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Satanists are opening an abortion clinic. It's named after Sam Alito's Mom.
Because when you don't have reproductive options, the rest of us are forced to pay the price
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The Satanic Temple has just announced the launch of a virtual abortion clinic in New Mexico where patients can receive "free religious medication abortion care." Patients will receive tele-health screenings with licensed medical professionals, and if everything checks out, a prescription will be sent over to a partnering pharmacy. The pills will then be mailed to the patients to addresses in the state in a "discreet package."
"The Samuel Alito’s Mom’s Satanic Abortion Clinic" is named in honor of someone whose lack of options in 1950 forced the rest of us to pay the price.
While the cost of the screenings and follow-up calls will be free, the pharmacy's fees will be around $90, far lower than patients might experience with a brick-and-mortar clinic. The virtual clinic will also have a 24/7 hotline that anyone can call if help is needed. (The project, I am told, is being funded entirely through donations.)
In recent years, The Satanic Temple has argued that abortions are a religious right for members and denying them access to reproductive care would be a violation of their religious freedoms, echoing arguments made by a rabbi in Florida and other clergy members in Missouri.
The Satanists cite their Seven Fundamental Tenets in defense of the religious freedom argument since saying the Third Tenet (“One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone”) and the Fifth Tenet (“Beliefs should conform to one’s best scientific understanding of the world”) out loud is a step in both their medical and surgical abortion rituals.
If this virtual clinic succeeds, then The Satanic Temple hopes to replicate it in other states that are not as welcoming of abortion by taking advantage of laws permitting religious exemptions:
The Satanic Temple hopes to expand operations into other states, including those that do not allow clinicians to perform abortions. “TST is proud to expand reproductive options for our members. This is just the beginning,” said Erin Helian, Executive Director of Campaigns. “We will remain steadfast as we continue the fight to uphold reproductive justice in the United States.” The Satanic Temple has argued in its lawsuits against Texas that under the First Amendment, and federal and state Religious Freedom Restoration Acts, its abortion ritual is exempt from restrictions and bans because the procedure is an essential part of a religious practice.
Helian told me yesterday that New Mexico was an ideal place to launch their first clinic because it's a blue state bordering red states (including Oklahoma and Texas). Since laws may prevent pills from being sent across state lines, they're hoping residents from neighboring places who want to use their clinic have a way of getting to New Mexico, where pills can be sent to a hotel, P.O. Box, or friend's address.
The cost of approximately $90 is far cheaper than other telemedicine abortions. They're able to do that, Helian said, because there's no building and the pills are coming through their partners at Honeybee Health.
Helian added that they already have several (vetted, background-checked) registered nurses who will be speaking with patients and an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) who can write prescriptions. Some of them are coming from Planned Parenthood clinics that were shut down in the wake of Roe being overturned.
Are they just reinventing the wheel, though, since other telemedicine clinics already offer abortion services? Not necessarily. That's partly because of The Satanic Temple's religious nature and also because, if this trial run is successful, they're going to use that faith-based leverage to open branches elsewhere.
The process to launch The Samuel Alito’s Mom’s Satanic Abortion Clinic began 18 months ago when the writing was on the wall regarding Roe. After speaking with several attorneys and hiring the necessary help, the virtual clinic will begin meeting with patients on February 14.
Anyone seeking to use their services can get more information at tsthealth.org.