Overturning of Roe v Wade should not stand

Earlier this month there was a leak from the Supreme Court with their opinion on the status of Roe and Casey, more commonly known as Roe v Wade. Before we go over the actual leak, here is a quick rundown of Roe v Wade and everything the case covers in turns of protections. Because no, it’s not just the abortion case in case you weren’t paying attention in American Gov. 

While, yes, Roe v Wade was argued on the ideology of protecting an AFAB person’s right to abortion, the case was mainly supported by the ideologies of the fourteenth amendment. 

For those unfamiliar or who need a reminder of what the amendment is, here is the exact wording of the first section. “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” 

In layman’s terms, this section states that all persons who are citizens living in the United States or U.S. jurisdiction, cannot have laws made to go against their natural human rights, including their right and or privilege to life, liberty, property and, yes, privacy. It also states that if such laws are made that person has the right to due process and equal protection from the law. 

This is an amendment to the nation’s constitution, therefore making it the nation’s law. Meaning that not the president, congress or the supreme court can go against this ruling unless the amendment is overturned or the actual document itself is amended to remove this section. 

This leads us to Roe v Wade. Originally argued on Dec. 13, 1971, and then reargued on Oct. 11, 1972, and it finally passed on Jan. 22, 1973. Roe v Wade has been in effect for 49 years as of 2022. The actual decision was founded on the case of “Jane Roe,” which was the legal pseudonym of Norma McCorvey during the trial in 1969 and onward to the decision in 1973. 

In ’69, Norma was a Texas citizen who had become pregnant with her third child. At the time she wished to terminate the pregnancy, but under Texas law was unable to. Her lawyers, Sarah Weddington and Linda Coffee, helped Norma file a lawsuit in federal court against her local DA, Henry Wade, under the claim that Texas’s law of “Not allowing termination unless pregnancy coming to term will harm the mother” was unconstitutional. 

When the three-judge panel ruled in favor of ‘Jane Roe’, Texas immediately appealed directly to SCOTUS (Supreme Court of the United States), which then slowly turned into Roe v Wade, and this is why most assume that Roe v Wade is just the “abortion case,” but it is so much more. 

Roe v Wade was the basis for several other cases that have granted civil rights and equity to several minority groups. The case was more about protecting personal privacy and autonomy than anything else. Abortion may have been the hill Roe v Wade was fought on, but it isn’t the hill it will die on. It was already mentioned that Roe v Wade was built as a case using the Due Process Clause of the 5th and 14th Amendments, mainly focusing on the 14th. 

This means that inherently it was fighting for a person’s right to not have laws made to go against their natural human rights, including their right and or privilege to life, liberty, property, and, yes, privacy. 

But this means nothing if the draft overturning is only specifically overturning abortion, so let’s pull an excerpt from the actual leaked opinion from earlier this month. 

“We have long recognized, however, that stare decisis is ‘not an inexorable command,’ and it ‘is at its weakest when we interpret the Constitution.’ It has been said that it is sometimes more important than an issue ‘be settled than that it be settled right.’ But when it comes to the interpretation of the Constitution — the ‘great charter of our liberties,’ which was meant ‘to endure through a long lapse of ages,’ we place a high value on having the matter ‘settled right,” wrote Supreme Justice Samuel Alito, but what does this excerpt actually mean? 

Well, let’s focus on the one sentence that actually states something about the case instead of the rest of the paragraph that is used to defend this opinion. “We have long recognized, however, that stare decisis is ‘not an inexorable command,’ and it ‘is at its weakest when we interpret the Constitution.” 

Dissecting it, we (the audience) can assume that Justice Alito is using “we” in reference to the court. Stare decisis is simply Latin for “to stand by things decided,” which in a court of law means that if one court has made a previous ruling on an issue that is currently being debated, then the court will make a decision in alignment with that previous ruling, and the last section just states that that is a faulty course of action with the constitution. 

So, to translate fully, his defense for overturning Roe v Wade is that the Supreme Court should not rely on past consensus to make decisions on what the constitution does and does not cover, which for many things, like segregation, could be a good thing. The past is the past for a reason. We need to learn from and adapt from it, but in the same draft, Justice Alito had this to say, “The inescapable conclusion is that a right to abortion is not deeply rooted in the nation’s history and traditions. On the contrary, an unbroken tradition of prohibiting abortion on pain of criminal punishment persisted from the earliest days of the common law until 1973.” Which completely disregards his previous statement. 

According to Justice Alito, the past should be left behind unless it is in terms of revoking people’s bodily autonomy, but let’s get back on topic. Does this draft want to overturn Roe v Wade and everything connected to it or just the sections speaking on abortions? Well, when actually reading the draft they may only talk about abortion, but you can tell this is about several topics. 

Our nation’s historical understanding of ordered liberty does not prevent the people’s elected representatives from deciding how abortion should be regulated.” This quote, also from Alito, seems too, very obviously, to be about allowing states to decide on these rights. 

But allowing this to happen would be a slippery slope. If this happens, if Roe v Wade is overturned, we can replace abortion with any right that was covered and obtained through the evidence of Roe v Wade. 

So in as soon as three years we could be seeing a draft saying this: Our nation’s historical understanding of ordered liberty does not prevent the people’s elected representatives from deciding how birth control should be regulated,” or this, Our nation’s historical understanding of ordered liberty does not prevent the people’s elected representatives from deciding how gay marriage should be regulated,” as all of these rights were argued in court with the backing of Roe v Wade. 

This isn’t just about abortions. This is about a person’s right to choose. When you revoke the autonomy of one, you revoke the autonomy of all but those at the top. The only people this won’t affect in any way, direct or indirect, are the people who are passing the bill. You would need a supermajority to stop this from being overturned, but with six of the nine judges being decidedly pro-forced birth, and the other three being the democratic judges, it doesn’t look good for those of us with uteruses. 

It’s infuriating, it’s dehumanizing, and worst of all with the current political climate we can’t just rely on the courts to do the American people right. 

To those of you reading this, who are unaffected by this, remember that you don’t get a say here. The only say you get is agreeing with those who are. If you don’t have a uterus, if you aren’t gonna lose nearly 50 years of rights in a month, then sit down, shut up and get ready to listen. If you are someone who is a self-proclaimed pro-lifer, listen now as well. A fetus is a bundle of cells literally defined as “an unborn offspring of a mammal, in particular, an unborn human baby more than eight weeks after conception.” It is “an unborn or unhatched vertebrate especially after attaining the basic structural plan of its kind.” It does not breathe. It does not want, and most importantly it cannot sustain itself outside of the womb. Making it more of a parasite than a baby. Abortion doesn’t matter to them. They don’t care if they die because it isn’t death. It is simply the removal of a foreign entity from the womb. 

Pregnancy is something that many people fear because of everything that can go horribly wrong. For example, it can go ectopic. Go ahead and look up some pictures of an ectopic pregnancy. Let that sink into your mind, then come back to this. If you believe in forcing someone to go through something as potentially dangerous as that—to damage their body, mind, and finances, all because of your personal beliefs—then you are not a person and you cannot be helped. 

For those of you who do want to ensure others’ safety follow these steps.

Since Roe v Wade is more than likely to be overturned this year, that leaves the legality of abortions to state approval, so go out and vote, and vote blue. 

Delete all period and cycle tracking apps, as they can use this to prove you got an abortion and can use it as evidence to arrest you.

Stock up on any physical contraceptives you can since many states are banning birth control and some are even banning condoms. 

Lie for each other. 

Fight off each other’s rapists with sticks, heels and anything else you can grab. 

Believe the victims and help them come forward or at least get them to a clinic.

Don’t let the apocalypse overtake us. People are already dying, and we need to fight that, so go out and fight. Scream, march, claw, cry. Be as loud as you can and bite the hands that try to silence you. There’s a reason we all read and loved the Hunger Games as kids; it was the warning and our guidebook.

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