The true ripple effects of “rolling back” Roe v. Wade

By Dave Andrusko

The Abortion Industrial Complex has known for years and years that no matter how many misrepresented and misleading polls they trot out, support for abortion is discrete, finite, and subject to erosion. 

As we have documented countless dozens of times, a majority of the American people consistently opposes the reasons 90+% of all abortions are performed. That’s why abortion advocates wrap abortion in gauzy rhetoric about “reproductive rights/reproductive health/reproductive justice.”

With the 48th anniversary of Roe v. Wade just 23 days (and the annual March for Life is still on!), we will read story after story whose premise is that the reversal of Roe would result(to the author) in a series of awful events. (The truth, of course, is that if/when the Supreme Court reverses Roe, each state will be free to decide its own laws on abortion, but that is rarely pointed out in the rush to hysteria.)

A good example is a post that appeared at the National Journal a while back which I re-read this morning. Titled “’Roe’ Is the Scaffolding on Which a Slew of Liberties Are Built,” Lourdes Rivera argues that countless number of subsequent decisions on issues far outside our single issue purview are bound to Roe

Rivera argues,

A cornerstone precedent like Roe reaches both backward and forward in time: From the past cases it elaborated on, to the later cases it influenced.

What to say? 

When we look “backward” in time, we see how “privacy” and “autonomy” were like empty vessels. The courts filled them with rationales that legalized not only failing to treat babies born with disabilities but also to starving and dehydrating patients to death.

The “forward” in time for us is how these same vague terms morphed into support (“scaffolding” to use Rivera’s metaphor) for the “right” to assisted suicide. We’ve seen how the underpinning for legalizing abortion can be imported into the controversy over “assisting” someone to die.

A better metaphor for Roe is of a virus. Once the anti-life virus jumped from the preborn to the child born with imperfections, it was only a matter of time before it would attack the medically vulnerable of any age.

However, I would  agree 100% with Lourdes Rivera in one respect. He believes that “rolling back” Roe would have a “ripple effect.”

I would hope so—that it would reestablish protections for other vulnerable populations vanquished by the logic of Roe v. Wade.