Missouri Law Says Personhood Begins At Conception

Lawmakers in Missouri have passed a law that asserts life begins at conception, joining South Dakota as the only other state with a similar provision on the books.

Senate Bill 793 reads, “The life of each human being begins at conception. Abortion will terminate the life of a separate, unique, living human being.”

The measure, which became law without Gov. Jay Nixon’s signature, also adds new regulations to the state’s 24-hour informed consent law for abortions. Abortion providers will now have to include the language from the bill “prominently” on brochures given to every woman seeking the procedure.

Critics of the measure oppose it because of its religious nature, believing the law’s stance stems from one version of Christian theology.

“Those are not sentiments that all the world’s religions, or all the people in the state, believe in,” Paula Gianino, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Kate Lovelady of the Ethical Society of St. Louis, said the law imposes one narrow religious view on others.

She told the newspaper, “A lot of our members don’t believe life begins at conception – that it’s much more complicated than that.”