Catholic peer Lord Alton has urged UK pro life groups to ‘fight back’ in the ‘battle against abortion’ following last week’s Supreme Court leak which revealed the Justices’ intention to overturn Roe vs Wade and return abortion law to individual states.
Commenting in The Critic upon the implication of the ruling, Lord Alton wrote: “It would not be the end of the battle against abortion, but would represent a strong start in a fightback that is so desperately needed.”
If the majority of justices agree, which seems likely given their pro-life stance, then each state will be able to pass its own laws governing abortion. Nine states have pre-Roe restrictions on abortion that could potentially be enforced if the ruling is overturned, and 13 states have what abortion advocates have labelled as “trigger bans” in place, meaning that abortion restrictions would be in place in these states if Roe was overturned.
Lord Alton shared some encouraging statistics as he turned towards the subject of ‘public opinion in the UK’. “Polling from Savanta ComRes found that 60 per cent of people, including 70 per cent of women, believe that the current 24-week limit for abortion should be reduced,” he wrote. “93 per cent of women surveyed said someone considering having an abortion should have a legal right to independent counselling from a source that has no financial interest in her decision, and 91 per cent of women agree that sex-selective abortion should be explicitly banned by the law.”
Noting that ‘what happens in the United States matters beyond its borders,’ Lord Alton expressed optimism for the future. “Those of us who have been arguing against the UK’s laws in this area for decades can hope this is the start of the tide turning,” he wrote.
His words came as news of attacks emerged against pro-life groups and Catholic churches in the USA. Right To Life reported that protests took place outside the homes of three Justices of the Supreme Court and at least two pro-life centres were set on fire. They added that churches were vandalised and pro-choice activists interrupted Mass at the following churches:
St. Louis Catholic Church in Louisville, Colorado; Notre Dame de Lourdes in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania; Holy Rosary Catholic Church, in Houston, Texas; the Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption, in San Francisco, California; the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, Los Angeles, California and Sacred Heart of Mary in Boulder, Colorado.
Right To Life UK spokesperson Catherine Robinson condemned the attacks as ‘an appalling attack on the rule of law’ and called for the perpetrators to ‘be prosecuted swiftly and to the fullest extent of the law’.
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