Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Roe V. Wade 35th Anniversary...

Yup, Today is that day again. Many people will go through their day in regular routine and not once think about what this day means for even a second.

In 1973 the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that a woman has a constitutional right to an abortion during the first six months of pregnancy.Before the Court’s ruling, a majority of states prohibited abortion, although most allowed an exception when pregnancy threatened the woman’s life. The Court overturned these state prohibitions in Roe v. Wade. The Court ruled that states could restrict abortions only during the final three months of pregnancy, a stage when medical experts considered the fetus capable of “meaningful life” outside the womb.

Here's my question, who decides what's "meaningful life" and what isn't? Does a bum on the side of the road have a less meaningful life than me? Does a two year old baby have more meaning in life than an hour old baby?

Ms. Norma McCorvey (a.k.a. Jane Roe) thought the court should have that power back in 1973. She was 22, unmarried, pregnant, homeless, a drug addict and living on a park bench in Texas in 1969. She didn't know much about anything. But she ended up becoming the figurehead in the Supreme Court case that legalized abortion in America. However, in 1995 a Christian group moved into the office across the car park from Ms. McCorvey's abortion clinic. Over time, she came to accept their view, that abortion was not a woman's "fundamental right to choose," but the murder of an unborn child. She quit working in abortion clinics, gave up drugs and alcohol, converted to Catholicism, wrote a new book called "Won by Love" and established an anti-abortion group called "Roe No More."

My question to most people, after they hear what "Jane Roe" is up to now, is do you think the case should be overturned by the supreme court? Or is an amendment more efficient and more likely?

3 comments:

Saint in Exile said...

To address your question:
My question to most people, after they hear what "Jane Roe" is up to now, is do you think the case should be overturned by the supreme court? Or is an amendment more efficient and more likely?

I think that Jane Roe's story is a good example of why the pro-life movement is too caught up in politics at the expense of neglecting what they are probably much better at: changing how people look at the world. Jane Roe changed her mind about abortion without any legislation or constitutional amendment. Why? Because some Christians who feel strongly about the issue set out to change her mind and succeeded.

This is a great example of PJ O'Rourke's observation that everybody wants to save the world, but nobody wants to help mom do the dishes. The pro-life movement, apparently forgetting its largely Christian roots, has come to view legislative achievement as its goal. The goal should be to change peoples' opinions. Overturning Roe v Wade and banning abortion in every state will not stop unborn children from being killed because it will not address the moral problems that lead some women to view abortion as a viable option.

For the government to outlaw abortion would send a signal that a significant portion of the country views this act as so repulsive that it must be banned, which helps to reinforce the sanctitiy of life in our culture, but it will also repulse that large segment of our society that has come to view abortion as a dogmatic symbol of freedom. That will ensure that pro-abortion forces will continue their crusade and seek legalization once again. It will also ensure that abortion continues on the black market.

George Bush was right when he said it 8 years ago - the cure for abortion is to change the heart of man. Changing laws or the constitution doesn't do that.

Jezla said...

I agree with Saint in Exile that our best hope is to emphasize changing hearts before changing laws.

That said, it bothers me that our country's laws make a distinction between killing a born child and an unborn one.

In answer to your question, however, I think an amendment would be the better route, and would certainly be ratified, but I doubt it would ever make it through Congress.

I R A Darth Aggie said...

That said, it bothers me that our country's laws make a distinction between killing a born child and an unborn one.

That shouldn't bother you, not when we make a distinction between one unborn child and another depending on whether the mother wants to keep or remove the child.

As an example, let's say I cause a car crash, and a woman with child is injured and she loses the child. I'm now on the hook for a crime, even if she where driving to Planned Parenthood to get an abortion.