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Alrighty folks, I've got some commentary, but first, some background. I was educated as a lawyer, though I've never practiced. I noticed a lot of guys turning into alcoholics by 40 because they'd always hated the practice and didn't want that future. Further, I have not read the entirety of Alito's draft opinion. And it may change before announcement. I doubt it, but maybe.
Here we go. Roe got us to the right place, but was bad law from day one. And was recognized as such. It relied on some mighty powerful stretching and hauling to create the right to choose. And a note here: Roe guarantees the right to choose an abortion, not the right to an abortion. Nowhere in Roe is anyone else obligated to ensure that a given individual will get the abortion she wants; that's up to her, or her family or friends. But it guarantees that no one is allowed to stop you if you put together the resources on your own. Even Alito uncharacteristically stated this wrongly...or flamboyantly to play to non-lawyer crowds. Or, likely, he just doesn't feel like the effort to hide his purpose is necessary anymore.
But, back to the point: Roe was weak from day one. Why? it is based on an extension of privacy law that itself is, at best, implied in the Constitution, not enumerated. To make an analogy, its as though you take the Constitutional guarantee against unlawful searches and seizures and say, Aha! the Constitution wants governments to respect the rights of the individual against the police, therefore the Drafters must have recognized an implied right to personal dignity and therefore there is a sphere of activities that MUST have been meant to be protected, and since pregnancy is about as personal as it gets, decisions on same MUST have been intended. Eh, Voila, a 'right' to choose.
I overstate the simpleton nature of the decision but you get the drift. Again, the goal was achieved, but it was never sitting on that firm a foundation. You've heard of bad facts making bad law? Well, in this case, bad law makes for bad, weak, precedent.
So, now Roe is almost surely dead and gone. How did we get here, and more importantly, why?
For 75 years or so, we have, as a society, freighted the court with a lot of cultural decisions that it was never made for. Because our Presidents and Legislators are and have been, in the main, feckless assholes who run from the first hint of tough decisions. So, those got kicked to the court. Where they never should have been in the first place. And Alito is saying, 'No More' and kicking the issue back to the states and to congress. Is this proper? Probably. That's who should have decided this matter to start with.
I stress that I want the right to choose to be legal. I have two daughters. I have a sister and a wife. Women should control their own bodies. But, we must contend with the issue that many in our society do not agree. They believe that women should be treated as human, yes, but something less that a man. These people will fight at every level to maintain whatever power over women they can grab.
But the SCOTUS is no longer a lever we can use.
Racial cases have a different foundation of the immediate post Civil War Amendments which made clear that black people are to be, before the law, equal in all ways with any other citizens. Not so women, disgustingly.
Now this is going to be fought out in the states. And it's going to be a grind. We know that the ERA failed. That's done. Maybe in another 25 years we can have a go at that, again. It worked for women's suffrage...after 125 years of struggle. And it may take that sort of effort again to get this situation righted.
What to do? DO WHAT THE REPUBLICANS DID. Every race counts. Make sure you have candidates running in every race. I don't care if they lose. They must make the Republican enunciate their positions. Be an asshole, set them into bad hypotheticals to make them look stupid, unprepared, or callous. Anything negative. Tar them. And make seizing state houses a prime objective. It'll take what it took the pugs: 30-50 years. Turn out your voters. Be monolithic.
Those who are 'progressive' and feel that political purity is the only way to go? Hold your noses and vote straight ticket. Your only other option is to hold little pockets of ideological purity ... while the Republicans run the country ... and your life. San Francisco, Brooklyn and Boston are not the totality of America. The rest of the country may be ahead, or behind these places, but it is not the same and what appeals in Berkley is not likely to fly in Sioux City.
These are the only things we can do. And they will not be enough to protect the next generation or two of American women. I expect a nice underground to develop. Like the Underground Railway. Help where and as you can.
And, we all should, by now, understand that flyover country matters. You lose those votes at your peril. As we see today.
Secondly, understand that the other guys are playing for keeps. They will not back off when you tap the mat and 'give'; they will drive us into camps if given the option. They are not fair, they are not logical, they are not humane. If not blocked, they will turn this country into a fascist hell.
So, get ready for a decade or three of monkey wrenching. I am not prepared to allow them the peaceful enjoyment of their ill gotten gains. Since at least two of the conservative justices are illegitimate in that their nominations were the result of Mitch's bullshittery, deny them legitimacy. Resist them. Let me repeat this and it pains me as a patriot to say it, but the Supreme Court is done. At least for the balance of my lifetime. So, deny them legitimacy. And be rude about it.
They have guns and police power. Make them use it. They have abandoned all pretense of moral cogency, so you are merely ignoring a partisan cabal. Cheat. All you can. Sabotage everything! Glue toilet seats down in government buildings. Pour cement down the drains. Raw shrimp, strategically left in hard to reach places can really spice up a court room on a summer's day. Be creative. Wreck. Don't give these bastards anything. Make them earn every last breath.
The Supreme Court is now revealed as a wing of the Republican Party, they are due no respect. Only what they can command through threat of physical violence. Congratulations Mitch and Roberts, you win!
And the Supreme Court is forever diminished.
Long read, but worth every word.
My heart is so heavy today.