Another Look at Roe v. Wade

18 May

May 18, 2022

Abortion is not a “Right”. It is a medical procedure beyond the auspices of the State to regulate or ban or support.

The Supreme Court needs to reverse Roe v Wade to declare that there is no legal justification for the Federal Government, state governments or any other public entity to regulate abortion. Reverse the stand that abortion is a “right” and instead make this medical procedure a nullity for government intervention at any level other than any normal medical activity.

The groundbreaking recent article by Gillian Brockell in The Washington Post, Abortion in the Founders’ era: Fact-checking Alito’s history – The Washington Post should be cut and pasted into the Supreme Court’s majority decision reversing Roe v Wade.

She correctly points out that research shows that there was no interest on the part of the founders in abortion. There were no laws in any country controlling the “right” to an abortion, and almost no contemporary commentary from the period other than if a person killed the woman during an abortion they could be charged with murder, which is pretty much the same as the law is today. Some spoke against abortion, yet they also spoke against such things as witchcraft. Do we want to elevate witchcraft to a “right” to be preserved for all time, or do we just want to leave it to religious freedom to muck it about.

She doesn’t mention it, yet even the Catholic Church did not ban abortions until 1869, long after the Constitution was written. I have great respect for this and other religious objections, yet they don’t have the “right” to declare one of many medical procedures to be a “right” to the exclusion of all others, and have their views reflected by the Supreme Court; which should be looking at the concept of “rights” as it was understood by the founders and the general society of the time.

Truly, the elevation of abortion is almost entirely a religious phenomenon, and, as pointed out by Brockell, is of relatively recent origin. The Supreme Court should never overlook the freedom of religion, and at the same time should not elevate religious doctrine into Constitutional law, which would be a violation of core religious freedom.

There is no scientific evidence to support a special status for abortion in Constitutional law. Therefore, it should not be there before the Court at all. Roe judged that “a woman’s right to terminate her pregnancy was protected by the US constitution.” It is not. It is not a “right” at all. It’s a medical procedure. No more, no less. It was religious fervor that inflated abortion into the Constitution. Nothing else.

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