This blog started out as a companion piece to my book, Musings from the Christian Left (excerpts of which can be found in the July 2004 link) and to support a planned radio show. Now, its simply a long term writing project from a Christian Left Libertarian perspective (meaning I often argue for liberty within the (Catholic) Church, rather than liberty because the church takes care of a conservative view of morality.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Stop the March for Life

I am not arguing here for an external action stopping the March, or even for opposition to it by the pro-choice movement. What I am arguing for is a change in the focus of the pro-life movement.

As long as this March is the center of the movement, along with the judicial overturn of Roe, it will be seen as a Republican recruiting tool and not much else. Even though the result was tragic, Roe was correctly decided on the facts and law.

Prior to Roe, abortion was regulated as a medical procedure, the unborn did not have a recognized right to life. Indeed, using the language of rights affirms the fact that we can never go back to the pre-Roe status quo, where abortionists were simply fined and women sought unsafe abortions but were not punished in the same way that anyone ordering the death of another is punished.

Insistence on state-by-state variation in abortion law may make Justice Scalia and the Federalist Society happy, but it won't do a thing for the unborn, as women and parents of girls can cross state lines to get an abortion. The collateral damage from such a ruling on all matters of equal protection law would also be quite undesirable to all who care for the rights of minorities (including Catholics in Alabama and Mississippi). States are not the competent jurisdiction to recognize citizenship - it is a federal role under the 14th Amendment. Once a fetus is recognized as a legal person, he or she would enjoy the full range of equal protection rights, including the right to have the person who ordered his or her death punished. Since the nation (and even the pro-life movement) does not have the stomach for this happening in the first trimester, the game is forever changed.

As long as the focus is on the impossible dream of overturning Roe judicially, nothing will happen for the unborn. If we work within the boundaries of Roe and the 14th Amendment, however, at least late term abortions can be legally ended and the economic views of Caritas in Veritate can be applied to first trimester abortions (by making larger families affordable). Oddly enough, this position is the one taken by many, if not most, Catholic Obama voters. Perhaps it is time for the movement to listen to us, rather than pillorying us from the pulpit.

4 Comments:

Blogger James Young said...

"Roe was correctly decided on the facts and law"?!?!

Without regard to your other comments, with regard to this one: From what institution is your law degree?

'Fact is, that's utter nonsense. Roe is whole cloth, based upon factual fraud. As the late John Hart Ely (a proponent of a properly-enacted --- i.e., statutorily --- liberalized abortion regime, and an actual law professor) observed, "[I]t is not constitutional law and gives almost no sense of an obligation to try to be."

Opine about political strategy if you like. But your comment about something about which you're clearly ignorant diminishes your credibility about something about which you may not be.

3:46 PM

 
Blogger Michael Bindner said...

Aside from an attack on my credentials and the citing of some friendly authority who disagrees with me, do you have a point?

How am I wrong on either the jurisdictional or privacy questions? Be specific.

2:07 PM

 
Anonymous fasb rating system said...

Roe is whole cloth, based upon factual fraud. As the late John Hart Ely (a proponent of a properly-enacted i.e., statutorily liberalized abortion regime, and an actual law professor observed,

12:30 PM

 
Blogger Michael Bindner said...

Regardless of how you feel about the fact that Ms. Roe actually had the baby or even the result, the fact remains that repealing Roe would put equal protection and privacy law at risk. It is also the case that the plain language of the 14th Amendment is rather clear on this matter and that only the Congress (and not the states) can change this understanding. People may indulge in wishful thinking on States Rights on this matter, however that does not change the result at Appotomax.

9:44 AM

 

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