A PRIVATE CHOICE: Abortion in America in the Seventies by

A PRIVATE CHOICE: Abortion in America in the Seventies

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A dense legalistic argument indicting the Supreme Court's decision in The Abortion Cases (Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton), as rendered by Justice Blackmun in 1973. Noonan (Law, Berkeley) attacks Blackmun's basic finding that abortion is a Constitutional liberty, and examines ""how acceptance of abortion as a private choice affects American society."" The Court has in effect adopted the jurisprudence of Hans Kelsen, Noonan declares, contending that by logical extension ""any human conduct can now be made legally valid, and any human being can be expunged from the legal order and left without any protection."" And the poor, he maintains, have been newly oppressed. ""The Liberty"" to abort--Noonan's hot-potato label for legalized abortion--has led to ""depriving the pregnant poor of assistance for their dependent unborn children."" The latter is the fourth of twelve reasons ""Why the Liberty must Be Limited and Surpassed""--title of the last of the 21 webbed Inquiries that make this seem as morally neutral as the criticisms by Bickel and Cox. Abstracted, it may provide some ammunition for the anti-abortion forces, but its chief audience--the title notwithstanding--will be those with a professional, not personal, interest in the subject.

Pub Date: June 4th, 1979
Publisher: Free Press/Macmillan