In America's vast spectrum of political beliefs and moral values systems, opinions on the subject of abortion run the gamut from genuine ambivalence to white-hot extremism — both for and against.
Abortion remains controversial in America — and worldwide — despite unrelenting media efforts to replace the word "abortion" with the softer, obscured euphemism "reproductive rights."
The debate over abortion is one of the few places conservatives have managed to hold their own in the culture wars. On other social and political topics, progressives have prevailed as majority attitudes have shifted.
On abortion, progressives haven't fared as well. Polling routinely reveals that a majority of Americans still support restrictions on abortion.
The recent Supreme Court ruling — Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization — represents a major victory for the pro-life movement. Its members have been fighting for a long time to overturn Roe v. Wade, working hard to elect pro-life candidates across the country.
The pro-life lobby is more than willing to take the credit.
So who gets the blame?
The landmark Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization ruling represents a fundamental failure on the part of the left. But it is more like a symphony of failure in three parts.
Democratic Party overconfidence in 2016 elected Donald Trump.
Overconfidence, bad polling, and a pandering press convinced Democrats they could not lose in 2016. After eight glorious years of Barack Obama, what could possibly go wrong with "Her Turn"?
Like Republicans who thought the working-class electorate was ripe to elect another Bush — Jeb! Bush — Democrats thought the proletariat would be excited about another political legacy: Hillary Clinton.
After Hillary Clinton won the 2016 election, Ruth Bader Ginsburg was suppose to retire, paving the way for President H.R. Clinton to appoint former-President Barack Obama to the Supreme Court.
Trump's promise to nominate conservative justices to the Supreme Court is one of the major bargains he made with the conservative right for their support. Had Democrats not been so confident in Clinton, Ginsburg could have retired in 2016, allowing Obama to appoint her successor.
The Democratic Party ignored warnings about Roe v. Wade for 50 years.
Progressives had 50 years to find a better way to preserve abortion than a ruling every legal analyst in the country knew was built on shaky reasoning that could collapse at any time.
"Where Roe went wrong," admitted the Los Angeles Times May of 2022, calling it a "Sweeping new abortion right built on a shaky legal foundation."
Democrats did nothing to properly codify Roe Since its inception, even when they had a supermajority in 2009 and wouldn't have needed a single Republican vote to do so.
Progressives went too far in support of abortion.
"Safe, legal and rare," the old Democratic Party standard, garnered many adherents. The new platform, "Shout your abortion," "abortion chic," and third-trimester abortions aren't as popular.
For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Without this new level of extremism, Roe might still be the law of the land.