Almost Hell, West Virginia

On Wednesday, West Virginia governor Jim Justice tweeted this:

It’s never been a better time to move to West Virginia. Except if you are:

–a woman. Once the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, WV’s total ban on abortion went into effect:

On September 13, 2022, West Virginia began enforcing its total ban on abortion, which prohibits abortion at all stages of pregnancy, except in the case of a  “nonmedically viable fetus”, ectopic pregnancy, or medical emergency.[1] Survivors and victims of rape and incest can obtain abortions up to eight weeks of gestation, but only if they report to law enforcement first.[2] Survivors and victims who are minors have until 14 weeks of gestation to obtain an abortion and must report to either law enforcement or get medical treatment.[3]

Following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade in the case Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization[4], West Virginia officials claimed the state’s 1849 pre-Roe criminal abortion ban was in effect.[5] However, providers challenged the ban[6] and a state court granted a preliminary injunction, preventing enforcement of the pre-Roe ban. [7]

–a family with a trans kid:

The WV House of Delegates has passed a bill banning gender affirming care for minors. The bill now awaits action in the state Senate.

Trans female athletes from the middle school to university level have been banned from competition (now blocked while on appeal).

–a college student:

Over the opposition of colleges and universities, and students, professors, and staff, the legislature passed and the governor signed a bill allowing people with concealed carry permits to carry on college campuses. This is on top of their attempt to gut the state university.

–a person of color or a LGBTQ person:

A number of municipalities have passed non-discrimination ordinances over the last few years. The state legislature has just passed a bill that allows individuals to discriminate based on their religious beliefs.

Regular order has been dispensed with for this session, so most of these bills have been rammed through with no testimony from experts and minimal public response. Of course the roughshod passage process is meant as insult to injury.

The legislature is also working on some disastrous economic bills. but I’ve depressed myself enough for now.

It wasn’t like this when I moved here in 2008. Joe Manchin was governor and the state had 2 Democratic senators. I was constantly reminded of how friendly and helpful West Virginians were. Now it’s just all a hard meanness, thanks to TFG. This song sums up my feelings about my adopted state:

3 thoughts on “Almost Hell, West Virginia

  1. Seriously considered moving out to Harper’s Ferry or somewhere at the end of the MARC line 30 years ago. But I hear that’s cut as well. Don’t want those nasty DC workers in their towns, I guess.

    1. the MARC Brunswick line trains still run all the way out to Martinsburg, and Berkeley and Jefferson (especially) counties are now full of commuters. the easternmost Eastern Panhandle counties are rapidly changing away from the rest of the state. (i live in Jefferson county.)

  2. Here in Wood County WV we were red before it was cool. In fact, we had the OG “Tea Party” in the 1980s. That group was instrumental in ridding us of our county’s then WV State Senate President (Burdette) and then WV State Speaker of the House (Albright) because they had the temerity to comply with the WV Supreme Court decision to equalize public school funding in the state.

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