The Supreme Court’s 7-2 ruling this week in Box v. Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky shows that the end of Roe v. Wade may be in sight!
The heart and meat of the ruling is the concurring opinion of the Court’s Senior Associate Justice Clarence Thomas.
The Court upheld the part of the Indiana law that dealt with the disposal of aborted fetuses. Thomas wrote that the Indiana law “prohibits… treating the 'bodies of aborted children' as infections waste and incinerating them alongside … laboratory-animal carcasses, and surgical byproducts.”
His reference to “children” is itself noteworthy.
On the second question before the Court — whether Indiana could prohibit abortions because of the child’s race, sex, diagnosis of Down syndrome, disability, or related characteristics — the Court refused to consider that part of the law because only the Seventh Circuit had addressed the issue.
In concurring with the Court’s decision, Thomas takes the opportunity to tackle the issue of selective abortions head on and discussed it within the context of the controversial issue of eugenics — the practice or advocacy of controlled selective breeding of human populations.
He writes that the Indiana law and others like it, promote a State’s compelling interest in “preventing abortion from becoming a tool of modern-day eugenics” concluding that use of abortion to achieve eugenic goals is “not merely hypothetical.”
Many in the black pro-life movement, as recently discussed in this space, have argued that abortion of black babies is tantamount to genocide.
Thomas’ well researched and extensively documented 20-page opinion should be mandatory reading for pro-life advocates, particularly those in the black anti-abortion movement!
It provides an excellent discussion and history of Planned Parenthood Founder Margaret Sanger — how she helped to shape the eugenics movement in America and its relationship to abortion today.
Stating that the foundations for legalizing abortion in America had been laid during the early 20th century birth control movement which developed alongside the “American eugenics movement,” he noted that Sanger “recognized the eugenic potential of her cause.”
He writes that as whereas Sanger “believed that birth control could prevent ‘unfit’ people form reproducing, abortion can prevent them from being in the first place;” that “Many eugenicists therefore supported legalizing abortion, and, abortion advocates… endorsed the use of abortion for eugenic reasons.”
Sanger campaigned for birth control in black communities and initiated the “Negro Project,” in 1939 in an “effort to promote birth control in poor, Southern black communities.”
She later emphasized that black ministers should be involved in the program, noting, “‘We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population, and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea…’”
Thomas doesn’t say it, but it is truly ironic that today most black politicians are in the pocket of Planned Parenthood as was former black president Barack Obama!
He rightly points out that “with today’s prenatal screening tests and other technologies, abortion can easily be used to eliminate children with unwanted characteristics.”
He references “petitioners and several amicus curiae briefs” stating that “abortion has proved to be a disturbingly effective tool for implementing the discriminatory preferences that undergird eugenics.”
He then provides sources, references and citations regarding abortion rates in several countries for children diagnosed with Down syndrome: “Iceland approaches 100%; United States 67%; Denmark 98%; United Kingdom 90%; and, France 77%”!
Regarding sex-selective abortions in Asia, Thomas cites data showing that “widespread sex-selective abortions have led to as many as “160 million ‘missing’ women—more than the entire female population of the United States.”
In India, “over the course of several decades, 300,000 to 700,000 female fetuses were selectively aborted in each year--today there are about 50 million more men than women in the country.”
The opinion goes on to cite sources for recent evidence suggesting that sex-selective abortions of girls are common among certain populations in the United States and that conclude “Chinese and Asian-Indian families in the United States 'show a tendency to sex-select boys.'”
Writing that “abortion in the United States is also marked by a considerable racial disparity,” he cites statistics showing that the reported national abortion ratio among black women is nearly “3.5 times the ratio for white women.”
He references New York Department of Health numbers showing that there are areas of New York City in which “black children are more likely to be aborted than they are to be born alive—and are up to eight times more likely to be aborted than white children in the same area.”
In concluding his opinion, Thomas states that “while the Court declines to wade into these issues today, we cannot avoid them forever.” With that, he sends a strong message:
Enshrining a constitutional right to an abortion based solely on the race, sex, or disability of an unborn child, as Planned Parenthood advocates, would constitutionalize the views of the 20th-century eugenics movement.
He reminds us all: “In other contexts, the Court has been zealous in vindicating the rights of people even potentially subjected to race, sex, and disability discrimination.”
If the Court is “zealous” in vindicating peoples’ rights based on race or sex or disability, how could it rule that killing an innocent “child” based on race, sex, or disability in the womb is justifiable?
As Thomas states, “The Constitution itself is silent on abortion.”
Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political, and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as in the Reagan presidential campaigns. He is a former co-owner of WTVT-TV in Tampa and former president of the Florida Association of Broadcasters. Read more of his reports — Go Here Now.
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