Why are Parents Excited about the Supreme Court Hearing Arguments on S.B.8?
Listen up. This is the best thing that has happened in family law since Planned Parenthood v. Casey. The Supreme Court is about to help parents of minor children by helping women protect their privacy rights.
Parents have been in this boat that Texas just placed all women seeking abortion in. That boat is the disfavored class of person who do NOT have access to the federal courts for injunctive relief against blatantly unconstitutional laws because who do we sue? Texas S.B.8 deputizes individuals to enforce the law themselves by bringing a private suit against any person they believe to be violating the law. Parents in a similar fashion can bring private suit against the other parent and win custody of their children and a paycheck as reward for winning the contest of who is the better parent. The protections the constitutional promises are completely ignored.
The judge in family law enforces the blatantly unconstitutional family law code against us and we can’t block the law in federal court because another private party is bringing the suit and they don’t let us sue judges.
How will these cases Help Parents?
The United States Supreme Court can change all of this, and there is plenty of caselaw to support things going your way. Planned Parenthood v. Casey has been a wonderful benefit to our legal arguments as have many abortion cases because they deal directly with family issues. Federal judges care deeply about the right of women who choose to abort, because those rights translate into family rights, and personal privacy rights. The states have not been respecting these rights though and getting back into the federal courts to be heard on these grievances has been impossible for parents lately because of the Younger abstention doctrine.
The Supreme Court will be addressing what we wrote about in Oath Breakers. If the Supreme Court declares in Women’s Health that all private parties that bring suit against a woman getting an abortion after the fetal heartbeat is detected, are state actors – parents win and we were right again! We believe that the Whole Women’s Health v. Jackson case will add another layer to protecting parent-child bonds in divorce suits – because family laws do the same thing by allowing the other parent to bring suit and the parent being sued has no way to get federal oversight for the violation of their parental rights – which are also supposed to be constitutionally protected. The state of Texas and all other states that have evaded review here will no longer be shielded by Younger.
Regardless of your stance on abortion, if you are a parent of minor children you should be one thousand percent behind privacy rights and be watching this case closely.
If you would like to read more about what a state actor is and how the success of this abortion suit could make it even easier for you to sue your ex, read more about what determines whether someone is a state actor in the book Oath Breakers.