CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts, June 19, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) – “Unborn babies are constitutional persons,” the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy stated in a remarkable release last month.
The nation’s “leading forum for conservative and libertarian legal scholarship,” according to its website, said in its report that unborn children do in fact fall under the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections.
The Fourteenth Amendment, adopted in 1868, holds that no state shall “deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”
The question of whether “life” includes unborn life has been the crux of the pro-life debate carried out in the courtrooms for years.
Harvard Law student Joshua Craddock challenged the premises of both the pro-abortion and pro-life sides of the debate in the article.
Since Roe vs. Wade, the court’s abortion-friendly decisions have basically been predicated upon the assertion that it is unknown if the unborn child constitutes life, The Stream reported, so the court has typically said “no” it does not.
Similarly, Craddock’s argument also challenges the conservative – often originalist – position that the Constitution does not deal with the nature of the unborn person.
Craddock believes both are wrong and that the “original” meaning of the Constitution includes the unborn child’s right to life.
He argues through three premises that the amendment includes the unborn: What the word person meant when the Amendment was crafted, the anti-abortion laws of the time, and what the people who wrote the amendment said about it.
The article states in part:
One might look to dictionaries of legal and common usage, the context of the English common law tradition, and cases that attempted to construe the meaning of the text in a manner consistent with original meaning. Using this methodology, it is reasonable to construe the Fourteenth Amendment to include prenatal life. The structure of the argument is simple: The Fourteenth Amendment’s use of the word “person” guarantees due process and equal protection to all members of the human species. The preborn are members of the human species from the moment of fertilization. Therefore, the Fourteenth Amendment protects the preborn. If one concedes the minor premise (that preborn humans are members of the human species), all that must be demonstrated is that the term “person,” in its original public meaning at the time of the Fourteenth Amendment’s adoption, applied to all members of the human species.
Craddock concluded that states allowing abortions violate the Constitution and that a higher authority must act to protect the lives of the unborn.
If Craddock is correct, The Stream report said, the Supreme Court may finally base its rulings upon what the Constitution supposes about the unborn. “The Fourteenth Amendment,” Craddock stated in conclusion, “was to be a new birth of freedom for all human beings.”