by Dmitry Shapiro, Jewish News Syndicate
The unprecedented leak of an initial draft majority opinion by the Supreme Court in the challenge of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization—Mississippi’s law banning abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy—has caused a firestorm of opinions on both sides of the abortion debate, no less so among Jewish organizations that for the most part oppose the court’s likely decision, which was due to be officially announced in June.
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One concern among the Jewish organizations was that the decision would allow states to pass laws that enshrine the less nuanced opinion on abortion found in Christianity, which believes that life and rights for the fetus begin at conception, and whose adherents are often opposed to abortions even when the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest.
One Jewish organization, the Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV), disagrees with other organizations that claim restrictions on abortion represent a specific Christian belief that would interfere with Jewish practice.
CJV, which represents more than 2,000 traditional, Orthodox rabbis in America, said in a release that the Torah identifies human life as “a soul placed (breathed) within a body by G-d Himself, with inestimable sanctity and value.”
“We support heartbeat laws and other efforts to distinguish between tragic cases of abortion due to medical necessity, as compared to disregard for fetal life as simply the mother’s ‘choice,’ ” it stated.
CJV pointed out that if the leaked opinion remained the court’s decision, it would not be a ban on abortion as opponents claim, but rather a return of the decision back to the hands of the “democratic governments of the individual states” as a policy issue.
“We hope that more states will be able to enact reasonable restrictions and restore America to a posture of valuing all human life,” wrote CJV.
Read the full article here.