Opinion: Vote ‘yes’ on Amendment 1


In this Sept. 8, 2020 photo, voting booths are kept socially distant at the Chesterfield, N.H. polling site. A majority of President Donald Trump’s supporters plan to cast their ballot on Election Day, while about half of Joe Biden’s backers plan to vote by mail. That’s according to a new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research that finds 54% of voters say they will vote before polls open on Nov. 3. (Kristopher Radder/The Brattleboro Reformer via AP)

Monica Ruiz and Jonathan Marshall

When you vote this year, you will be asked “Do you support an amendment declaring that, to protect human life, a right to abortion and the funding of abortion shall not be found in the Louisiana Constitution?” There seems to be some confusion as to what this will mean for Louisiana which has led to a lot of misinformation.

Amendment 1, also known as the Love Life Amendment, supports pro-life legislation and will uphold pro-life values in Louisiana should it be passed. It does not ban any abortion or make the procedure illegal. The exceptions in current legislation for the tragic instances of rape or threats to the mother’s life are not changed by the Love Life Amendment. Women whose pregnancies endanger their lives will not be denied care because of this amendment’s passage. The amendment also has no influence over medical treatment for miscarriages.

Put simply, this amendment decides whether or not a judge can make a decision on abortion. A vote yes leaves the decision on abortion to state legislators. Even if Roe v. Wade were overturned, this amendment would not make abortion illegal.

A common argument against this amendment is that constitutions should create rights, not take them away. And this is true. Following this rule, we should consider that all rights in the U.S. Constitution stem from the Declaration of Independence, which gives everyone three inalienable rights: the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Abortion, by definition, completely disregards these rights, and as such, allowing abortion takes away the rights of the most vulnerable in our society. Our country has shown a history of expanding rights in the past, changing to give rights to women and African Americans. It is past time for the same rights to be extended to the unborn.

So, when you cast your ballot this voting season, we do hope you will vote yes on Amendment 1. Louisiana citizens deserve better than abortion: we deserve a state that gives the human rights our country was founded on to every human being.