anti-abortion activists could be held liable under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, or RICO. RICO makes it illegal for groups to conduct activities by using criminal activity. The Supreme Court ruled unanimously that abortion-rights groups could use the RICO law. Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist stated that “there was no question that pro-choice groups could sue anti-abortion groups and demonstrators who had supposedly organized violent and criminal acts against abortion clinics and doctors who performed abortions.” From all these previous court rulings, the Supreme Court has decided that in the first trimester of pregnancy a State must recognize a woman’s right to an abortion and cannot interfere with medical judgments. in the second trimester a state can make reasonable regulations about how, when, and where abortions can be performed but cannot prohibit a procedure. However, in the third trimester a state can choose to prohibit all abortions except those necessary to save the life or health of the mother.
Equality before the law The separate-but-equal doctrine was created in 1896. For years, several court cases were held under this law, such as Plessy v Ferguson. Homer A. Plessy decided to test the separate-but-equal doctrine by sitting in the white only section of a train. When asked to move, he refused and was arrested. He was tried by a New Orleans court and found guilty of violating the Louisiana Law, which ordered railroads in the state to “provide separate but equal accommodations for the white and colored races.” Violations of the law was either a $25 fee or 20 days in jail. Plessy appealed to the Supreme Court claiming that the law was unconstitutional. Majority of the Court denied Plessy’s appeal and upheld the segregated Louisiana law.
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- Winter '14
- James Griffin
- Government, Supreme Court of the United States