by Alec Bonjolo, Columnist
Ever since his nomination and confirmation, Brett Kavanaugh has been under major scrutiny from left-leaning movements. Perhaps the biggest issue that his detractors have harped on is abortion: specifically, the future of the Supreme Court Case Roe vs Wade. A great deal of Kavanaugh’s opposition believes that he will help bring down that court decision. With all this finger pointing from left-leaning Americans, I can’t help but feel as though they keep pointing in the wrong direction. They scream about women’s rights and how it is constitutional to have an abortion, but that might not be the whole story. Since Kavanaugh has recently been confirmed by the Senate, I find it appropriate now, more than ever, to discuss two aspects of the abortion debate: primarily its origins and its current state.
First, I would like to address the legitimacy of Roe vs. Wade. Abortion advocates continually claim that the decision is final, yet they still are afraid of it being overturned. Why is this? Perhaps this fear stems from the weak foundation the court decision was built on.
Before explaining why the case is flawed, it is important to understand how it became law. The Supreme Court considered abortion legal by interpreting the Fourteenth Amendment, “no state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws,” to include a woman’s right to abort her child. Justice Harry Blackmun, the writer of the majority opinion on the case of Roe, wrote that they came to the conclusion by not extending the word ‘person’ to the unborn child.
Many abortion activists believe that if Roe vs. Wade is overturned that abortion will somehow become illegal nationwide. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. Instead, the decision will be given to individual states, where they can decide for themselves whether they want abortion or not in their state. This is pulled directly from the Tenth Amendment where it clearly states, “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.”
Now that I have talked about the origins of the Roe v. Wade conflict, I would like to address the current state of affairs regarding where such discussion stands today. The Democratic Party has been a huge supporter of the pro-choice movement. This has rewarded their party members with a guaranteed set of votes, whether it is for local congressman, midterm elections, or even the presidency. However, voting is not the only piece of the puzzle. There is a financial aspect as well. Just as the Republican party receives massive donations from controversial organizations, like the National Rifle Association, the Democrats have their own set of notorious financial backers.
A USA Today article by Christian Schneiderin shows that NRA and Planned Parenthood donations to individual candidates are equal, with the NRA barely ahead with $2.7 million compared to Planned Parenthood’s $2.6 million. Unlike the NRA, though, Planned Parenthood is not exactly a private institution. Both entities may be financed by donations by their respected supporters, but Planned Parenthood is also federally funded. They receive an estimated $450 million a year of taxpayer money from the government. Essentially, this taxpayer money loops back around to finance the party.
This has been a giant problem for the Republican Party, which has had the ability to eliminate such funding, but has failed to take action thus far. On August 23rd, Senator Rand Paul proposed a bill that would kill funding for Planned Parenthood. To Senator Paul’s disappointment, the Republican majority Senate turned down the bill in a 45-48 vote. Because of this lack of substantive policy shift, the Republicans hold plenty of responsibility for the continuation of tax-funded abortions. This demonstrates that Catholics everywhere have much to advocate for, regardless of party.
I hope that this article has shed some light on the origins and state of affairs of the abortion debate. How does the Kavanaugh confirmation impact this subject, though? Well, Kavanaugh is a firm believer in preventing government overreach. He is directly involved in the process of eliminating federal programs and restoring rights and decisions to states. This could very well impact federal funding for associations that support abortions, but only time will tell if actions are actually taken to end these practices. For now, all we can do is pray and advocate for our leaders to choose life and uphold the rights of every life, which starts at the moment of conception.