Apr 7, 2023
Rolling Stone

Texas Republicans Try to Break the Internet to Deny Women Abortions

There is more than one way to burn a book, Ray Bradbury wrote, and the world is full of people running about with lit matches. Texas House Rep. Steve Toth brandished the equivalent of a butane torch earlier this session when he introduced House Bill 2690, legislation that seeks to ban websites that contain information about abortion — but he and Texas Republicans may find it’s harder than they think to make speech they don’t like disappear from the internet.

Toth’s bill would make it illegal to “create, edit, upload, publish, host, maintain, or register a domain name for an internet website, platform, or other interactive computer service that assists or facilitates a person’s effort in obtaining an abortion-inducing drug.” Internet service providers themselves would be in the awkward position of enforcing the law by making “every reasonable and technologically feasible effort” to block sites with information about abortion, abortion providers, or abortion funds — keeping Texans in the dark about their health care options, essentially.