Last week, Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch filed an amicus brief for Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. In addition to communicating support for the state’s 15-week abortion law being heard before the U.S. Supreme Court, the brief asks that the Court overturn the landmark decisions of Roe v. Wade from 1973 and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, from 1992.
While many more amicus briefs have come in since then, perhaps none have come from a more high profile figure than former Vice President Mike Pence, who announced that his organization, Advancing American Freedom (AAF), and others, were filing one on Friday.
Townhall was given a first look at the brief as well as a press release announcing the brief.
“Forty-eight years ago, our Supreme Court turned away from the timeless ideal that we are ‘endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights that include, first among them, life,” said former Vice President and AAF Chairman Mike Pence in a statement. “By calling for Roe and Casey to be overturned, Advancing American Freedom and its partners seek to protect the right to life and to restore respect for the sanctity of life. Life is winning in America, and we must not rest until we restore a culture of life in America.”
The press release also provides a brief summary of arguments:
These developments include the declining formation of families with accompanying increases in family instability and single parent households; the suffering of women and children’s mental well-being and happiness; increases in unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections; encouragement of pregnancy discrimination in some instances by employers; and use of abortion as a tool of eugenics.
The brief covers at length a multitude of reasons why the Court ought to overturn the two abortion cases mentioned above, specifically focusing on the negative impacts stemming from the decisions.
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As the brief summarizes early on:
Societal developments since Roe and Casey were decided suggest that this Court’s disregard for the value of human life, and its minimization of society’s fundamental interest in protecting unborn children, has in fact substantially harmed people’s ‘views of themselves and their places in society,’ and that this harm has been particularly acute for women. A number of deleterious social conditions have emerged that bear some relationship to current broad access to abortion.
In short, the Casey plurality’s factual assumptions about the role of abortion in people’s lives took no account of potential societal harms that have actually come to pass in the wake of Roe. Based on the actual harms that have emerged, in part due to unfettered access to abortion, this Court should overrule both cases, and return the power to ban or regulate pre-viability abortions to the states.
The first argument is that “Roe and Casey have changed societal expectations regarding sex thus contributing to the destabilization of family formation.” Noted is how “Sexual markets develop in response to innumerable factors, some cultural, some economic, some physical. To many the availability of abortion disconnects sex from childbearing, and seemingly reduces the personal cost and risk in having multiple sexual partners.”
The second argument claims that “Broad access to abortion has contributed to devaluing of mothers in the market-place.” It points out “Roe’s proclamation that abortion is purely a woman’s private decision has fostered employer disregard and even disdain, for pregnancy.”
While pregnancy discrimination is illegal, it “is entirely consistent with the logic of abortion jurisprudence, which treats continuing a pregnancy as a woman’s purely personal choice, and deems anticipated economic impact alone sufficient justification to terminate the life of an unborn child,” the brief points out.
An unforeseen but nevertheless tragic harm is how “Roe and Casey Did Not Anticipate the Coercive Potential of Easy Access to Abortion.” It is argued that “Abortion has sometimes been described as ‘a man’s solution to what he perceives to be the woman’s problem.’ That is precisely the view of women and their place in the world that Casey encourages, teaching society that it has no responsibility, duty, or even ability to revere and protect unborn children in a wide array of circumstances.”
Another concern is that the “Court’s abortion jurisprudence reduces the role of parents in guiding children at a time when their children most need help.” When it comes to the scenario of a minor being able to have an abortion without her parents knowing, the brief laments such “abortion jurisprudence teaches that the weightiest decision a young girl is likely ever to make, irrevocably affecting both the life of the unborn child and her own long-term mental, emotional, and physical health, is one from which her parents are uniquely excludable.”
The section of how “Roe reflected and accelerated changing social norms that has resulted in increasing sexual assault on girls by adult men,” references the tragedy of abortion being used to cover up statutory rape. As the brief concludes:
Clearly, several young girls who obtained abortions without their parents’ knowledge were encouraged to do so by a sexual partner who could be charged with statutory rape, and who feared that the continuation of the pregnancy would lead inevitably to the discovery of the crime. Roe and its progeny are the catalyst to these social atrocities, protecting men who would otherwise be criminally charged. Roe has turned statutory rape laws designed to protect young women into a license to cover up crimes against them.
Also included in the amicus brief are the Minnesota Family Council (MFC), The Family Leader (Iowa), Center for Political Renewal, Family Heritage Alliance, and Nebraska Family Alliance.
According to the press release, the brief “marks the first major policy or legal action taken by Advancing American Freedom.”
LifeNews Note: Rebecca Downs writes for TownHall, where this column originally appeared.