Abortion Constitutionality

“Abortion is Unconstitutional”

That is the title of this recent essay by John Finnis in the April 2021 issue of First Things. Here is his concluding paragraph in support of constitutional personhood and the unconstitutionality of laws permitting abortion:

“A break in the nearly half-century silence on the Court about all these matters would enhance respect for law, for historical meaning and constitutional commitment, and for the order of things that underpins our common humanity. On the question whether, under the Fourteenth Amendment as it stands, the unborn from their conception onward are persons entitled to the protection of its due process and equal protection clauses, there is only one right answer. That the Court’s adoption and declaration of that answer would meet unimaginable resistance does not render it nonjusticiable. And though the pertinent bio-­philosophical assessments in no way depend upon religion and are even better supported by scientific knowledge than they were in the era of Lincoln and Reconstruction, the pertinent historical-juridical assessments are indeed fully justiciable in kind. Giving judgment in line with them would ratify the legislative judgment made by the great majority of the legislatures that adopted the Fourteenth Amendment: that prohibiting the killing of the unborn is a matter of simple justice to the most vulnerable among us.”

Richard Myers

Richard S. Myers, the Vice-President of UFL, is Professor of Law at Ave Maria School of Law, where he teaches Antitrust, Civil Procedure, Conflict of Laws, Constitutional Law, and Religious Freedom. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Kenyon College and earned his law degree at Notre Dame, where he won the law school's highest academic prize. He began his legal career by clerking for Judge John F. Kilkenny of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Professor Myers also worked for Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue in Washington, D.C. He taught at Case Western Reserve University School of Law and the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law before joining the Ave Maria faculty. He is a co-editor of St. Thomas Aquinas and the Natural Law Tradition: Contemporary Perspectives (Catholic University of American Press, 2004) and a co-editor of Encyclopedia of Catholic Social Thought, Social Science, and Social Policy (Scarecrow Press, 2007). He has also published extensively on constitutional law in law reviews and also testified before Congressional and state legislative hearings on life issues. Married to Mollie Murphy, who is also on the faculty at Ave Maria School of Law, they are the proud parents of six children - Michael, Patrick, Clare, Kathleen, Matthew, and Andrew.