It’s unfortunate that the loath hero of the pro-choice movement who changed abortion rights in America has died at the age of 69 years. The 1973 landmark Supreme Court case legalizing abortion gave McCorvey also known as the plaintiff Jane Roe the opportunity to further her ambition. Unfortunately, she’s died of heart ailment in an assisted-living facility in Texas. A journalist by the name Joshua Prager -working on a book about Roe v. Wade confirmed her death to the Washington Post.
Back in 1970, McCorvey was a 21-year-old Texan struggling with addiction, abuse and her sexual identity when she sought to eliminate her unwanted pregnancy. However, the restrictive Texas laws prevented her from getting an abortion and her case was picked up by lawyers Sarah Weddington and Linda Coffee. The two took the case all the way to the Supreme Court.
McCorvey gave birth before the case was concluded and her child was put up for adoption she also kept her identity as Roe hidden until years later. In a statement that she made to the New York Times back in 1994, she stated that she was a simple woman with a ninth grade education and that she wanted women not to be harassed or condemned and that she wanted the privilege of a clean clinic to get the procedure done, adding that she’s never had the privilege to go into an abortion clinic, lay down and have an abortion done.
The Texas law banned all abortions apart from those meant to save the life of the mother. After maintaining that the pregnancy was a result of being raped, McCorvey later recanted that claim. A watershed 7-to-2 ruling was handed down by the Supreme Court and it declared individual state laws banning abortion unconstitutional and set the stage for decades of contentious public debate over the controversial decision.
McCorvey then published a 1994 tell-all book titled I am Roe in which she detailed her role in the struggle for reproductive rights as well as her relationships with women. However, one year later, her views concerning abortion changed and she became a Christian. As a result she pledged her life to overturning the decision that has forever been linked to her fictitious name.
In a pro-life advertisement from 2013, she emphasized that she is safe to say that the entire abortion industry is based on a lie and that she’s dedicated to spending the rest of her life undoing the law that bears her name. She was born in Louisiana back in 1947, her father was a television repairman who left her family when she was 13, she was thus left under the care of her alcoholic mother. She married Woody McCorvey at the age of 16 and had two children in quick succession, both of which were adopted, one by her own mother.
Unfortunately, she struggled with drugs and alcohol and was kicked out of her mother’s house when she told her that she was attracted to women. After becoming pregnant with her third child she sought to end the pregnancy and that led to the famous court case.
McCorvey later spoke bitterly of the team of lawyers that took her case to the high court. The constitutional right to privacy, as recognized by Roe v. Wade, extended to a women’s right to make her own personal medical decisions. At that point, the decision allowed women to seek an abortion at any point in the first 24 weeks of pregnancy, through first and second trimesters. The decision remains one of the most contentious Supreme Court decisions.