Little Rock All of the pundits and the smart money are saying that the Supreme Court, in arguments made currently on the Mississippi challenge to the 50-year-old decision, are going to sound the death knell on Roe v. Wade, if not now, then soon. This has been a fight for almost all of those fifty years, relentless on all sides to the extent, that many may be resigned to seeing the Trump 6-3 Supreme Court cut or replace the decision because of the political polarity around abortion.
Listening to the lawyers and reading the arguments, as important to all sides as choice is, the arguments being made to overturn open a door not to resolutions on this issue, but to permanent division. There seems to be no real evidence presented by the lawyers on why 15 weeks, as Mississippi wants, versus the 24 or so weeks currently permitted. In fact, Chief Justice Roberts seems to see the reduction of weeks as relatively minor. Talk about a man’s world, geez, sing that song again, James Brown! Listening to the lawyer for the Mississippi statute, his whole pretzel twisted argument seemed based solely on state’s rights.
I heard an interview with him at some length before dawn as I drove in the fog, an enclosed trailer behind me and 29 boxes of PPE water bottles in the truck bed as well, to Little Rock from New Orleans. His pitch was simply, “return it to the states so that people could decide.” He tried to make a big deal of the fact that some states would certainly under those circumstances continue to make abortions legal, but wanted to allow other states to have these “discussions,” as he called them, and come to their own, separate conclusions about this issue.
Wow! We’re definitely going back more than fifty years now. This was the identical argument made by the segregationists to resist according full rights to African-Americans. The examples of why this permanent and concrete wall built between red and blue states would open up revision to all manner of court decisions and existing laws, not just abortion, are way more numerous than the pointless list of overturned precedents provided by Justice Kavanagh as a smokescreen in the hearing.
The lawyer’s other argument, made in glancing fashion, was that the Constitution did not mention abortion, so it wasn’t a constitutional right. Poppycock!. It doesn’t mention the unborn either, yet he was also claiming to represent them. On the other hand, women are protected, and unquestionably protected under our Constitution. Fabricating a political decision around state’s rights and those of the unborn would create a precedent that would eviscerate the protections and status of all women in the USA, regardless of their current reproductive status.
Politicians, lawyers, and judges are willy-nilly creating separate but equal divisions as great as those between the North and South in the Civil War, but this time it is wholly partisan, and I fear is about to become institutionalized and permanent.
What have we wrought?!? How can we stay as one union, so divided?