Banning Abortion Pills — Choosing Between Secularism And Moralism

How a single federal judge could upend twenty years of science.

Texas Federal District Judge Matthew J. Kacsmaryk recently banned prescribing and distributing the abortion pill mifepristone as unsafe. However, after a four-year review, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) certified the pill safe in 2000. Its status as a safe drug was maintained across five presidential administrations until this one Judge wouldn’t accept that decision.

Judge Kacsmaryk’s heart rather than science seems to lead him to ban mifepristone. In his ruling, he refers to the fetus as an “unborn human” or “unborn child.” These are not medical terms but moral statements.

Language reinforces our beliefs into reality. Kacsmaryk used terms to define abortion as a violation of a moral code. However, he and similar moralist judges are careful not to morally condemn aborting a fetus. If they did so, they would pierce their veil of claiming that they pursue secular justice.

Six years before his ruling banned the abortion pill, we could see him as an advocate for a Christian morality code. Washington Post reported that Kacsmaryk had submitted an article to a Texas law review criticizing Obama-era protections for those seeking abortions.

He argued that the Obama administration had discounted religious physicians who “cannot use their pens to prescribe or dispense abortifacient drugs designed to kill unborn children.” In other words, the doctors’ religious freedom would be violated if a woman asked them not to give birth even if they were raped. The doctors were the victims, not the pregnant woman.

Kacsmaryk must have realized that his logic might not fly at his Congressional confirmation hearings. So, although he had initially been listed as the article’s sole author, he removed his name and replaced it with two other attorneys from the First Liberty Institute, where he was the deputy general counsel.

First Liberty claims to be the nation’s largest legal organization focused exclusively on defending the religious freedom of individuals and businesses. Their attorneys sue the government to stop regulations that force their doctor clients to violate their religious beliefs, like allowing women…