The criticism erupted. Hillary Clinton tweeted that punishing the woman is “horrific and telling.” And John Kasich, who opposes abortion, said: "of course women shouldn’t be punished.... I don’t think that’s an appropriate response, and it’s a difficult enough situation than to try to punish somebody." Why isn't it the appropriate answer for those who oppose abortion rights? Is abortion not the woman's decision? Why shouldn't the decision-maker be held responsible if abortion is to be banned? It sounds as though you don't respect women as decisionmakers.
It took less than 3 hours for Trump to recant in a statement that read:
If Congress were to pass legislation making abortion illegal and the federal courts upheld this legislation, or any state were permitted to ban abortion under state and federal law, the doctor or any other person performing this illegal act upon a woman would be held legally responsible, not the woman. The woman is a victim in this case as is the life in her womb.The woman is a victim of her own decision? How does that respect the autonomy and full personhood of the woman? Those who want to ban abortion should take responsibility for what they are really saying about women, that women should be denied a choice they want to make. Unless you think the denial is based on women's inability to think for themselves and ascertain what's right and wrong and define the meaning of life for themselves, then you should hold women responsible for choosing to do something that you think the majority has the power to forbid and you want to forbid. If you think women are incapable of thinking for themselves, say that outright. It would take political courage. If you think women are capable and would be choosing to do something that is properly forbidden, then admit that they deserve punishment. Ah, but that too would take political courage.