Update: The Supreme Court issued opinions on Monday, but did not include a ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.
A leaked memo suggests that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security is reportedly preparing for the possibility of a surge or wave of violence across the country if the Supreme Court goes ahead and strikes down its landmark 1973 landmark Roe v. Wade decision.
The abortion debate has reemerged on the national stage after another leak: A draft Supreme Court opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization authored by Justice Samuel Alito that overturns Roe.
The Dobbs decision could come as early as Monday, although SCOTUS usually waits to publish hot-button rulings of great magnitude later as the court term winds down in June. Given the preemptive disclosure, however, all bets are presumably off.
“Law enforcement agencies are investigating social-media threats to burn down or storm the Supreme Court building and murder justices and their clerks, as well as attacks targeting places of worship and abortion clinics,” according to Axios.
If Alito’s decision is ever finalized and ratified by a majority on the high court, the abortion-rights issue would return to the states to regulate individually.
The Mississippi state law that is in dispute in Dobbs would ban most abortions after 15 weeks. The court has an option of limiting its decision to Dobbs without going any further, which presumably is consensus-building Chief Justice Roberts’ preference, as he has become known, in general, for an incremental approach to jurisprudence. It remains to be seen how the other five conservative justices vote.
Unruly protests from the left have already occurred outside the D.C.-area homes of the conservative justices, and DHS reportedly anticipates that these demonstrations are likely to rev up and then continue once the court puts its imprimatur on an official ruling in Dobbs.
Threats of various kinds “are likely to persist and may increase leading up to and following the issuing of the Court’s official ruling,” the memo reportedly cautions.
— Bo Snerdley (@BoSnerdley) May 10, 2022
The Senate has passed a bill that, among other things, upgrades personal security for the members of the court who typically receive varying degrees of protection from the U.S. Marshals Service. The legislation is pending in the House.
The federal government has also installed fencing around the SCOTUS building in Washington, D.C., just in case further pro-choice protests get out of hand.
“DHS is committed to protecting Americans’ freedom of speech and other civil rights and civil liberties, including the right to peacefully protest,” the agency told Fox News. “DHS is also committed to working with our partners across every level of government and the private sector to share timely information and intelligence, prevent all forms of violence, and to support law enforcement efforts to keep our communities safe.”
In this context, DHS, which is part of a Biden administration that seems to have an affinity for censorship, purportedly draws a distinction between inflammatory rhetoric and extremism.
Whoopi quick to defend Lori Lightfoot’s ‘call to arms’ rhetoric: ‘We in the ’60s know what that means’ https://t.co/WiJzE8abGM
— Jack Furnari (@JackBPR) May 11, 2022
“The mere advocacy of political or social positions, political activism, use of strong rhetoric, or generalized philosophic embrace of violent tactics does not constitute domestic violent extremism or illegal activity and is constitutionally protected,” DHS reportedly claimed in the memo.
“The Roe decision is flypaper for extremists. The memo, along with communications between government and the private sector, show how multiple agencies are mobilizing to try to get ahead of civil unrest,” Axios noted.
“Abortion-related violence historically has been driven by anti-abortion extremists…But the memo warns that this time, extremist acts could come from abortion-rights proponents as well,” the liberal news outlet claimed.
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