Kansas Attorney General apologizes for citing Dred Scott decision in abortion-ban brief


Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/11/23/kansas-attorney-general-apolog.html


Who reads those things from beginning to end? Right?


Still ain’t getting shit for Christmas.


Give it a couple of years.


Roger That!


At this point shouldn’t people who are in backwards states just fly to a safe place to get an abortion? It would be cheaper to support that than all the lobbying, court cases and it’s what the rich people who need abortions have done since abortions were an option.


Where are they going to get money for that?



[extra chars]


As someone who was raised in Kansas, everything seemed like it was going to remain middle-of-the-road when I was a kid. Then the extemists showed up at our doorstep in the seventies and tried to blow shit up.


There was a recent book I can’t recall about how the Reagan wing of the GOP in the 70’s very deliberately used Roe to radicalized the evangelicals into the political force they became by the 80’s. Before that abortion was not a crusade or political issue for them.


Exactly. I recommend the film “What’s the Matter with Kansas?” for a little recent front line insight, but I think there are a few documentaries out there that cover more of the history and growth of the movement.


Anti-Abortion politicians like to cite Dred Scott I’m not sure if they’re were mimicking Scalia, who opined

[D]red Scott…rested upon the concept of “substantive due process” that the Court praises and employs today. Indeed, Dred Scott was very possibly the first application of substantive due process in the Supreme Court, the original precedent for… Roe v. Wade.

Planned Parenthood v Casey, 505 US 833

It may feature as a sort of code-- appoint me, elect me, confirm me, and I’ll make your wildest abortion related dreams come true!

Odd that none of these politicians could put two and two together.


I think the idea is to stop bother with lobbying, put that money into a fund to just provide free flights to places which allow abortion.


Then those states would just make it illegal to transport someone for the purpose of getting them an abortion. Since Roe they keep coming at abortion from any angle they can think up, they aren’t going to stop just because you stopped fighting them.


Can’t the decision be made invalid somehow? I don’t know how the weird Anglo precedent system works, but if it is still valid (shuddersome though it is) then, strictly speaking, you have every reason to cite it when it applies, horrifying though that might seem.

Far better to strike it out somehow. I don’t know. Pull a pope Stephen VI and exhume the original members of the court and impeach them post-mortem or something.


There’s no such thing per se, but Dred Scott has been overturned many times. I think it’s generally considered bad lawyering to cite a decision that’s been roundly rejected as precedent. IANAL.

Also, I think even Dred Scott’s claim to ultimate badness was challenged in Bush v Gore.


Bush v. Gore at least didn’t lead to a civil war.



Didn’t the 13th and 14th Amendments do that?

I think the point they were making was the idea of equal protection under the law was just a silly thing Thomas Jefferson wrote in the Declaration of Independence which has no teeth when applied to constitutional concerns, making a ruling like Dred Scott possible in its day.


I don’t think they have. They changed the constitution. Invalidating would mean that, even with the constitution as it was then, it was an incorrect decision. Which I, moral questions aside, think is obvious on purely technical grounds.

Because if it isn’t invalidated, then quoting it to demonstrate a principle[1] is not wrong. It’s not even necessarily racist. Indeed, you could quote it while arguing for things like the ERA: that equality needs to be spelled out.

[1] I.e. “the constitution needed the 13th and 14th to make Dred Scott impossible.”


Oh, wait, maybe he is