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Peace & Life Connections Index

709 - Peace & Life: SCOTUS bad news/Europe good news - June 21, 2024

Bad News: SCOTUS has another Double-Death Day

We had a blog post in 2020 called June 29: Double Day of Death Dealing at the Supreme Court. On that day, they threw out health regulations for women because of abortion precedent and they refused to even hear a case challenging lethal injection protocol for executions.

Now June 13 and 14, 2024 become another double-death set:

In Garland v. Cargill, the regulation against machine guns isn’t recognized as applying to bump stocks. A weapon of war remains readily available, ready for more mass shootings.

Given that the ruling on the abortion pill case was unanimous, a case can be made that the problem was that plaintiffs didn’t have standing – that is, they weren’t injured parties entitled to bring suit. But that’s troubling when we consider that for decades abortion doctors have been regarded as having standing to bring suit against abortion regulations – not for themselves, but in theory on behalf of women. Yet as a hopeful sign, there was some indication in the opinion that this may also change.

Another hopeful point: the opinion was very clear that doctors are legally protected by conscience rights – that was part of why they didn’t have standing. But a high court opinion that can be referred to as establishing that is crucial and helpful.

However, it’s worrisome that Thomas’s concurrence suggests that all sorts of advocacy groups no longer having standing to sue on a variety of social justice goals.

Supreme court building

As for the gun decision, we’re not talking about everyday gun use. A gun that can fire so many bullets so quickly and effortlessly has no use in hunting, target practice, or any notion of self-defense. It’s a weapon of war. And mass shootings are a form of war. The bump stock has no other use.

In both cases, unlike with Roe v. Wade, these decisions can be addressed legislatively. The abortion pill can still be regulated more stringently if the FDA or legislature decides so, and Congress can pass a law that either defines the bump stocks as the already-banned machine guns or just ban them directly.

So the damage the Court did to the law can be undone, but as always, it will take work.


Good News: European Court Says Assisted Suicide is Not a Human Right

The European Court of Human Rights, in the case of Karzai vs. Hungary, has ruled assisted suicide isn’t a human right. They didn’t rule that it had to be banned, but that it could be. See more details from the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition and this article by Wesley Smith in the National Review.

European Court Building


Our Latest Blog Post

book cover for nuclear war with atom bomb exploding

John Whitehead reviews an important new book about the dangers of nuclear weapons in Apocalypse Imagined: The Urgent Message of Nuclear War: A Scenario.

Note: screenings of the documentary "Silent Fallout" on the devastating consequences of U.S. nuclear testing will be held at American University in DC on July 16, and at Homewood Friends Meeting House in Baltimore on July 17.


Quotation of the Week

Adam Groza

Kentucky Today, June 16, 2024

Second, the resolution applies a consistent pro-life ethic. The same ethic of imago Dei that led Southern Baptists to pass resolutions against slavery, segregation, racism and abuse has been consistently applied to IVF. This ethic is not new, but it needs to be applied consistently, even in delicate matters such as IVF.

Responses/News Tips/Questions to share are all welcome.


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