On June 29, the Supreme Court handed down its ruling on the case of June Medical Services v. Russo, a high-profile case in which the abortion industry challenged Louisiana’s law requiring abortionists to acquire hospital admitting privileges before carrying out abortions. A plurality of four pro-abortion justices reaffirmed the Court’s previous holding in Whole Women’s Health v. Hellerstedt that such health and safety regulations pose an “undue burden” on women seeking abortion. Chief Justice John Roberts, who dissented in Hellerstedt just four years ago, joined these pro-abortion justices. Roberts argues that Hellerstedt is now protected by the legal doctrine of stare decisis, which, he writes, “requires us, absent special circumstances, to treat like cases alike.”
But, as Justice Thomas acknowledged in his dissent, “Our abortion precedents are grievously wrong and should be overruled.” Likewise, had the stare decisis standard upheld precedent in Brown v. Board of Education, the precedent of segregation between Black and white Americans would have been upheld.
It’s worth pausing to consider the absurdity of what was debated in this case; that is, whether a state can require abortionists who kill children for a living to have safeguards in place in the event that they injure a woman in the process of killing her child. The fact that these men and women, trained as healers, spend their days decapitating, poisoning, suctioning, and dismembering children does not even factor into the conversation. Deeply disconnected from basic morality and relying on judicial activism to uphold their license to kill, the abortion industry cannot win the war over abortion.
First, popular opinion leans towards protecting innocent human life, not destroying it. In fact, most Americans want one of two things: No abortions at all, or legal abortion with limitations. Many Americans are unaware that these positions are at-odds with Roe v. Wade, which permits abortion until birth. And few Americans are aware that, as a result of Roe, children are being killed well into the second and third trimesters of pregnancy in states from New Mexico to Nebraska to New York.
The so-called right to abortion is not found in the document the Supreme Court is charged with guarding — the U.S. Constitution. This license to kill was fabricated out of a purposeful misinterpretation of the Fourteenth Amendment and its so-called right to privacy. Ironically, it is the Fourteenth Amendment that guarantees the right to due process of law before a person can be deprived of life or liberty. Yet that is exactly what every abortion does to an innocent preborn child. From Planned Parenthood v. Casey in 1992, through June Medical, the precedents upholding Roe v. Wade through generations of Supreme Court Justices are built on sand.
Second, the abortion rate has been falling for decades. In fact, since 1980 the abortion rate has declined by about 50 percent. The abortion industry is a profit-driven enterprise that operates within the perimeters of supply and demand. As women reject abortion — often due to information exposing the gruesome facts about abortion, as Live Action does — the number of children the abortion industry can kill for money goes down and their businesses become unsustainable. But it’s crucial not to understate the number of children being killed in abortion: 862,320 in the last reported year. That is 2,363 children killed every single day in the last year reported.
Third, while the federal government demonstrates utter failure to protect the preborn child and her mother from Big Abortion (Planned Parenthood’s taxpayer funding increases every year, even under President Trump), individual states are bolder than ever. In 2019, according to the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute, 25 pro-life bills were signed into law — many of which are actively rescuing the lives of children every single day.
Fourth, the pro-life movement has proven capable of longsuffering in the fight to end abortion. Many of us have been in this fight for decades. I stand on the shoulders of giants who came before me and began their work long ago, and the next generation of pro-life activists is already rising up to carry on the mission. Our ability to adapt and evolve despite lost Supreme Court cases, the silence of religious leaders, and the betrayals of politicians is a testament to the trajectory of this movement toward victory. The pro-life movement will persist until abortion is rejected by both our laws and our culture.
The pro-life movement is outfunded by the abortion industry by orders of magnitude. Our staffs and budgets are smaller, our political power is outflanked by pro-abortion super PACs, and tech giants and mainstream media outlets work to silence or mischaracterize us on a daily basis. Yet the truth that it is wrong to kill the innocent is written so deeply into the human conscience that our victory over Big Abortion is only a matter of time. We need only call out what humans know to be true: All of us are equal, and it is wrong to do fatal violence to our society’s youngest, most defenseless members.
America has always led the world in defending human rights. We can restore the paradigm of protection of the preborn child and the dignity of mothers for the rest of the world. What is required of us in these moments, when we feel we have lost a battle, is to recommit ourselves to waking up every morning and saying Yes to winning the war.
Lila Rose is the Founder and President of Live Action, a national pro-life nonprofit organization dedicated to ending abortion. Follow her on Twitter.