Editorial: responses to the Roe v. Wade campus forum

The Supreme Court of the United States overturned Roe V. Wade on June 1, giving states the power to ban abortions within their borders.

Overturning the 1973 ruling, which established the constitutional right to abortion, has altered the lives of millions of people. Because of the immediate impact the ruling will have, we as Bucknell University’s independent student publication feel that the voices of anyone willing to share their opinion on our campus should be amplified at this time.

We have collected opinions of multiple students, faculty members, staff and alumni through an emailed forum to create an editorial that expresses the collective feelings of those affected by this ruling. Those that have responded gave their permission to be quoted with their response under their name. 

The following statements do not express the opinions of the editorial staff at The Bucknellian and it is the responsibility of the respondent to support any claims made in their writing. Expletives were removed from the answers, with permission of the writer. 

Jennifer Scott ‘23:

“The Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v Wade is disappointing, angering and a demonstration of a very flawed court system in the United States. This is not about religion, this is about controlling women and taking away their right to bodily autonomy. What a woman chooses to do with her body, no matter the reason, is no one else’s business but her own. This decision makes me think a lot about the idea of religion and what it means to be pro-life in America. To me, being ‘pro-life’ is a pretty hypocritical stance. Where are all of the ‘pro-life’ people when mass shootings occur in elementary schools? Where are all of the ‘pro-life’ people when the babies they seek to ‘protect’ from abortion are impoverished or in need of help and healthcare. Where are all the ‘pro-life’ people when hundreds of thousands of people are dying from Covid-19? It seems as though so many people in this country are only pro-life when it is convenient for them and their own personal beliefs. The Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade is going to set a scary percent in this country. Women will not be the only group negatively impacted by this decision, as freedom of choice is no longer meaningful or respected in this country.” 

Tara McKinney ‘00:

“It is wrong to let each state decide the fate of anyone’s reproductive health. Everyone should have a right to decided whether or not they need an abortion. I’ve never had to have one, but that doesn’t mean I should decide whether or not someone else can have one. It isn’t right for someone’s else’s religious beliefs to impact someone else’s decisions either. I think the supreme court justices needed to be reviewed especially in light of Clarence Thomas and Brett Cavanaugh’s histories as sexual predators (which they lied about) and Thomas’s wife’s involvement with the January 6th insurrection. Kavanaugh also lied to Susan Collins when he said he would uphold Roe v. Wade. I have absolutely no confidence in those two supreme court justice members and little confidence in the remaining members.” 

Cameron Lodi ‘23

“I have many reasons to be upset and frightened at the decision. To share only one: abortions are healthcare, used to save the mother’s life in cases. Delaying an abortion so that a court/lawyer can weigh in on the medical treatment needed to save someone’s life makes no sense to me.” 

Lodi included a link to a Reuters article with his response. 

Noor Kaur ‘23

“Absolutely disagree [with the Supreme Court’s decision] and [it is] in total conflict of what the American people want.” 

Khue Minh Le (Alex) ’24

“To be honest with you, I’m horrified! It’s almost like a fever dream. No, more like a nightmare. As an international student, my family and friends always envy that I’m studying in one of the best countries in the world. The United States of America is where your dream will come true. You can do anything you want here, right? All men are created equal, right? Gosh! This will be the first downfall and hear me out, this will impact all women around the world. It is insane to me how some of the allegedly wisest and fairest people of the whole entire country just blissfully ignore the rights of women. This is all about fear and control. […] They said they don’t want any more murder, but apparently children being slaughtered in schools like […] animals doesn’t stop the government from more gun restrictions. How does that even make sense? It’s okay to kill the living breathing innocent human beings, but this nonexistent being somehow matters a lot more. Wake up, people, it is a ball of cells. And why does it always have to be about women? Where is the vasectomy rule? […] I’m upset but also scared. As someone who has been sexually harrassed and touched inappropriately without consent, what am I going to do if one day I get raped? Not only am I a woman, I am a woman of color who identifies as queer. I’m screwed here as people like me will always be considered as this exotic animal who doesn’t deserve any respect. Thank you, the Supreme Court, for stripping away the most basic healthcare right any human being should deserve.”

Rob Jacob ‘97 

“I disagree with the interpretation of what Rights are provided in the founding documents of our great nation that the court indicated in their decision. I have also felt for 30 years that since the word abortion or concept that another person can not have dominion or dictate what another person can or can not do, that the legislative branch needed to act and not leave this important concept to the interpretation of others.” 

Kerin Goecke (staff)

“Every pregnancy is truly life-altering, whether preferred or unpreferred, and support and love are required in each circumstance. Yet I can’t help but think about 20 years from now as the first babies whose lives are saved enter adulthood.  Some undoubtedly will walk the grounds of the Bucknell campus as students. Who will they be? What will their contribution be to our society?  For in each pregnancy there are two lives to consider, those of the mother AND the child. 

“In light of the Court’s decision, in many states, more babies will now be permitted to live and thrive, and many women will not suffer from the multiple negative post-abortion impacts. 

“Women may become more aware of alternative options to abortion. Indeed, help for women who find themselves with unplanned pregnancies are myriad (and growing) — from medical expense and housing assistance, to furnishings, formula, clothing, and adoption referrals, if desired. The lines are long for individuals waiting and hoping to adopt infants. And I (and many others I know) have been challenged to do more to help these women and babies who need assistance! 

“The recent Dobbs decision is about the interpretation of the Constitution; it does not make abortion illegal, but rather argues that abortion is not a constitutional right. Both Roe v. Wade and the companion decision Doe v. Bolton were decided on weak interpretations of law and on incomplete science. Many legal scholars across the political spectrum (including RBG) have questioned the legal reasoning of Roe v. Wade. Remember that at the time of these 1973 decisions, we had no ultrasounds and there was little medical intervention available. Yet who among us today hasn’t seen an ultrasound picture from an excited parent sharing the sex of their baby, or known of preemies who survive and thrive outside of the womb? Now, 49 years post-Roe with marvelous scientific advancements, we know that the unborn baby’s heart begins beating at 3 weeks after conception, and at twelve weeks, she can begin sucking her thumb. We can watch her hiccupping, kicking, and thriving while in the womb. We can help a premature infant survive, and we can perform surgeries in-utero to correct problems. It’s noteworthy that we can also see the baby fighting and trying to move away from the abortionist’s tools, and even experiencing pain during the procedure.

“So, my plea would be…Let’s change our culture so that the womb is no longer the most dangerous place to be in America—with a death rate 160 times higher than the murder rate of the most dangerous city in the world! 

“The pre-born are no less human than those that survive to birth. So please, let these precious babies live! Let us all help these mothers who find themselves confused and afraid! And watch the blessings that abound, for all involved!

“Oh, that you would choose life; that you and your children might live! (Deut 30:19b, TLB).” 

Goecke included multiple links to go along with her response. 

Two links are to a research paper and the Gateway Women’s Care website that found people can have adverse reactions to abortions, another to The Endowment for Human Development website that demonstrates when a fetus’s heart begins to beat and one final link to The Life Institute, which writes that unborn children can feel pain. 

Rabbi Jessica Goldberg, Jewish Chaplain 

“The Dobbs ruling is an attack on religious freedom, one of our most deeply held American values and the reason many of our families came to the United States in the first place. Judaism supports access to reproductive health care, and in fact, mandates the termination of a pregnancy in certain situations. Thus, in addition to the obvious loss of freedom and dignity of gestating people that this decision represents, our foundational principle of religious liberty has been violated, rendering the decision unconstitutional at best.”

Colin Soule ‘25

“Finally, overturned on the solemnity of the Sacred Heart while the planets aligned nonetheless. Human rights belong to biological humans, no matter young or old.” 

Taylor Schultz ‘25 

“I personally feel like we have officially gone backwards in history. I am amazed that people cannot realize their hypocrisy when they vote for people to have the right to have guns which threaten the lives of others and yet they believe that women should not have to right to decide what happens to their own body, which does not threaten the lives of others. I just would love to know why people in the government believe that they have the right to say what women they have never met and will never meet can or cannot do with their bodies. How would those people feel if I decided that they could not do something with their own bodies? Liberties are being taken with women’s rights and I am absolutely terrified to see what the Supreme Court will remove and attack next.” 

Evelyn Pierce ‘25

“It is completely absurd. This isn’t about being pro-life, it’s the government taking away women’s rights. They do not care about our choice, they do not care about the babies after they are born, they only care about controlling women and giving power to old white men. It’s disgusting and I cannot believe our country is moving backwards at this point.”

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