On Friday, the Nebraska Supreme Court refused a 16-year-old girl’s request for an abortion. The girl, who is a ward of the state after being taken away from her abusive parents, lacks a guardian who can provide the required parental consent, leaving her in a legal limbo.
According to the ruling, the judges voted 5-2 against her because she was unable to prove that “she is sufficiently mature and well informed to decide on her own whether to have an abortion.”
As Jos at Feministing put it, those justices believe a 16-year-old girl in foster care is old enough to have and raise a child… but not old enough to have an abortion.
One of the lower court judges, the “honorable” Peter C. Batallion, went so far as to tell this teen “when you have the abortion, it’s going to kill the child inside of you,” and asked her if she would “rather do that than risk problems with the foster care people.”
It’s just sickening what this girl is dealing with: Jump through loopholes to terminate the pregnancy so that she doesn’t jeopardize her placement in the foster system (or her own future), or keeping an unwanted ‘child inside of her’ and risk being thrown out by her admittedly conservative foster parents.
To paraphrase a commenter at Raw Story, this is a decision not based in common sense or the girl’s maturity level. It’s a religion-based ruling made by a predominantly male court.
She deserved a better outcome than this.