What You Need to Know About the Biggest Abortion Case Since Roe v. Wade
Pro-life Americans have been waiting nearly 50 years for this day: the U.S. Supreme Court has overturned Roe v. Wade.
This is a major victory for unborn children and their mothers.
It all started when Mississippi passed a state law limiting abortion after 15 weeks—it really was nothing extreme but was in line with the majority of the world. Seventy-five percent of countries worldwide limit abortion past 12 weeks gestation.
But that’s not what pro-abortion activists would have you believe. Not long after the law passed, it was labeled as “extreme” and challenged in court. This Mississippi abortion case made it all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Let’s take a deeper look at Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the Supreme Court decision that overturned Roe v. Wade.
Who is affected by this Mississippi abortion law?
Mothers and children benefit from Mississippi’s Gestational Age Act, passed in 2018, which protects not only unborn children but also women’s health and well-being.
At just 15 weeks, babies have a strong heartbeat and can move around the womb. It’s also likely they can feel pain at this point—which abortion undoubtedly inflicts.
The Mississippi law also recognizes that all women deserve beneficial health care, not unnecessary and life-threatening procedures such as abortion. What is often left unsaid about late-term abortions is that they put women at risk of facing severe complications, trauma, or even death. Mississippi’s law protects them mentally, emotionally, and physically.
Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization
The Supreme Court issued its decision in Roe v. Wade in 1973. Since then, more than 60 million unborn children have lost their lives to abortion.
The past 50 years have also seen huge advances in prenatal medicine and technology. While viability (the point at which a baby can survive outside the womb) was widely considered to be between 24 and 28 weeks gestation in 1973, it is now considered to be between 21 and 22 weeks gestation.
The reality is our federal abortion laws are stuck in the past. It makes sense that Mississippi would want its state law to reflect our modern scientific knowledge. Ultrasounds have helped reveal developmental characteristics such as fetal heartbeat, movement, and pain perception, characteristics that weren’t widely known back in 1973 when Roe was decided. And that’s why Mississippi passed a law limiting abortions after 15 weeks in gestational age, permitting them only in medical emergencies or for severe fetal abnormality.
It shouldn’t be too controversial, given that most nations put more limitations on and most Americans support commonsense laws like Mississippi’s.
Yet pro-abortion activists were quick to challenge the law. That challenge reached the U.S. Supreme Court, where the Court was asked whether to uphold the law and overturn Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.
- March 2018: Mississippi passed the Gestational Age Act. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, a Mississippi abortion clinic, challenged Mississippi’s law shortly after it was passed.
- June 2020: Mississippi asked the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit ruled that states cannot pass laws like Mississippi’s limiting abortion before the point of viability.
- May 2021: The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.
- December 2021: Oral arguments were heard before the Supreme Court. ADF prays that the court will overturn Roe v. Wade and allow states to protect the sanctity of life.
- June 2022: The U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision overturning Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.
By overturning Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court has given lawmaking decisions about abortion back to the states. We now turn to the states to ensure that unborn children and their mothers are protected from the gruesome reality of abortion.
Every human life is valuable and deserves to be protected. It is now in the hands of each of the 50 states to protect the most vulnerable among us.
The bottom line
Every life is precious and needs to be protected from harm. And abortion can only bring pain and suffering.
ADF team members contributed to the writing and publication of this article.