Trial raises abortion issue

By Staff Writer
March 25, 2004

Cecelia Francisco

This month hundreds of potential jurors will be given a thirty-page questionnaire, in order for the defense and prosecution in the Scott Peterson trial to find the right juror to win their case. The questions will range from what bumper stickers they have on their cars to their belief or disbelief in the death penalty.

It hasn’t been since 1995 that a trial of this stature has caused as much controversy. Many people sat anticipating a guilty verdict in the O.J. Simpson trial but when the verdict was read many people were outraged to hear the verdict; not guilty. Will we see a repeat verdict for Scott Peterson?

Scott Peterson allegedly killed his wife on Christmas Eve of 2002 and then took her body and threw it in the river. His wife, Laci, at the time was pregnant with their unborn son at the time. Her body washed up in the same place that Scott Peterson was supposedly fishing the morning his wife disappeared.

Scott Peterson is charged with double-murder, murder of his wife Laci and their unborn son, Conner. Many people believed that he shouldn’t be charged for the death of his unborn son because the child wasn’t born.

Many people were skeptical about whether the case should be classified as a double murder charge or not. More than two dozen states have opted to use the double murder charge when a pregnant woman has been killed.

However, groups like NOW, the National Organization for Women’s rights are opposed to “fetal homicide”, because they feel that it will support the abolishment of abortion.

However, I feel that the one issue has nothing to do with the other.

Abortion is a decision which must be made within the first three months of a woman’s pregnancy, whereas Laci was eight months pregnant and never chose to abort her son.

From a woman’s point of view, abortion is a topic that isn’t as clear-cut as many people make it out to be. I disagree with abortion, however there are certain circumstances in which I understand why women would choose to abort. I guess you could say that I’m pro-choice, but I don’t agree with women using abortion as another form of birth control.

In this case, however, I feel that they made a good choice classifying it as a double murder, because two people were killed no matter if the baby was born or unborn. Laci had already named her unborn son, Conner, and therefore had already made a decision to keep it. The killer’s decision was to murder Laci, which in fact meant that he/she had known that he/she would be killing a baby as well.

There is no fetal homicide law in New Jersey, which I feel is a disgrace! I understand the right for a women to chose to abort her child or not, but when it comes to killing pregnant women there should be no choice on whether or not the person should be convicted of a double murder charge.

The case is underway and should be brought to trial sometime in May and hopefully if Scott Peterson is in fact guilty, he will go to jail no matter how good of a lawyer he has representing him.

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