This article in the New York Times online I think expresses some of the views many of us have about the ban being upheld. All of my favorite debaters, including Scott Klusendorf, will tell you that whoever frames the debate will ultimately win. Every politician that has ever run a successful campaign will tell you that the goal is to stay on your message and not allow your opponents to get you talking about what they want you to talk about.
First, I acknowledge that given the language of the decision and the alternative methods of abortion, the elimination of this procedure does not necessarily reduce the number of abortions in the United States at all. As Serge and Lydia discussed in earlier comments here, the overall landscape of the abortion world is relatively unchanged.
This decision does help us to start to frame the legal discussion in a new way. It opens up the opportunity shift the discussion from the “precedent trumps all” language of Planned Parenthood v. Casey to an evaluation of the current practices of abortion in the United States based on the morality of the procedures/lethal action against human fetal life. I specifically like this quote:
What the court really did, said Anne Hendershott, a professor of sociology at the University of San Diego, was reframe the debate about how abortion should be discussed.
The court did not talk about big concepts and issues like privacy, but about the small, gripping details of how abortion works, said Professor Hendershott, author of “The Politics of Abortion” (Encounter, 2006).
Focusing on such details, she said, is how so-called “incrementalists” are trying to chip away at the availability of abortion. These opponents try to make women, doctors and other health professionals talk more, in some cases a lot more, about the actual consequences and mechanics of abortion.
Getting past the editorial aspects of her determining the “big” concepts versus the small ones, the core issue is a strong point. For the first time the legal argument is shifting away from the question of “reproductive rights” and moving toward a new question. “What the heck are we doing?” Once that becomes the question, once we frame the legal debate on what are the unborn and what are we doing to them, we start to win