In Human rights, Roe vs. Wade, Victor Gao

Abortion rights activists march on Constitution Avenue to the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC. Photo: Supplied/ AFP – Jose Luis Magana

By Victor Gao,

Published on NCW, July 7, 2022:

Written exclusively for the NewColdWar by Victor Gao, Chairman at Yale Law School Association of China and Chair Professor, Soochow University, addresses the highly politicized decision made by the US Supreme Court to overturn Roe Vs. Wade, the negative response to the pronouncement in countries around the world, and how it reveals the true face of the US in terms of other rights and values both domestically and globally. The terms in which the abortion debacle is being discussed in the US – those of the dangers of a right wing Supreme court – are both very small c conservative in that they do not see the complicity of the Democrats in getting us here – and also very provincial, given the US’s use of human rights banners in its international aggression.

Victor Gao presents a new perspective.

The US Supreme Court’s 5:4 decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade sent alarms throughout America, depriving the American females of the constitutional protection of their right to abortion, and pitting half of the states outlawing or prohibiting abortions against the other half of the country which are more liberal and progressive regarding abortion. This extraordinary and highly destabilizing decision reflects in a fundamental way the dangerous politicizing of the highest court of the United States by some extremely conservative justices on the bench, including the three justices nominated by Donald Trump, who seem to have no qualms in throwing a wedge in the long-standing image of the USSC as the ultimate embodiment of prudence, impartiality, justice, and sound judgement for America.

The utter shock and disbelief across the world are no less profound. This decision instantly makes the United States the odd and awkward outlier in the developed countries in the world in not giving constitutional protection to women’s abortions. The world at large is dumbfounded by this decision because it disregarded the changing landscape in the world, especially in the developed world, over the past five decades, which increasingly view abortion as an inherent human right of women to be protected by the laws in any country. This is particularly outrageous in the sense that, in recent years in particular, the United States flaunts itself as the protector and champion of values and rights which it uses to divide the world into a bloc it likes, and another bloc it hates. This decision of the USSC, at least as far as abortion is concerned, fully demonstrates that, rather than representing mankind, the United States is against the general practice in the developed world in particular, and globally in general. It makes people outside the United States wonder that, if the United States cannot protect the female gender in the United States as far as abortion is concerned, how much weight should be given to the United States as far as other values and rights are concerned?

The USSC decision deprived the female gender in the United States of their constitutional abortion rights specified in Roe vs. Wade, which are in line with the general practice of almost all the countries in the developed world. America needs to be reminded that the worst enemy of the United States may not be outside, but inside the United States. Legal protection needs to be provided to women in the United States to make their own decision, at their own discretion, considering all the relevant aspects of their own circumstances, about whether abortion is needed in the legally and scientifically defined period of time after conception. Like charity, human rights should start at home. Constitutional protection of American women’s right to abortion should not be struck down in a highly politicized judicial decision of the Supreme Court. For America to shine abroad, America should shine at home first.

Victor Gao, Esq.

Chairman, Yale Law School Association of China

Chair Professor, Soochow University

July 7, 2022

Sanya, Hainan, China


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