Done. And of course there wasn’t more than the inevitable shadow of doubt – the one that hangs over all human enterprises – that the Texas Legislature was going to pass that abortion bill, as duly happened last Saturday.
A lot of unnecessary expense falls upon the taxpayers on account of Sen. Wendy Davis’ showboating. Try convincing me Davis didn’t suspect her last minute filibuster wouldn’t lead to the convening of a special session to pass the bill she killed in order, apparently (I can think of no other purpose), to sell herself to the Ann Richards left, at home and elsewhere. On those terms, it sure worked. They loved her, over on the left: that feisty, indomitable woman in her pink sneakers, uncowed by jeers and heckling! The lonely stand for righteousness! The noble head, bloody but unbowed!
The left goes nuts sometimes over this stuff. It certainly did over Wendy Davis, who, for all her newfound fame, has about as much chance of winning statewide office in Texas as of getting her photo on the cover of Human Life Review.
I said in a previous post there’s something substantive to Wendy. She ascended from trailer park to Harvard Law School by dint of, I can only guess, ability and character. We often call such types meritocratic heroes. In a corner of her mind, nonetheless, seemingly flickers resentment of an “establishment” she credits with holding down everybody besides herself.
Too bad, but enough of that. What does Davis’ defeat signify? Well, not exactly a Roman triumph, with trumpets and laurel wreaths, for the pro-life forces in Texas. The new law seems unlikely to survive Supreme Court review. But I don’t think that was the point. The point was to build – slowly, slowly – public pressure for reform of the Roe vs. Wade regime, shot through as it is with incoherencies, inconsistencies, and like signs of failure in terms of persuading the American people that doing away with your unborn child is no big deal.
An unrepentant Supreme Court majority has tried for 40 years to spread that impression, but millions still aren’t buying: and not because the doubters take their marching orders from Cardinal Dolan. No other Supreme Court decision, not even the one in Dred Scott vs. Sanford, has flopped the way this one has. It lacks wisdom; it lacks understanding, theological or secular either one; it divides society as with a knife: the Wendy Davis set over here, the lovers of life over there. The Supreme Court, in the great providence of God, needs a chance to wriggle out at least part way from the great legal disaster that Roe must necessarily be considered, 40 years later. The more numerous the law suits against anti-abortion laws, the larger the number of opportunities for the court to reflect on the lameness – a nice, neutral word – of its handiwork.
It may not happen for 20 more years; it may not happen for 40. Who but God knows?
The point is to keep on plugging, not because it’s fun or profitable or in some odd sense exhilarating. No: because it’s right, that’s all.