Category Archives: Abortion

Obama Against “Choice”

Adam of The Metropolis Times reminds us that the Declaration of Independence reads:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,

Creation and Endowment — birth is besides the point, just one point in the developmental process.

Surprisingly (or not), Barack Obama now seems to agree. His latest “clarification” is that he opposes what liberals call “choice” and others call infanticide late in the pregnancy — and that mental distress does not count as a physical need:

My Way News – Obama: Mental distress can’t justify late abortion
WASHINGTON (AP) – Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama says “mental distress” should not qualify as a health exception for late term-abortions, a key distinction not embraced by many supporters of abortion rights.

In an interview this week with “Relevant,” a Christian magazine, Obama said prohibitions on late-term abortions must contain “a strict, well defined exception for the health of the mother.”

Obama then added: “Now, I don’t think that ‘mental distress’ qualifies as the health of the mother. I think it has to be a serious physical issue that arises in pregnancy, where there are real, significant problems to the mother carrying that child to term.”

I’m glad for any friends in the fight against infanticide, and would be happy if Obama’s latest statement gave us a prediction of how he would govern.

I’m sure Obama’s black nationalist and Marxist supporters, such as Rev. Wright and Bill Ayres, were once just as happy to have Obama on their side.

I’m sure Obama’s left-wing supporters, such as MoveOn and Wesley Clark, were once just as happy to have Obama on my side.

But for now, I’m happy to have Obama on my side, until he stabs me in the back… again.

Hidden Selection

Stein, R. (2008). Abortions hit lowest number since 1976. Washington Post. January 17, 2008. Available online: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/01/16/AR2008011603624.html?hpid=topnews.

As someone who believes in the equal worth of every human person, this is good news:

The number of abortions performed in the United States dropped to 1.2 million in 2005 — the lowest level since 1976, according to a new report.

The number of abortions fell at least in part because the proportion of women ending their pregnancies with an abortion dropped 9 percent between 2000 and 2005, hitting the lowest level since 1975, according to a nationwide survey.

Some data:

The total number of abortions among women ages 15 to 44 declined from 1.3 million in 2000 to 1.2 million in 2005, an 8 percent drop that continued a trend that began in 1990, when the number of abortions peaked at more than 1.6 million, the survey found. The last time the number of abortions was that low was 1976, when slightly fewer than 1.2 million abortions were performed.

The abortion rate fell from 21.3 per 1,000 women ages 15 to 44 in 2000 to 19.4 in 2005, a 9 percent decline. That is the lowest since 1974, when the rate was 19.3, and far below the 1981 peak of 29.3.

The abortion rate varies widely around the country, tending to be higher in the Northeast and lower in the South and Midwest. The rate in the District dropped 20 percent but remained higher than that of any state at 54.2. Virginia’s rate fell 9 percent, to 16.5, while Maryland’s rate rose 8 percent, to 31.5.

The proportion of pregnancies ending in abortion also declined, falling from 24.5 percent in 2000 to 22.4 percent in 2005 — a 9 percent drop and down from a high of 30.4 in 1983.

It’d be interesting to see the source of these numbers in more detail.

On first glance, it would appear that abortion is a highly effective informal genetic selection program against political liberals and those of low general intelligence.

Certainly the article implies that “blue states” have higher abortion rates than “red states,” and I would guess the politically conservative (who tend to oppose abortion as a lifestyle choice) practice it less than the politically liberal (who tend to support it as a lifestyle choice). Likewise, as a commonly cited reason for abortion is necessity, I would imagine that abortions are more common among the poor than the rich. As wealth correlates with general intelligence, abortion is thus a eugenics program that increases societal general intelligence across generations.

Gonzales v. Carhart alone justifies the Second GW Bush Administration

Thank God for Justice Alito.
Thank God for Justice Roberts.

The best-of highlights from the ruling, courtesy of Justice Ginsburg:

Today’s decision is alarming. It refuses to take Casey and Stenberg seriously. It tolerates, indeed applauds, federal intervention to ban nationwide a procedure found necessary and proper in certain cases by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). It blurs the line, firmly drawn in Casey,between previability and postviability abortions. And, for the first time since Roe, the Court blesses a prohibition with no exception safeguarding a woman’s health.

Ultimately, the Court admits that “moral concerns” are at work, concerns that could yield prohibitions on any abortion. See ante, at28 (“Congress could … conclude that the type of abortion proscribed by the Act requires specific regulation because it implicates additional ethical and moral concerns that justify a special prohibition.”). Notably, the concerns expressed are untethered to any ground genuinely serving the Government’s interest in preserving life. By allowing such concerns to carry the day and case, overriding fundamental rights, the Court dishonors our precedent. See, e.g., Casey, 505 U. S., at 850 (“Some of us as individuals find abortion offensive to our most basic principles of morality, but that cannot control our decision. Our obligation is to define the liberty of all, not to mandate our own moral code.”); Lawrence v. Texas, 539 U. S. 558, 571 (2003) (Though “[f]or many persons [objections to homosexual conduct] are not trivial concerns but profound and deep convictions accepted as ethical and moral principles,” the power of the State may not be used “to enforce these views on the whole society through operation of the criminal law.” (citing Casey, 505 U. S., at 850)).

Revealing in this regard, the Court invokes an antiabortion shibboleth for which it concededly has no reliable evidence: Women who have abortions come to regret their choices, and consequently suffer from “[s]evere depression and loss of esteem.” Ante, at 29.7 Because of women’s fragile emotional state and because of the “bond of love the mother has for her child,” the Court worries, doctors may withhold information about the nature of the intact D&E procedure. Ante, at 28–29.8 The solution the Court approves, then, is not to require doctors to inform women, accurately and adequately, of the different procedures and their attendant risks. Cf. Casey, 505 U. S., at 873 (plurality opinion) (“States are free to enact laws to provide a reasonable framework for a woman to make a decision that has such profound and lasting meaning.”). Instead, the Court deprives women of the right to make an autonomous choice, even at the expense of their safety.9

Today, the Court blurs that line, maintaining that “[t]he Act [legitimately] appl[ies] both previability and postviability because … a fetus is a living organism while within the womb, whether or not it is viable outside the womb.” Ante, at 17. Instead of drawing the line at viability, the Court refers to Congress’ purpose to differentiate “abortion and infanticide” based not on whether a fetus can survive outside the womb, but on where a fetus is anatomically located when a particular medical procedure is performed. See ante, at 28 (quoting Congressional Findings (14)(G), in notes following 18 U. S. C. §1531 (2000 ed., Supp. IV), p. 769).

One wonders how long a line that saves no fetus from destruction will hold in face of the Court’s “moral concerns.” See supra, at 15; cf. ante, at16 (noting that “[i]n this litigation” the Attorney General “does not dispute that the Act would impose an undue burden if it covered standard D&E”). The Court’s hostility to the right Roe and Casey secured is not concealed. Throughout, the opinion refers to obstetrician-gynecologists and surgeons who perform abortions not by the titles of their medical specialties, but by the pejorative label “abortion doctor.” Ante, at 14, 24, 25, 31, 33. A fetus is described as an “unborn child,” and as a “baby,” ante, at 3, 8; second-trimester, previability abortions are referred to as “late-term,” ante, at 26; and the reasoned medical judgments of highly trained doctors are dismissed as “preferences”motivated by “mere convenience,” ante, at 3, 37. Instead of the heightened scrutiny we have previously applied, the Court determines that a “rational” ground is enough to uphold the Act, ante, at28, 37. And, most troubling, Casey’s principles, confirming the continuing vitality of “the essential holding of Roe,” are merely “assume[d]” for the moment, ante, at15, 31, rather than “retained” or “reaffirmed,” Casey, 505 U. S., at 846.

Thank God for the Re-Election of President George Walker Bush.

PS: Remember my mock report of the imposition of Curia on the Untied States? Well, the Kos Kids aren’t joking.

Daniel Ortega: Vote Yes For Life

Nicaragua Passes Total Ban on Abortion,” by Marc Lacy, New York Times, 26 October 2006, http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/27/world/americas/27nicaragua.html.

My image of the former Nicaraguan strongman will be ever reflected by a quip from Mark of ZenPundit

Recalling Jumblatt’s activities twenty years ago, this is kind of like finding out that Daniel Ortega had emigrated to the States and was last seen as a Republican poll watcher in Dade county.

Rapidly, fact is catching up to fiction:

Nicaragua’s legislature on Thursday banned all abortions, eliminating exceptions for rape and when the life of the mother is threatened.

The measure was supported by Daniel Ortega, the front-runner in the presidential race. He favored the right to an abortion during his presidency in the 1980’s but has since embraced the Roman Catholic Church and has spoken out strongly against abortion.

This reflects the unlikely entry of a former Communist leader into South Dakota’s Vote Yes For Life campaign, which is the talk of South Dakotan blogs such as Dakota War College, I Hate Linux, Sibby Online, and South Dakota Politics..

A Pro-Life State

Republicans opposed to abortion ban lose in S.D.,” by Judy Keen, USA Today, 8 June 2006, http://news.yahoo.com/s/usatoday/20060608/pl_usatoday/republicansopposedtoabortionbanloseinsd (from Mainstream Coalition’s leader: Vote proves need,” by David Kranz, Argus Leader, 13 June 2006, http://argusleader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060613/COLUMNISTS0102/606130320/1131.

Imagine a legislative caucus whose ever member up for reelection lost. That’s the South Dakota Mainstream Coalition, a bi-partisan group of legislatures whose main issue in the last legislative session was a defense of abortion. Their spin, as reported by the Sioux Falls Argus Leader political correspond (and close friend of Tom Daschle) David Kranz:

Frequent discussion since four Republican state Senators lost bids for re-election last week centers around its impact on the Mainstream Coalition.

The defeats opened the door for ridicule from anti-abortion critics saying the organization got its just dessert.

This isn’t the setback that some gloaters think, says state Sen. Ed Olson, a Mitchell Republican and executive director of the Mainstream Coalition.

senator_ed_olson
Senator Ed Olson (R-Mitchell)

“What does it say about the future? It points to why we needed to start Mainstream,” Olson said. “Look at the turnout. You had some districts with 11 and 12 percent. I think it is unbelievable, the voter apathy.”

The poorly attended primary was not an indicator of strength or weakness of the group, he said.

It’s onward and upward,” Olson said. “I know there was a tremendous amount of work done by those who staunchly oppose us, but the premise was we wanted to be a group people were comfortable with, Republican, Democrats, pro or anti-abortion, whatever. I look at that turnout and say now more than ever, something has to change.”

While Senator Olson characterizes the SDMC’s cataclysmic defeat as “onward and upward,” the national Gannet news organization has a different perspective:

There’s certainly no good news in the outcome for pro-choice advocates,” Bob Burns, a political science professor at South Dakota State University, said Wednesday.

The defeat Tuesday of half of the eight Senate Republicans who opposed the nation’s most restrictive abortion law might mean trouble for a planned referendum in November to rescind the ban, Burns says. The other four had no primary challengers.

The results “mean that the state of South Dakota is very pro-life,” says state Sen. Bill Napoli, who voted for the ban and won his primary.

I previously reported on the Pro-Life Sweep in South Dakota’s primary election. I did my part, and voted for the successful reelection effort of Senator Gene Abdallah (R-Sioux Falls).

Abortion Foes Victorious in SD Primaries

Several Opponents of Abortion Bill Lose,” by Joe Kafka, Associated Press, 7 June 2006, http://www.mercurynews.com/mld/mercurynews/news/politics/14756121.htm (from South Dakota Politics).

More good news from the Pro-Life State, following the Democratic Party’s firing of their pro-abortion Clean Cut Kid and the Oglala Sioux suspension of their pro-abortion President

south_dakota_flag2_md

Pro-Abortion Senators Defeated in the ’06 Pimary: Adelstein (R-Rapid City), Duniphan (R-Rapid City), Kooistra (R-Garretson), Moore (D-Yankton), Sutton (R-Aberdeen)

Pro-Life Senators Victorious in the ’06 Primary: Abdallah (R-Sioux Falls), Bartling (D-Burke), Greenfield (R-Clark), Klaudt (R-Walker), Napoli (R-Rapid City)

Congratulations!

South Dakota Democratic Party Fires Pro-Abortion Blogger

Abortion Feud Strikes Dems,” by Kevin Woster, The Rapid City Journal, 5 June 2006, http://www.rapidcityjournal.com/articles/2006/06/04/news/top/news01.txt (from South Dakota Politics).

Just a day after I noted that the Oglala Sioux Nation suspended her President for pushing pro-abortion views at the expense of the Tribe, the South Dakota Democratic Party has fired two contractors (including one prominent blogger) for similar reasons

south_dakota_flag2_md
Pro-Life State

The Democratic leader in the South Dakota Senate says a Sioux Falls consultant under contract with the party is advancing a pro-choice philosophy on abortion at the expense of Democratic candidates for the state Legislature who oppose abortion.

Sen. Garry Moore of Yankton said consultant Steve Hildebrand, a former executive director for the state Democratic Party and past campaign manager for Tom Daschle, is working to defeat Democratic legislators who voted for HB1215, the controversial near-total ban on abortion approved by the Legislature this year.

Moore said Hildebrand has made it clear that electing pro-choice candidates is more important than electing Democratic candidates. Hildebrand and his employee Chad Schuldt have also issued critical and — in Shuldt’s case — profane statements about Democrats who supported HB1215.

During the past legislative session, Schuldt referred to some Democrats who voted for HB1215 as “(expletive) idiots” and “sickos” on an Internet political blog he maintains. Schuldt also called Moore “a joke” as a legislative leader and encouraged his defeat, along with others who voted for the abortion bill.

Chad Shultd of Clean Cut Kid, whose front page at present discusses George Bush’s desire for a draft and establishing the fact that Northern State University political science professor Jon Schaff [of South Dakota Politics is an idiot, has been mentioned on tdaxp before.

For more excerpts from the article, read on:

Critics of Hildebrand and Schuldt have taken the issue to Judy Olson Duhamel of Rapid City, the state chairwoman of the South Dakota Democratic Party. Former state Sen. Jim Hutmacher of Oacoma, a current member of the party’s Central Committee who once was Democratic leader in the Senate, has asked Olson Duhamel and the party’s executive board to sever business relationships with Hildebrand. Hutmacher also wants Hildebrand removed from his unpaid position as coordinator of the campaign fund named in honor of Daschle.

They are particularly irked by Hildebrand’s statements in a Washington, D.C., political publication that he would work for a pro-choice majority in the Legislature.

“As a former Democratic Senate Leader, I am very offended at Steve Hildebrand’s ‘goal’ of a ‘pro-choice majority,’” when it comes at the expense of current members of the Democratic Caucus,” Hutmacher wrote to Olson Duhamel. “Steve Hildebrand is one of those people who would see our party divided and some of our legislators defeated.”

..

In a letter soliciting donations to his PAC, Common Sense South Dakota, Hildebrand said Bartling had “crawled in bed with the likes or Roger Hunt [the prime sponsor of HB1215, which outlawed abortion in the state], Rob Regier and Alan and Leslie Unruh — people who worked their tails off to defeat Tom Daschle in 2004 and make abortion an issue in his political campaign.”

There is a connection too:

Abortion became a troublesome issue for Daschle during his 2004 re-election campaign against successful challenger John Thune. Daschle maintained that he opposed abortion personally but also supported abortion rights affirmed in the 1973 Roe v. Wade U.S. Supreme Court decision.

That put Daschle in a difficult position as Thune, his campaign staff and anti-abortion activists hammered at the abortion issue. Hildebrand ran Daschle’s campaign two years ago. And even though Daschle received about 30,000 more votes than Democratic Sen. Tim Johnson captured in defeating Thune in 2002, Thune topped Daschle in 2004.

Obviously angered by Hildebrand’s actions regarding HB1215 supporters, Moore recalled the 2004 election last week.

“Maybe we can blame Hildebrand for Daschle’s defeat,” Moore said. “Quite frankly, he isn’t the smartest individual.”

For those interested in networked warfare, this amounts to a defensive strike by the Democratic network against an ideological network.

Oglala Sioux Indian Tribe Bans Abortion, Suspends Pro-Abortion President

Tribal Council Outlaws Abortion,” by Nestor Ramos, Argus Leader, 31 May 2006, http://www.argusleader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060531/NEWS/605310319/1001 (from Sibby Online).

Some may remember that slightly after South Dakota passed her ban on abortions, the world media jumped in to trash the Coyote and Pheasant State.

south_dakota_flag2_md

Even a prominent South Dakotan, Oglala Sioux President Cecilia Fire Thunder, announced that her reservation would soon offer abortions free from state laws.

oglala_sioux2_md

But her people protested. They would have none of it:

The Oglala Sioux tribal council banned all abortions on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation and suspended President Cecelia Fire Thunder on Tuesday, charging that she solicited donations on behalf of the tribe for a proposed abortion clinic without the council’s approval.

“It was unauthorized political activity,” said Will Peters, a tribal council representative from the Pine Ridge district. “It’s just a matter of failing to communicate not only with the governing body but with the people that she was elected to serve.”

This must be the greatest humiliation for a South Dakota liberal since George McGovern. Or Tom Daschle. Or at least Jim Abourezk.

Wrong on Immigration. Wrong on Abortion.

Immigration: Four Things The Home Countries Could Do,” by Don Reid, Business Week, 15 May 2006, pg 20, http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/06_20/c3984029.htm.

A letter to the editor of Business Week that is shockingly wrong. I normally don’t comment on letters to editors, but this is so wrong in both its ends and means it deserves special attention, in the sense that a train wreck does:

“The best immigration reform” (Outside Shot, Apr. 24) repeats a frequent refrain that the countries of immigrants should institute policies that reduce the need for citizens to go elsewhere to find jobs. If it were easy, they probably would.

One thing that could be done today that would show results within 5 to 10 years would be to have the native countries of immigrants reduce their rates of population growth.

Population growth is something that individual countries can manage. The U.S. should not bear the consequences because they refuse.

Wrong on ends. Immigration helps the United States. It doesn’t only encourage small government. It promotes economic growth, by matching willing workers with eager employers. What little harm immigration causes is easily offset by immigration’s economic gains. Calling on emigrant countries to stem the flow of immigration is like calling on Japan to stem the tide of stylish, affordable automobiles. It’s poorly designed protection for a very small number of Americans, at the expense of everyone, when the real issue is a request for a welfare subsidy.

Wrong on means. The letter doesn’t explicitly use the term, but ‘population control’ tends to be a codeword for “abortion.” It’s schemes like this (killing off surgically reducing the future generations of nations we don’t want to deal with) that gives the West a very bad name. And the leadership of traditional communities stupid enough to embrace this sort of plan often find themselves politically terminated.

Support immigration. Support life. Support People. Oppose government control schemes.

Fisking Der Spiegel on South Dakota

The Front Lines of the Religious War in God’s Own Country,” by Frank Hornig, translated by Christopher Sultan, Spiegel Online, 13 March 2006, http://service.spiegel.de/cache/international/spiegel/0,1518,405690,00.html (from RadioActive Chief, also at Albert Mohler, Forest Nymph, Lost in Media, Titus One Nine).

A stray link over at JRR alerted a German article on the .

The wrongness of the article extends from geography, to politics, to everything in between.

Begin rant:

Phillips Avenue in Sioux Falls, South Dakota — located in the heart of the flat Midwestern prairie

Philips Avenue is in the heart of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, which lies in a huge bowl surrounded by “hills.” You have to travel a long distance, certainly longer from Foss Field to downtown Sioux Falls

downtown_sioux_falls_airport_philipps_up_md
Foss Field to Philipps Avenue

to get to even the rolling prairies of South Dakota.

That’s why Sioux Falls appears to have no skyline — the tallest buildings are about level with the land outside the city.

— is a sleepy thoroughfare.

If “sleepy thoroughfare” equals “the heart of downtown of the largest city in the state,” yes.

There are a few businesses along the street, a couple of restaurants, and a souvenir shop which struggles to attract customers.

*cough*

From the DTSF Business Directory. Those not on Philipps are about a block away

Cafe 334
605.334.3050334 S. Phillips Ave.
Food N’ Fermentation
605.332.4338212 S. Phillips Ave.
Minerva’s
605.334.0386301 S. Phillips Ave.
Touch of Europe
605.336.3066337 S. Phillips Ave.
Coffee ‘N Clay
605.367.1100324 S. Phillips Avenue
De Hoek
605.334.2942200 S. Phillips Ave.
Falls Landing Restaurant
605.373.0153200 E. 8th St.
Hamburger Inn
605.332.5412111 E 10th Street
Kaladis Coffee Legend & Bistro
605.977.0888121 S. Main Avenue
Leonardo’s Cafe at the Washinton Pavilion
605.731.2384301 S. Main Avenue
Mama’s Ladas
605-332-2772116 W. 11th St.
Ming Wah’s Chinese American
119 W. 10th St.
Park Place Cafe and Terrace
605.339.2000100 W. 8th St.
Phillips Ave. Diner
605.335.4977121 S. Phillips Avenue
River Walk Cafe
605.339.4824196 E. 6th St.
Sanaa’s 8th Street Gourmet
605.275.2516401 E. 8th St. Suite #100
Skelly’s Pub and Grill
605.221.0244130 S. Phillips Ave.
Soda Falls In Zandbroz
605.331.5137209 S. Phillips Ave.
The Cookie Jar
605.978.0991125 W. 10th St.
Uncle Angelo’s Italian Buffet
605.330.0331230 S. Phillips Ave.
Zandbroz Variety
605-331-5137209 S. Phillips Ave.

But last Thursday, this dreary provincial boulevard

>

A boulevard?

philipps_avenue_downtown_md
Philipps Avenue

Nope, because it’s not divided.

became the dividing line separating two irreconcilable camps in the city — and it became the most recent front line in an ongoing war that bisects the entire nation. For about an hour, opposing groups of demonstrators swore at one another across the street, launching a new round in an old dispute that has long since expanded into a cultural battle — a bitter fight that has raged for decades between conservatives and liberals, devout Christians and women’s rights groups.

Setting aside the idea that “women” or “women’s rights” includes only one ideological perspective (an error also made by Misquoting Jesus), the conservative v. liberal divide simply does not describe South Dakota. The Mount Rushmore State is prairie populist, which is why the state constantly sends Democrats to Washington and republicans to Pierre.

By signing the bill into law, Rounds threw down the gauntlet not just to the majority of Americans — two-thirds of whom are pro-choice — but also to the United States Supreme Court, which established the constitutional right to abortion more than 30 years ago in the landmark decision “Roe vs. Wade”.

Also ignoring the article’s questionable definition of “pro-choice,” the important piece here is the reference to the United States Supreme Court. To paraphrase Tom Barnett, the United States is an economic and political union of fifty member states, and when push comes to shove, Massachusetts and South Dakota can each have the laws they want.

With the bizarre exception of abortion.

South Dakota’s law is an attempt to correct that.

The burning issues dividing America today are the extent to which right-wing fundamentalists should influence public life, and the relevance of religious morals in a nominally secular country.

The article’s confusion of evangelicalism and fundementalism is as typical as it is misguided.

the separation of church and state

Considering that South Dakota former four-term Governor and former Congressman is a self-described “Jewish Lutheran” and son of one of the Nuremberg prosecutor, and the South Dakota capital building yearly is decorated with a Menorah, the author’s sectarian view is bizarre.

in a nominally secular country.

Nominally secular? Nominally? Where is America or South Dakota described that way? Certainly our united States are at least nominally Christian or nominally faithful, but nominally secular? How strange.

Thelma Underberg, director of the regional pro-choice movement, has been fighting to uphold abortion rights for more than 40 years. For Underberg, professional and economic equal opportunity and a woman’s right to choose are inextricably linked. When the Supreme Court passed Roe vs. Wade in 1973, enabling women to obtain abortions legally anywhere in America, Underberg celebrated. “We thought we had won,” she says.

But now, sitting in her windowless office, she says she doesn’t understand the world anymore. The 74-year-old has three children, four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, and she is active in her church. Yet while she outwardly resembles her opponents in the pro-life camp, she refuses to speak with them. “You might as well be talking to a wall,” she says.

Rarely does one read such classic examples of self-referential cognitive loops. A fighter thinks he wins, he ignores reality, and then loses. Interesting.

The climate began to deteriorate in South Dakota sometime in the mid-1990s, says Underberg. The churches, led by the Catholic Church, began politicizing the abortion issue and endorsing candidates who were willing to oppose abortion. Apparently the strategy worked. South Dakota’s state legislature ratified the new law with a majority of 50 to 18 votes. “The dividing lines didn’t run between the parties or the sexes,” says Democratic state legislator Elaine Roberts. In the end, religious faith was the deciding factor — and the crevice which has been slowly wedging American society apart for several years came into sharp focus in South Dakota.

The ban is supported by members of both parties and sexes. Considering the hysteria, that’s important to remember.

The religious war in the Midwest is gradually threatening to become a burden for Bush, himself a born-again Christian. At least five other states in the American Heartland have backed South Dakota’s radical approach. But such extreme positions are unlikely to sway a majority of moderate Republican voters in urban areas. States with larger populations, critical in election season, like Pennsylvania and Ohio, could easily revert to Democratic control if the Supreme Court ever decides to overturn its 1973 landmark decision.

A reversal of Roe v. Wade would de-federalize the issue, sending abortion back to the 50 united States of America where it belongs. Abortion is only a federal issue, at all, because of the Supreme Court’s overstretch in the 1970s. There is no reason for thinking it will remain so.

Two-thirds of Americans are against a tightening of the current liberal laws on abortion. Nevertheless, the abortion rate has consistently declined since the 1980s, even without a ban, and has almost returned to its level in 1973, when Roe vs. Wade made abortion legal.

Most Americans believe partial birth abortions should not be legal.

But any moderate, reasoned approach to the issue has long been shunted aside

Here, the article is somewhat right. The Supreme Court, by removing abortion from the democratic process, has prevented the emergence of a stable center. That is a true loss.