It is almost funny that the New York Times thought Roe v. Wade, easily one of the worst Supreme Court decisions in its history even if it had nothing to do with dehumanizing an entire class for the purpose of ending their lives, would possibly “end the argument” over abortion.
I’m sure the editorial board wouldn’t have said, “Issue’s totally settled, I guess!” if Roe v. Wade had ruled abortion unconstitutional. Why would they think it would operate the other way? This week marks the anniversary of that decision and we’ve seen 42 years of massive public protests.
In “Abuse of Discretion,” Clark Forsythe’s comprehensive look at how Roe v. Wade came to be, he notes that advocates of legalized abortion polled a very general question about whether abortion “should be between a woman and her physician.” Four months before the first arguments in Roe v. Wade were made, such a question got 64 percent affirming it in a Gallup poll, perhaps because the wording was so vague. (This is a bit of an aside, but Forsythe notes that abortion is almost never between a woman and her physician. Fewer than 5 percent of abortions are performed by a woman’s regular OB-GYN and almost all are performed by a stranger.)