How overturning Roe v. Wade may impact you

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Millions of lives will be immeasurably changed as states now have the ability to make abortion illegal. This comes after the Dobbs v. Jackson Supreme Court ruling on Friday that overturned Roe v. Wade, eliminating the constitutional right to an abortion. People are flocking to protest the decision that shatters nearly half a century of law.

“With sorrow — for this Court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection — we dissent,” Justices Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan wrote a joint dissent criticizing the majority decision.

The 6 to 3 majority decision landed down the political lines of the justices. It didn’t come as much of a surprise after a draft written by Justice Samuel Alito was leaked earlier this year. Now, reproductive rights will be decided by states, half of which are expected to place bans on the medical procedure, according to the Associated Press. This could lead to hundreds of preventable pregnancy-related deaths across the country, NBC News reported in May. The decision will also likely affect your privacy, the need for abortion funds and reproductive justice networks, and even the porn you watch.

Privacy experts warn that this new decision is an attack on Americans’ right to privacy because the right to abortion and the right to privacy are connected through the Roe v. Wade ruling. As Mashable previously reported, the ruling “stems from the right to privacy guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment’s due process clause.” That means the Court’s decision has undermined the U.S.’s right to privacy, which, as Albert Fox Cahn, the executive director of the Surveillance Technology Oversight Project previously told Mashable “has played a role in protecting everything from the right to contraceptives to the right to same-sex marriage.” 

And it’s true: In Justice Clarence Thomas’ concurring opinion, he wrote that the Court “should reconsider all of this Court’s substantive due process precedents, including Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell.” Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell are the rulings that decided the rights of contraception, same-sex sexual contact, and same-sex marriage, respectfully.

In Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court ruled that a right to privacy included the right to abortion, and held that the abortion right is part of a right to privacy that springs from the First, Fourth, Fifth, Ninth, and Fourteenth Amendments. Now that the precedent has been overturned, Americans’ digital privacy is at risk, including our right to make and watch porn. As Mashable reported in May, legislators could use this new precedent to police adult creators working from home, and overturning Roe v. Wade has the potential to completely disrupt the porn industry and online sexual expression because it criminalizes bodily autonomy.

Because of the detrimental, blanket, and all-encompassing ruling that overturning Roe v. Wade amounts to, advocates and health professionals are encouraging folks to fight for safe abortion care. As Mashable reported, there are tons of ways you can help abortion funds and reproductive justice networks, from helping organizations that are local to your state or other states that are in direct threat, to regional and national funds. 





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