Dr Alan Braid, an OBGYN based in San Antonio, broke the law on purpose. In an essay published in the Washington Post last Saturday, the doctor announced that he performed an abortion on a woman who was past six weeks of gestation, the limit imposed by Texas’s new abortion ban, SB8. The doctor wrote that he felt morally obliged to perform the procedure, his worldview shaped by his years in obstetric practice having conversations with patients who revealed that they were terminating their pregnancies because they couldn’t afford more kids, because they had been raped, because they were with abusive partners, or because they wanted to pursue other dreams…
He was promptly sued. Two complaints – both from men living out of state – were filed against Dr Braid on Monday morning. One, a rambling, weird document, comes from a convicted felon and disbarred former attorney named Oscar Stilley, who is serving a prison term on house arrest in Arkansas…Stilley, who has said he does not personally oppose abortion, feels strongly that “if there’s money to be had, it’s going to go in Oscar’s pocket.”
The second lawsuit is from a man named Felipe Gomez of Illinois, another disbarred lawyer, who labels himself “pro-choice plaintiff”, and whose complaint asks only that SB8 be overturned. These test cases, strange and off-putting as they are, now represent the best chance for SB8 to be vacated, and for abortion rights to be returned to Texans – at least for now.
We are the “United States”, after all, to stop wasting time on outlandish legislation from regions or states populated by 18th Century religious fanatics or little green men with purple hair (from other planets). Hopefully, the Federal Government will move faster than a cowflop floating in a mud bog.