Bender: The Supreme Court has awakened a sleeping tiger
"The Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade reversal last week may have awakened a sleeping political tiger — American women. A CBS News/YouGov Poll reports 67% of women oppose the decision."
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The Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade reversal last week may have awakened a sleeping political tiger — American women. A CBS News/YouGov Poll reports 67% of women oppose the decision.
The draconian 5-4 ruling and Clarence Thomas' ominous prelude of what's to come had thousands in the streets, and that energy could reverse the trend of midterm losses by the party in power. When the smoke clears, Democrats may have the numbers they need to roll back this rot of authoritarianism.
The Supreme Court's lost for decades, however. Voter apathy and Republican chicanery long ago set that garbage scow adrift. Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass., expressed the outrage many Americans have with the increasingly discredited institution: “You have six justices, five of them who are appointed by Republican presidents who didn't win a majority of votes in the country. You have two of them who face credible sexual assault accusations. One of them is married to a woman who actively participated in activities to overthrow the U.S. government and they're telling women they no longer have the right to choose?”
Thomas believes the court should also revisit rulings on access to contraception and marital equality. But originalism is archaic and unworkable. Constitutions must evolve and breathe. “The earth belongs to the living and not to the dead (authors of the Constitution),” Thomas Jefferson once said.
In 2015, I was in the room with my friend, the late Sen. John Andrist, R-Crosby, a traditional conservative, when the news broke that the Supreme Court had legalized same-sex marriage. He was overcome with joy because someone near and dear to him could finally, legally, love who they loved. But the heart of the GOP has been replaced with ice. This American Taliban represents mandated pregnancy even in pre-teen rape cases, second-class citizenship for women, and the resurgence of the bedroom police. Welcome to the theocracy. Welcome to the Inquisition.
Just days before the Roe v. Wade ruling, the Supreme Court overturned a 1913 New York law restricting the use of handguns outside the home. In a Fargo protest, a young woman, one of thousands in the streets, held up a sign that read, “I hope one day my vagina has as many rights as guns do.”
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By Monday, in the second-reddest state in the country, a GoFundMe effort to finance the Fargo-based Red River Women's Clinic relocation to Moorhead (because a trigger law now outlaws abortion in North Dakota) had topped 8,000 donors and $630,000 with a million dollar goal that it'll likely exceed, a powerful signal that our Republican-controlled government is out of step with its constituents on this issue. You can track the numbers at www.gofundme.com/f/red-river-womens-clinic-new-location.
“My mother accompanied a friend who had an illegal abortion in 1961,” one donor wrote. “I cannot believe that this will soon be happening again.”
The ability of a woman to choose her destiny, to have bodily autonomy, has been severely curtailed. That leaves it to Democrats to codify into law, if not the Constitution, that basic human freedom, but it won't happen without an impenetrable majority in Congress.
You have the power. Embrace the pain. It's the greatest motivator of all.
So these soulless fascists can't steal the next election.
Tony Bender writes an exclusive weekly column for Forum News Service. This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of this publication, nor Forum Communications ownership.