St. John's Lutheran, Northfield, MN
I want to thank the women's group at St. John's for inviting me to talk last night as a part of their Courageous Conversations series via Zoom. After my presentation, the questions from the audience were excellent and showed their understanding of the issues involved.
Given the Supreme Court ruling in June regarding Dobbs v. Jackson and the numerous states that have outlawed abortion or severely restricted it, there are millions of citizens in numerous states who do not have freedom of religion in our country. It is amazing that the Supreme Court ruling did not even consider freedom of religion in this difficult issue. It seems to me that the majority including Justice Alito did not want to consider that inconvenient concept. The reality is that there are strongly held beliefs regarding abortion on all sides of the debate because those beliefs are based on the religious beliefs of the individuals involved.
Our country was founded on freedom of religion. Many groups immigrated here to avoid religious persecution elsewhere. But now we have a Supreme Court that effectively states that only those religions that oppose abortion are accepted on a legal basis in many of our states. There is supposed to be equal protection under the Constitution for our citizens. That is certainly not the case regarding a woman's right to self-determination for her health. Many states are forcing women to take the more hazardous course of continuing an unplanned pregnancy to delivery and many more women in our country are dying as a result of this decision. The medical facts are straight forward. It is safer for a woman to have an abortion than to carry a pregnancy to term. When a woman desires to become pregnant, that risk is acceptable. When a pregnancy is unplanned, that risk may not be acceptable.
That does not mean that every woman should consider an abortion when she becomes pregnant.
How many women will have to die before this wrong is corrected.
Justice Alito claims that Roe v. Wade was "egregiously" wrong.
I would state that Justice Alito was "egregiously" wrong in his majority opinion.