Noting that induced early abortions had become safer than childbirth and holding that the word person in the Constitution of the United States "does not include the unborn," the Court defined, within each of the three stages of pregnancy, the reciprocal limits of state power and individual freedom: (a) During the first trimester, the abortion decision and its effectuation must be left to the medical judgment of the pregnant woman's attending physician. (b) After the first trimester, the State, in promoting its interest in the health of the mother, may, if it chooses, regulate the abortion procedure in ways that are reasonably related to maternal health. (c) For the stage subsequent to viability, the State, in promoting its interest in the potentiality of human life may, if it chooses, regulate and even proscribe abortion, except where it is necessary, in appropriate medical judgment, for the preservation of the life or health of the mother.
Many have seen fracking and the natural gas that the process produces as at best a “bridge,” a practice that is slightly less carbon-intensive compared to coal, but merely an imperfect step toward getting to an energy market based on renewables such as wind and solar. What has become clear in the policy world recently is that there may be no inevitable timeline to such a “bridge,” and while political fights continue, the practice of fracking must be better understood more quickly from a research perspective and regulation strongly tailored to the best evidence.