The Supreme Court is about to go in radically different directions on abortion and guns
For 49 years, under a ruling by the nation’s highest court and subsequent precedent, Americans have grown accustomed to the idea that women have the freedom to terminate a pregnancy to the point of viability. fetal. They don’t have to travel from state to state to access a right that, although not explicitly mentioned in the Constitution, the courts have always said derives from its protections for life. privacy and due process.
Now, unless a proposed Supreme Court majority decision is drastically revised or becomes a dissenting opinion, Justice Samuel Alito and his band of not-so-cheerful conservatives are poised to denationalize that right, making freedom entirely dependent on the state in which a woman happens to live and the disposable income she happens to have at hand. A New Yorker can have an abortion at the 12th or 20th week. An Oklahoma will not be able to have one after the sixth week, even if her pregnancy is the product of rape.
Americans should bear in mind that on yet another matter of life and death, the same court seems poised to rush in the exact opposite direction, preventing states from legislating as they deem necessary.
The Second Amendment says that “A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” These words have been interpreted in different ways over the generations (with judges increasingly discarding these first 12 words), but since the very beginning of the Republic, different states have had wide latitude to impose different restrictions on the possession of ‘fire arms. New York’s gun law, stipulating that concealed weapons permits are granted only after demonstrated need, has been in effect since 1913. It’s different from Wyoming law, and understandably. . Wyoming’s largest city has one-fortieth the population of Brooklyn.
If the court creates in one breath state-by-state abortion rights free for all, and in future state gun laws by returning the right to wear a concealed weapon uniform, it will become itself even a clown.