Main Content
Roe v Wade: Primer
Roe v Wade: Primer
On January 22, 1973 the U.S. Supreme Court issued an opinion on Roe v Wade establishing the link between a woman's fundamental right to privacy and her ability to obtain a safe and legal abortion. In a subsequent decision the Court determined that a woman has the right to an abortion until viability. While the Supreme Court's decisions disallowed many state and federal restrictions on abortion, they neither ended the debate nor efforts to limit access to abortion in the United States. Blue Boat has compiled a primer on the history, effects and current opinion of this landmark decision. – Ed.
 

Recalling the world before Roe v Wade (The Herald Sun, Jan. 16, 2013)

By Neil Offen noffen [at] heraldsun [dot] com">noffen [at] heraldsun [dot] com

DURHAM — It was 40 years ago that Roe v Wade legalized abortion. It was 30 years ago that Planned Parenthood of Central North Carolina, which provides abortions and a wide range of other medical services, began its operations. And while the organization and women’s reproductive rights might seem under siege today, speakers said Wednesday, it’s important to remember what the situation was like before. “After 40 years, a lot of people have forgotten what kind of world we had to live in without abortion,” State Rep. Deborah Ross told more than 200 supporters gathered at the Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Hall. “We need to remember what a deplorable effect not having legal abortion wrought on women and their doctors. We need to remember the horrible situation they were in. That is why we are pro-choice.” (Full story at The Herald Sun.)


Chipping away at Roe v. Wade (The Washington Post, Opinions, Jan. 22, 2013)

By Katrina vanden Heuvel , (@KatrinaNation), editor and publisher of the Nation magazine, writes a weekly column for The Post.

Only moments before she appeared in front of the Supreme Court to deliver what would be a successful argument in the landmark case Roe v. Wade, 26-year-old attorney Sarah Weddington found herself with one more thing to worry about: The lawyers’ lounge where she was waiting had only a men’s room. This month, as we mark Roe v. Wade’s 40th anniversary, we can rejoice that the Supreme Court now has a ladies’ room. But is that all we have to celebrate? Over the past 40 years, state legislatures across the country have managed to place a slew of impediments, inconveniences and indignities between women and their right to choose.In 1992, the court ruled that states can pass laws regulating abortion as long as the laws do not constitute an “undue burden” on women seeking abortion services. But the interpretation of “undue burden” has turned out to be pretty narrow. (Full story.)

Winning Roe v. Wade: Q&A with Sarah Weddington (Time Magazine On-line, Jan. 22, 2013)

By Valerie Lapinski Follow @TIME

Forty years ago, the Supreme Court decided Roe v. Wade, making abortion legal in all 50 states. Sarah Weddington, an attorney from Texas, was the lawyer who argued for legalized abortion before the high court. She was 26 years old at the time. Years later, the plaintiff, Norma McCorvey (“Roe” in Roe v. Wade), became a pro-life activist. Weddington went on to serve three terms in the Texas House of Representatives, became the first female General Counsel of U.S. Department of Agriculture, and later worked as Assistant to President Jimmy Carter. She is currently an adjunct professor at the University of Texas at Austin. TIME interviewed Weddington ten years ago about her experience with the case,  and recently caught up with her to discuss the ongoing abortion wars. Below are excerpts from the conversation and audio clips from her historic reargument on October 11, 1972. (Full story at  http://nation.time.com/2013/01/22/winning-roe-v-wade-qa-with-sarah-weddington/#ixzz2IuMUMucg)


As Roe v. Wade Turns 40, Foes Focus on State Capitols (National Journal, Jan. 23, 2013)

By Beth Reinhard

President Obama’s reelection bid emphasized abortion rights more than any other presidential campaign in history, warning women that their reproductive freedom was at stake on Nov. 6. But while Obama picked Supreme Court justices believed to support abortion rights and backed federal funding for Planned Parenthood, state legislatures quietly passed a record-setting number of restrictions over the past two years, according to the Guttmacher Institute. As the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision turns 40 years old on Tuesday, the debate over abortion rages on in state capitals from Richmond to Phoenix. (Full story.)


Deconstructing Roe v. Wade (American Thinker Jan. 24, 2013)

By William Sullivan

This week, Americans celebrate, lament, or just indifferently shrug at the fortieth anniversary of that storied 7-2 decision handed down by the Supreme Court in the case of Roe v. Wade which legalized abortion in the United States. Aaron Blake of the Washington Post is among those shrugging his shoulders at the milestone, using the occasion to appeal to the GOP that "it's time Republicans stop talking about Roe v. Wade." It's simply a lost cause, he argues, because public opinion is continually shifting to support abortion rights. "It's hard to get 70% of Americans to agree on much of anything these days," he writes. "But, for the first time, one of those things is Roe v. Wade." This conclusion that the trend we witness favors the pro-abortion crowd runs in stark contrast to the conclusion offered by Time magazine earlier this month. (Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/2013/01/deconstructing_roe_v_wade.html#ixzz2IuQ8ynlS.)

About the Author

  • Ted joined the staff of the Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministries in February 2010. He brings more than twenty years' experience using media to create social change by creating communications strategies and content for progressive non-profits, political campaigns, and cause...

Like, Share, Print, or Explore

For more information contact blueboat@uua.org.

Section Menu