Texas politician proposes fines for men who masturbate in private

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Anna Pollitt
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Would fining men who masturbate help to address America’s problem with women’s reproductive rights? It’s a radical new proposal made by a Texas politician in response to controversial pro-life laws.

Democrat Jessica Farrar’s satirical legislation proposal focuses on men in a bid to protect women seeking abortions. It matches point-for-point a string of real anti-abortion laws in the state that are underpinned by the view women should not be allowed the choice to remove unwanted embryos and foetuses from their bodies.

Farrar suggests that male ejaculation created through masturbation is not being used to its full potential, i.e. to create babies. Accordingly, such “emissions” should "be considered an act against an unborn child, and failing to protect the sanctity of life" and the men be fined $100 (£81).

Touché, Jessica, touché.

Obviously the bill is designed to mimic the extreme but very real viewpoints held by her Republican opponents, including a new rule calling on women having abortions to choose whether the remaining foetal tissue be cremated or buried.

In 2011, Texas passed restrictive laws aimed at women seeking abortions, including requiring them to undergo a transvaginal ultrasound 24 hours before the procedure, despite there being no medical reason for them to do so.

Farrar’s bill countered this by advising that men be administered with “a medically-unnecessary digital rectal exam and magnetic resonance imaging of the rectum."

Doctors were also ordered to give the women state-mandated information about medical risks, adoption alternatives, and developmental stages of foetuses, called A Woman's Right To Know, which Farrar, 50, described a “guilt mechanism”.

Her bill, called A Man’s Right to Know features a corresponding plan for men seeking vasectomies and Viagra, in which Christian conservative doctors would be allowed to “invoke their personal, moralistic, or religious beliefs in refusing to perform an elective vasectomy or prescribe Viagra”.

"A lot of people find the bill funny," Farrar told the Houston Chronicle. "What's not funny are the obstacles that Texas women face every day, that were placed there by legislatures making it very difficult for them to access health care."

Images: Rex Features/Jessic Farrar


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Anna Pollitt

Anna is a freelance writer and editor who’s been making her dime from online since 2007. She’s a regular at, ITV News and Emerald Street and moonlights as a copywriter and digital content consultant.