Shall there be an amendment to the Colorado constitution protecting pregnant women and unborn children by defining "person" and "child" in the Colorado criminal code and the Colorado wrongful death act to include unborn human beings?Colorado's criminal code was already amended in the 2013 legislative session (by Democrats) to provide enhanced penalties for crimes that harm pregnant women and cause them to miscarry. As the title to that bill explained:
The bill creates a new article for offenses against pregnant women. The new offenses are unlawful termination of a pregnancy in the first degree, unlawful termination of a pregnancy in the second degree, unlawful termination of a pregnancy in the third degree, unlawful termination of a pregnancy in the fourth degree, vehicular unlawful termination of a pregnancy, aggravated vehicular unlawful termination of a pregnancy, and careless driving resulting in unlawful termination of a pregnancy. The bill makes it clear that a court can impose consecutive sentences for a violation of this act and other associated convictions. The bill excludes from prosecution medical care for which the mother provided consent. The bill does not confer the status of "person" upon a human embryo, fetus, or unborn child at any stage of development prior to live birth. The bill repeals the criminal abortion statutes.Colorado tort law also allows a pregnant woman to sue for assaults or other unlawful conduct directed at her that causes the termination of her pregnancy or birth defects, and Colorado's probate laws address in exquisite detail the inheritance rights of children born after the death of their parents.
The personhood amendment isn't necessary to address the issues it attempts to use as a smokescreen to fulfill its true purpose. The true purpose of the personhood amendment is no more and no less than an attempt to criminalize abortion, contrary to what has been the controlling constitutional law of the land since Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), and to criminalize hormonal contraception and IUDs contrary to what has been the controlling constitutional law of the land since Griwold v. Connecticut, 381 U.S. 479 (1965).
Colorado Ballot Issue 67 seeks to expose doctors, nurses, pharmacists, the majority of pre-menopausal adult women who use contraception that Issue 67 attempts to ban, and women who are unfortunate enough to miscarry, to criminal and civil liability. It is based on an extreme version of the anti-abortion agenda that only a minority of people in Colorado, and in particular, a very small minority of women in Colorado, share.
Vote no on Colorado Ballot Issue 67 on "personhood" just as Coloradoan's overwhelmingly did in 2008 and 2010. The issues presented by it are no different.