March 3, 2012
A Cautionary Tale: Louise Trubek on the Resurgent Urge to Control Women’s Reproductive Choices in American Politics
Denise Reaume, Faculty of Law, University of Toronto
Those who follow this blog will have seen Cara Davies’ posts about recent efforts by Conservative federal MPs to introduce new legislation designed ultimately to restrict abortion. The Current also recently interviewed Conservative backbenchers Stephen Woodworth and Brad Trost on the continuing appetite within the Conservative caucus to reopen the abortion debate. You can listen to that interview here. The interview focused less on the wisdom of that stance than on whether Prime Minister Harper is likely to allow the issue to surface. The Current thus passed up an opportunity to engage with the substance of the issue, and, perhaps not surprisingly, no pro-choice voices were included in the broadcast.
Against this backdrop, it might be wise to keep tabs on what is happening in the presidential debate in the United States around these issues. We are seeing in Republican members of both Houses of Congress and candidates for the nomination as the party’s candidate for President expressing a remarkable desire to turn back the clock to a time when not only was abortion unavailable, but even contraception was illegal.
Louise Trubek, one of the original plaintiffs to challenge Connecticut’s ban on the sale of contraceptives, has written an op-ed in the New York Times on March 1 that is well worth a look. It can be found here.