The problem that needs to be fixed is not kick all the girls out of YA, it’s teach boys that stories featuring female protagonists or written by...”
Economic coercion of low-income pregnant people, the political coercion we see tearing Native families apart, social coercion from the stigma perpetuated on all sides against single parents (historically and present-day), and the…I don’t know what to call it - imperialist coercion? of parents from other countries.
It’s time to start talking about it.
Arizona cannot enforce its ban on abortions at 20 weeks of pregnancies, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled this morning.
The justice rejected a bid by Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery to review an appellate court ruling concluding the 2012 law is likely unconstitutional. The justices gave no reason for their decision in their brief order.
The Arizona law made it a crime for a doctor to perform an abortion on a woman who is beyond the 19th week of pregnancy. The only exceptions are when necessary to prevent a woman’s death or “substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function.”
Last year, however, the 9th Circuit said the law is not enforceable. The judges said Supreme Court precedents have made it clear that women have an absolute right to terminate a pregnancy at any time prior to viability, something that does not occur until around the 23rd or 24th week.
Montgomery, however, contended Arizona lawmakers have a legitimate interest in stepping in.
He cited testimony — disputed by some — that a fetus can feel pain at 20 weeks. Montgomery also said the procedure has an increased risk to the mother after that point.
Appellate Judge Marsh Berzon, writing for the 9th Circuit, said all that is legally irrelevant.
"A woman has a constitutional right to choose to terminate her pregnancy before the fetus is viable," she wrote. "A prohibition on the exercise of that right is per se unconstitutional."
In a concurring opinion, Judge Andrew Kleinfeld brushed aside the measure’s stated interest in protecting a woman’s health as a reason to keep her from getting an abortion at or after 20 weeks.
"People are free to do many things to their health, such as surgery to improve their quality of life but unnecessary to preserve life," Kleinfeld wrote. "There appears to be no authority for making an exception to this general liberty regarding one’s own health for abortion."
The ruling was cheered by Nancy Northup, president of the Center for Reproductive Rights, which represented several Arizona doctors who had challenged the law. She said the high court, by its action, affirmed the 9th Circuit’s “sound decision that Arizona’s abortion ban is clearly unconstitutional under long-standing precedent.”
She also noted that the ruling likely had broader implications, as lawmakers in several other states have approved similar measures.
"Women should not be forced to run to court, year after year, in state after state, to protect their constitutional rights and access to critical health care," Northup said in a prepared statement.