she had been unable to get an abortion and forced to carry her rapist’s child to term, Blakely said, “I can honestly say that I would not be here.”
Last week, she shared her experience with Alabama’s state legislature in the hopes lawmakers would not pass the bill, known as the Alabama Human Life Protection Act. Even if the law had been in place, Blakely told them. she would have found a way to have an abortion “somewhere, somehow,” because “there’s no way I would be able to carry my rapist’s child.”
“I want you all to know that as you are deciding on this,” she told them. “Please, I am begging you. Please don’t take away my choice.”
Women will continue to have ‘unsafe’ abortions, survivor says
Despite Blakely’s pleas, Alabama state senators passed the legislation on Tuesday night, and Gov. Ivey signed it into law on Wednesday. The only exceptions in the bill are for women whose health is at risk as a result of the pregnancy, or if the “unborn child has a lethal anomaly.”
Democrats tried to re-introduce an amendment to exempt victims of rape and incest, but the motion failed.
Alabama Republicans have pushed the bill forward with the goal of getting it before the Supreme Court, where they hope the court’s conservative justices will overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling, which legalized abortion in the US.
Blakely said she was disturbed that state lawmakers would be willing to put the safety and lives of women at risk in order to score political points.
“I think it is sick and cruel that they are willing to endanger the lives of literally millions of women for some sort of political pat on the back or something,” she said, “some sort of political advancement in their agendas.”
The new law will not stop women from having abortions, Blakely added. “Safe, legal abortion will end, but abortion will not end,” she said, adding that women will be forced to turn to unsafe abortion methods.
“That is something that I don’t know if the Republicans know or care about,” Blakely said. “But that is the fact of the matter -- that we will continue to have them (abortions). They are taking away our safety.”