Missouri Judge Changes His Mind

I’m afraid I’ve been offering hard news lately, so I’m happy to report on a good development.

Remember me talking a week or so ago about the Missouri judge who had blocked a new law upholding parents’ rights? The Missouri legislature, under the able and passionate leadership of Governor Matt Blunt, enacted a law which makes it a tort to bring a girl across state lines to get an abortion. Unless, of course, you are the girl’s parent or legal guardian.

This law has Planned Parenthood up in arms. They have usurped the privileges of parenthood in many places – and are quite convinced they are more enlightened than you and I. In fact, they sued to stop the law in Missouri from taking effect.

For a time, it seemed that they had succeeded in using the courts to once more trump self government. Circuit Judge Charles Atwell issued a temporary restraining order about two weeks ago. This is the case in which he wrote that he thought the law had probably violated Planned Parenthood’s right to counsel Missouri’s children.

In that first order, he said it was probably unconstitutional to allow parents to sue another adult who brings their daughter across state lines for an abortion.

I can’t account for it – but apparently this judge has changed his mind. One can only assume that Judge Atwell is under intense political pressure, for his ruling clearly violates his own ideas about how the world should work. Atwell now says that the law is constitutional, though he approved the law with “substantial trepidation”.

A further clue about his political agenda came in the addenda to his ruling. He continued the restraining order until Missouri’s Supreme Court could review the case; even more disturbing is his requirement that no one could be investigated or disciplined for possibly violating the law.

Nevertheless, we must be grateful for this progress, and trust God to see the law is upheld and enforced.


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