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TUCSON OPINION

Local Opinion: Abortion deepens our country's divisions

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The following is the opinion and analysis of the writer:

Amelia Craig Cramer uses these pages (“Justice Alito’s shadow is specter of a slaveholder” on May 8) to equate the Supreme Court justices who voted to overturn Roe v. Wade with slave owners. She certainly has a right to her own opinion but not her own set of “facts.”

Justice Samuel Alito writes, “The Constitution makes no reference to abortion, and no such right is implicitly protected by any constitutional provision....”

It is true that neither the right to own slaves or abort children are enshrined in the Constitution, but while both practices are egregious, they are very different. Slavery places controls on the life of an innocent victim, while abortion extinguishes the life of that victim. Both practices are opposed by those of us who value the lives of the vulnerable.

Some abortion advocates fear that by allowing individual states to legislate abortion, the reversal of Roe v. Wade will erode other rights. Justice Alito has clearly stated that the reversal of Roe v. Wade does not have an impact on other rights, nor does it outlaw abortion. Each individual state will establish laws to regulate abortion.

We live in a deeply divided country and Roe and Planned Parenthood v. Casey deepened that division. That division has accelerated since Roe v. Wade became the law of the land in 1973. Alito writes “It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.”

Last year, 22 states passed new laws dealing with abortion, including 16 that restricted access to abortion in some way and six that expanded access, according to statistics compiled by USAFacts org.

In her opinion piece, Cramer states Alito would have us maintain a deal with the devil and that the Bill of Rights recognizes the freedom for all people. That freedom also includes the right for those of us who feel abortion is wrong to make that choice and act accordingly.

Cramer cites a series of cases between 1965 and 1990 that the Supreme Court recognized and reaffirmed repeatedly. That legacy has gnawed away at the fabric of our culture and has wormed its way into nearly every issue in politics. For example, abortion is used as a litmus test in almost every aspect of American politics.

We need a clean break from Roe. Alito’s opinion dismantles with great precision the many sagging lies that have upheld Roe for nearly half a century. It obliterates the viability standard, for example, as an arcane one founded on rusty science and on weak moral reasoning.

It soundly rejects the notion that stare decisis protects bad law forever and quotes from countless scholars on the left to make the case. Societal reliance on a bad law is not grounds for permanence.

Ronald Eustice is a writer, retired executive and a Tucson resident. He is a member of St. Odilia Catholic Parish, Casas Adobes.


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