Supreme Court Roe V. Wade Decision Draft Leaked

The Beginning of the End for Reproductive Rights


Map of the United States showing which states are certain or likely to restrict abortion if Roe V. Wade is overturned. Source: New York Post, 5/3/22.

Kylee Schecter

Yesterday, we were made aware that the government doesn’t care about us. Not that we couldn’t have inferred from past decisions that have hit plenty of marginalized groups so hard that it forced them into record high poverty. Yesterday, we were given a glimpse into the beginning of the end of our reproductive rights. The initial draft of the supreme court’s decision to overturn Roe V. Wade, written by Justice Samuel Alito, was leaked and has been circulating news outlets for over 24 hours. Roe V. Wade allows women, such as myself, insured autonomy over their body and decisions regarding reproduction. While Justice Alito believes “the constitution makes no reference to abortion,” women nationwide and the 1973 supreme court, made up of only men, ruled in favor of Roe. (Link to the Politico article that leaked this draft here.)

Roe V. Wade argued against a Texas law that prohibited abortions except in cases of incest, rape, and threats to the life of the mother. “Roe’s” attorneys argued that her and other women living in Texas had the right to obtain a legal, safe abortion in a medical facility in their home state. This argument was set on the grounds of Texas’ current policy on abortions violating Roe and other women’s right to privacy, as guaranteed in the fourteenth amendment. If this court case could hold up in uber-conservative 1970’s Texas, why has our current Supreme Court voted to overrule it? Unfortunately, this leaked ruling has come down to the discretion of a right leaning Supreme Court. Justices Alito, Thomas, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Barrett have voted to overturn the initial Roe V. Wade decision. If this decision is overturned, 26 states are likely to ban abortion. These include Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. (Determining the likelihood of this outcome is due to current/past laws concerning abortion in these states and/or attitudes towards abortion in these states.) 

As a young woman living in America, I understand that if this decision is released by the Supreme Court and no longer remains a draft, I will be stripped of my right to bodily autonomy. By making this decision, the Supreme Court of the United States moves to emulate the repressive governments that it has worked so hard to terminate. To what extent are we going to let bias lead our nation? When will we become what we seek to destroy? If this decision is revealed to be overturned, there is only one potential outcome: more deaths. Disagreeing with abortion, which has been deemed being “pro life,” is ironically not “pro life” at all. Without safe options for abortion, more women will put themselves in danger seeking illegal abortions, which may have severe complications that can lead to death. A woman living in a state that has restricted abortion completely, without exception of harm to the mother, can even face death in childbirth. By supporting this idea or being silent about this Supreme Court draft, we are subsequently supporting states that may decide to revoke the right to autonomy over one’s own body.

Personal bias aside, choosing to support the overturning of Roe V. Wade means denying the unalienable right to life, which is guaranteed by the fourteenth amendment to the US Constitution.

“No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”
U.S. Const. Amendment XIV, Section 1.

How can you help? 

Picket and protest outside your local government buildings, voice support on social media, sign petitions, and most importantly; educate yourself on the issue. Knowledge is our greatest asset within matters like these, and knowing your rights and your state’s policy on abortion gives you power to protect yourself and your liberties.