A reasonable law requiring minors to seek parental consent before having an abortion is threatened because religious judges are putting their beliefs before the law. As with over-the-counter birth control, religion in the workplace has taken center stage and is capable of doing major damage.
Back in June of this year a pregnant teenager walked into the Memphis, Tennessee courthouse, saying she wanted an abortion. Judge John McCarroll refused to hear the case and said he would recuse himself from any others like it, citing strong aversion to abortion.
"Taking the life of an innocent human being is contrary to the moral order," the judge wrote. "I could not in good conscience make a finding that would allow the minor to proceed with the abortion."
Well that's nice of the judge to consider the wellbeing of the unborn child, but on that particular day another child -- the girl seeking an abortion -- didn't get her day in court and lost out on justice.
Like it or not, the Supreme Court invented a right to abortion, and Roe v. Wade will remain the definitive law of the land until the court takes it upon itself to reverse the landmark 1973 ruling. Unless Bush picks a stellar right-winger to replace Justice O'Connor and then one more in the future, I wouldn't expect such a change anytime soon.
But even though the High Court assures us that somewhere in the Constitution the evisceration of unborn children is made clear, several laws have been passed over the years in many states restricting the procedure that is best illustrated by Comedy Central's South Park.
One such edict is a law 19 states have adopted requiring minors to get a parent's permission before they can have an abortion. In extreme cases such as incest, or parental abuse, or whatever other situation liberals seem to believe is a mainstream occurrence, the minor can ask a judge for permission to go under the knife.
But only four of the nine judges on the Shelby Circuit Court -- where McCarroll sits -- hear such abortion cases because the others have recused themselves in similar fashion.
This is also taking place in Alabama and Pennsylvania, and if the trend continues one can expect such recusals to take place in the other states as well, making it a difficult challenge for women expecting judicial access.
This is not a safe trend for judges to follow. Unlike the over-the-counter birth control fiasco where patrons can take there business elsewhere, we the people depend on the courts for justice and simply can't shop around until we find a desirable outcome.
If obtaining help from the courts become too difficult, then the possibility of being denied due process becomes a reality and the law will find itself under heavier scrutiny from those seeking to have it rendered unconstitutional.
This is not just about abortion, and what we think of it, and whether it should be easy for minors to experience the thrill of it. It's about giving parents the right to control their kids for as long as they're minors. Without this instrumental law 15-year-olds will be able to march into Planned Parenthood clinics to get their fetuses forked with no questions asked.
Without such laws, minors would still be unable to get body piercing, tattoos, and a ballot card, yet they'd have unobstructed access to invasive medical surgery that leaves mental scars for life.
Should 13-year-olds be able to make such decisions on their own?
Aren't parents better suited to determine what's best for their own child than a deadly pill-hawking Planned Parenthood representative?
The parental notification law is the best anti-abortion measure we've got right now, and we can't afford to lose it. In the last presidential election Florida voters overwhelming passed our own statewide measure, Amendment One, by more than 65% with 4,639,635 votes. Every county, even the Democratic bastions, voted "yes" to give parental rights to the parents.
Only liberal nutcases voted against it; comfortable with allowing 12 and 13-year-old girls to make their own potentially life-threatening decisions. Naturally the fringe Left has been all over it, from the ACLU to Planned Parenthood and the radical feminists. We don't need to give them another reason to attack a sensible law.
Judges, religious or not, need to recognize that they are in fact judges, and it is their job to serve without letting personal biases get in the way. If your personal religious beliefs hinder your ability to make a ruling, then it is only fair that you step down and let someone take your place who doesn't have that problem.
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