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Roe v Wade II: Electric Boogaloo


Sanctuary legend
So the Supreme Court of the US allegedly said that they were going to repeal the federal abortion decision that allowed it, which would mean the decision on whether or not the allow it would be up to the states.
But this was leaked to the public before the decision was finalized:

I think this was leaked as a form of protest and to inspire protest aimed at changing their decision.

Here's what I predict:
1. They'll reconsider and walk it back because of the angry mob.
2. The SC will have proven that it is susceptible to bullying.
3. Every decision they make from now on will be based on appeasing whichever mob is beating down their door.

Paco Smithereens

It is more likely they won't walk it back because it would make the Supreme Court look like it is susceptible to bullying. I'd say, the opinion was more likely to be revised and revisited before the leak.

It's not that I think the Supreme Court is courageous; it is that they are up their own ass enough to protect the institution's independence by not changing course, but of course, we will see for sure.

My long-shot hope is that this could lead to an amendment to the US Constitution explicitly protecting privacy in a way which will cover things far beyond abortion, although squaring a right to privacy with the First Amendment is going to be difficult.

Still, I'd love for the people who continually seek to undermine encryption to have to face off against something that is explicit, rather than a vague mirage in the "penumbras and emanations," which is where Roe's half-assed right to privacy was found.

As for abortion, this is an unbridgeable chasm. If you believe the unborn are full human lives, nothing short of defending that life at all costs will suffice. If you believe it is not, you are fighting against the state deciding it has sovereignty over your own body.

Neither of which are negotiable to either side.

Still, I think the Supreme Court can't walk it back now and preserve their little castle at the top. I had a few pre-law classes in college and the way the general public views the Supreme Court, and the way people in law view it, are very different things. To at least some law professors, the Supreme Court is akin to the Vatican.

Or something.


Staff member
although squaring a right to privacy with the First Amendment is going to be difficult.
Actually it's already in the Bill of Rights. Kind of. Amendment IV I believe... Yep, pegged it.

Amendment IV said:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Paco Smithereens

Well, that refers to a specific context of being secure from search and seizures.

Among things not covered (that affect me personally):

If you own a house or land, at least in my state, that is a matter of public record. The government needs to know this to levy property taxes, and I'm not even opposed to this information being released with a warrant, but it is actually used by data miners and marketers, and I have no choice to opt out of it. If you're being stalked, don't ever buy a home.

It does not secure the privacy of my amateur radio license - my details are replicated and spilled out all over the net because this crochety hobby feels like publishing everyone's call sign and home address as many as places as possible is conducive to...something.

It does not cover anything digital specifically, which was obviously not conceived of at the time the Fourth was written. There is a concerted effort to abolish the private, ephemeral conversation, starting with the Clipper Chip in the 1990s and resurfacing again in EARN-IT Act and other attacks on encryption.

If the Fourth Amendment were interpreted more broadly to secure our privacy in the sense of all of the government databases our information is in, it would be sufficient.

And similarly, it is not merely Roe vs Wade which is in jeopardy, but its precedents like Griswold v. Connecticut, which could undermine the right to buy birth control similarly.

I am also unclear how the Fourth Amendment applies to things like mass surveillance; the vacuuming of data as with AT&T Room 641A, which I'm still sore about,