| | Comments (0)
Brit Hume: "Would you consider someone that though Roe v Wade was improperly decided by the court, does that place someone outside the mainstream, in your view?"
Dianne Feinstein: "In my view it does ... Roe could have been overturned 38 times. Precedent has been estbalished. Women all over America have come to depend on it. An overwhelming majority of people support it. ... I think it would be for many of us a very difficult thing to see somebody you knew was going to overthrow Roe at this point in time."

Hume did not ask about someone who would overthrow Roe, he asked about someone who thought it was improperly decided. Heck, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, one of the greatest champions of legal abortion rights, has said that Roe was improperly decided, that the court should not have made the law, but let the political process play out.

Just because you think it was improperly decided -- as many legal scholars of all stripes and beliefs do -- does not mean you want to overturn it.

Further, just because you want to overturn it, does not mean you would. Lincoln wanted to abolish slavery, but wouldn't support doing so, because it would cause war. More recently, some gay rights advocates opposed trying to use the courts to force gay marriage on society, because of the inevitable backlash. Be patient. Let society change. It had already changed so much in the last 15 years in favor of acceptance of homosexuality ... don't push it.

But they couldn't resist. They could not wait for society to change. They tried to change society, and now, guess what? Gay marriage is now more illegal in the U.S. than it ever has been before.

And mark my words, if the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, abortion will become a part of most state Constitutions in this country, and the anti-abortion cause will be set back decades. Society is not ready for it, and you can't force things like that on society.

I am as opposed to abortion as almost anyone. But I am not in favor of "overthrow[ing] Roe at this point in time." Even if Alito still believes Roe was wrong, and even if he believes abortion is evil and should be abolished, who is to say whether Alito would overturn Roe, even if he could (which he couldn't, since there are five solid votes for Roe right now)?

Which brings me to the word "mainstream." George Bush got more votes for President than anyone in our history. And he said he would nominate judges in the mold of Scalia and Thomas during that campaign. And Scalia and Thomas were two of the votes dissenting from the Casey decision that reaffirmed Roe. If a person such as this is not mainstream, then the word mainstream has no real meaning, beyond "what I personally believe, and believe that everyone else should believe."

Part of the problem is probably that her measurements don't measure what she thinks they measure. There's several different things here: disagreeing with Roe, thinking it should be overturned, and being willing to overturn it. When you take a poll about whether Roe should be overturned, most people will likely answer based on whether they think it should be overturned now, and the answer is surely, mostly, no. But if you ask people if they think we should work toward the "eventual abolition" of abortion -- to borrow from Lincoln -- a lot more people would say yes, including many people who call themselves pro-choice.

Is that mainstream?

Leave a comment

<pudge/*> (pronounced "PudgeGlob") is thousands of posts over many years by Pudge.

"It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become a prey to the active. The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt."

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by pudge published on January 9, 2006 10:30 PM.

Call Me Lucas McCain was the previous entry in this site.

Chuck Connors is the next entry in this site.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.