The New Leaked Supreme Court Draft Threatens the Rights of Americans Everywhere

A recent draft was leaked from the Supreme Court and later ruled authentic, calling for the overturning of Roe v. Wade.


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Ingalls Witte, Staff Writer

At the start of this month, a draft from the Supreme Court was leaked– threading the civil liberties of American citizens across the nation. The ruling was authored by Justice Samuel Alito, who stated that “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start,” and called for a complete overturn of the historic 1973 decision as well as the subsequent 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey ruling. The draft was circulated around the court and received majority support, with four of the nine justices backing it.

The 98-page draft states that both Roe and Casey must be overruled, as the right to abortion is not “implicitly protected by any constitutional provision.” The initial ruling of Roe v. Wade was justified by the 14th Amendment, stating the right to abortion as a civil liberty granted to all Americans. However, because the right to abortion isn’t explicitly stated in the Constitution, Alito argues that it is not “deeply rooted” in American tradition and thus not recognized by the Supreme Court. This stance poses a threat to several different rulings, such as privacy laws and even those allowing gay marriage- as they are all justified by the 14th Amendment, though not explicitly stated by the Constitution.

Though the ruling won’t outwardly ban abortion, it will turn the power back over to the state legislature. “The Constitution does not prohibit the citizens of each State from regulating or prohibiting abortion,” concludes the draft, “Roe and Casey arrogated that authority. We now overrule those decisions and return that authority to the people and their elected representatives.” 26 of the 50 states are expected to ban abortion following the possible over-ruling of Roe in the form of trigger laws, bans at six and eight weeks, near-total bans, bans written into the state’s Constitution and pre-Roe bans that could be re-enacted.

There is a magnitude of things wrong with Alito’s draft, but the most glaring discrepancy is this: Justice Alito is a man. Someone who never has and never will go through the experience of pregnancy and childbirth. In fact, three of the four justices backing this proposal don’t even have uteruses- begging the question, “Why do those incapable of bearing a child so desperately want to control the bodies of those who can?”

The stance of the five justices and people in support of the overturning of Roe is that of “pro-life.” Pro-lifers believe life begins at conception, equating the life of the mother equal to a culmination of diploid cells. The National Right to Life Committee is the largest pro-life organization in the United States, and they state, “The baby living in her mother is a distinct and unique separate person/human being as I am from you.”

Yet this distinct and unique “person” said to be separate from the mother is only mature enough to survive outside the womb 27 weeks after pregnancy– 19 weeks after most states are planning on banning abortion. The fetus isn’t scientifically able to be separate from the mother until nearly six months into the pregnancy, therefore the pro-life argument that there is a distinct and unique life in the womb is one of moral standing.

Those with pro-life views in government are primarily Republican- yet the overturning of Roe directly contradicts the traditional conservative views of lack of government involvement in the personal affairs of American citizens. If the stance of pro-lifers is a moral one, why should the government impose said morals upon those who don’t hold those same values?

A common argument regarding an alternative to abortion is that of putting the baby up for adoption once it is born. Justice Amy Coney Barrett, one of the backers of the proposed rulings, asked “Why don’t the safe haven laws take care of that problem?”  This statement not only disregards the physical trauma endured by pregnant individuals that don’t even want to be pregnant, but the effects of the foster system on children put into it. One study found that kids in the foster system are four times more likely to contemplate or attempt suicide than kids not in the system.

Even if the child was given up for adoption, the parent still has to endure the physical and mental tolls of pregnancy. Postpartum recovery typically lasts around six weeks, but most say it takes a lot longer than that to get back to normal. Other than physical recovery, there is a mental recovery as well. Approximately one in seven people suffer from postpartum depression, a serious mental illness that can continue months and even years following birth.

Given the immense effects birth has on an individual and the overwhelming push to force people to stay pregnant,  you would assume the United States would rank fairly high regarding paid paternal leave, affordable childcare, and healthcare. That, however, is not the case. In a study conducted by UNICEF, the U.S. ranked incredibly low in “family-friendliness.” The United States ranks last in the OECD for paternal leave offered- a whopping $0. So not only do individuals have to endure the tolls of a pregnancy not even wanted, the time taken off to recover is not even paid.

America claims to be the “land of the free” yet is fighting to go back on laws that ensure that freedom. The bodily autonomy of American citizens is not anything that should be up for debate- especially by those who don’t even have a uterus.

The political climate in America as of right now is very frightening- and very real. Though the thought of losing reproductive rights can make people feel helpless, now more than ever we need to step up and fight. Make your voice heard. Contact your Senators voicing your support for Roe, show up to protests and see other resources on how you can help keep the bodily autonomy of all Americans and fight for reproductive rights.