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Fetal Personhood Laws As Limits To Maternal Personhood At Any Stage Of Pregnancy: Balancing Fetal & Maternal Interests At Post-Viability Among Fetal Pain & Fetal Homicide Laws, Bernice M. Bird
Bernice M. Bird
Collectively, fetal pain and homicide laws serve to effectively diminish maternal personhood at any stage of pregnancy. At pre-viability, fetal pain laws unconstitutionally infringe on women’s right to reproduce without state interference, as reaffirmed in Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey. In tandem, at post-viability, fetal homicide laws act as undue burdens because the laws lack life or health exceptions to maternal prosecution for the death of the fetus. Ultimately, both types of laws encroach on women's liberty interests to continue or terminate pregnancies at all stages. This paper proposes that state fetal pain and homicide laws ...