The United States Supreme Court in late June revoked the constitutional right to abortion, guaranteed in the country for almost a century. The decision triggered different reactions in the states that, according to the federal system, now have the autonomy to legislate on the issue.
Thus, the general rule is that states ruled by Democrats maintained the right to abortion, while states ruled by Republicans wasted no time in executing the decision and banning the procedure.
Civilians staged protests across the country, and abortion clinics filed lawsuits to challenge the decision in order to secure the right to terminate pregnancies.
In addition, judges expressed themselves in the most diverse ways. Some contravening state laws and promoting actions to guarantee the right of women who wish to have an abortion.
Thus, the issue was the subject of great controversy, which demonstrates that the country does not absolutely agree with the decision taken.
In addition, some other essential questions were raised, such as what to do about women traveling for abortions or health workers who proceeded with the procedure in breach of the new rules.
The United States is a country where abortion is historically legal. The decision reflects the return to conservatism, which has been gaining strength in the last decade.
Women who travel for abortions
One issue that has gained prominence amid the chaos of the execution of the decision handed down by the US Supreme Court concerns women who travel for abortion.
With the permission of abortion being a state issue from now on, in some states it is possible to perform the procedure and in others it is not. This is the case in New Jersey and New York, both ruled by Democrats, in which abortion is still allowed.
State representatives have been reinforcing the legitimacy of the law and supporting entities and judges that challenge the application of the ban, which has already occurred in more than 11 states. This is the case in Florida, Utah, Louisiana and Kentucky, where there was a ban, but civil society and magistrates acted in disagreement with the order.
In this context, supporters of the ban claim that traveling to a state where abortion is allowed will incur a penalty, which so far only occurs in a civil, not criminal, scope.
Representatives of democratic parties in states where abortion is allowed reinforce their disagreement with the new determination and invite the population to travel to have the procedure performed in their territories.
The divergence of opinions resulted in a veritable shower of lawsuits in different instances, including the United States Supreme Court. The actions aim to ensure the right of women to have an abortion, and question the legitimacy of the decision.
Another very important issue concerns health professionals who perform abortion procedures. Because the procedure has been legal for decades in the United States, many abortion clinics existed legally in every state.
In relation to these establishments, the new decision, in addition to making activities impossible, creates civil liability for employees who carry out procedures that, until then, were routine.
Also in relation to these people there is no concrete position. Many fear being penalized by the new rules, especially in states where the ban actually existed.
Lawyers for these clinics have filed many lawsuits that question the enforceability of the ban on the procedures. In this context, in some of the states where there was an attempt to apply the law, the bans were overturned through the courts.
The issue is still very controversial in all corners of the United States, and every day the number of actions and protests against the bans multiply. Conservatives promoting law enforcement have encountered a strong movement in the opposite direction.
Therefore, it is not known for now what to expect from the enforcement of this new law. For the time being, the pro-abortion movements are quite resistant and society has organized itself in different ways to guarantee the right to abortion even in states governed by conservatives, where the ban is most likely to materialize.