Should We Ban Abortion?


Joey Hester

A sign encouraging people to vote no on Amendment 2.

Only a few short months after the overturning of Roe v. Wade, Kentucky voters were presented with a new amendment on their voting ballot. Amendment 2 stated, “To protect human life, nothing in this Constitution shall be construed to secure a right to abortion or require the funding of abortion.” This amendment to the Constitution of Kentucky would eliminate any right to an abortion that one may have previously had in Kentucky. On November 8th, Kentucky residents voted no on this amendment.

Before the overturning of Roe v. Wade, abortion was protected under the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which protects one’s right to privacy. Specifically, in the case of abortion, Roe v. Wade protected a person’s right to an abortion throughout the entire 1st trimester of the pregnancy. It allowed individual states to impose restrictions on one’s right to abortion in the second and third trimesters of the pregnancy. Since the overturning of Roe v. Wade, states are now entitled to make their laws and regulations regarding abortion.

In support of this amendment are people usually known as pro-life. Often they believe that immediately after conception, the fetus that has been conceived is a baby. They receive their name “pro-lifers” from this belief that fetuses are alive from conception. They believe that the right to an abortion should never be guaranteed and that Kentucky should not be attempting to make it so. People who use the word pro-life to describe themself often identify as Republican.

Opposition to this constitution amendment is from those who often use the term pro-choice to describe themselves. These people believe that the pregnant person’s life always comes before the life of a fetus. They believe a fetus to not be alive from the point of conception and continue to not be alive until varying points in pregnancy. Pro-choice activists often argue that abortion is needed, especially for severe cases of pregnancy, like incest or rape. Amendment 2 would ban abortion even in these severe cases. A common misunderstanding about pro-choice people is that they promote abortion as a valid form of birth control, but many don’t. They believe that abortion should be used in cases where other forms of birth control fail or in other severe unintentional cases of pregnancy like rape or incest.

Amendment 2 attempted to prevent a person’s right to an abortion in all cases. As we can see from the first decision on Roe v. Wade, restricting abortion infringes on the American right to privacy. The majority of residents in Kentucky seem to agree. The Amendment did not pass on November 8th. 741,411 Kentucky residents took a stand to protect Women’s rights and voted no to Amendment 2. 674,255 Kentucky Residents voted yes to the Amendment, which is a truly disheartening number.

If Amendment 2 had been passed and the right to an abortion was banned, it would have only made other social matters worse. The foster care system and other forms of child protection through the government are already struggling with the amount of work they have now. It would have only worsened if people, sometimes young children, are required to carry a pregnancy to term. Often, these unprepared people will not be able to provide a stable and caring home for that child and will have no choice but to surrender it to the government, putting more children into foster care.

Banning abortion would have also only caused people to endanger themself. If the right to a safe and clean abortion is not guaranteed, people may begin to perform more at-home abortions, which further puts the life of the pregnant person at risk. Right now, 60% of abortions are performed at specialized clinics where a patient is required to undergo an ultrasound where they are shown and described the fetus. The observation the patient may have of the fetus rarely deters them from receiving the abortion, though. This shows that even though people have so many hoops, they must jump through to get an abortion, they still find a need to receive one.

Your thoughts on the matter and whether you would choose to get an abortion are as important as others’ rights to their bodily autonomy.

A vote in support of Amendment 2 was a vote that would have overcrowded foster care and endangered the lives of many. Not to mention, the amendment infringed on one’s basic rights according to the United States Constitution, which protects the privacy of American citizens. Kentucky has proven that bodily autonomy matters to them. Thank you, Kentucky, for protecting women’s basic rights.