Judges applying a principled constitution are not empowered to decide that a woman should never have an abortion, nor as unchecked legislators might, that a woman must abort a fetus in certain circumstances. Their role is the more limited one of deciding when politicians can deprive the individual of the freedom to choose for herself.
Judges can never take such important decisions uninfluenced by their own political or moral beliefs. However, individual autonomy and responsibility is a fundamental value central to our conception of a democratic society. The function of judges would not be to usurp the vital decisions but to defend the individual's right to decide.
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