By Laurie Shrage

Shrage argues that Roe v Wade's regulatory scheme of a six-month time span for abortion on call for polarized the general public and obscured choices with probably broader help. She explores the origins of that scheme, then defends an alternative one--with a time span shorter than 6 months for non-therapeutic abortions--that may possibly win large help had to make criminal abortion companies on hand to all ladies.

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Additional info for Abortion and Social Responsibility: Depolarizing the Debate (Studies in Feminist Philosophy)

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They also reflect the understanding that, in some cases, the state's help may not be enough to offset the hardships of pregnancy. Unfortunately, in the United States, "pro-life" sentiments have not led to calls for better public assistance programs for poor families and single mothers. Instead they have led to calls to protect human embryos from destruction, including laboratory-produced embryos that might be used for research. Such strategies for protecting human lives are the result of extremely individualistic notions that see the government's role as limited to protecting individuals from assault but not from material impoverishment.

64 As Roe was being argued before the Court, the justices considered whether the Texas abortion law should be struck down on vagueness grounds. But the justices were divided in regard to the various vagueness rulings. When it became apparent to the justices in favor of invalidating the Texas law that there was a majority for striking it down on privacy grounds, an apparent "conceptual difficulty" arose. The Court faced the issue of whether the state could override a woman's fundamental right to privacy at any point in a pregnancy to protect an entity that was not a legal person.

For Dworkin has argued that what justifies the government's regulation of abortion is not its duty to protect the fetus's interests or rights, for the fetus is not a person and thus does not have legal rights. Instead, what justifies the government's regulation of abortion is its responsibility for upholding fundamental social values, especially the intrinsic value Is Roe Viable? 29 of human life. Although a society may be divided about the moral and legal rights of human fetuses, belief in the sanctity of human life is a core social value and not subject to genuine dispute, according to Dworkin.

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