The American Constitution

Part A

Question 1

  1. Blackmun’s Argument for his Decision about the Permissibility of Abortion

In the Joe verses Wade case, Judge Blackmun ruled that abortion was permissible. Firstly, the judge cited the right of personal privacy, which gives a woman the right to decide whether to terminate a pregnancy or give birth. Secondly, the judge said the word person mentioned in the Constitution does not mention an unborn child. Therefore, the Federal law did not protect an unborn baby. Thirdly, Justice Blackmun maintained that the Texas law failed the Strict Scrutiny Test. Accordingly, the Court had to revert to a historical review of abortion cases in the country as current ones lacked a historical foundation. The judge used this analysis to show that the law allowed women to have an abortion.

  1. Explain White’s reasoning for Dissenting with Blackmun’s Decision

Conversely, Justice White dissented the majority ruling arguing that the Court lacked a legitimate petitioner. The judge reasoned that the Court needed a plaintiff in the first trimester of pregnancy to support its verdict that states should not regulate abortion in the first trimester. Since the court lacked such a witness, the case was null and void. Secondly, Justice White maintained that abortion was not a private act as the Court claimed. The entire process involved a licensed physician prodding the body of the pregnant individual. Thirdly, the judge argued that the right to privacy did not extend far enough to guarantee the right to abortion. Finally, Judge White explained that the rational relations test was appropriate for the due process case.

  1. Which Judge Advances the More Cogent Position on the Abortion Issue?

Granted, Judge Blackmun advanced a more cogent position on the topic of abortion in the country. The judge began by comparing the rights of women versus the interest of the state, which were critical issues the case. Justice Blackmun’s argument that an abortion during the first three months of pregnancy did not affect the health of the mother was valid. Furthermore, the interest of the state to protect the health of the mother was not affected. Hence, they did not have the right to regulate abortion. However, the judge agreed that the interest of the state came into play after the first three months when the danger of having an abortion increased.

Part B

Question 8

  1. What Conclusion is he trying to Support; What Reasons is he giving to Support the Conclusion?

Szasz supports the conclusion that the government has no right over the ideas one makes or the drugs they pump into their bodies. The libertarian psychiatrist argued that in a free market, businessmen can sell any product. What is important in a free market is the profit traders make from their sales. According to Szasz, drugs are commodities just like any other. The psychiatrist further argues that if the government aims to reduce harm to the users, then it should ensure the free sale of drugs in stores in the country. Doing so would ensure that doctors provide prescriptions to clients.

  1. Quality of Szasz’s reasoning

However, the argument put forward by Szasz does not hold water because drug use threatens the lives of the user and the society. Drug addicts can cause harm to their bodies and on those they love. Therefore, the government has to intervene to protect such individuals by terming the act as a crime. Additionally, commercializing drugs in the country would teach children that using drugs was acceptable. Moreover, personal drug use impinged on the rights of non-users, which goes against the civil rights. Personal drug use seems harmless to society in the beginning. However, buying illegal drugs funds the activities of drug traffickers and cartels around the globe. Such groups put communities in which the consumers live at risk of violence and death.