Roe always looked like a house of cards

Roe v. Wade has been overturned by the Supreme Court after 49 years of legal arguments, protests, and political fights over who should be on the court.

No matter how you feel about abortion, this is a good thing for American democracy and the rule of written laws made by the people's representatives. Roe was a legal mistake that did a lot to make our politics crazy on a national level. Now, what happens with abortion is up to the democratic process.

Before Roe, almost every state in the Union banned or limited abortion, but the trend was toward letting it happen in more situations. This trend happened here and elsewhere at the same time that divorce laws and other parts of the sexual revolution of the 1960s and 1970s became easier to get. Roe stopped all of that in its tracks by taking the laws of almost every state off the books at once. The law in New York, which was the most liberal in the country, allowed abortions up to 24 weeks.

The job of the Supreme Court is to interpret the law, not to make it. Not even indirectly, the Constitution says nothing about abortion. Before the 1970s, no one thought that the Constitution made abortion legal. At the time, even legal experts who agreed with abortion thought Roe was bad. Its trimester framework sounds more like a law than a judge's reasoning, but it stopped the democratic process from making compromises and changes over time, which are common in laws that are made by the people.

Roe v Wade protesters
Pro-choice demonstrators outside the Supreme Court.
AP

The fact that Roe was not democratic led to a backlash that made the pro-life political movement much stronger than it was in 1973. It changed the way conservative politicians thought about the Constitution. It brought together different groups in national elections, causing religious and cultural differences. It made the process of putting people on the Supreme Court a show. It sometimes made people fight.

All the energy that Congress and state legislatures usually put into politics and making laws was forced into an all-or-nothing national battle for the Supreme Court that lasted decades.

When presidential candidates like Donald Trump or Bill Clinton did bad things, their supporters said that the stakes of every presidential election were too high for disagreement because Roe was always on the national ballot.

That's not good for you. In America, the law should be made by the people. They can now. People in different parts of the country can again disagree with each other. Some states, like New York, are very pro-choice and will keep letting abortions be legal. Some, like Mississippi, are very pro-life and will either ban it or put a lot of restrictions on it.

When presidential candidates like Donald Trump or Bill Clinton did bad things, their supporters said that the stakes of every presidential election were too high for disagreement because Roe was always on the national ballot.

That's not good for you. In America, the law should be made by the people. They can now. People in different parts of the country can again disagree with each other. Some states, like New York, are very pro-choice and will keep letting abortions be legal. Some, like Mississippi, are very pro-life and will either ban it or put a lot of restrictions on it.

Some, like many European countries, will ban abortions after a certain point in a pregnancy, but they will still allow abortions early in the pregnancy. Some places will have direct votes on the issue in November or in elections coming up soon. Congress will decide what the government will pay for and what it won't. Maybe one day there will be a national law or even a constitutional amendment about abortion, but only if there is a strong enough national consensus to pass one.

The people will also decide on this.

=========

Follow us on Google News

Recent Search