Stars Stripes And Reproductive Rights Historic Decision Of The US Supreme Court
The US Supreme Court overturned a ruling recognizing women’s right to abortion, sparking mixed reactions and nationwide protests. The June 24 ruling received six votes in favor and three against, with conservatives gaining a majority in the Supreme Court. The ruling supported a Republican-backed Mississippi law that banned abortions after 15 weeks.
The Court reversed the 1973 “Roe against Wade” ruling. At that time, the Supreme Court declared abortion to be one of the fundamental human rights of women and an amendment-based constitutional right. Judgment No. 14. This precedent has been considered the highest legal document in the US on the issue of abortion. Chief Justice John Roberts said he supported Mississippi’s law, but would not take the additional step of removing the precedent entirely.
The Supreme Court ruled that the ruling in the “Roe against Wade” case allowing abortion between 24 and 28 weeks of pregnancy was wrong because the US Constitution did not specifically mention the right to abortion.
States now have the power to pass laws banning abortion. Twenty-six states are considered certain or likely to ban abortion. Mississippi was among 13 states that had already prepared legislation to ban abortion when the 1973 ruling was overturned.
“The Constitution does not grant abortion rights,” the US Supreme Court said in a statement. “Authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and elected officials.”
US Attorney General Merrick Garland said the department would fight to protect abortion rights and signaled legal battles would ensue.
“God made the decision,” former president Donald Trump said, praising the ruling. When he ran for office in 2016, Mr. Trump pledged to appoint judges to the Supreme Court who would overturn the “Roe v. Wade” case.
During his four years in office, Mr. Trump appointed three conservative justices, representing a third of the total number of justices on the Supreme Court, successfully building a 6-3 conservative majority. All three of his appointees voted in favor of the latest ruling.
President Joe Biden called the ruling a “tragic mistake” stemming from “extremist ideology” and called it a “sad day for the courts and for the country”. “The health and lives of women in this country are at stake,” Biden said, warning that other rights could be at stake, like same-sex marriage and contraception.
Protests against the ruling broke out almost immediately in Washington, DC and elsewhere such as New York and Boston. More protests are also planned around the country. “Abortion is health care, health care is a right,” the crowd chanted as they marched in Manhattan, New York.
The abortion rate in the US peaked in 1980, seven years after the 1973 ruling, at 29.3 cases per 1,000 women of childbearing age (15-44). The number of cases fell to 13.5 cases per 1,000 women in 2017 before rising to 14.4 cases in 2020. In 2020, there were 930,160 abortions in the US, accounting for 20.6% of the total. pregnancies, up from 18.4% in 2017. Mississippi saw a 40% increase from 2017 to 2020.
Globally, abortion rights are generally on the rise. The World Health Organization (WHO) says about 73 million abortions take place globally each year, accounting for 29% of all pregnancies.
The US Supreme Court’s decision on abortion is expected to increase conflict in American society. Massive protests have been planned in states across the country. Many are concerned that this will be a premise for other rights of Americans to be taken away, especially when conservative Judge Clarence Thomas has asked the Court to review past rulings. on the protection of the right to contraception and the legalization of same-sex marriage.
States Require An End To Abortion
Wyoming was one of the first states to ban abortion, doing so on the evening of the Supreme Court’s decision.
Wyoming Republican Senator Daniel McCay, who supports the state’s “activation law,” said it’s illegal for Utah women to seek abortions in neighboring states.
However, Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, one of the conservative justices who voted to overturn the ruling, said it would be unconstitutional for one state to ban its citizens from traveling to another state to have an abortion.
As for Ohio, women in this state will not be able to have an abortion when a fetal heartbeat is detected. The so-called “heartbeat” bill, which bans abortions at six weeks of gestation, has been in place since 2019. Shortly after the June 24 ruling, a federal judge agreed intends to overturn a Federal Court order that had previously blocked the law.
In the state of Alabama, the Protection of Human Life Act of 2019 went into effect immediately following the Supreme Court’s decision. It is illegal for “any person to knowingly perform or attempt to perform an abortion,” including a victim of rape and incest, unless “abortion is necessary to prevent a serious health risk.” important to mother”.
Similarly, in Arkansas, the Supreme Court’s 1973 precedent overturned the state’s abortion law immediately, with the exception of abortions to protect the mother’s life in an emergency.
Health facilities in the state have been told that performing abortions is now against the law, punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.
West Virginia’s only abortion clinic shut down abortions on June 24. The state has laws that deal with the crime of abortion with sentences ranging from three to 10 years in prison, but it remains unclear how it will proceed after the supreme court’s decision.
“Now people from the state who want an abortion will be forced to travel hundreds or even thousands of miles to other states to get an abortion,” said Katie Quinonez, executive director of the West Virginia Center for Women’s Health. do not break the law.” She emphasized that in such a context, the communities of the disadvantaged would be hardest hit.
Minutes after the US Supreme Court overturned the Roe v Wade case, Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt proposed an abortion ban in the state.
The Texas legislature passed a “trigger law” in 2021, providing that 30 days after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade, it would be illegal to perform an abortion in Texas.
In Arizona, abortion clinics are temporarily suspending abortion services while state officials assess the situation.
Places That Still Protect Abortion Rights
In Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser announced the capital would support women’s choice to have an abortion, but possibly within an area, not the entire city.
The Democratic governors of California, Washington and Oregon have all vowed to defend abortion rights and help women from other states come to the West Coast to have abortions.
The Republican governor of Massachusetts, Charlie Baker, also signed an executive order to protect access to reproductive health care.
In North Carolina, the Democratic governor, Roy Cooper, also vowed to defend abortion rights, despite the Republican-controlled legislature.
And in New Mexico, the top prosecutor and Democratic nominee for attorney general, Raúl Torrez, has called on politicians to do more to protect women’s abortion rights. even for people from other states.
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