Saturday, January 17, 2015

Abortion Case Winner Lied About Rape, Never Had the Abortion, Becomes Pro-Life Catholic

WASHINGTON, Sept. 8— The woman whose challenge to a state law virtually prohibiting abortion led to the Supreme Court's landmark Roe v. Wade decision now says she lied when she declared upon bringing suit that it was rape that had caused her pregnancy.
The assertion of rape was not a factor in the Supreme Court's ruling, which established a woman's constitutional right to an abortion, a decision that has stirred emotional debate ever since it was handed down 14 years ago.
The disclosure by Norma McCorvey, the ''Jane Roe'' in Roe v. Wade, came in an interview with the syndicated newspaper columnist Carl T. Rowan. The interview, conducted in June in Dallas, Ms. McCorvey's hometown, is part of a television documentary that will be broadcast Sunday by station WUSA here, which issued a transcript today.
Ms. McCorvey told Mr. Rowan that she had fabricated her account of being raped by three men and a woman in 1969 because she had hoped to circumvent a 100-year-old Texas law that banned abortions except when the woman's life was in danger. 'What I Thought Was Love'
Ms. McCorvey said that she had actually become pregnant ''through what I thought was love'' and that she decided to challenge the state law when her doctor told her that she could not legally have an abortion in Texas. In 1970, her lawyers filed a Federal suit against Henry Wade, the Dallas County District Attorney. The suit, protecting her anonymity by identifying her as ''Jane Roe,'' was eventually upheld by the Supreme Court, which, in legalizing abortion on Jan. 22, 1973, cited the 14th Amendment's privacy protections.
The transcript of the interview does not make clear why Ms. McCorvey thought that an account of rape would necessarily help win exemption from, or overturn, a law that allowed abortion only to protect a woman's life. Ms. McCorvey, now a 39-year-old apartment house manager in Dallas, has an unlisted telephone number there and could not be reached for comment tonight.
However, Mr. Rowan, reached at his Washington home, said, ''She told me that she thought she would win so much public support by claiming that she was gang raped that she might get an exception from the Texas law.''
Mr. Rowan said that when he approached Ms. McCorvey about the possibility of interviewing her, he had no notion that she would make so startling a disclosure. ''I frankly was flabbergasted,'' he said.
As for why Ms. McCorvey would make the disclosure now, after 17 years, Mr. Rowan said she had told a producer for the program that she had been swayed by Mr. Rowan's gentle and concerned manner. #21 at the Time Ms. McCorvey was 21 years old when she became pregnant. At the time, she was working as a waitress and, she told Mr. Rowan, was too poor to travel to California, the closest state where abortion was legal, or to afford local illegal abortionists.
''I was very depressed,'' she said. ''How dare them tell me that I couldn't abort a baby that I did not want!''
Unable to have an abortion in Texas or travel to another state, she said, she grew ''bitter, very bitter,'' and in her anger fabricated the rape story.
Meanwhile, with the legal challenge pending, Ms. McCorvey brought the baby to term and put it up for adoption. According to news reports, she never again saw the baby. Lawyer's Response
According to a news release issued by WUSA about the interview, Sarah Weddington, one of the two lawyers who took the case to the Supreme Court, said she had never ''touched the issue of rape and only emphasized the question of whether the Constitution gives to the state or leaves to a woman the questions of what she can or must do with her body.''
Kate Michelman, executive director of the National Abortion Rights Action League, said in an interview today that Ms. McCorvey's disclosure ''should not cloud the discussion about the right of a woman to terminate her pregnancy.''
''If she lied, you have to remember that abortions were illegal,'' Ms. Michelman said, ''and that women were looked down upon if they were pregnant outside of marriage. It was her life circumstances that created the conditions that mitigated against her being straightforward about the fact that she was pregnant and wanted to terminate that pregnancy.''
After the celebrated Supreme Court decision, Ms. McCorvey at first lived in relative obscurity in Dallas, fearing that she would become a target of anti-abortion activists.
In recent years, however, she has become active in abortion rights and feminist groups. Last month, for example, she appeared at a rally, sponsored by the National Organization for Women, denouncing President Reagan's Supreme Court nomination of Judge Robert H. Bork.

Plinthos: This last claim by the Times is surprising given the further developments in McCorvey's journey; viz. she became Catholic the following year, totally rejecting abortion and the culture of sensuality and death upon which it is based and actively campaigning against it ever since, promoting the civilization of love!

Fr. Frank Pavone Confirms former "Jane Roe" of Roe vs. Wade
Priests for Life Newsletter Nov-Dec 1998 Vol. 8

Monday, August 17, 1998 was another day of victory for the pro-life movement as Norma McCorvey, the "Jane Roe" plaintiff of the Roe vs. Wade decision, made her profession of faith in the Catholic Church and received her Confirmation from Fr. Frank Pavone and her First Holy Communion from Fr. Ed Robinson, OP, in Dallas, Texas.

In a post-Communion reflection, Fr. Frank told Norma that because, as Vatican II states, the Lord by His Incarnation united, in some fashion, every human being to Himself, this includes every pre-born baby. "In giving you His Body, therefore, he has given back to you all the babies who were aborted because of what you did," he said to Norma in a moment filled with emotion. "He has restored to you all the children over whom you have wept. He has reconciled them to you, and given you peace."

Fr. Pavone confirms Norma McCorvey

In her press release about becoming a Catholic, Norma called Fr. Pavone "the catalyst to bring me into the Catholic Church." Norma has her own website at

That website appears to have been sold and I cannot find any further website for Ms. McCorvey.

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