A POTUS/SCOTUS FETUS FOR THE REST OF US

Illustration by Michael Lacey (with gratitude for inspiration by artist Philip Guston)
Michael Lacey, the former executive editor of Village Voice Media, opines on U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito's leaked draft opinion, which threatens to nullify Roe v. Wade.

Nothing is ever done.

And when it is done, 

It is soon enough, undone.

After 49 years of Roe v. Wade, we now face the fundamental destruction of a woman’s right to control her own body.

This is a direct result of the Supreme Court genuflecting to the dictums of the Praetorian Platoons of Cassocked Pedophiles, which is to say the priests of the Catholic Church.

Protesters inspired by Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale (Kai Medina (Mk170101) via Wikimedia Commons)

Catholics who have ascended the final ranks of the judicial hierarchy are now voting their catechism. Not content with believing that priests turn water into wine, and insisting that a libidinous laity practice the rhythm method as the only approved contraception, these ‘secular’ judges have signaled a commingling of church and state.

You can’t gargle that bile.

Ex-President Donald Trump’s most outrageous legacy — and this is not a close call — is his eradication of a woman’s right to choose, a byproduct of his three vivid appointments to the United States Supreme Court.

All three of his appointments were Catholics, and Catholics now make up a 6-3 majority on the court.

Hillary Clinton may well have been insufferable, but her court appointments would not have led to this.

No one, no president, no judge, no jury of our peers, can pretend to be God.

But this is precisely what this Catholic court is poised to embrace.

God.

And no God could claim to be just that would hold liable a woman’s decision to terminate a pregnancy when no one amongst us can prove to a certainty when life is viable.

In 1971, the City of Tempe sued the early New Times over this ad for an abortion-referral service, which was illegal in Arizona before Roe v. Wade (New Times)

Individual states are passing legislation to ban abortions within mere weeks of conception and prior to any reasonable window for a woman to suspect she is with child. 

Legislators are competing, state by state, to see who will go furthest in declaring women chattel.

Texas, for Christ’s sake, is set to allow any yokel to sue anyone for damages involved in facilitating an abortion: the nurse, the doctor, the taxi driver . . .

Oklahoma considered Texas policy a noble pursuit and passed similar legislation this month.

County fairs in both states are weighing tractor pulls in which women will be attached to two John Deeres, one heading north, the other south. 

I’ve been down this path before.

In the earliest years of Phoenix New Times, writer Gayle Pyfrom accompanied women who departed Arizona to obtain a legal abortion in California. Her story created a roadmap for women. This then was followed by ads in our weekly for Arizona-based counseling on how to obtain a safe, legal abortion. The City of Tempe, Arizona, home of Arizona State University, sued our weekly. 

And we lost in court.

But the father/daughter team of Herb and Ellie Finn won on appeal in 1973 based upon the recently decided Roe v. Wade, and doors opened for Arizona women who were finally able to peruse informative advertisements about abortion.

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, who’s draft SCOTUS ruling overthrows Roe v. Wade (White House/public domain)

And yet, Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s recently leaked opinion stakes out the court’s intent to turn over the moral pudding of abortion to individual states.

Alito is a Catholic.

And the Catholic Church views abortion as a mortal sin — it has for over 2100 years. They also teach that Mary, the mother of Jesus, was a virgin. You connect those dots if you can; I can’t . . . and I was an altar boy.

How is Papist dogma allowed to meddle in this conversation between a woman and her God?

There is too much mumbo in that gumbo.

Graham Greene, the great skeptical Catholic convert, captured in The Power and the Glory, the current dilemma confronting women: ” . . . a little additional pain was hardly noticeable in the huge abandonment.”

Women have challenged this abandonment — a second-class vesting — since landing in the new world and promptly finding their sisters labeled as witches to be judged by men.

But Alito, of course, sees no issue with ordering the disordered life of a pregnant woman.

In 1991, in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, Alito, who then sat upon the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, dissented when the Third Circuit Panel struck down a law that women needed to alert husbands before getting an abortion. He wanted a woman to be forced by law to first consult the man who impregnated her.

In a tone-deaf moment in the current leaked memo, Alito references England’s 17th century Sir Matthew Hale.

In his draft opinion gutting Roe, Alito cites 17th Century jurist Matthew Hale, who sentenced women to hang as “witches” (public domain)

According to ProPublica’s Ken Armstrong, in a piece published May 6th,  Hale “conceived the notion that husbands can’t be persecuted for raping their wives.”

Hale also sentenced women to their death as “witches.”

When he was in university Alito joined the Concerned Alumni of Princeton, a misogynistic fellowship whose purpose was to prevent women from attending Princeton. 

In 1972, a full year before peace was negotiated in Vietnam, Alito joined the ROTC.

He did not get a tattoo declaring: “Tin soldiers and Nixon coming . . .”

One simply can not consider this new world order for women without mentioning the author of The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood.

As women march and affect the scarlet cape in protest of Alito, Atwood writes presently in The Atlantic: “ Theocratic dictatorships do not lie only in the distant past: There are a number of them on the planet today. What is to prevent the United States from becoming one of them?”

In a powerful essay in the May 22 New York Times, “We Must Take Back Our Privacy”, Zeynep Tufekci, the extravagantly credentialed and prolific writer, took an entire page in the Sunday Review to outline the tech tools available to the government to invade our bedrooms: 

“ . . . Given the many changes pregnancy engenders even before women know about it, in things like sleep patterns, diet, fatigue, and moods, it’s not surprising that an algorithm might detect which women were likely to be pregnant. (Such lists are already collected and traded.) That’s data that could be purchased by law enforcement agencies or activists intent on tracking possible abortions . . .” 

A clinic escort outside the Planned Parenthood–Carol Whitehill Moses Center in Washington, DC ( via Wikimedia Commons)

God knows the Lord’s self-appointed troops are everywhere. 

Is there anything so common as pious propaganda?

Once society, rightfully, looked askance at the sanctimonious solicitations of Jehovah’s Witnesses who climbed the stairs and knocked upon your front door. Frustrated, I put a locked gate between my front door and the evangelicals. 

It was not sufficient protection. Because the devout of heart, like the Pink Panther’s Cato, are ever prepared to spring upon you.

I opened my mail recently to find a letter from a Phoenix woman, Mi Hon.

Ms. Hon wrote:

Due to the Covid 19 pandemic, most of us are quarantined at home. Even while you are isolated, you can find happiness by being aware of your spiritual need and filling it.

www.jw.org ( offers ) many free resources that can help you get started. Including an online Bible that is accurate and easy to read.

You can also find free online bible lessons, short videos for all ages, encouraging articles and much more.

To contact me, please feel free to respond to the address listed above.

Sincerely Mi Hon.

Though she sends me this handwritten letter to my home address, I note with some amusement that Ms. Hon does not provide me with her home address.

Nope.

She expects me to find God in her Post Office Box.

Maybe it’s just me . . . but I get the feeling that the pious simply can not help but project their ideas upon the rest of us. To the point, let’s take retired Supreme Court Justice, and Catholic, Anthony Kennedy.

Justice Anthony Kennedy (far right) with his replacement, Brett Kavanaugh and President Donald Trump (public domain)

Justice Kennedy speculated, on the record, that abortions triggered depression.

“While we find no reliable data to measure the phenomenon, it seems unexceptionable to conclude some women come to regret their choice to abort the infant life they once created and sustained,” he opined.  “Severe depression and loss of esteem can follow.”

Then along comes this uppity woman, Dr. Diana Greene Foster, who for years studied the impact of abortion upon those who undertook the procedure. The groundbreaking research, The Turnaway Study, also reviewed the experience of those denied an abortion.

According to a report on NPR this month:

“The research team regularly interviewed nearly 1000 women for five years and found those who’d been denied abortion experienced worse economic and mental health outcomes than the cohort that received care. And 95% of study participants who received an abortion said they made the right decision.”  

Individual states have splintered as if in another Civil War and will divide further into those states empathetic to women’s rights and those states whose legislatures will be triggered by the SCOTUS ruling into restrictive legislation targeting abortion.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi: San Francisco’s Archbishop is denying Pelosi communion over her support for Roe v. Wade (public domain)

Rather than sorting through this Confederacy of Dunces, state law by state law, one would be better advised to consult Planned Parenthood, a rock of comfort, advice, and litigation.

Planned Parenthood takes note of each state’s legal posture, and perhaps more importantly, stands ready to assist those who can not navigate financially in these stressful times.

Women picketed the homes of Supreme Court justices following the Alito leak. Their message was stark: “KEEP YOUR ROSARIES OFF MY OVARIES.”

(There is a backstory to this snappy riposte. In 2021 San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone urged Catholics and “others of goodwill” to sign onto a campaign to send thousands of roses as well as to pray the rosary to change the mind of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi on the matter of abortion. The petals and pity campaign was organized under the Benedict XVI Institute in Silicon Valley.) 

A few days ago, Archbishop Cordileone banned Pelosi, a devout Catholic, from receiving communion.

Sign of the times, from a 2017 Women’s March in Chicago (bradhoc via Wikimedia Commons)

Back in Washington D.C. abortion rights protestors picketed the very homes of Supreme Court Justices in response to the leaked memo announcing the pending death of Roe v. Wade.

The feds announced they were bracing for violence.

Women were not intimidated.

Then that Florida greaseball, Representative Matt Gaetz grabbed his pantsed pearls and described protestors as: “ . . . over-educated, under-loved millennials who sadly return from protests to a lonely micro-wave dinner with their cats and no bumble matches.”

The fumes from his pomade must be getting to him.

Ain’t that just like a man?

To read more by Michael Lacey, please see his past columns for Front Page Confidential.

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About Michael Lacey

Michael Lacey is the co-founder of Front Page Confidential. You can read more about him and his business partner Jim Larkin here.

7 comments

  1. Great article by Michael Lacey!
    “She expects me to find God in her Post Office Box.”

  2. Didn’t we end this abortion thing about 50 years ago? Seems Republicans are fine with killing outside the womb, tho. Evidence: Texas.

  3. This guy needs to do more writing. (Just finished watching the 2-part George Carlin documentary on HBO, so I’m reading Lacey in Carlin’s voice.)

  4. Brilliant piece by a legendary journalist whose flagship paper Phoenix New Times has a decades-long history taking on unpopular totally important causes and winning every journalism award. This piece again shows why. “You can’t gargle that bile.”

  5. Oh, Lacey, we knew each other then and you have carried on the fight into the present day while I considered it all a done deal until Alito. But you remind me to pick up the banner and fight on. Keep your rosaries off my aged ovaries indeed!

  6. Supreme Court Abortion Case Talking Points

    Justices Alito, Kavanaugh, Comey-Barrett, and Gorsuch all acknowledged that Roe v. Wade was established law in their confirmation hearings. We now have a Supreme Court in which the majority of Justices are willing to lie under oath to get what they want.

    5 of the 9 Justices on the Supreme Court (Alito, Roberts, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Comey-Barrett) were appointed by presidents who did not receive the majority of the popular vote (Bush II and Trump). All of them again are taking action that will harm millions of people to impose a minority view on the rest of us.

    The Supreme Court has only taken away civil rights a few times in its history and each case stands as a black mark on its record. Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Org will join that list if not stopped.
    Dred Scott Decision (African-Americans are not people)
    Civil Rights Cases (Congress could not protect former slaves, thus ending reconstruction and paving the way for Jim Crow and the KKK)
    Korematsu (OK for the government to intern Japanese-Americans during WWII.)

    The right to bodily integrity is a fundamental right and the foundation of Anglo-American law. The right to habeas corpus is in the Magna Charta, signed in 1215. Today’s Supreme Court is saying that men have a fundamental right to be free from government control of their bodies but women do not.

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