On Friday, the Supreme Court officially overturned Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. Dobbs eradicates what has been the law of the land for nearly half a century: that the Constitution protects the fundamental right to an abortion. This decision has devastating consequences. Dobbs denies people with uteruses full legal personhood, their right to bodily autonomy, and the ability to make personal choices that affect their lives. It also directly threatens basic principles of equality.
The Michigan Journal of Race & Law (MJRL) was founded as a forum to explore issues relating to race and the law, including by publishing scholarship that highlights and critiques racial inequality in the law. Dobbs will not affect people equally. Restrictions on abortion disproportionately affect people of color, Indigenous people, people with disabilities, LGBTQ+ individuals, and others who face barriers to accessing reproductive health care. Dobbs is reminiscent of a time when restricting reproductive freedom was a tool of the oppressors, used to control and suppress marginalized communities. As a result of this decision, systemic inequities that plague this country will only get worse.
Abortion is both a fundamental human right and a necessary form of health care. MJRL stands with the individuals in our community who are or will be impacted by this terrible decision. We also stand with the Women’s Law Students Association, If/When/How: Lawyering for Reproductive Justice, the Gender Violence Project, the Civil Rights Litigation Initiative, and all other MLaw organizations that are working on state, local, and national levels to ensure that abortion remains accessible to all. If you are able, donating to abortion funds is a great way to provide support for those who are seeking care. You can also share helpful resources like Abortion Finder with people in your network.
At such a dark time in our country, we must try to be resilient. The fight is now.
With love and strength,
MJRL Editorial Board