Roe v. Wade: 35 years of compassion continues

Contemplation of Justice, statue outside Supreme CourtToday is the 35th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that made abortion legal in America.

Despite the highly visible, sometimes violent protests, the law still stands. Why? Because it represents the enlightened compassion and understanding of the majority of Americans. The majority believes in a woman’s constitutional right to privacy, including the right to make her own decisions about what happens to her body.

Without Roe v. Wade, abortion would not be protected as a legal option for all women. It could again be prohibited by state or local laws that would criminalize both women and their physicians. Many such laws existed before Roe v. Wade. Women of means could and did circumvent them by traveling to places without such laws, even if that meant going abroad. However, there were many women for whom a safe, legal abortion was not an option because they lacked either money or access. Such women, if desperate enough, resorted to back-alley methods like the infamous, symbolic coat hanger. And some of them died as a result.

Roe v. Wade simply ensures that all women, regardless of means, will have the option of a safe, legal medical procedure if that is their choice. It is the individual’s decision, not the government’s, not society’s, and certainly not that of anonymous protesters trying to push their own beliefs onto women in crisis.

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Categories: Health, Law, privacy, Roe v. Wade

10 replies

  1. Hey Windy,
    I hate to disagree here, but Roe v Wade did not legalize abortion in this country – abortion was already legal in 48 states when the Roe v Wade decision was written. And overturning Roe v. Wade would not make abortion illegal in the individual states – as states have the right to create their own laws and as I said, it was already legal in 48 of the 50 states. What Roe v. Wade seems to have accomplished is making abortion a constitutional right – which for my money was a waste of time.

    WC

    _______________

    Windy!? Moi? LOL.

    I guess I didn’t express myself very well. Bottom line, I think the abortion decision (whether pro or con) should be made privately by the woman and her doctor — and no one else. Roe v. Wade protects that privacy and that decision.

    -30-

  2. Just a quick question, who looks out for the baby’s life and why should my tax dollar fund this “procedure” for irresponsible women?

    ___________________

    TRM, just to clarify, are the “irresponsible women” the ones who get pregnant, or the ones who opt for abortion?

    -30-

  3. For the benefit of those who haven’t read Steven Levitt’s Freakonomics:

    Legalizing abortion had multifarious effects in altering the societal structure. Women were emancipated, and now they were no longer restricted to their stereotyped role of a homemaker and an abiding wife.

    It also meant that the unwanted babies were never born, the ones who would not be cared for, and would live in conditions of abject poverty, and were more likely to end up as petty criminals on the street.

    The Butterfly Effect.

  4. Great ANIRUDHBHATI!! Based on your logic we should send a knife into senior citizens skull’s as well,,,,, when do we get started??!!

    Think of all the “children” of these elderly that could be spared the burden of responsibility///..

    GREAT!!

    The Common Sense Effect..

  5. No offense, but I’d rather have the welfare state protect the interests of living beings capable of reason and choice.

    Your tax dollar would be well-served by serving the interests of the /irresponsible/ females, rather than ending up as a part of funding dedicated to fighting crime. Would you rather save the thousands of dollars or the millions of dollars?

    ______________

    So, Ani, you are suggesting we subsidize abortions because they’ll keep our crime fighting costs down? That really is “Freakonomics.” Somehow I doubt that women who opt for abortions do so to “take a bite out of crime.”

    -30-

  6. I think you have me a bit confused now.

    sooooo give more to the single mom and cut pay for cops?

    And all fetuses, elderly and anyone incapable of reason can piss off?

    I guess that would leave you flappin in the wind, I’ll let you guess which category above you fall in…

    Are you American?

  7. Rape, incest, life threatening conditions during pregnancy are some reasons why a woman should consider abortion. In some extreme cases of financial distress maybe ie homeless… but as a form of convenient birth control because the ecstasy pill made you soooo horny you just had to get a quickie in the john,,,, no….. and it shouldn’t be marketed as such by the likes of the American abortion factories, Planned Parenthood.

  8. TRM, the police department exists because there is crime in our society and not the other way around. The same human resources can be productively expended elsewhere in the interests of the nation.

    And it is not just the cops, or the crime fighting mechanism. The government is compelled to allot public funds to rehabilitation programmes, because such children are more likely to end up as substance abusers, alcoholics and compulsive offenders.

    Because they are unwanted, the females are unwilling to take good pre-natal and post-natal care of the babies, which reflects in the nature and nuture of the child.

    >And all fetuses, elderly and anyone incapable of reason can piss off?

    So, by your own logic, masturbation by males should be proscribed since it actually snuffs out living cells that could have become human beings.

    I believe you have misunderstood me there. The elderly have the capability of experiencing pain, even if, in some cases, they are unable to exercise all their mental faculties, which is not the case with foetuses.

    I define ethics as a set of moral values and consequences that I would like to live with myself. You may disagree.

    I am Indian.

    -30-: Agreed. Steven Levitt has a very idiosyncratic way of looking at the world. He believes that the solution to all the problems of the world, irrespective of their magnitude lies in economics.

    Human beings are not rational. Instant gratification over delayed and prolonged happiness is how they like to live. It is the responsibility of the state to ensure collective good, and for that it might choose to adopt certain economic policies. However, I am sure that this was an unwitting ramification of a case law that sought to confer more rights to the women.

  9. anirudhbhati

    Your first three paragraphs have left me confused as to what that has to do with our discussion here…

    As for masturbation if they ever made that illegal I would be in prison in 2 minutes… 🙂
    Its not a life until the sperm fertilizes the egg… I must ask you though, do you beleive a fetus is unfeeling? Have you ever watched a partial birth abortion and heard the screams as the knife goes into the baby’s skull???

    When do you think a fetus becomes “human” and worthy of compassion?

    Your mot making much sense dude///

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