Doug Bandow: Roe v. Wade ... Four Decades of Tragedy





Doug Bandow is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute. A former Special Assistant to President Ronald Reagan, he is the author and editor of several books, including The Politics of Plunder: Misgovernment in Washington.

Roe v. Wade, perhaps the most ostentatiously unconstitutional of many dubious Supreme Court decisions purporting to interpret the Constitution, was issued 40 years ago. Rather than settle the abortion issue, the justices triggered a bitter political conflict which continues unabated.

Roe represents tragedy. An unwanted pregnancy can cause serious, sometimes overwhelming, problems. Moreover, there are few more personal decisions than to terminate a pregnancy. Liberty and life seemingly come into sharp conflict.

But abortion is not a just another "choice." Rather, it is a flight from responsibility. Abortion is a response to choice, that is, the decision to have sex. Other than rape, sex is voluntary. Sometimes the result is an unwanted baby.

The question then is what to do? What is a person’s responsibility for the earlier choice freely exercised? Abortion has become a leading means to avoid taking responsibility for the life created.

This goes as much for men as well as women.... 



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