The Justices Have No Robes

The Supreme Court faces a rule-of-law crisis of its own making.

We residents of the United States who are governed but not protected by its laws must now wonder: Which right will be next? And for whom? And if the Court does not exist to respect rights, why does it exist and why should it be respected?

The Government Has a Long History of Controlling Women—One That Never Ended

Abortion is not (just) a health issue. Whether we are willing to let women and people capable of becoming pregnant control their own bodies, for health or any other reason, is an equity issue—a question of who deserves bodily autonomy and freedom to reach their full potential.

Ultimately, abortion bans and restrictions are part of broader legal and societal structures that were unambiguously designed to not recognize women’s inherent equality.

A Vocal—and Wealthy—Minority Is Controlling Abortion Access

Conservatives have relentlessly focused on reshaping the Supreme Court for decades. And now, they’ve allowed Texas’s six-week abortion ban to stand for months because a handful of oil and gas tycoons exerted massive influence over Texas politics by funneling millions into statehouse races.

To a large extent, this stunning outcome is a story of democratic failures and the power of big money in American politics. 

The Power of State Courts in Securing Abortion Access: “It’s Time to Give Them Center Stage”

Progressives are giving new attention to reforming the Supreme Court—but it would be a mistake to stop there. We also need to pay greater attention to state courts and state constitutions as a promising, underappreciated and frequently threatened venue for protecting rights. 

Of course, courts can’t be the only path to achieving reproductive justice—but we won’t have reproductive justice without them.