Doctors in Ohio will soon be prohibited from performing abortions on fetuses that have been diagnosed with Down Syndrome. Governor John Kasich, who is a supporter of the pro-life movement, signed the controversial bill that not only prohibits women from seeking an abortion but also could send the participating doctor to jail. If a doctor is convicted of performing this procedure, he or she could face a prison sentence of up to 18 months and receive a fine of $5,000 dollars. The woman who receives the abortion will not face any charges. This bill is set to go into effect March 22, 2018, after 90 days from its set date.

Down syndrome is a genetic disorder that causes developmental and intellectual delays. It was discovered that prenatal testing of Down syndrome led to 34 percent fewer children born between the years of 1980 and 2005. In Iceland, they have reportedly eliminated Down syndrome from their population. For some, this bill is the beginning of women losing their rights and for others, this is a step in the right direction.

The risk of freedom of choice

As this bill goes into effect, it brings in the conversation of more restrictions being placed on women's rights. Enforcing this bill, like most have started with previous anti-abortion laws, is an unconstitutional law set against women. Women will now be forced to become a parent to a child they may not be ready to take care of.

Though this law has been approved in four states total now, Indiana, Louisiana and North Dakota have not been able to enforce it. Courts have been able to block the law from going into effect citing that it is unconstitutional. In Indiana, a judge was able to block this law by referencing the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court case citing that "a liberty right to make independent decisions" were the promises of this decision.

In North Dakota abortions are prohibited after 16 weeks.

According to the executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio Kellie Copeland, this bill is another scheme used to have control over women's choices regarding their bodies. "This law does nothing to support families taking care of loved ones with Down syndrome," she said.

"Instead it exploits them as part of a larger anti-choice strategy to systematically make all abortion care illegal.”

Emily Chesnut, who is a Down syndrome activist after her six-year-old daughter's diagnosis, is against the bill. According to Chestnut, people interact with someone who has Down syndrome in some way and therefore it is not the necessary to enforce this restriction. "... I really think Down syndrome is just kind of being the pawn to the bill — which is just restricting women's choice."

The slippery slope of who is more deserving of life

The introduction of anti-abortion bills brings in more conversation for the law set which ultimately decides who is more deserving of a life. According to Mike Gonidakis, president of Ohio Right to Life, "Ohio is and will continue to be a state that sees the lives of people with Down syndrome as lives worth living, thanks to this legislation." This statement can be challenged because if you are saying it is illegal to receive an abortion based on a Down syndrome diagnosis than there should be other disabilities that deserve the same treatment. Bills of this nature will also create a friction in the relationship between the doctor and the woman. Doctors are hoping to offer the best care possible regarding the woman's health.