The watershed U.S. Supreme Court decisions Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, we are told, “empowered women” to control their lives.  In reality, they empowered the Police State and set the U.S. Imperium on a trajectory where it not only could deny the personhood of the unborn but could legally classify whole groups of people who object to the Imperium, at home and abroad, as nonpersons—individuals who can be rounded up, imprisoned, tortured, and deprived of our traditional legal provisions.

Today, civil libertarians of the right and the left deplore the growing Police State; they object to the fact that citizens can be arrested, tasered, and detained without cause; that their phone calls, e-mails, and other private communications, as well as their travel, can be monitored; that citizens must exercise prior restraint on their very thoughts.

They can thank Roe and Doe for all of that.

Government violence against pro-lifers peaked during the reigns of Republican Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.  Hundreds of peaceful pro-life demonstrators were beaten, their arms, wrists, and shoulders, broken.  In the late 80’s, as pro-life “rescue” operations took place, police in West Hartford, Pittsburgh, Los Angeles, and other cities removed their badges and name tags before assaulting old men and women, sexually tormenting young women, and incarcerating protestors, who were held without charges for prolonged periods.  When such scenes were videotaped, even by local television reporters, police or judges seized and often destroyed the film and cameras.

According to the American Life League, between 1987 and 1996, 100,000 American pro-lifers risked arrest, and 70,000 were arrested and stood at show trials, without a whimper from civil libertarians on the left—the honorable Nat Hentoff excepted.

Meanwhile, as government officials and members of the media began increasingly to refer to peaceful anti-abortion protestors as terrorists, real Middle Eastern terrorists got a free pass to enter the United States, train at flight schools and plot large-scale terrorist activities, overstay their visas, travel abroad unrestricted, and even, in the case of September 11 ringleader Mohammed Atta, run a business in Toronto manufacturing fake ID cards.

Halfway between the February 26, 1993, bombing of the World Trade Center and the April 19, 1995, Oklahoma City bombing, Attorney General Janet Reno established a secret database known as VAAPCON (the Violence Against Abortion Providers Conspiracy), which collected data on tens of thousands of pro-lifers, including the late John Cardinal O’Connor of New York and other U.S. bishops.

That same month (August 1994), according to the Center for Cooperative Research, Omar al-Bayoumi, a young Saudi with extensive ties to the Riyadh government and its aviation industry, arrived in San Diego, where he made contact with a number of the September 11 hijackers.

In the 29 months between October 23, 1998, when James C. Kopp assassinated Buffalo abortionist Barnett Slepian, and March 29, 2001, when Kopp was arrested, nearly 300 FBI agents and other police, as well as agents of Interpol, were on Kopp’s trail, interviewing anyone and everyone who had ever come into contact with him.  But, as the 9/11 Commission Report revealed (but did not point out), when Kopp was captured, the entire U.S. intelligence “system was blinking red,” indicating an imminent terrorist attack.

Overall, during these years when several dozen Middle Eastern terrorists were plotting from within the United States, there were, at any given time, between 11 and 39 FBI field agents (out of 11,000) pursuing rock-solid leads on Arab terrorists in U.S. flight schools.

In other words, the Clinton and Bush administrations devoted between 8 and 27 times the manpower to bringing James C. Kopp, whose victim was a specialist in late-term abortions, to justice.

By October 1998, when Kopp fired the shot he says was intended to wound Slepian, the FBI knew that the September 11 hijackers were all in place, were traveling with ease from the United States to Canada and abroad, and had a good bead on their Saudi funding sources.

According to the Report of the Joint Inquiry Into the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001, FBI agents Robert Wright and John Vincent were tracking a Saudi terrorist cell in Chicago through the first half of 2001 but were told to take no action other than to follow the suspects around town and file reports.  When they managed to trace the Al Qaeda operatives’ funding to Saudi multimillionaire businessman Yassin al-Qadi, their supervisor told them not to make any arrests and thwarted the criminal investigation they sought.

And then, of course, “everything changed,” and the Police State tactics the government employed against pro-lifers were applied to nearly everyone.  In post-Roe America, only the state and its protectors enjoy the civil rights most Americans took for granted before 1973.