Abortion is the Story

We begin the episode by hearing reactions to the unprecedented leak of a draft brief from the Supreme Court that outlines a legal argument for reversing a 49-year legal precedent that legalized abortion. And then we take a closer look at American beliefs about abortion with sociologist Dr. Tricia Bruce whose research sheds light and insights where polling fails. She explains why between the political labels most Americans find themselves wrestling with questions and balancing paradoxical views in a political climate that is defined by absolutes.

A Bombshell Leak Produces Anger and Defiance
We review the various political reactions to the unprecedented leak of a SCOTUS draft opinion made public on the evening of May 2, 2022, and how some religious voices and leaders are preparing to respond with national religion correspondent Emily MacFarlan Miller of the Religion News Service.

Beyond the Polls: How Americans Understand Abortion
Historian Mary Ziegler, visiting professor at Harvard University explains why so many Americans are confused by the legal history, timeline, and rhetoric of the abortion battles taking place in the states and courts. Then sociologist Dr. Tricia Bruce describes the findings from an expansive 2020 research study that created a safe space to explore how Americans feel about abortion. The key findings underscore that polling reported in the media fail to capture the nuance and complicated positions most hold and that many Americans have not wrestled with questions about the issue because Americans do not talk about abortion.

A New Generation of Activism
As we continue the conversation with Dr. Bruce explains in detail why overturning Roe may have an unintended consequence for many who until now have remained silent and not engaged in activist behaviors. Bruce shares insights from research and offers suggestions for those working on these issues to not rely on polling data on attitudes and highlights ways some are finding common ground.

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