A few important updates and analyses on the culture wars from around the interwebs:
Over at First Things, John Murdock makes the case that Chief Justice John Roberts may actually be playing 4-D chess on Roe v. Wade:
Roberts is capable of playing four-dimensional chess, and may be positioning things so that Roe comes down in such a way that it is most likely to stay down. To uphold Obamacare, Roberts bent over backward to show deference to Congress. His DACA decision was focused on following proper procedures when reversing your predecessor. In Bostock, Roberts may have joined the opinion late so that he could use his special seniority as Chief Justice to hand the pen to Justice Gorsuch. Otherwise, Ginsburg would have chosen the opinion’s author, and a liberal scribe probably would not have had to bend too far to keep Gorsuch on board. (Gorsuch’s pro-LGBT leanings are no surprise to those who were paying attention to his church, his friends, his record, and his confirmation hearing where the former clerk for Justice Kennedy flatly declared gay-marriage to be “absolutely settled law.”) If Gorsuch drafted the opinion, though, he was more likely to at least acknowledge the importance of religious freedom in this context (as he did) and to center the opinion on textualism (as he did as well, albeit in a manner that was too cute by half).
Read the whole thing. It’s an interesting—and encouraging—theory.
At The Public Discourse, Ryan T. Anderson (author of the exceptional book When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Moment) pushes back against David French’s optimism regarding the recent Supreme Court wins on religious liberty:
The religious liberty triumphs of the past several days are important, but they’re not enough. Not nearly so. We need to contend about the truth of the matter. Through legislation and litigation, we need to make it clear that it’s lawful to act on the convictions that we are created male and female and that male and female are created for each other. Privacy and safety at a shelter, equality on an athletic field, and good medicine are at stake for everyone—religious or not.
Read the whole thing. It’s an important argument, although I suspect it might be too late in the game to be a viable strategy. We probably lost that fight with Obergefell.
Over at The Guardian, Jessa Crispin has an interesting piece blaming Planned Parenthood for the failures of the pro-choice movement:
Instead, Planned Parenthood spends its time talking about “protecting Roe”, a notoriously weak and hobbled supreme court decision that guarantees legality but not access, and there is a massive difference between those two. For large parts of the nation, abortion is simply not accessible – logistically, financially or politically. Six states each have only one remaining clinic, meaning women there must travel extreme distances to access services. Then there are waiting limits, invasive medical tests, “counseling” and other wastes of time they must undergo. These facts are well known in the feminist community, but they are often recited as a head-shaking “what are you going to do?” commentary on how the pro-life movement has us on our heels. Rarely do we use them to indict ourselves on just how many people we are letting down every year.
Discontent with Planned Parenthood within both the abortionist community as well as the pro-choice community has been growing for years, especially as the abortion giant has pushed smaller abortion clinics out of business and has essentially monopolized the entire abortion rights coalition of Canada. As far as I’m concerned, any civil war in that community can only be a good thing.
Abortion laws on Guernsey are changing, according to the BBC:
Abortion in Guernsey is set to be “modernised”, following the States approval of amending the law. The reforms to the 1997 law include extending gestational time limits and allowing one doctor to sign off an abortion. The limit will double to 24 weeks and no limits will apply in case of “significant” foetal abnormalities. The changes also decriminalise terminating a pregnancy outside of a medical setting. The reforms will be drafted into law and return to the States for final approval.
A public consultation by the Committee for Health and Social Care (HSC) found 66% of the more than 300 respondents supported the reforms. The “modernisation” regulations will increase the time limit for an abortion from 12 to 24 weeks, bringing the Bailiwick in line with England, Wales and Scotland. Abortions in cases of “significant foetal abnormality” will be allowed at any time, up from 24 weeks currently. Women on the island can currently pay to have an abortion privately in the UK after 12 weeks. Under the changes nurses and midwives will be allowed to perform abortions and women can have them at home, rather than exclusively at the Princess Elizabeth Hospital.
A disappointing decision that will lead, inevitably, to more death.
CTV is reporting that thousands of women in Quebec are opting to use the abortion pill:
During its first year of availability, the abortion pill was used by women for at least 8 per cent of abortions, a report by the College of Physicians shows. That means at least 2,130 women chose this option to terminate their pregnancy, rather than having a surgical abortion.
The abortion pill, available for pregnancies up to nine weeks old, can be taken at home and is an alternative to surgical abortion. The College of Physicians said the data show that the abortion pill is well established in Quebec. The figures show only a minimum: the College collected data on the pill from the abortion clinics that distribute it, but it is also available in pharmacies with a doctor’s prescription, figures that were not included in the study. Therefore, it’s likely that more women used the abortion pill than the numbers reported.
When CTV says the “pregnancies” are nine weeks old, they mean the babies are nine weeks old. Just so we’re clear.