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A failed abortion for a politicized science


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Public trust in scientific institutions suffered greatly during Covid-19 as lockdowns and mask mandates outlived the underlying evidence. Don’t expect this to get any better as an ostensibly prestigious medical journal attempts to politicize medicine with an op-ed slamming Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito.

The Lancet urges this week that, “The fact is, if the Supreme Court of the United States upholds its “staggering” draft decision Roe vs. Wade“women will die. The judges who vote to invalidate roe deer will not succeed in ending abortion, they will only succeed in ending safe abortion. Alito and his followers will have women’s blood on their hands.

Allow us to offer editorial peer review. The proposed court ruling does not end abortion in America. It returns the issue to the states, where the public and elected officials would debate and vote.

Many states would continue to allow the procedure throughout pregnancy. Some may forbid it in most cases. Others would probably end up moving closer to public opinion: Allow abortion early in pregnancy and in some cases later, such as cases of rape or when the life of the mother is in jeopardy.

The Lancet editors lament that Judge Alito’s leaked draft opinion is based on “an 18th century document” – you know, the US Constitution – and ask what “kind of society the United States became when a small group of judges are allowed to harm the women, their families and communities they have been tasked to protect?” Judges are beholden to the law and are no more qualified to settle political consequences than, well, doctors are not to wade through constitutionally guaranteed rights.

These journals are meant to be places of debate and academic rigor. And there’s a debate worth having in the medical profession about abortion: Less than a quarter of American obstetricians perform abortions, according to a survey. The main reason for the refusal? Personal objections to the practice.

The Lancet attempts to give the imprimatur of science to an American legal and political debate. But the paper will hurt the pro-abortion cause if the public begins to dismiss medical expertise as just another vehicle for the progressive agenda.

Wonder Land: How did the United States become a country always on the verge of political or personal violence? Images: AP/Zuma Press Composer: Mark Kelly

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Appeared in the May 14, 2022 print edition as “Another Miss for Politicized Science”.


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