Female protesters in Ohio injected fiction into the real battle over women’s reproductive rights by wearing the signature red robes and white bonnets donned by the handmaids in the Hulu adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s 1985 dystopian novel, The Handmaid’s Tale.
During the first hearing on Monday for Ohio Senate Bill 145, which is seeking to ban and criminalize most second trimester abortions in the state, women filed into the room wearing the costumes at the State House in Columbus.
NARAL ProChoice Ohio documented much of the protest on Twitter, while also recapping statements made during the hearing.
In The Handmaid’s Tale, the United States government has been overthrown by a totalitarian regime and women who are still fertile are assigned to leaders and forced to copulate in hopes of producing offspring. Those women are in a class called the handmaids.
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According to Cleveland newspaper The Plain Dealer, the bill is sponsored by Republican Sens. Matt Huffman and Steve Wilson, and would ban the abortion method of dilation and evacuation (D&E).
If a physician were to perform a D&E, they could face fourth-degree felony charges, according to the bill. The bill only makes an exception if the life of the mother is at serious risk, said The Plain Dealer.
The Handmaid’s Tale season 1 finale premieres on Hulu on Wednesday.