Monday, July 08, 2024

Abortion the reality and truth behind Roe v. Wade

Washington, DC—Let me start by saying I don't have a personal stake in this issue. While I find abortion generally troubling, I acknowledge its necessity in many cases. Roe v. Wade is often misunderstood. The Supreme Court should adhere strictly to the Constitution, not sway with public opinion. However, justices sometimes allow their personal political beliefs to influence their decisions, which is problematic.

In Roe v. Wade, the Court legalized abortion through a complex interpretation, declaring an unwritten Right to Privacy. This right, which wasn't explicitly included by the Founding Fathers, was effectively created without a constitutional amendment. To be clear, there has never been an inherent reproductive right or right to choose—these are terms born out of advocacy.

For "pro-choice" advocates, it's important to note that there has never been a simple majority (50%+1) to legalize abortion nationwide, nor a consensus on when abortion should be permitted in terms of weeks or months. The recent Supreme Court, with a different set of justices, reversed the earlier Burger Court's decision, leaving the abortion issue to individual states. In regions like the Bible Belt, opposition to abortion is strong due to deeply held beliefs about the sanctity of unborn life.

Given the longstanding division on abortion, achieving the support needed for a constitutional amendment is unlikely.

The Supreme Court's makeup during the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973 was as follows:

1. Harry Blackmun (appointed by Richard Nixon) – wrote the majority opinion.
2. Warren E. Burger (Chief Justice, appointed by Richard Nixon) – joined the majority.
3. William J. Brennan Jr. (appointed by Dwight D. Eisenhower) – joined the majority.
4. William O. Douglas (appointed by Franklin D. Roosevelt) – joined the majority.
5. Thurgood Marshall (appointed by Lyndon B. Johnson) – joined the majority.
6. Lewis F. Powell Jr. (appointed by Richard Nixon) – joined the majority.
7. Potter Stewart (appointed by Dwight D. Eisenhower) – joined the majority.
8. Byron White (appointed by John F. Kennedy) – dissented.
9. William Rehnquist (appointed by Richard Nixon) – dissented.

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