Pennsylvania’s Parody Law Proposal

Connor Rogers, Writer, Editor

The debate on abortion rights takes a comedic turn as on October 2nd, Pennsylvania state representative Chris Rabb proposed a legislation mandating men get a vasectomy within six seeks of reaching the age of 40 or following their third child, whichever comes first. A couple days later, Rabb issued a press release clarifying that the proposed bill was meant as a parody to the recent Texas anti-abortion law, the Heartbeat bill, to highlight the gendered double standard on reproductive rights. 

The legislation is satire meant to cause discussion on the unfair abortion restrictions in some states. In the bill, it states that failure to receive a vasectomy within the timeframe will result in a $10,000 dollar fine. It also states that Pennsylvanians can be rewarded with that money for reporting anyone who refuses to comply with the legislation. Chris Rabb stated he proposed this bill know that it would never get passed but that it would hopefully spark the conversation about equal reproduction rights to both men and women.  

While the bill was not explicitly labeled parody, it is littered with sexual innuendos. The act states, “As we head towards climax on this heated discussion around this delicate matter, we should come together to address it with surgical precision,” and it promises “to release sweet justice into our households and bedrooms.” While it is an effective piece of satire, republicans are quoted saying that vasectomies and abortions are not equivalent so it’s doubtful any positive discussion with come out of this proposal. However, he is not the only elected official to try such an idea; Alabama State Representative Rolanda Hollis introduced a similar bill back in February 2020, however with a age requirement of 50 years old instead of 40, only to be met with the same response. 

While it is highly doubtful that this bill will ever pass, it will hopefully bring to light the double standards women face when considering an abortion. The hypocrisy is exactly why Chriss Rabb produced this proposal, to show men how it feels having their rights infringed on by the law.