by Atty. Emmanuel S. Tipon
It is a God-given right to control your own body. The Founding Fathers recognized certain God-given rights when they declared: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”
They did not mention abortion and circumcision because the enumeration would be too long. That is why they simply said “among these.” But abortion and circumcision are included under the rule of ejusdem generis. At the very least they are encompassed in the unalienable right of “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
According to Merriam Webster Dictionary, “unalienable” means impossible to take away or give up. In Oxford Dictionary, “unalienable” also means incapable of being repudiated or transferred to another.
Therefore, what God giveth only God can taketh. It is a sin to take what God giveth.
God gave you the unalienable right to control your own body. No court or legislature or any other creature has any authority to interfere with the “unalienable rights” endowed by God to men [and women].
God did not give any court or legislature or any other creature the authority to control a person’s body. You did not give them the authority to control your own body.
Therefore, it is ungodly of any court or legislature or any other creature to control or even attempt to control a person’s body or to tell a person what such person can do and cannot do with his or her body.
These principles should be the ones cited by people who support abortion.
Abortion Is Not In The Constitution
Pro-abortionists instead invoke the U.S. Constitution in claiming that they have a constitutional right to abortion. But their invocation is misplaced. The Constitution does not say anything about abortion.
As I have been telling my radio audience for years, I will eat the Constitution for breakfast together with a Laoag longganisa if you can find the word “abortion” in the Constitution. The Founding Fathers were thinking of many things when they wrote the Constitution – but not abortion. They were all men. Why should they be concerned with abortion?
Therefore, the Supreme Court was correct when it ruled today, June 24, 2022, in a 6-3 decision, that the Constitution does not confer a right to abortion. Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, No. 19-1392.
The Court then overruled Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 and Planned Parenthood of Southeaster Pa. v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 which held to the contrary. The Court said that the authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and their elected representatives.
Roe v. Wade reasoned that the right to an abortion is part of a “right to privacy” that springs from the First, Fourth, Fifth, Ninth, and Fourteenth Amendments. Planned Parenthood of Southeaster Pa. v. Casey was based on the theory that abortion is part of the “liberty” protected by the Fourteenth Amendment’s due process clause.
The Supreme Court rejected these theories, saying that the Court has been “reluctant” to recognize rights that are not mentioned in the Constitution. The Court said that the Fourteenth Amendment clearly does not protect the right to an abortion. No state constitutional provision recognizes such a right. Abortion has long been a crime in every single State. The Court said that Roe ignored or misstated history showing that abortion had been a crime at common law. The Court rejected the argument that history does not matter.
Stare Decisis Inapplicable
Stare decisis is a Latin phrase meaning “to stand by things (previously) decided” refers to the legal doctrine of judicial precedent – “that previous rulings should govern future rulings on the same or similar issues.”
The Court said that stare decisis plays an important role and protects the interests of those who have taken action in reliance of a past decision. But stare decisis is not an inexorable command, and “is at its weakness when the Court interprets the Constitution.
There are factors that should be considered in deciding when a precedent should be overruled, including (1) the nature of the court’s error, (2) the quality of the reasoning, (3) workability, (4) effect on other areas of law, (5) reliance interests.
The Court discussed each of these factors. The Court said that Roe was egregiously wrong and on a collision course with the Constitution from the day it was decided. Roe was not grounded on constitutional text, history, or precedent, but imposed on the entire country a detailed set of rules for pregnancy divided into trimesters.
Roe was not workable because it could not be applied in a consistent and predictable manner. Roe led to the distortion of many important but unrelated legal doctrines. Overruling Roe will not upend concrete reliance interests like those that develop in cases involving property and contract rights, because abortion is generally unplanned activity.
The Court said that it cannot allow its decisions to be affected by extraneous concerns – the danger that the public will perceive a decision overruling a controversial “watershed” decision, such as Roe v. Wade, as influenced by political considerations or public opinion. The Court said that its job is to interpret the law, apply long-standing principles of stare decisis, and decide the case accordingly.
Comment On Supreme Court Decision
“God made the decision,” former President Donald Trump reportedly told Fox News, and he expressed hope that the decision “will work out for everybody.” Three of the justices that comprised the majority were Trump appointees – Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, Amy Coney Barrett.
Trump, however, indicated that the decision is bad for the Republican Party. Other commentators attacked or supported the decision.
Where Do We Go From Here
Some critics want to impeach certain Supreme Court justices. But that is not the solution. You cannot impeach a justice simply because you do not like their opinion. Impeachment is easier said than done. Remember Trump. The Democrats did it twice. The Senate voted NO.
The Court said that the authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and their elected representatives. People will pressure state legislatures and even Congress to pass laws to have abortion on demand.
There will be a patchwork of laws with some states legalizing abortion while others will prohibit abortion. People from states like Texas or Mississippi with stricter abortion laws might travel to Hawaii with liberal abortion laws to have an abortion. Aloha Hawaii. We will have “Abortion Tourism.”
Legislatures should stop legislating on abortion. Let men and women exercise their God-given and unalienable right to control their own body.
ATTY. TIPON was a Fulbright-Smith Mundt scholar to Yale Law School where he obtained a Master of Laws degree. He has a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of the Philippines. He was the Dean and a Professor of Law of the College of Law, Northwestern University, Philippines. He has written law books and legal articles for Thomson Reuters and columns for Filipino-American newspapers. He and his son Noel, principal attorney of Tipon Law Office, co-host “The Tipon Report,” Honolulu’s most witty, informative, and useful radio show. He practices law in Honolulu, Hawaii, focusing on immigration, criminal defense, and other federal laws. Tel. 808-225-2645. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: hawaiiimmigrationattorney.com, courtmartiallawyer.com