Have we gone backward? Have we returned to the infamous Dred Scott era when the so-called lawful ownership of human beings as property was extended to operate interstate so as to override restrictions by those states where slavery was forbidden by law? Today we must ask: Are children in their mothers’ wombs their mothers’ abortable property? Does their right to life and their equality before the law depend on their location? Are unborn children to be transported freely from a state where their equal right to life is protected by law to a state where their mothers may access “lawful” commercial services to be rid of them as their disposable private property? The Department of Defense, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Health and Human Services all answer yes. Avoiding state restrictions? The DOD now offers interstate abortions with the commitment to “establish travel and transportation allowances for Service members and their dependents … and as necessary amend any applicable travel regulations, to facilitate official travel to access noncovered reproductive health care [abortions] that is unavailable within the local area of a Service member’s permanent duty station.” The Department of Veterans Affairs, on its VA Women’s Heath website, now asks and answers the question, “Does VA offer abortions in states where abortion has been banned?” “VA is taking steps to guarantee Veterans and other VA beneficiaries have access to abortion-related care anywhere in the country. VA employees, when working within the scope of their federal employment, may provide authorized services regardless of state restrictions.” [Emphasis added.] VA says its employees are able to avoid state restrictions “when working within the scope of their federal employment.” HHS guidelines are similarly dismissive of state laws. Staff are instructed to ensure unaccompanied migrant children in the department’s care have access to abortion, even if it means taking them to another state. “This may involve transporting a minor to a state in which abortion is lawful and available, if the minor is currently in a state in which abortion is not lawful or available.” [Emphasis added.] Abortion on demand in VA hospitals — is it legal? Now VA has gone even further: It has introduced abortion services in VA hospitals. This is ironic given that the federal government’s second-largest department is already overwhelmed with problems of sub-standard care and delays. Its struggling management of some 1,600 health care facilities, over 140 medical centers and more than 1,200 outpatient sites does not bode well for its new undertaking to provide abortions on demand. VA claims it is “acting to help to ensure that, irrespective of what laws or policies States may impose, veterans who receive the care set forth in the medical benefits package will be able to obtain abortions.” [Emphasis added.] A previous VA regulation boasted that, in order to “provide the same complete health care and hospital services to beneficiaries in all States … conflicting State laws, rules, regulations, or requirements pursuant to such laws are without any force or effect, and State governments have no legal authority to enforce them in relation to actions by health care professionals within the scope of their VA employment.” Federal departments’ immunity from state laws? VA has determined that state laws that would limit or impede abortion services are thus pre-empted: “In addition, ‘[t]he Constitution’s Supremacy Clause generally immunizes the Federal Government from State laws that directly regulate or discriminate against it,’ unless federal law authorizes such State regulation.” This begs the question. Under Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health, federal law, as directed by the Supreme Court, actually does right now authorize state regulation of abortion. In a DOD background briefing, an official asserted, “Secretary [Lloyd] Austin has been clear that the department would closely examine the [Dobbs] decision and related state laws and that we would evaluate policies to ensure seamless access to health care, consistent with federal law.” This is muddled logic and wishful thinking. How can being “consistent with federal law” still be the primary legal consideration in the abortion of the lives of unborn children when Dobbs has passed the authority for abortion law back to the states? This challenge is being taken up by a 23-year VA nurse and Army veteran. Stephanie Carter is suing the department because it is against state law and because she cannot “work in a facility that performs abortion services for reasons other than to save the life of the mother because … unborn babies are created in the image of God and should be protected.” Her request for religious accommodation of her conscientious objection was rejected. An amicus brief in support of Carter has been filed by the attorneys general of 18 states. Are children in their mothers’ wombs not included in their families? The main emphasis of the DOD background briefing was to “ensure service members are able to access reproductive healthcare [abortion] regardless of where they’re stationed. This includes policies allowing … administrative absence from their normal duty stations without being charged leave and travel allowances for service members and dependents who must travel to access reproductive healthcare.” [Emphasis added.] We are assured that “Secretary Austin will help ensure access to reproductive healthcare for our service members and their families.” Regrettably, this promise of “reproductive health care” for service members and their families is deceptive. The health care is only for wanted members of service families. Yet the children targeted for abortion are family — they are already little daughters or sons, already detectably alive and active in their mothers’ wombs. The targeting of these children for deliberate medicalized or surgical killing in private cannot be genuinely lawful in any state. Prenatal killing is not health care. When on Oct. 20 last year Austin announced the DOD will ensure that service members and their families can access “reproductive health care,” he was being duplicitous. The truth is being ignored. Prenatal care for pregnant women and their unborn babies is health care, and that makes it a basic human right guaranteed in the preamble of the Constitution, not just for ourselves but for all members of “our Posterity.” Prenatal killing is not health care. It is abusive treatment of the newest, smallest and most vulnerable members of our service families. The truth is that neither federal law nor state law can override provisions in the 13th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution that forbid ownership of human beings as disposable property. Nor can federal or state law override the preamble’s specific concern for our posterity. Our unborn children are indisputably the newest members of our posterity, for whom the Constitution promised to secure the same blessings of liberty as for ourselves.
“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”Are we now treating the smallest children in their mothers’ wombs as mere property to be transported interstate for unconstitutional legalized killing? This interstate trafficking of unborn children for prenatal killing must be stopped. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.