Archbishop reacts to Supreme Court decision

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — In an interview June 27 with local media, Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann told reporters that the Supreme Court’s decision Monday on Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt shows “how radicalized our court has become.”

He expressed dismay at the 5-3 decision that failed to uphold the Texas law requiring abortion clinics to comply with standards of ambulatory surgical centers and require their doctors to have admitting privileges at local hospitals. And he said he worries not only about the unborn babies who are victims of the abortions conducted at these clinics, but about the health and welfare of the women who undergo the abortions.

“This is very sad,” said the archbishop, “that the court didn’t at least see that the health of women should be protected to the maximum degree that we can.

“The whole presupposition to Roe v. Wade was the [protection of the] health of women,” the archbishop continued, “and yet we know we’ve had examples here in Kansas of atrocious conditions in abortion clinics.”

Even more horrible conditions have since been uncovered in abortion clinics in other parts of the country, he said, since local media reported on the clinics here.

Archbishop Naumann went on to describe a book written by former abortion clinic employee Abby Johnson [“The Walls Are Talking: Former Abortion Clinic Workers Tell Their Stories”], which details the shocking conditions in which they witnessed abortions being performed.

The archbishop said he does not yet know what local impact the decision might have.

“We do have a Kansas law that could be affected by this,” said the archbishop, “and we’ll have to see. It’s uncertain how they’re going to interpret this decision relative to other types of laws that try to protect women’s health. We’re going to continue to do everything we can to protect children and protect women.”

But when asked whether this setback was going to stall pro-life efforts, he was adamant.

“It can’t,” he said. “We can’t ever give up in terms of trying to protect children and to care for women.”

“I think the takeaway for most people,” Archbishop Naumann concluded, “is we really have to [recognize how] our judges more and more have inserted themselves into creating public policy, and so who is on the court is very important.”

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