Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Upheld, A Prolife Victory?

The Supreme Court today upheld a federal ban on partial-birth abortions in a 5-4 decision. This is most definitely a victory for the pro-life movement as it outlaws the most hideous abortion procedure in use today. However, in pondering this decision I am struck by the complete illogic of the entire argument, both for and against its usage.

In banning the partial-birth abortion procedure we are basically saying that this singular procedure is wrong because of how it is carried out. In a partial-birth abortion the child is delivered feet-first, then a scissors is inserted into the base of the skull to create an opening, after which the brain is then suctioned out. All other types of abortion are not affected by the ruling and are still perfectly legal to use.

So what does all of this tell us? In my mind it says the method now determines whether an action is right or wrong, not the action itself. This is a problem. If abortion is a constitutional legal right that is always justifiable to use, then when, how, where, or why it is performed should not matter. If however the act itself is not a constitutional legal right and is morally reprehensible then once again, when, how, where or why should not matter, as abortion should never be allowed based solely upon it's own objective evil.

A great analogy of this would be a father who kills his handicapped two-year-old because he decided its life wasn't worth living. This man would not be prosecuted if he did it in a "humane" way, as opposed to another man who in the same situation and with the same objective, butchered his own child to death but is prosecuted because of the "inhumanity" of his act. The same act is committed by both men with the exact same intention, but it is carried out in a different manner and therefore judged differently.

This is completely ludicrous! You can't have it both ways. Either the act of abortion is always legitimate or it never is. When the Supreme Court mandated Roe v. Wade in 1972 it stated that women have a 'constitutional right to abortion'. If such is the case then is this new ruling not unconstitutional? Or, if it is constitutional then doesn't this mean women do not have a 'constitutional right to abortion'? If so then all abortions are deemed illegitimate and should be prosecuted just as partial-birth abortions now will be.