In the latest attempt to discourage women from seeking abortions, Republicans have introduced a new bill requiring women to first paint a still life oil portrait of the fetus before consulting with a physician.
If the bill passes, abortion seekers will need to obtain pre-approval from a special committee made up entirely of men over 70 years old, each one selected for the quality of their masculine horse art rather than their knowledge of the female reproductive system.
“We just want to make sure these women know exactly what they’re getting into,” says one sponsor of the bill. “And this is one painstaking and difficult way to do that.”
The new bill requires all fetal portraits to be “detailed” and “life-like”, although it notes that some impressionism will be tolerated if it appears to express feelings of regret.
Though critics have noted current medical guidelines recommend pregnant women avoid exposure to oil-based paints, Rep. Pittenger (R – NC) claims, “We would never compromise on artistic quality in the name of protecting women.”
Women whose paintings fall short of these exacting aesthetic standards can re-submit a new painting after a one-month waiting period.
Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) voted against the bill after failing to pass an amendment that would have added acrylics and watercolors to the list of approved media.
Rep. Pittenger states, “I respect Molly, but when it comes to women’s health we refuse to lower the bar. The rich colors of an oil painting can capture details of the fetus that you just can’t see in a sonogram.”
Under the new law, women would be responsible for purchasing all their own oil paints, easels, canvases, brushes, and gesso.
A Hobby Lobby spokesperson praised the bill as in-line with the company’s values, while hospitals and clinics are expected to combat the law, claiming it will be expensive to provide women with adequate studio space.
Republicans in congress recommend any woman who believes she may someday need an abortion begin a two to four-year fine arts degree program immediately.
Pressed for a closing comment, Rep. Pittenger says, “I’ve heard of some women practicing their still-lifes with peaches, but the colors there aren’t quite right. So a background in the arts is absolutely vital, but we won’t be paying for that either.”