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US: Supreme Court backs Texas heartbeat abortion law

October 2021 | by Evangelical Times

US Supreme Court
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The US Supreme Court has upheld a new law which limits abortion in Texas despite pressure to block it.

The law, nicknamed the ‘Heartbeat Act’, was signed into the Texas legislature in May this year, and makes abortion illegal from six weeks into pregnancy.

The act means that any individual can sue a doctor who performs an abortion after a heartbeat has been detected, usually around six weeks from the mother’s last period. There is no discernible exemption in the law in the case of rape or incest.

Pro-abortion campaigners and activists urged the Supreme Court to overturn the law, but in September the Court ruled five to four not to block the law.

Christian Concern’s chief executive, Andrea Williams, debated journalist Hilary Freeman on GB News about the new law.

Speaking in the discussion, Freeman, who advocates abortion up to full term, said a six-week-old foetus was ‘not human’, and said being pregnant was like having a ‘parasite’ inside the woman.

She told GB News, ‘Banning abortions does not cut down on abortions, it just makes them more unsafe. It is creating a society that is a horrible place for women to live … and create a whole generation of children who are unwanted.’

Williams said, ‘A truly civilised society will look after women in unplanned pregnancies, but will also really care for their unborn children.

‘A wealthy society would be able to solve this and not say the solution is in the snuffing out of a heartbeat.’

The decision by the US Supreme Court to uphold the Texas law has given hope to pro-lifers that they could overturn the landmark ruling of 48 years ago – Roe v Wade – which legalised abortion across the US.

A separate case involving the State of Mississippi’s new law limiting abortion is expected to be decided by the US Supreme Court next June.

Pro-lifers believe the Mississippi case, which relates to a ban on abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy except in medical emergencies and cases of ‘severe foetal abnormality’, is their best chance to strike down Roe.

If Roe is overturned, it would allow each State to decide the legality of abortion in their individual jurisdictions.

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