South Dakota Abortion Ban, Here We Go Again

(Originally posted on Daily Kos.)

It's like nothing has changed since 2006. South Dakota has another abortion ban on its ballot. And I returned this past weekend to Sioux Falls to volunteer again with the South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families. There I was sitting in the car, still incredibly nervous about knocking on a stranger's door to talk about why he or she should vote against Measure 11 and let families decide personal matters for themselves.

Again, I learned the same not-so-obvious lesson I was taught in 2006: elections are decided by people. Not television ads, lawn signs, or press conferences. What matters are the face- to-face conversations that happen at the supermarket, with your family, or on your doorstep on a sunny Saturday in October. Throughout the weekend, my fellow volunteers and I had the opportunity to really explore with folks why they're voting either against or for the ban. Our presence was extremely appreciated by South Dakotans questioning Measure 11. By proudly and publicly voicing our strong opposition, we showed those opposing this intrusive measure that they're not alone. These personal reassurances should not be underestimated.

On Sunday morning, I spent an hour jumping up and down like a madwoman at a major Sioux Falls intersection every time a car driver honked his or her support. But the incredible rush I felt each time a horn went off is not what I'll remember. Instead, it will be the personal conversations. I had the privilege of meeting Tiffany Campbell, a South Dakotan mother who strongly opposes the ban. Two years ago, a pregnant Tiffany had to abort one of her twins to save the life of the other. Tiffany is working with the Campaign to ensure that all women have the freedom to decide what is best for themselves and their family. I am so moved by Tiffany's courage and strength.

Like many of you, I have been reading about the South Dakota abortion ban in the newspapers and on the blogs. I know that it is a ban on virtually all abortions. I know that South Dakotans decisively defeated a similar ban only two years ago. And I know that it is an attempt by anti-abortion activists to overturn Roe v. Wade. But I had forgotten what one weekend of volunteering in Sioux Falls could do to stop this initiative from becoming law. And by writing this blog and talking to my friends and family about my experience, I remember how important it is that we continue to keep talking both on doorsteps in South Dakota and in our own homes. It is a critical component to defeating this dangerous measure come November.

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Denise Ross

To learn more about South Dakota's 2006 abortion ban saga - from the Legislature to the ballot box - check out the new documentary, Unplanned Democracy: America's First Vote on Abortion.

You can buy the DVD at

The film was directed and produced by a South Dakota journalist and features an interview with Jennifer Ring of the ACLU of the Dakotas.

Unplanned Democracy won the jury prize for Best Documentary at the 2008 South Dakota Film Festival, where it was praised by the audience for its balanced approach to the issue and story.

To understand what's different in 2008, this documentary is a must-watch!


just admit that abortion is killing

James W

Abortion on demand is an unjust law and in the eyes of God in accordance with His character displayed in His Holy Word...Abortion on Demand is no law at all!!!

God gave His creation a standard for living...His Holy Word! Our founding fathers held this standard for living in their conscious and subconscious minds when they framed our Constitution.

Women and men have the rights to use all reproductive preventive measures available to them by law...Abortion on Demand at the expense of a poor innocent child should never be one of them.

Our nation is in a moral and spritual crisis...this sickness causes problems in all areas of this is the root cause of our financial crisis.

The innocent blood of over 50,000,000 poor innocent girls and boys cry out to God from the ground. Our children have been sacrificed on the altar of a "womans's right to choose" to the god of "selfishness! May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on our souls!

South Dakota Dating

Keep fighting! Stop the killing! respect life and give the chance to live!

Jen Rosen


Well I can only imagine what you must tell yourself in the quiet moments in your mind. How you will explain this when you meet God. It will be that moment that you won't have your Title- affililiation,and rationalization to hide behind. Enjoy the self worship you are flying high on now Ms. Goldschein, it won't last forever. Only our spirits will and yours will be judged as will everyone elses will. Sleep well and keep pushing that pesky ole' conscience out of the way. (It must be exhausting trying to forget what you are really doing).hope you are enjoying your salary, notoriety and lifestyle. All fueled by your commitment to killing babies. Wow, must be nice living in your conscience...pretty noisy in there I suppose. You may be the one reason that your mother should have had an abortion. She could have ya know. Why didn't she? Did you bother to ask or wouild that make what you are defending too uncomfortable for Ms. Lawyer? You are...oh never mind..ennough wasted time on you.


Sondra GoldSHAME

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