Texas’ abortion pill ruling sets dangerous precedent

For decades, women’s right to an abortion and other reproductive freedoms have been challenged and debated. Anti-abortion politics have made relentless attempts to strip away womens’ rights to make decisions for themselves and their bodies – proving successful recently more than ever. Last November, the Alliance Defending Freedom, a conservative Christian legal advocacy group, filed a lawsuit against the Food and Drug Administration, stating that the FDA falsely approved mifepristone, the abortion pill that has been in use for over 20 years. Beginning in Texas, U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk ruled that the FDA improperly approved mifepristone more than 20 years ago, and the case recently hit the Supreme Court, which preserved the pill’s broad access. The Texas court ruling highlights the fragility of the American judicial system and lack of respect for preexisting, science-based agencies, like the FDA.

According to a study released by the Guttmacher Institute in Feb. 2022, medication abortion accounted for 54% of all abortions. It is clear that mifepristone, used in tandem with misoprostol, is an effective and scientifically legitimate method of abortion that has aided women across the U.S. for decades. This should not have been in question after its approval by a long-respected federal agency like the FDA, especially two decades later.

But the Texas ruling sets a dangerous precedent for any pharmaceutical company aiming to have their drug in mainstream use. It sends a message that no matter how much scientific data and evidence supports the legitimacy of a prospective drug or how hard a company works to satisfy the FDA’s stringent measures, a single opposition group, blinded by their biases, can take it all away.

While this case’s path to the doorsteps of Washington is alarming, the public outcry against it that was largely responsible for the opposing cases and its ultimate appearance in Washington should be an inspiration for Americans.

Though the case belittles any pre-existing pharmaceutical legitimacy and trust in our judicial system, the unified and infuriated response to it shows that our voices are still capable of making some difference.

Read on Issuu.

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