Home / General / Overturning Miranda v. Arizona wouldn’t turn back the clock to 1965

Overturning Miranda v. Arizona wouldn’t turn back the clock to 1965

Photo by Heather Zabriskie on Unsplash

That’s a headline the AP is unlikely to ever write. Maybe. But when it comes to women’s rights, the AP thinks people need to calm down because there are no time machines. Or something.

A wave of state abortion bans has set off speculation: What would happen if Roe v. Wade, the ruling establishing abortion rights nationwide, were overturned?

People have been speculating about this for decades but nice of the AP to finally get sort of close to this century.

Although far from a certainty, even with increased conservative clout on the Supreme Court, a reversal of Roe would mean abortion policy would revert to the states, and many would be eager to impose bans.

No argument there.

What would not happen is a full-fledged turning back of the clock to 1973.

Oh what a relief, because the fashions were horrible.

Things will never again be exactly as bad as they were in another place or time is an incredibly lazy and unoriginal way to dismiss people’s concerns about attacks on their rights. The AP manages to make it worse by using half-baked better living through chemistry arguments.

Women now have far more methods to avoid unwanted pregnancies, as well as safer, easier options for abortion. Many abortions are induced at home with a two-drug combination, and advocacy groups are spreading the word about home abortions using one of the drugs that can be done without a medical professional’s involvement.

And the idea that the right wing will try to cut off access to surgical abortion pharmaceutical abortion and other methods of birth control is ridiculous because it would be immensely unpopular and if they succeeded it would deprive them of a means to rile up their base. Furthermore, science is completely shielded from ideological and political interference, therefore things can never go back to the bad old days.

Or something.

“It’s safe and comfortable,” said Missouri resident Lexi Moore, 30, who ended a pregnancy in September with a prescription from Planned Parenthood. “You get to sit in the comfort of your home instead of doing it in a clinic or in a back alley. … You will have cramps, like a heavy period. But it’s worth it in the end, and you have control over that.”

Moore had to drive 70 miles to pick up her prescription and, lacking insurance, paid $800 out of pocket. But she welcomed the outcome, and wrote thank-you cards to the clinic.


And money. And a car.

By the way, that Planned Parenthood is the last abortion provider in the state and could be shut down in a few days. But provided some women have the ability to cross one or more state lines and nearly $1,000 to get a prescription there will be no need to panic.

Her experience contrasts with that of Vikki Wachtel, who as an 18-year-old attending school in Connecticut had an abortion in New York City’s Bellevue Hospital in October 1970. That was just a few months after New York became a pioneer in broadly legalizing abortion.

“The staff made us feel like we were about to commit a crime,” Wachtel said, recalling how she and other young women were treated callously.

That ordeal was followed by post-abortion complications, yet Wachtel has steadfastly supported abortion rights.

Remember, things could always be much worse and anything less bad than the very worst is better than nothing, therefore stop being so hysterical.

However, warnings that large numbers of women would die from unsafe abortions if Roe were overturned don’t reflect the fact that abortion-related deaths — which numbered as high as 2,700 in 1930 — fell to under 200 a year by the mid-1960s thanks to the development of antibiotics and other medical advances.


As arguments go, women will die 100% preventable deaths because a state decided to take away their rights is less compelling than the argument that it is OK to restrict women’s rights provided there are loopholes that allow women a way around these restrictions. Or that such restrictions are no big deal because they won’t be as bad as the earlier restrictions because Science.

However, I hold to the apparently radical idea idea that women have the same right to privacy as men, so perhaps that’s just me.

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