Opinion: Columnists

There is no 'right' to abortion if it depends upon 'access'

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Gregory Kane,Columnists,Supreme Court,Abortion,Analysis,Constitutionality,Liberalism

Is there really a “right” to have an abortion? No, there is not. Indisputably, unequivocally, there is not. And it was a liberal that proved it to us.

It happened 36 years ago, just as the Hyde Amendment, which prohibited federal funding for abortions, was being debated in Congress.

Massachusetts Sen. Edward Brooke, a liberal Republican – there were a few in 1977 – was a supporter of the “right” to an abortion and of a “right” for poor women to have taxpayers foot the bill for their abortions.

To support his position, Brooke piously intoned, “A right without access is no right at all.”

Whether you consider yourself in the “pro-life” camp – or “anti-abortion,” the term honchos at the AP would prefer us journalist types to use – or whether you think the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision is just awful law, we should all thank Brooke for hitting the nail on the head.

What Brooke meant was that if poor women didn’t have “access” to their “right” to have an abortion, then they didn’t have the right. What he didn’t realize is that his comment proved his opponents’ point, not his.

Since when do Americans have to have “access” to their constitutional rights? Do we need to “access” our constitutional right to free speech, or do we just speak freely?

Do we need to “access” our right to peaceably assemble and petition our government for redress of grievances, or do we just peaceably assemble and petition our government for redress of grievances?

Do we need to “access” our right to worship at the church, synagogue or mosque of our choice, or do we just go to our churches, synagogues and mosques to worship?

The notion that Americans have to “access” their rights – or that there are some rights that need to be “accessed,” as opposed to simply exercised – is absurd on its face. Brooke’s comment was Libthink at its absolute worst.

Neither Brooke – nor any other liberal, circa 1977 or in 2013 – would even dream of making this argument in regard to the Second Amendment. But let’s follow Brooke’s faulty logic to its faulty conclusion.

If Brooke were right, then Americans who couldn’t afford to own firearms have every right to expect the government – either city, county, state or federal – to buy them a handgun or rifle so they could “access” their Second Amendment rights.

Poor Americans – especially those in our inner cities – are frequent victims of violent crime. They, more than any other group, need to have “access” to their Second Amendment right to own a firearm.

The poor living in our cities need to protect themselves from burglars who might break into their homes, or the street thugs who might mug them in some dark alley.

Liberals in 1977 – and today – go all gaga at the very thought of helping “the poor” – especially if that help consists of having taxpayers foot the bill for baby killing.

Those same liberals would probably freak at the notion that taxpayers should also foot the bill for buying firearms for those same poor. For liberals, baby killing is a constitutional right. The Second Amendment?

Find me a liberal who doesn’t believe, deep down in his or her soul, that the country would be way better off if the Second Amendment were repealed.

Liberals that believe poor women have a “right” to an abortion shouldn’t come begging the taxpayers to foot the cost.

Those liberals need to dig deep down into their own pockets and finance abortions for poor women the way the Founding Fathers and a series of judges have decided they should be financed: With private donations.

GREGORY KANE, a Washington Examiner columnist, is a Pulitzer Prize-nominated news and opinion journalist who has covered people and politics from Baltimore to the Sudan.
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