Thursday, July 28, 2016

What Roe v. Wade didn't say ...

The Supreme Court did not say abortion was a constitutional right.  Or that it was moral or just. 

In its perhaps most controversial ruling, the court did allow for a "right of privacy" which it "discovered" in so-called "emanations" or "penumbrae" of our constitution.  The consequences have been culturally divisive and deadly.

The court did not declare that abortion itself was a constitutional right, morally acceptable, or ethically appropriate. Instead, the Supreme Court said, "We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins ... the judiciary at this point ... is not in a position to speculate as to the answer."

They went further with a key admission:  "If this suggestion of personhood is established, the appellant's case [i.e., "Roe" who sought an abortion], of course, collapses, for the fetus' right to life is then guaranteed specifically by the [14th] Amendment."

If somewhere along the timeline from conception to delivery, 'personhood' begins, then perhaps some abortions have in fact been homicidal.  No surprise.  Life does begin before birth of course, and we do have a problem.

Culturally, we've become accustomed to discarding unwanted babies.  Doing what's right is perhaps going to be a difficult battle. After we've lived with easy answers, it's hard to pry our minds loose from that easier path and move back (or forward) to a more rigid rule. True?  A moral lifestyle isn't necessarily on the bucket list for everyone.

Currently, viability is the threshold for human life according to several court rulings.  So what happens when the fetus becomes viable ex-utero?  Medical science is close to requiring a legal answer to that particular question.

For those who have personal convictions on the issue, you'll be interested to know that the 'Life at Conception Act' is in the queue for Congress.  There are controversial outcomes expected from the fight.  It's a good time for raising the issue with elections pending.

You can join the public discussion and petition Congress at the National Pro-Life Alliance website.  Be careful; there are no simple answers when it comes to law.

Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton supports late term abortion up to and including on the baby's due date.  On “The View”, she was asked: “At what point does someone have constitutional rights, and are you saying that a child, on its due date, just hours before delivery, still has no constitutional rights?”

Hillary responded “Under our law that is the case… I support Roe v. Wade…”  Note: the court did not say the unborn child does not have constitutional rights, only that the court could not (yet) make a determination on when the child's life begins.  Once that determination is made, the child has full status as an individual and protection under the Constitution.
Baby Chava was born alive by abortion at around 21 weeks gestation. The child struggled to breathe for ten minutes before clinic staff noticed.  They eventually called 911 for emergency assistance, and baby Chava was transported to a hospital.  The child was pronounced dead upon arrival.

This abortion clinic is the same one exposed in a undercover investigation in 2013. The released video shows the Phoenix, Arizona-based late-term abortion doctor Laura Mercer and an abortion center counselor saying they would leave a newborn, struggling for life after a failed abortion, to die. The abortion industry continues to fight against a federal bill, the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act, that would ensure babies who survive abortions receive equal protection under the law.

It has been forty years since Roe v. Wade, and the public conflict continues.  Resolving this issue will not be easy.

3D ultrasound image  

 Ultrasound technology has advanced in recent years to 3D/4D imagery.  Interestingly, about 75% of women who are shown a modern ultrasound of their unborn child will subsequently decline their intended abortion. Dr. Bernard Nathanson quit aborting babies after he had done one while using ultrasound imaging.

Bernard N. Nathanson (July 31, 1926 – February 21, 2011) was an American medical doctor from New York, co-founder in 1969 of the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws — NARA. Dr. Bernard Nathanson was also the former director of New York City’s Center for Reproductive and Sexual Health, but later became a pro-life activist. He was the narrator for the controversial 1984 anti-abortion film The Silent Scream.