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Climate Change, Media, Politics, Public Policy, Reproductive Rights, Science, Uncategorized, Women's Health, Women's Rights

GOP Lawmaker Suggests Abortion Is To Blame For California’s Historic Drought

Assemblywoman Shannon Grove, R-Bakersfield, was one of several Republicans calling for lawmakers to reject a measure to overhaul California's enterprise zone program, during the Assembly session at the  Capitol Thursday, June 27, 2013, in Sacramento, Calif.  The measure AB93 by Assemblyman Bob Blumenfield, D-Woodland Hills, and supported by Gov. Jerry Brown,  failed to pass on the two initial attempts, but was passed on the third vote. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

California Assemblywoman Shannon Grove, R-Bakersfield, has an interesting theory on what’s driving the state’s worst drought in over a thousand years: reproductive freedom.

Scientists are still investigating the causes of California’s historic drought, but one local GOP lawmaker thinks she’s already found the answer: God’s wrath over abortion.

While speaking at the California ProLife Legislative Banquet last week, California Assemblywoman Shannon Grove (R) suggested a theory that the state’s worst drought in 1,200 years may be divine retribution for California providing women with access to abortions, RH Reality Check reported.

“Texas was in a long period of drought until Governor Perry signed the fetal pain bill,” she told the audience. “It rained that night. Now God has his hold on California.

Grove was likely referring to House Bill 2, RH Reality Check noted, a Texas bill that used the junk science of ‘fetal pain‘ to justify an unconstitutional ban on abortion 20 weeks after fertilization, four weeks earlier than the standard set by Roe v. Wade.

Grove further elaborated on her theory in a Facebook comment:

“I believe –and most Americans believe –that God’s hand is in the affairs of man, and certainly was in the formation of this country,” she wrote. “Is this drought caused by God? Nobody knows. But biblical history shows a consequence to man’s actions.”

While it is indeed true that Texas has seen the end of its drought since Perry signed the extraordinarily restrictive anti-abortion law, it’s also true that just a short time later the state was greeted by epic floods that killed more than 30 people. No word on what God was angry about then.

In Kern County, the district Grove represents, even fellow anti-choice activists have distanced themselves from her comments. Marylee Shrider, executive director of Right to Life of Kern County, told The Bakersfield Californian that she is a “huge fan” of Grove, but, “[t]hat being said, we have not made a connection between the drought and abortion here in California.”

Pro-Choice Kern County called her comments “absolute lunacy” and made this mock-up of a T-shirt:

abortion CA drought 2California is suffering through its fourth year of unrelenting drought, and a snowpack measure in the Sierra Nevada mountains in April revealed levels at a record low of 6 percent of the long-term average for that time of year. Two months ago, Gov. Jerry Brown enacted mandatory water restrictions in the state, requiring all municipalities to cut their water use by 25 percent. According to NASA’s senior water scientist, California has only about one year of water left in its reservoirs.

Scientists say the drought is likely attributable to a combination of  “natural oceanic and atmospheric patterns” as well as diminished rainfall and hotter temperatures driven by man-made climate change.

Republicans, of course, have their own ideas about what’s causing California’s drought, and they aren’t going to let trivial things like “research,” “empirical evidence,” and “overwhelming scientific consensus” sway their opinions. Besides abortion, conservatives have also cited immigration, homosexuality, same-sex marriage, and environmentalists as likely culprits.



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"Science is a way of thinking much more than it is a body of knowledge." -- Carl Sagan


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