Kalantry on Reason-Based Abortion Bans and Eugenics

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In an essay just published by the Cornell Law Review Online, Professor Sital Kalantry explains how U.S. Supreme Court justices and U.S. Federal Court of Appeals judges misconstrue eugenics and make false analogies to foreign data to cast doubt on abortion decisions made by people in the United States.

This issue is important at this moment because the U.S. Supreme Court is deciding whether or not to hear a case about an Arkansas law prohibiting abortion on the basis of Down syndrome.  Judges and advocates have argued that a state has a legitimate interest in enacting disability-selection, race-selection, and sex-selection bans because they are designed  prevent eugenics.

In “Do Reason-Based Bans Prevent Eugenics?,” Kalantry argues that eugenics should not be conflated with personal and voluntary decisions of pregnant people and the argument that these individual decisions in the United States will eliminate groups of people is also empirically flawed.


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