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July 15, 2005


Different world, then, huh? Even in CT.

Different world, then, huh?

No kidding. It's inconceivable that some pharmacists are refusing to fill prescriptions for the Pill; it's unimaginable that women were arrested for dispensing birth control.

Yes, I completely agree. But, as you will find if when you cross-post this at Daily Kos, there are quite a few folks over there - Armando being one - who don't think Griswold will be in play.

I heard this same view quite a bit when the heavy-duty abortion Diaries were being posted several months ago. Roe is at risk, it was said, but we don't have to worry about Griswold, Eisenstadt because the 'Merkun people just wouldn't stand for losing access to contraception.

To which I reply, how many SCOTUS votes do you think you could get today if Griswold were coming up for the first time. Thomas? Scalia? Rehnquist? Doubtful. So, at best, we've got a 6-3 majority on the subject now. If Bush gets to replace O'Connor, Rehnquist and Bader-Ginsburg, it could be 5-4 against us in this matter.

MB - thanks for confirming what my very limited reading has lead me to believe as well. I've held back from posting anything on the SCOTUS issue because I don't know shit about anything legal, but I've heard the Griswold argument before, and I figured I might as well go for it.

IIRC, Mrs. Griswold was the wife of later Solicitor Irwin Griswold. Was that in your story? I confess I skimmed it.

The right to contraception is really the key right. As a 62 year old woman, I can tell you that that is what liberated my generation, far more than Roe v. Wade. Getting Planned Partenthood into the open in every state.

This is also the quintessential wedge, because it separates those who are serious about reducing unintended pregnancy, and all the problems that follow from it, from those who want to punish women for "stepping out of line" and having sex on their own terms.

There has been much that wnet5 awry with the sexual revolution, but the far, far right is correct that Griswold is what allowed it to happen.

Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the Court only narrowly (5-4) upheld the core privacy doctrine of Roe — and at the same time introduced a new standard that has allowed many states to place greater restrictions on abortion, even in the first trimester.

This may be obvious to most here, but do you know who the Casey was in this Supreme Court ruling. It was none other than Young Bob Casey's father when he was an anti-choice Dem? Governor of PA! Young Casey is the highly publicised Dem condenter to beat Santorum, but on this issue, there may not be much of a difference. For that matter, throw in Harry Reid's Democractic view of the issue, and I think women concerned about such issues should begin to think about forming their own political party, as the current (and future with Casey) Dems will not likely be much help, IMO!

As I said to Armando, I think Meyer v. Nebraska would be jeopardized before Griswold, given the current state of the country. Now there's one for you to look up.

Excllent post Page. This is something I hope to see the dems pounding when over the next couple of election cycles.

Oddly enough, I actually knew what Meyer was when you posted that comment at Daily Kos.

The reason: my stepfather was born in Nebraska in 1923, coincidentally just four days after that decision. His family is ultra-conservative German Lutheran, and they would still make references to this decision 40 years later when I hooked up with them. Their view: it was the last time the High Court made a good ruling.

I doubt that Griswold is in any danger of being overturned but I also think it should be the issue. "Abortion" has been turned into a poison word. Most people wish they would never hear anything more about it. So, whenever "abortion" enters the debate, the left loses.

We have to start talking about the right to privacy rather than right to choose. And, in my mind, we should stop talking about Roe and start talking about Griswold. Because, while the decision may not be in imminent jeopardy, surely many of the principles that stem from it are.

No one wants their privacy invaded. We saw that with Terri Schiavo. So to stress the need to preserve the right to privacy, we would play on negative frames already accepted by the American people.

I know so many people who tune out the abortion/Roe debate because they feel that it is intrusive on the women who have to make such a difficult decision.

So let's talk abt privacy. When they say Roe, we say Griswold. When they say pro-life, we say privacy.

And, I know that there are people who feel passionately about this issue and I might have offended someone with something here. For that I apologize. I very much support abortion rights, as I did in 1973 when I had mine.

Interesting poll from cbs. The first two questions are a little screwy compared to the third. The third says that Roe was a good thing by 59/32, with reps split at 47/47.


The problem with bringing up Griswold is the credibility gap. We weren't even able to convince people in 2004 that Roe was on the line. It's unclear whether we will even be able to convince them of that in the SC debate, unless the nominee is someone openly anti-Roe. So when we bring up Griswold, and the Right pooh-poohs it as a silly straw man, I'm just not confident people will see it our way.

Well, I agree with you, Steve. Because those of us who believe Griswold damned sure is at risk can't even convince you we're right.

So if Kainah is right, that the left always loses when "abortion" is said aloud (despite the polls), and you're right, that using the privacy issue based on Griswold is hopeless because Americans won't buy it, what should be our strategy?

I, for one, would like my Democratic Senators to ask the question directly of the nominee: Tell us in detail what you think of Griswold? Litmus test? Absolutely.

Those who have doubts about whether or not Griswold would come under direct assault come from a place we'd all like to think makes good sense. But having received by legal education from the neo-con sympathizing, law & economics-trained, Federalist Society professors, I can tell you that when the case is discussed at the George Mason University School of Law, the "poison word" isn't "abortion." It's "penumbra."

It's not about the legal reasoning involved. What state is wingnutty enough to criminalize birth control in the year 2005? You don't get to the Supreme Court until there is a case.

I wouldn't go out on a limb and name a state, but I wouldn't take a bet that no state will produce a case that challenges Griswold, either. The reason the "penumbra" language raises hackles is that goes to privacy in general, not just birth control.

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