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Wednesday, November 30, 2005

The Supreme Court and Abortion

I was going to post about the recently uncovered story alleging that Bush had contemplating Al-Jazeera's offices in the friendly nation of Qatar, but anything I was going to say was said far better by Snave at Various Miseries. So, instead, I will discuss the first abortion-rights case to be heard by the Roberts court.

The question in Ayotte v. Planned Parenthood is whether New Hampshire's parental notification law will be upheld. If I had to choose between either pro-choice or pro-life, I would probably have to say I'm pro-choice, though I am in favor of some restrictions on abortion and am strongly in favor of measures to reduce the demand for it. On the surface, the New Hampshire law seems like a good idea. I favor parental notification in principle, but a potential problem with this law is that there is no explicit exception in the case of emergencies where the mother's health is in jeopardy, though other laws in the state of New Hampshire may protect doctors in those instances. As a general rule, I believe it should be as difficult for a minor to get an abortion as it is for a child to receive other forms of medical treatment. In the specific case of abortion, I believe it should require parental/guardian notification unless the mother's life or health is in danger, or unless the parent/guardian fathered the child or otherwise abused the mother-to-be. But this question is not about my personal views. It is about which way this court will rule on this case. Chief Justice Roberts has shown some signs of being a maverick and has been given the American Bar Association's highest rating. At this point, all that is left is to wait a few months for the ruling.

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