How as Christians are we to respond to the Supreme Court leak?
Because of an unprecedented leak, we now have a first draft of a Supreme Court opinion that strikes down the infamous Roe v. Wade decision from 1973. In the draft opinion Justice Samuel Alito argues, based on the Constitution, American history, and the writings of both liberal and conservative scholars, that Roe v. Wade is an unconstitutional, unworkable, and incoherent ruling and must be overturned.
In publishing the leaked document, Politico reported that Justice Samuel has written “a full-throated, unflinching repudiation” of both Roe and the 1992 decision—Planned Parenthood v. Casey—that supported it. This decision was joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett. Reports from opposing justices have not been revealed, nor has the viewpoint of Chief Justice John Roberts, who is expected to agree in part and disagree in part.
If the final draft is consistent with the leaked document, the abortion issue will go back to state legislatures for the first time in fifty years. Pro-life activists celebrate this decision as a wonderful step in the right direction while recognizing that there is work to do. It is one thing for states to limit abortion, which many of them will undoubtedly do, and yet another to foster a culture of life based on the truth that every individual has dignity and worth as an image bearer of God, from the moment of conception.
Beyond this monumental ruling in Roe v. Wade is the shocking nature of the leak itself. I’ve heard many speculations about who is responsible for this act. My first reaction was that someone with access to the document must have leaked it to create a national uproar that would pressure the justices to rethink their decision before the final version is released. Drafts of Supreme Court opinions are not classified documents, but as University of California, Berkeley criminal law professor Orin Kerr explains, whoever leaked the draft opinion could potentially be charged with stealing or converting federal government property for their own use. As Chief Justice Roberts has said, “This was a singular and egregious breach of that trust that is an affront to the Court and the community of public servants who work here.” People of all political viewpoints should be deeply concerned about this.
As followers of Jesus, we can celebrate this significant ruling on Roe v. Wade and thank all those who continue to fight for the justice and protection of the innocent. Moreover, we can continue to advocate for laws that protect the personhood of all human beings, regardless of their size, development, environment, or dependence.
In the days and weeks to come, you’ll likely have conversations about this forthcoming decision. Blessings on you as you have conversations with friends and loved ones in a spirit of grace and truth.
Cheering for you!
Dr. Jeff Myers
Dr. Jeff Myers is president of Summit Ministries. As an educator and entrepreneur, Dr. Myers has become one of America’s most respected authorities on youth leadership development. Focus on the Family founder James Dobson referred to him as “a very gifted and inspirational leader.” Evangelist Josh McDowell called him “a man who is 100% sold out to preparing the next generation to reflect the character of Christ in the culture.” Through his speaking engagements and media appearances Dr. Myers has become a fresh voice offering humor and insight from a Christian worldview. He is the author of 16 books, including Understanding the Faith, Understanding the Times, and Understanding the Culture textbooks which are studied by tens of thousands of students. Dr. Myers holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree from the University of Denver. He continues to engage college students and adult learners by serving as a trustee of Colorado Christian University and through a Signature Leadership Course offered by Unbound, that offer project-based education as an alternative to traditional higher education. Jeff and his wife Stephanie and their family live in Colorado.
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