Letters to the Editor: Of course white men didn’t write ‘woman’ or ‘abortion’ in the Constitution

A group of abortion rights supporters protesting outside a tall building, one with a sign reading "We are not your property."
A group demonstrates in favor of abortion rights in front of the U.S. Courthouse in downtown Los Angeles on May 5.
(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: As a woman and an American citizen, I am very angry over the impending repeal of the 1973 decision in Roe vs. Wade. According to the Supreme Court justice who wrote this draft opinion, Roe should be overturned because the right to an abortion is not “deeply rooted in this Nation’s history and tradition,” as law professor Aaron Tang cites in his op-ed article.

I would argue that gender equity is not deeply rooted in our history either. The word “woman” is never mentioned in the Constitution. The word “person” is used frequently, and the pronouns “he” and “him” are used, but no references are made to “her” or “she.” According to the Constitution, I don’t exist.

If you want to consider a woman as a person, I wonder if this justice would label her a free or unfree person within the context of the Constitution.


I don’t want any government, federal or state, making decisions regarding my reproductive choices. The 10th Amendment states that if a power is not delegated to the federal government or denied to the states, it reverts back to the states or the people. In this case it should go back to the people.

June Thompson, Los Angeles


To the editor: It’s hard to believe that Tang depends on the notion of “quickening” to advance his support for legal abortion. Quickening refers to the flutter or movement of the fetus felt around 16 weeks of pregnancy — not exactly a scientific term in this day and age.

Women look to ultrasounds and other prenatal science and recognize that heart, brain and organ development are recognizable in the embryonic period between three and eight weeks after conception. Outdated 19th century information is useless to women today as a basis for abortion decisions.

Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion would not outlaw abortion. It sends the whole controversial issue back to the democratic process in the states, where it should have been left back in 1973.

Mary Curtius, Coronado



To the editor: I had to tamp down my rage as I forced myself to read the specious arguments about the supposed long history of criminal abortions in this country — all the laws that were made exclusively by men.

Women had no say, no power, in the early history of our nation. But now the pussy cats are out of the bag.

Women will not stand for being forced into motherhood. Women will do whatever it takes to maintain their liberty and control over their own lives.

Barbara Jackson, Cerritos