Progressives have, for decades, taken for granted Roe v. Wade as the law of the land. Now that land is being dangerously encroached upon by the GOP and religious right-wingers. Stacked with Conservative judges in recent years (thanks, Trump!), the Supreme Court is closer than ever before to putting in jeopardy access to safe, private abortion clinics. A leaked draft opinion by Justice Samuel Alito has circulated publicly showing the court’s inclination to repudiate legal precedent, uproot and overturn everything. Identified as the “Opinion of the Court,” Justice Alito writes “We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled.” No draft decision in the modern history of the court has been disclosed publicly while a case was still pending, by the way. This is a big deal.
“Roe was egregiously wrong from the start. Its reasoning was exceptionally weak, and the decision has had damaging consequences. And far from bringing about a national settlement of the abortion issue, Roe and Casey have enflamed debate and deepened division.”— Justice Samuel Alito
“Roe expressed the ‘feel[ing]’ that the Fourteenth Amendment was the provision that did the work, but its message seemed to be that the abortion right could be found somewhere in the Constitution and that specifying its exact location was not of paramount importance,” Alito writes. The immediate impact of the ruling as drafted in February would be to end a half-century guarantee of federal constitutional protection of abortion rights and allow each state to decide whether to restrict or ban abortion. Having trained its crosshairs on Roe long ago, Republicans must have the widest shit-eating grins on their faces that it completely disgusts me.
In the end, I’m confident this matter will be laid to rest and women’s rights getting ratified by other means. The years between now and then, however, may prove to be very turbulent, divisive, and will leave many of our poorest citizens in the lurch. The wealthy will continue to seek abortions from whichever state or country allows them; it’s people who can’t afford to travel or go outside the health care system who will suffer the most. That means unwanted pregnancies most parents can’t manage, or putting the mother’s health —and indeed her life— at risk by having to use an unsafe, “off the books” type of procedure done by medical professionals with questionable expertise.