The Alabama Chief Justice Who Invoked God in Deciding the Embryo Case

In an Alabama Supreme Court decision that has rattled reproductive medicine across the country, a majority of the justices said the law was clear that frozen embryos should be considered children: “Unborn children are ‘children.’”

But the court’s chief justice, Tom Parker, drew on more than the Constitution and legal precedent to explain his determination.

“Human life cannot be wrongfully destroyed without incurring the wrath of a holy God,” he wrote in a concurring opinion that invoked the Book of Genesis and the prophet Jeremiah and quoted at length from the writings of 16th- and 17th-century theologians.

“Even before birth,” he added, “all human beings have the image of God, and their lives cannot be destroyed without effacing his glory.”

Read the Alabama Supreme Court’s Ruling

The Alabama Supreme Court has ruled that frozen embryos should be considered children.

Read Document 131 pages

Just as the case, which centers on wrongful-death claims for frozen embryos that were destroyed in a mishap at a fertility clinic, has reverberated beyond Alabama, so has Justice Parker’s opinion.

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