Tennessee criminalizes drug use by pregnant women

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by ugahairydawgs, Apr 30, 2014.

  1. ugahairydawgs macrumors 68020

    ugahairydawgs

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    #1
    http://thinkprogress.org/health/2014/04/29/3432433/tennessee-criminalize-pregnant-women/
     
  2. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #2
    Wouldn't the same logic (and charges) be applicable to a company that releases any chemical known to harm fetuses, if it is then ingested by a pregnant woman?

    Or would only the women be able to be charged?
     
  3. iBlazed macrumors 68000

    iBlazed

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  4. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #4
    I thought it was already a criminal offense to use drugs in Tennessee. This is a tough one because I don't think anyone advocates pregnant women mainlining heroin or doing meth. How much research could they really do on this subject? I can't see them having a lab experiment where they jack up some pregnant women on PCP.
     
  5. steve knight Suspended

    steve knight

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    #5
    mandatory drug test on all poor and none or non white pregnant woman. Asa usual the whole right to life thing is out of hand as usual.
     
  6. noisycats macrumors 6502a

    noisycats

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    #6
    So abortions will be readily available to addicted women? Hopefully state funded?

    :rolleyes:
     
  7. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #7
    Better would be to have rehab that was state funded.
     
  8. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #8
    from link
    how about something not that biased ?
    http://www.cnn.com/2014/04/17/us/tennessee-pregnancy-drug-use/

    from that link
     
  9. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #9
    That really changes the scope of things a bit.
     
  10. iBlazed macrumors 68000

    iBlazed

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    #10
    Let's, for arguments sake, assume that exposure to illicit drugs in the womb DOES cause long term damage to a child. Would this bill be the right course of action to take anyway? I don't think it is. But what is? It's really hard to say. Obviously the drug addicted pregnant woman should immediately be sent to treatment. But what if she refuses treatment and refuses to stop? What is she's reckless? In that case, maybe she should be forced into treatment by a judge, but incarceration is the worst possible thing to do.
     
  11. ugahairydawgs thread starter macrumors 68020

    ugahairydawgs

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    #11
    That was my first thought too. Wouldn't it make more sense to outlaw smoking around pregnant women?
     
  12. steve knight Suspended

    steve knight

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    #12
    I could see this stopping woman from going to a doctor too. if it is just a misdemeanor what is the point sounds liek ti is so minor it is pretty much useless. but I guess it gives the GOP lots of warm fuzzy feelings like they are actually protecting a fetus while once born they are kicked to the curb.
     
  13. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #13
    Maybe but it could cause women who have a substance abuse problem and are pregnant to get help. It's a misdemeanor and let's face it, they'd probably get probation any way. Some states made these laws that allow people to abandon their children if they do it in a certain place. The laws worked.
     
  14. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    I suspect it will cause pregnant users to avoid doctors more than it will cause them to seek help. By the time you realize you need help, you've probably already committed the crime, and doctors ask questions.

    The abandonment thing is different, you're talking about giving them an alternative to committing the crime in the first place. Plus, it doesn't always work.
     
  15. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

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    If you actually want women to seek help for their addictions, making it so they could possibly face criminal charges is the absolute worst way to go about it. Sounds quite Orwellian as well.

    If we really want to help people with their addictions, we need to completely abolish the threat of any criminal penalties. That's the only way you're actually going to make people comfortable with the idea of seeking treatment for their disease.
     
  16. ugahairydawgs thread starter macrumors 68020

    ugahairydawgs

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    #16
    How would that look? As it stands now addiction itself is not a crime, just the possession or sale of a substance.
     
  17. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

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    #17
    Well, apparently this bill makes it a crime. That's why it seems like a step backwards.

    I think part of the problem also lies with the stigma attached to addition to an illegal drug. Many are unwilling to come forward and seek treatment because it's an illegal drug even though obviously you can't be criminally charged or prosecuted unless you are caught with the substance.

    I wonder if decriminalizing possession of small amounts would change that or not. I don't claim to know the answer but it's something to think about. Obviously, sales, distribution, and trafficking drugs like heroin should remain criminal though.
     
  18. Huntn macrumors G5

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    #18
    The typical flawed conservative approach. These people are making me ill.
     
  19. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #19
    Wait a second, Huntn. Is it really that bad? Drug use is already a crime in Tennessee. Many of those drugs are felonies. This new law added a misdemeanor if you are pregnant. If you are charged with a felony for cocaine does it matter that they toss a misdemeanor into the mix because you were pregnant at the time?

    The part of the law that I like is that you will not face prosecution if you seek treatment. Was this law necessary? Not really. It is already a criminal offense to do drugs in Tennessee.
     
  20. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

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    #20
    Yes it is. Drug addiction is a medical issue, not an incarceration issue. It makes hard lives even worse. You really think, lock'm up is the solution?
     
  21. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #21
    What I am saying is that it already is a lock'm up situation. Using drugs is already a crime in Tennessee. Most drugs are actually a felony in Tennessee. This is simply a feel good law that wasn't really needed. The only positive side of it was the fact that a woman would not be prosecuted if she went for help.
     
  22. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

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    #22
    I see what you are saying. Unfortunately addicts often are not in a position to help themselves. They should not be ushered into prison as a solution to the problem.
     
  23. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #23
    they are not being ushered into prison IF they seek treatment, I see the law as a way to FORCE them into treatment, I disagree with the law, seems like a feel good slippery slope to me.
     
  24. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

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    #24
    My original premise stands: Unfortunately addicts often are not in a position to help themselves. If they want to call it helping, it should not be into prison. That's the opposite of helping IMO.
     
  25. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #25
    let me rephrase a bit, I agree with you its not helping them. its a misguided law IMHO, I was not trying to counter what you posted, simply stated they could avoid prosecution by seeking treatment. hope that somewhat clears things up.
     

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