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Blumenthal, Murphy escalate the culture war with hysteria

Abortion and gender dysphoria are serious issues worth serious discussion. But you'd never know it from listening to Connecticut's two U.S. senators, Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy. They offer only hysteria to rile up their supporters, fanning the flames of the culture war.

According to Blumenthal, the Supreme Court's leaked draft decision reversing its 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade "would be a horrific moment inflicting a huge leap backward with incalculable costs and chaos for countless women and their families. ... Overturning Roe v. Wade would leave American women abandoned and alone."

Huh? "Incalculable costs and chaos" because states and Congress would recover authority to legislate about abortion through the ordinary democratic process? Blumenthal makes it sound as if nine unelected judges are plotting to fix abortion law throughout the country when in fact they are preparing to relinquish the judicial power to do so.

And how would reversing Roe leave women "abandoned and alone" when they would retain all their other constitutional and statutory rights? If all women in the country rose up in support of codifying abortion rights, such rights would be codified everywhere. Such rights are not codified by certain states and by Congress precisely because many women disagree with Blumenthal's abortion fanaticism, not because they are "abandoned and alone."

Little protest of the court's draft decision involves the issue actually before the court: What does the Constitution require? Indeed, few people other than legal scholars and serious journalists have even read the draft decision and its dozens of footnoted references. Nearly all the protest against the draft decision involves something else entirely: What should abortion policy be? Most of those protesting the draft decision seem to think that the Constitution requires whatever they like and prohibits whatever they dislike.

Some people argue that the court should not reverse precedents. Yet the court often has done so, as with the odious precedent in favor of racial segregation, Plessy v. Ferguson. That precedent endured for 58 years before it was reversed, nine years longer than the Roe decision has been in force, and adapting to Plessy's reversal was far more disruptive than adapting to the reversal of Roe would be.

As policy rather than law, Roe well may have gotten abortion right — that it should be left to the individual prior to fetal viability, whereupon the state has a fair interest in legislating, including legislating to protect the lives of the unborn.

Short of saving a woman's life amid a rare complication, there is no good reason for abortion after viability. After all, this is the age of free contraception, free "morning-after" pills, free abortion prior to fetal viability, and free surrender of unwanted babies at hospital emergency rooms.

While some states seem eager to outlaw abortion, over the long term, with democracy working on the issue, the policy outlined in Roe might make sense to most people and be legislated by most states and Congress.

Some people call reversing Roe "radical." But far more radical is post-viability abortion, which in effect has become legal by judicial order nearly everywhere in the country.

Last month opponents of abortion somehow got hold of a medical waste truck carrying the mutilated corpses of late-term fetuses aborted at a clinic in Washington, D.C. Photos of the corpses were published. If the corpses had been found on a blasted street in Mariupol, no one except maybe Vladimir Putin would be denying their humanity and that a right to life had been unconscionably violated.

As for Senator Murphy, he is denouncing as "bullies" anyone who won't ride the transgenderism bandwagon with him.

He charges that transgender students are prevented from participating in sports. But they remain free to participate in sports for their biological gender. He complains that transgender students are barred from using restrooms matching their gender identity. But this is only a matter of longstanding sexual privacy and safety. He complains about attempts to forbid sex-change therapy for minors. But such therapy often has damaging consequences that minors cannot fully evaluate.

Raising these objections to transgenderism isn't "bullying." It's argument. The bully here is Murphy himself.

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