USA – When Judges Defy the Supreme Court

When Judges Defy the Supreme Court
The chief justice faces a time of great testing, both of himself and of the institution he heads, as the lower courts move rapidly even to his right.
Linda Greenhouse

By Linda Greenhouse, Contributing Opinion Writer
Feb. 14, 2019

No, I wasn’t surprised last week, as most people apparently were, when Chief Justice John Roberts cast the deciding fifth vote to preserve access to abortion in Louisiana for at least a little while longer. In fact, I had predicted it (and I have witnesses).

Why? Not because I think the chief justice has developed a soft spot in his heart for the right to abortion. He has not. Not because he wants to minimize the Supreme Court’s role as a combatant in the culture wars. I think he does, but that’s not the point.

Rather, circumstances compelled the chief justice to stand up to a stunning act of judicial defiance.

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/14/opinion/abortion-supreme-court-louisiana.html

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60 hours, 50 abortions: A California doctor’s monthly commute to a Texas clinic

60 hours, 50 abortions: A California doctor’s monthly commute to a Texas clinic

By Soumya Karlamangla
Jan 24, 2019

The protesters are already positioned when she pulls up in her rental car. One lurches at women approaching the clinic, rosary beads dangling from her outstretched palm. Another hands patients tiny fetus dolls that match their skin color.

The doctor tries to ignore them. There are demonstrators at every abortion clinic and they’re all the same, she thinks: a nuisance. In Northern California, where she lives, a man yells, “Don’t take the blood money,” as she arrives at work.

Continued: https://www.latimes.com/local/great-reads/la-me-col1-abortion-doctor-20190124-htmlstory.html

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Texas made it hard to have my abortion. With Roe at stake, I’m going home to expand access.

Texas made it hard to have my abortion. With Roe at stake, I’m going home to expand access.

Sarah Valliere, Opinion contributor
Published Jan. 22, 2019

That’s the fourth test, my best friend told me in a calm, but stern voice. I was pregnant.

I sat in shock on the toilet seat, staring at all four positive pregnancy tests. How could this be? Taking birth control pills made me feel invincible; there was no way I could be pregnant.

I was 17 years old and in a state of pure instability. With siblings away at college, no longer speaking to my father, and knowing my mother was processing the messy divorce that tore our family apart — I felt alone, lost and with nowhere to turn.

continued: https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/voices/2019/01/22/abortion-roe-wade-planned-parenthood-texas-column/2636410002/

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A Texas abortion procedure ban is unnecessary, full of theatrics and harmful to women

A Texas abortion procedure ban is unnecessary, full of theatrics and harmful to women

By The Times Editorial Board
Nov 12, 2018

No matter how often a woman’s constitutional right to an abortion is upheld by federal courts, there’s a state legislature somewhere trying to make it impossible for her to have one. The assaults on abortion rights have come in waves, as state legislatures dominated by anti-abortion lawmakers simultaneously pursue the same new legal gambits until blocked by a federal judge, at which point they change tactics and try again.

Most recently, abortion opponents have shifted from seeking restrictions ostensibly designed to protect the health of a pregnant woman — such as requiring abortion clinics to be outfitted like outpatient surgery centers, or requiring doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital — to ones that focus on the fetus. For example, Texas and a number of other states slapped tough new restrictions on the dilation and evacuation procedure, or D&E, the safest and most common second-trimester abortion, calling it a “dismemberment abortion” and describing the procedure in ghoulish detail.

Continued: http://www.latimes.com/opinion/editorials/la-ed-texas-ban-second-trimester-abortion-20181112-story.html

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USA – Do Migrant Teenagers Have Abortion Rights? Two Volatile Issues Collide in Court

Do Migrant Teenagers Have Abortion Rights? Two Volatile Issues Collide in Court

By Robert Pear
Sept. 29, 2018

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration is claiming broad new authority to block access to abortions sought by undocumented immigrants under age 18 who are in its custody.

In a case that brings together two of the most volatile issues in American society, immigration and abortion, the Justice Department argued this past week before a federal appeals court that the government “has a strong, legitimate and profound interest in the life of the child in the womb.”

Continued: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/29/us/politics/court-abortion-immigrants.html

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USA – ‘Your decisions affect real people’: the lawyer who represented an immigrant teen in her fight to get an abortion explains why she testified against Brett Kavanaugh

'Your decisions affect real people': the lawyer who represented an immigrant teen in her fight to get an abortion explains why she testified against Brett Kavanaugh

Sep 8, 2018
Grace Panetta

After lawmakers on the Senate Judiciary Committee questioned Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh over three action-packed days, they listened on Friday to multiple witnesses who testified for or against Kavanaugh. Those people include the lawyer whose client he ruled against last year in the case of an undocumented teen seeking an abortion.

Rochelle Garza represented the 17 year-old girl, known as Jane Doe, in the case Garza v. Hargan. The case began as a suit against the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) over their decision to block Jane, who was detained in an ORR facility, from receiving an abortion. They did so by refusing to transport her to her appointment, even after she received the proper approval from a judge.

Continued; https://www.businessinsider.com/rochelle-garza-immigration-abortion-case-testifies-against-kavanaugh-2018-9

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Abortion Is a Problem to Be Solved, Not a Moral Issue

Abortion Is a Problem to Be Solved, Not a Moral Issue
Education and birth control are slowly making the politics less relevant

By Michael Shermer | Scientific American, September 2018 Issue (online August 14)

In May of this year the pro-life/pro-choice controversy leapt back into headlines when Ireland overwhelmingly approved a referendum to end its constitutional ban on abortion. Around the same time, the Trump administration proposed that Title X federal funding be withheld from abortion clinics as a tactic to reduce the practice, a strategy similar to that of Texas and other states to shut down clinics by burying them in an avalanche of regulations, which the U.S. Supreme Court struck down in 2016 as an undue burden on women for a constitutionally guaranteed right. If the goal is to attenuate abortions, a better strategy is to reduce unwanted pregnancies. Two methods have been proposed: abstinence and birth control.

Abstinence would obviate abortions just as starvation would forestall obesity. There is a reason no one has proposed chastity as a solution to overpopulation. Sexual asceticism doesn't work, because physical desire is nearly as fundamental as food to our survival and flourishing.

Continued: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/abortion-is-a-problem-to-be-solved-not-a-moral-issue/

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USA – Crisis Pregnancy Centers: Money for Nothing

Crisis Pregnancy Centers: Money for Nothing
Despite unprecedented taxpayer investment, state-funded crisis pregnancy centers deliver few services

By Mary Tuma
Fri., July 20, 2018

"They won't tell you this wherever they do these things, but it's a very big risk. You may never be able to conceive children. There's about a 90% chance you may never be able to have children down that road."

That was one of the misleading and deceptive messages imparted to Laura Gor­sky and Breanne Wenke by crisis pregnancy center counselors during a March visit to the TruCare pregnancy resource center in South Austin. While there, Gorsky and Wenke were also sold a slew of other medically unproven information about abortion, including negative mental side effects and emotional distress, false claims debunked by the American Psychological Association. The procedure, they were warned, was "very painful," and they would "hear the vacuum sucking the fetus out."

Continued: https://www.austinchronicle.com/news/2018-07-20/crisis-pregnancy-centers-money-for-nothing/

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USA – Restricting Abortion Access Is Class Warfare

Restricting Abortion Access Is Class Warfare
Onerous anti-abortion laws are designed to make abortion inaccessible — and by design they harm poor women and marginalized populations the most.

Jex Blackmore
Apr 5 2018

Imagine that you’re a 24-year-old woman living in Lubbock County, Texas, and you've just discovered that you’re six weeks pregnant. You know you can’t afford to carry a pregnancy to term at this point in your life, so you decide to get an abortion. However, you make an hourly wage of $13.20—which is 82 percent of what your male counterpart earns—and you’re uninsured, without credit or savings. Like 60 percent of women seeking an abortion, you are also a young mother. The nearest abortion provider is 300 miles away (one way), and you’ll have to visit the clinic twice to comply with Texas’ 24-hour waiting period law.

The clinic tells you that your procedure will cost $600. This is in addition to the cost of gas ($42), hotel accommodations ($160), lost wages ($316), medication and maxi-pads ($50), and childcare ($200), which adds up to a total of $1,368—or 65 percent of your monthly income. Depending on your current financial situation, this may be an inconceivable expense for you, especially if you lack support from a partner or family members, you’ve recently had car trouble, your child is sick, or you’re experiencing any number of hardships that women in poverty face.

Continued: https://broadly.vice.com/en_us/article/9kgddp/restricting-abortion-access-is-class-warfare

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The Astonishing Numbers Behind the Republican Crusade Against Pregnant Women

The Astonishing Numbers Behind the Republican Crusade Against Pregnant Women
Alex Henderson
Jan 30, 2018
AlterNet, News & Politics

Forty-five years after the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its landmark decision in Roe v. Wade, the Republican Party and far-right Christian fundamentalists remain obsessed with ending safe and legal abortion in the United States. But their opposition to universal health care and attacks on everything from Medicare to school lunch programs demonstrate that their concern for human life ends once a baby is born. If the GOP and its evangelical base truly were pro-life, they might object to the fact the U.S. now has the highest maternal death rate in the developed world—a figure that is especially pronounced in Republican-dominated red states.

In 2016, The Lancet published the results of an international study on maternal mortality that found U.S. women were almost three times as likely to die from pregnancy-related complications as their counterparts in Germany or the U.K., and almost seven times as likely as women in Finland. According to the medical journal, maternal mortality in the U.S. increased from 16.9 per 100,000 live births in 1990 to 26.4 per 100,000 live births in 2015.

Continued: https://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/astonishing-numbers-behind-republican-crusade-against-pregnant-womenthe?amp

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