The Supreme Court has begun the long march toward banning abortion with its affirmation of the federal Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act. First, “we told you so.” Anyone who claimed feebly during the Roberts Alito confirmation hearings that we really couldn’t know what their positions would be on the subject had their head up their ass. I don’t think the largely Republican voices who made these claims even believed them. But they were playing on hopes Democrats might’ve had that there was a chance, just a chance that we could hope they might actually be agnostic on abortion. Fat chance.
But what really burns me up in this quote from Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion. In another feigning of sympathy for an imagined pregnant woman having the banned procedure he writes:
…Justice Kennedy said that banning the procedure was in fact good for women, protecting them against terminating their pregnancies by a method they might not fully understand in advance and would come to regret later.
“Respect for human life finds an ultimate expression in the bond of love the mother has for her child,” he said, adding: “It is self-evident that a mother who comes to regret her choice to abort must struggle with grief more anguished and sorrow more profound when she learns, only after the event, what she once did not know: that she allowed a doctor to pierce the skull and vacuum the fast-developing brain of her unborn child, a child assuming the human form.”
Listen to the dripping condescension in this statement toward women:
1. that a woman wanting the procedure “might not” (read “cannot”) understand the procedure
2. any woman seeking an abortion violates the “ultimate expression…of love the mother has for her child”
3. a law which restricts women’s fertility choices is actually “good” for her
4. a woman who has an abortion must come to “regret her choice” when she comes to truly understand what she has done to an “unborn child”
And the language “pierce the skull and vacuum the fast-developing brain of her unborn child…assuming the human form” sounds like it could’ve been written by a Catholic priest. And in fact, Kennedy is Catholic as are many of the majority justices. I have a feeling U.S. abortion law has just been hijacked by the Catholic Church.
I find everything about this ruling repulsive. All I can say is thank God for the intellectual probity of Justice Ginsburg who wrote in the minority:
Justice Ginsburg objected vehemently that “this [Kennedy’s] way of thinking reflects ancient notions of women’s place in the family and under the Constitution — ideas that have long since been discredited.”
She cited century-old Supreme Court cases that upheld a paternalistic view of women’s place in society and contrasted those with more recent cases…that rejected “archaic and overbroad generalizations” and assumptions about women’s inherent dependency.”
Wether you like it or not, “pierce the skull and vacuum the fast-developing brain of her unborn child” is an accurate description of what they do to kill these babies that can live outside of womb. This is not a ‘fertility’ choice has you describe it. That choice was made 6-8 months earlier!
Richard Silverstein says
And you have a degree in obstetrics to know that a 13 week old fetus can “live outside the womb?” That WOULD be a record if it had ever happened, which it hasn’t. So spare us the medical opinions on subjects of which you know nothing.
Kennedy’s judicial opinion is theology, moralism and paternalism, pure and simple. It isn’t even jurisprudence and certainly isn’t medically informed.
samuel burke says
Richard, should we criminialize the use of the male and female reproductive system for producing a baby only to want to end its life ? can we hold the father and mother to the same standards as the gun store that sold a gun to a university student, for misusing their reproductive organs to produce and then to kill a sacred human life?
who is the criminal? is it the gun store owner for selling the gun….or the person that uses it to commit a crime?
who is the criminal the parents who produce a live human being and then want to take its life ? or the doctors who decide to take the babys life?
personal accountability. life is sacred.
no more victimizing the criminal. i am all for offering mental health exams and evaluations to any and all persons in society, and help services and educational services to pre-pubescent males and females.
frankly i am tired of having to give up my rights, i am a responsible citizen as all citizens ought to be.
Richard Silverstein says
Samuel: While I have respect for yr views on the ME conflict, I don’t accept yr terms for this abortion debate. We’ll just have to agree to disagree on this one.
Richard Silverstein says
[ed., Comment deleted. This blog will not publish anti-abortion propaganda especially not Pat Buchanan anti-abortion diatribes. Discussion, argument or debate on one side or another is acceptable. But no grisly spectacles. Any further such propaganda will endanger yr commenting prvileges.]