Lost amidst the horror of the massacre at Virginia Tech and the anticipation of the Roman circus that was Alberto Gonzalez's testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, the Supreme Court of the United States made a decision which was a stunning triumph of ideology over medical science, good jurisprudence and <i>stare decisis</i>. On Wednesday the Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, upheld the 2003 law banning "partial birth" abortions. This law, cheerfully signed by President Bush, makes no exception for the health of the mother. The court had no problem with this matter, despite the fact that many medical institutions and peer reviewed journals have shown that there can be a medical necessity for this very procedure which can save the woman's life. This ruling also inserts the government into the decision making process which has, heretofore, been solely between the physician and patient, and also appears to violate HIPPA, which protects the privacy of a patients health care information. After all, if health care providers can't discuss medical information without the patient's permission, how can the government interfere lacking either the consent or invitation of either the patient or health care provider? This case also opens the door for the government to intrude into other areas of health care, most especially end of life issues. We saw this in the horribly botched attempt by the Bush administration, and its slavish supporters in Congress and elsewhere, to prevent Terri Schiavo's husband from carrying out her wishes. This ruling by the SCOTUS, will open the door to even more draconian efforts on the part of state legislatures to write laws which further limit a woman's access to abortions. It will only be a matter of time before we see attempts to introduce laws as intrusive and punitive as those in <a href=http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/09/magazine/09abortion.html?ex=1302235200&en=d855d80018cd6c56&ei=5088&partner=rssuserland>El Salvador</a> Another aspect of this decision is that states may write and enact such laws on the basis of "moral", read as "religious", grounds, rather than any medical or legal grounds. I can see the religious zealots in this country who want to push gays and lesbians back into the closet on "moral", read as "religious", grounds rather than on the basis of any realistic criteria; pushing to resurrect sodomy laws that have already been struck down as unconstitutional by the SCOTUS. This latter especially since <i>stare decisis</i> no longer seems to matter. This decision will allow Dubbyuh's sins, in the eyes of his red-meat religious right wing-nut base, to be forgiven. It was, after all, Dubbyuh who packed the court with right wing ideologues dedicated to, ultimately, overturning Roe v. Wade. Their decision on the matter was made before they ever became members of the SCOTUS, and for supposedly impartial interpreters of the law, that is simply unacceptable.