Protecting Pre-Viable Unborn Children

The Alabama Supreme Court stood up for life on Friday. In the case of Hamilton v. Scott the court ruled a mother may pursue a wrongful death claim. The mother, Amy Hamilton, is making the claim on behalf of her pre-viable unborn child. The suit was filed against multiple doctors and a medical group, claiming the failure of the physicians to provide proper medical intervention resulted in the death of the child. Experts have agreed that the child was at a pre-viable state of pregnancy. According to the experts consulted, the child would have died if born at that stage of Hamilton’s pregnancy.

In a press release from the Liberty Counsel, Founder and Chairman Matt Staver said, “From the moment of conception and at all stages of development in the womb, the unborn child is a human being.” Alabama Justice Tom Parker, along with three other Justices, issued a special concurring opinion. Parker noted that Roe v. Wade does not prevent the ruling, citing the fact that viability is arbitrary and changes based on current medical technology. Justice Parker stated, “Roe’s viability rule was based on inaccurate history and was mostly unsupported by legal precedent. Medical advances since Roe have conclusively demonstrated that an unborn child is a unique human being at every stage of development.”

In addition to his comments on Roe v. Wade, Justice Parker referred to the prior ruling of the Alabama Supreme court in the case of Wolfe v. Isbell, which resulted in the court writing “that from the moment of conception, the fetus or embryo is not a part of the mother, but rather has a separate existence within the body of the mother.” Justice Parker concluded his comments by stating “Roe’s viability rule is neither controlling nor persuasive here and should be rejected by other states until the day it is overruled by the United States Supreme Court.” According to the Justice, the rights of unborn children have been acknowledged in wills and estates, tort or criminal law, and more. Parker believes Roe is our out step with all other areas of law.

Matt Staver stated, “I applaud Justice Tom Parker’s clear and well-reasoned concurring opinion, which conclusively shows that Roe v. Wade’s viability rule does not apply, was based on flawed legal reasoning, and is undermined by advances in medical technology. The life expectancy of Roe is limited and is being undermined by every other area of technology.”

The Liberty Counsel defines itself as “an international nonprofit litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics.” You can found out more about Liberty Counsel at LC.org.