Key Takeaways
  • On June 24, 2022, the federal court overturned the Roe v. Wade decision, making the possibility of attaining an abortion illegal for women.
  • Roe v. Wade was a landmark decision in 1973 that regulated abortions and allowed women to receive them without being prosecuted. 
  • Since the reversal of Roe v. Wade, abortions in most cases are banned, except for some states which allow exceptions such as rape, incest, and/or risk to the mother’s life.
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On June 24, 2022, the federal court overturned the Roe v. Wade decision, making the possibility of attaining an abortion illegal for women. This ruling came in the Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization case, where an argument was made that the Constitution does not protect women from receiving abortions, and, thus, should be illegal. 

 

Before the official court decision, which took place on June 24, a court document written by Justice Samuel Alito was leaked to the public, which discussed how they were looking to overturn the ruling of Roe v. Wade. The reason why this controversial decision was able to be reversed was due to the vast number of conservative members that hold a seat on the Supreme Court level.

 

Background of Roe v. Wade


Roe v. Wade was a landmark decision in 1973 regarding the criminalization of abortion. Jane Roe, the placeholder name used to protect the real identity of the plaintiff, argued that a pregnant woman should have a constitutional right to abortion at any point of their pregnancy. At the time, Jane Roe resided in Texas, and Texas statutes stated that abortion is illegal.
 

Image Credit: zimmytws / Shutterstock.com

 

Unhappy with the Texas laws, Jane Roe sued Henry Wade, the Texas District Attorney at the time. The legal battle was taken to the Supreme Court, and the court ruled in a 7-2 vote in favor of giving women access to abortions without being prosecuted. The legal outcome of this infamous case stayed in power for nearly 50 years, but recently, many judges have ruled in favor of overturning this Supreme Court decision.

 

Why the Roe v. Wade Verdict was Overturned

 

Dating back to the first Bush presidency era, an increasing number of conservatives have joined the bench, and they have now been able to finally achieve their goal of overturning the Roe v. Wade verdict. During the Trump administration’s reign, the then President appointed three conservatives to the bench, Justices Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett. These three justices all voted in favor of the abolishment of Roe v. Wade, which has allowed the conservatives to fulfill their political agenda. 

 

Furthermore, not only have the conservatives voted to illegalize abortion, there is speculation that they will be trying to criminalize gay marriage. One of the Justices, Justice Clarence Thomas, mentioned that the rationale used by the conservatives to overturn this ruling on June 24 will most likely be used to overturn other major cases.  

 

How Overturning Roe v. Wade Impacts Women’s Rights

 

One of the significant issues with this law being overturned is the lack of protection offered. Before, many women could receive abortions, regardless of their reasoning. In most situations, women who become pregnant cannot abort their fetuses. 

Consequently, if a woman is found receiving an abortion for an unlawful reason, they can be prosecuted as the Roe v. Wade precedent no longer protects them. Furthermore, only a couple of states who are banning abortions have exceptions in place for extreme cases such as rape, incest, or the risk to the mother’s life.

 

To view the list of the exceptions made to abortions for each state, click here for more information.

Image Credit: Wild 2 Free / Shutterstock.com

 

One recent case which has caused an uproar due to the new abortion restrictions is about a 10-year-old girl who forcefully became pregnant through sexual assault. In her home state of Ohio, she was denied an abortion and had to travel to Indiana to receive the necessary medical care. In most situations, overturning this law regresses women's rights and makes it difficult for them to obtain an abortion, which could have severe health and financial repercussions. 

 

Health Impacts of Overturning Roe v. Wade


Although Roe v. Wade being overturned bans abortions, it does not mean women will completely stop getting abortions. When this court decision was upheld, women received abortions from clinical professionals. Unfortunately, as the Supreme Court Justices decided to overturn Roe v. Wade, medical workers who previously conducted abortions risk their medical licenses being suspended or revoked if they are found conducting this medical procedure. 

 

Consequently, as healthcare workers are reluctant to perform abortions, women looking to receive this operation could risk their health by performing the procedure themselves. Without the background and experience of a medical professional, abortions become high-risk and could lead to severe health complications for the fetus and the woman. 

 

Financial Impacts of Roe v. Wade


With abortions becoming illegal, many women began trying to get abortions before the new laws were put into effect. Abortions cost an average of $750 if done during the first trimester of pregnancy, a large sum of money that not many people have immediate access to. 


Recommended Read: Healthcare Costs Are Increasing Despite Affordable Tactics


As a result, many companies have announced that they will be paying for their employees’ abortion travels so they can receive the procedure they desire. So far, nearly 20 companies have come out supporting their employees getting access to abortions, and this number will most likely rise in the coming weeks. 

 

To view the complete list of companies accommodating their employees’ travels to receive abortions, click here.
 

Image Credit: Ben Von Klemperer / Shutterstock.com

 

Regardless of the reasons a woman chooses to abort her fetus, this cost is pennies compared to the expenses related to giving birth and caring for a child until 17 years of age. Firstly, the average cost of giving birth is around $5,000 - $11,000, which is much higher than the average of $750 for an abortion. Additionally, caring for a child until they turn 17 years old is around $233,610, which accounts for the food, clothing, and other care a child requires.

 

The Money Wrap-Up

 

Therefore, by making abortion illegal, not only are women’s rights reduced in modern society, but they are now under financial pressure to provide for themselves as well as their children. 

It is heartbreaking to see how a basic human right of choosing whether to keep a fetus can be criminalized. But, as the overturning of this law has regressed a woman’s list of rights, it shows how important voting can be. 

 

Therefore, for those unhappy with the outcome of this verdict, in the upcoming elections, thoroughly research the candidates running for office and vote for those who will help enforce new laws that will help women and other groups of people attain more rights. 


Main Image Credit: Bob Korn / Shutterstock.com

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