“It is one of the happy incidents of the federal system that a single courageous state may, if its citizens choose, serve as a laboratory; and try novel social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country.” — Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis, dissent in New State Ice Co. v. Liebmann, 1932.
When it comes to laboratories of democracy, then, one can only suppose that Los Angeles County is anti-science.
According to The Hill, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has voted to suspend all travel for county business to the state of Alabama for one year due to the state’s new abortion bill, which bans the procedure in almost all circumstances.
The resolution, passed Monday, “implements a travel restriction for official LA County business to the State of Alabama except for emergency response, training, or assistance, or other legally-required matters where the failure to authorize such travel would seriously harm the County’s interests.
“The motion also orders a letter to be sent to the Governor and Alabama Legislative Leaders that communicates LA County’s opposition to HB 314 [the abortion bill], informs about the County’s travel restriction, and calls for the law’s immediate repeal. Another letter will be sent to the Governors and legislative leaders of Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, and Utah communicating LA County’s opposition to legislation that restricts access to abortion, and calls for the immediate repeal of any laws that restrict access to abortion.”
Yes, America: You listen to Los Angeles County and you listen good. When will our beloved nation learn that us plebs in flyover country would do much better if we just heeded the social policies of our largest cities?
The tin ear that crafted this resolution continued in the included quote from Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis.
“This challenge by Alabama and other states would overturn decades of precedent. It is an attack not only confined to the residents of those states, but an act of aggression upon all of us,” Supervisor Solis said.
“We must stand in solidarity and in opposition against extremist and unconstitutional laws that put the health and wellbeing of families at risk. (Emphasis ours.)
“The constitutional and human right to a safe and legal abortion is part of the very fabric of the United States. As such, Los Angeles County will stand against all attempts to dismantle the protections afforded by Roe v. Wade and the U.S. Constitution. Today’s vote sends a strong signal that infringing upon an individual’s rights to reproductive health and privacy are not American values.”
Literally every part that follows “overturn decades of precedent” is bunkum. I emphasized the segment that literally pries your mouth open and drags your mandible down to the floor with brute force — yes, there’s nothing that says “the health and wellbeing of families” like standing up for the right to kill your fetus by banning county travel — but almost any sentence in there turns into rhetorical dust under the slightest touch of scrutiny.
Another personal favorite of mine: “The constitutional and human right to a safe and legal abortion is part of the very fabric of the United States.” When the Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia 244 years ago, the first thing that congressional President Peyton Randolph told the assemblage was, “All right, gents — we’ll get around to creating the Continental Army in a quick minute, but first let’s establish the right of a woman to end her child’s life in the womb.”
And then there’s perhaps the most telling line, the one about “sending a strong signal” via restricting county travel.
I can only assume that the court system will have its say on HB 314, as it should. The entity that shouldn’t have a say on Alabama’s law? Los Angeles County, which is and will remain unaffected by the law, even if it ends up getting Roe v. Wade overturned.
Imagine being a county and laboring under the belief that you’re entitled to weigh in on the decisions of a state thousands of miles away. Yes, I could have guessed the governing apparatus of Los Angeles County is against the bill. I know this because I’m familiar with the county and the type of officials it would elect. I’m curious how much sympathy they thought they would generate by trying to impose West Coast values on another state where the elected representatives of the people passed and signed into law said legislation.
But then, these are the same abortion-obsessed people who have so much faith in the Constitution that they’re unwilling to let the law go through the courts without inserting themselves, an entity unaffected by the bill, in the process. One imagines that the practical effect of Los Angeles County’s resolution will be almost nil. In terms of generating public sentiment for the laboratory of democracy where it seems determined to smash equipment and stop the experiment, however, I couldn’t think of many better ways of doing it.
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