October 23, 2008
Prosecuting women for abortion?
The question is often raised -- it has been discussed more than a few times here at MOJ -- whether those who support the overruling of Roe and the increased regulation of abortion are actually prepared to treat women who undergo abortions as "murderers" and, if not, why not? It is suggested that the reluctance of most pro-lifers to so regard women who have abortions indicates, perhaps, that these pro-lifers don't really believe their own pro-life rhetoric. (In my view, there is nothing hypocritical or otherwise suspect about saying (a) our Constitution permits legislatures to regulate abortion more closely than Roe permits; (b) abortion involves the killing of an innocent human person; and (c) women who have abortions should not be prosecuted and punished like those who commit homicides against born persons.) With respect to this question, this essay, by Clarke Forsythe, called "Why the States did not prosecute women for abortions before Roe v. Wade", is helpful.
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