Post-Roe Florida Follows Its Laws, Yet the Death Merchants Still Have Conniption Fits

Source: RedState

Like many red states, Florida prepared its laws for the consequences of a post-Roe world. Those laws are being put to the test now, in this case of a 10-weeks pregnant 16-year old ward of the state seeking an abortion.

From NBC News:

A pregnant and parentless 16-year-old in Florida may be forced to give birth after an appeals court ruled she was not “sufficiently mature to decide whether to terminate her pregnancy.”

The teenager, who is identified in court papers as Jane Doe 22-B, was appealing a decision by Circuit Judge Jennifer Frydrychowicz on Aug. 10 that blocked her from having an abortion without the consent of a parent or guardian, as required by Florida law.

At the time, the teenager was 10 weeks pregnant, the court papers state.

But the three-judge panel of the state’s 1st District Court of Appeal, which covers northern Florida, sided Monday, for the most part, with Frydrychowicz.

The teenager “had not established by clear and convincing evidence that she was sufficiently mature to decide whether to terminate her pregnancy,” the ruling by Judges Harvey Jay, Rachel Nordby and Scott Makar, states. “Having reviewed the record, we affirm the trial court’s decision under the deferential standard of appellate review set out (in the consent law).”

There’s lots of weeping and gnashing of teeth going on by the death merchants, their allies, and stupid people who do not understand states’ rights, especially because the states are not upholding the right to kill your baby at any age, for any reason.

Newsflash: The Dobbs Supreme Court decision which overturned Roe v. Wade took the lawmaking on abortion out of the federal government’s hands and placed it back into the states’ hands. So, the United States has nothing to do with it, but the state of Florida certainly does.

Florida voters approved a constitutional amendment in 2004 that cleared the way for the state Legislature to pass a law requiring that parents or guardians be notified before minors have abortions.

But because some minors faced possible abuse if their parents found out they’re pregnant, Florida lawmakers also included a legal process that made it possible for them to go to court to get around the rules.

Then in June of 2020, Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is also a Republican, signed SB 404, legislation which requires written consent from a minor’s parent or legal guardian for an abortion.

According to this same NBC News article, Jane Doe 22-B is a ward of the state, who had been appointed a legal guardian.

The “guardian is fine with what [she] wants to do” the teenager claimed, according to [Judge Scott] Makar.

So, why doesn’t the appointed guardian just write a letter affirming this? According to Florida law, that’s all that would be required for Jane Doe 22-B to obtain the abortion she purportedly wants.

The one dissenting judge on the First District Court of Appeals panel, Judge Scott Makar, is also curious.

Scott Makar, states. “Having reviewed the record, we affirm the trial court’s decision under the deferential standard of appellate review set out (in the consent law).”

Dissenting from the other judges, however, Makar wrote that the appeals court should send the case back to Frydrychowicz for the possibility of further consideration.

“The trial judge apparently sees this matter as a very close call, finding that the minor was ‘credible,’ ‘open’ with the judge, and nonevasive,” Makar wrote. “The trial judge must have been contemplating that the minor — who was 10 weeks pregnant at the time — would potentially be returning before long — given the statutory time constraints at play — to shore up any lingering doubt the trial court harbored.”

Makar noted that the teenager is “parentless,” lives with a relative, but also has an appointed guardian. She was also savvy enough to do Google searches “to gain an understanding about her medical options and their consequences.”

So once again, why doesn’t the relative or the appointed guardian sign a letter stating they are giving Jane Doe 22-B permission to obtain the abortion? Why is no one in the legacy media asking this question or seeking the answer to it?

The Miami Herald gives a bit more information, but is also as clueless as NBC News on Jane Doe 22-B’s state of mind, and what factors may have caused her to seek the reversal of Judge Frydrychowicz’s decision:

Because the records of Jane’s case appear to be sealed, little is known about the girl, who is just shy of her 17th birthday. The appeals court decision said “she is pursuing a GED with involvement in a program designed to assist young women who have experienced trauma in their lives by providing educational support and counseling.” Complicating the ordeal, the order said, was the recent death of one of Jane’s friends.

What this does reveal is an even more complicated can of worms than what is presented in the legacy media. Truth be told, no one knows the ins, outs, and reasoning behind the decision except for Jane Doe 22-B and Judge Jennifer Frydrychowicz.

In reading the First District Court panel’s decision, it states clearly that according to the parameters of the law concerning “nonadversarial proceedings,” any overturn of a judicial decision has to be based on Judge Frydrychowicz’s abuse of her discretionary power, and not on any weight of evidence one way or another.

The trial court found, based on the nonadversarial presentation below, that Appellant had not established by clear and convincing evidence that she was sufficiently mature to decide whether to terminate her pregnancy. Having reviewed the record, we affirm the trial court’s decision under the deferential standard of appellate review set out in the governing statute. § 390.01114(6)(b)2., Fla. Stat. (2022) (“The reason for overturning a ruling on appeal must be based on abuse of discretion by the court and may not be based on the weight of the evidence presented to the circuit court since the proceeding is a nonadversarial proceeding.”).

The entire panel chose to side with Frydrychowicz’s original ruling. What is allowed is for a request for remand back to the trial court for further guidance and boundaries on the ruling. Two of the panel judges clearly stated:

We note that section 390.01114 allows for a remand to the trial court with instructions for a further ruling, but no such remand is warranted here. See id.

Judge Makar presented a partial dissent, requesting that remand be placed into consideration.

In a separate opinion, Judge Scott Makar wrote that “reading between the lines, it appears that the trial court wanted to give the minor, who was under extra stress due to a friend’s death, additional time to express a keener understanding of the consequences of terminating a pregnancy.” “This makes some sense given that the minor, at least at one point, says she was open to having a child, but later changed her view after considering her inability to care for a child in her current station in life,” Makar added.

First, Jane Doe 22-B indicated to Frydrychowicz that she was open to having the child; somewhere in this process (unclear of when) she changed her mind. This could well be interpreted as a lack of maturity to deal with the consequences of a pregnancy termination. Somehow, Makar disagreed.

Makar also noted that in her petition, which “she completed by hand,” the teenager insisted “she is sufficiently mature to make the decision, saying she ‘is not ready to have a baby,’ she doesn’t have a job, she is ‘still in school,’ and the father is unable to assist her.”

Remember that 10-year old Ohio rape victim who was taken across state lines to Indiana in order to have an abortion? The death merchants and activists wanted to use this as a poster child on how awful it is that Roe was overturned, and how the Right and the anti-abortionists simply want to enslave and burden women.

After proper investigation and questioning by our sister site PJ Media and others, it was discovered that the rapist of the 10-year-old was the mother’s 27-year-old illegal alien boyfriend, and the facts of the case did not line up with the legacy media outcry or the Indiana abortion doctor’s report. There was definitely lawbreaking that occurred—mostly by the mother and the abortion doctor—but the case had nothing to do with the young girl’s inability to get an abortion in Ohio.

What happened to that poor little girl? What happened to her mother? What happened to the rapist? As is typical of the Left and their complicit media allies, when the narrative no longer fits the agenda, it gets memory-holed quickly.

Looking under the hood of the case of Jane Doe 22-B, it appears there is more than the Left wants to be exposed. From my perspective, it’s a back-door attempt to use this case to erode SB 404 and the Florida Constitutional amendment protecting parental rights and consent, as well as upholding life.

Of course, it’s all Ron DeSantis’ fault.

“Thanks to Ron DeSantis, Florida is now forcing a teenager to give birth against her will,” Florida Democratic Party spokesman Travis Reuther said in a statement. “That is an appalling and dangerous overreach by the Governor, who claims to represent the ‘free state of Florida,’ but wants to make women’s healthcare decisions for them.”

Florida law, Travis. As a lawmaker, if you don’t like it, then work to change it.

NBC News has reached out to DeSantis for a response.

Abortion rights in Florida were endangered even before the Supreme Court in June overturned Roe v. Wade. In April, DeSantis signed into law a measure banning abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, a measure that is being challenged in court.

So, it sounds like the clock is still ticking for Jane Doe 22-B, particularly since the last court challenge to Florida’s 15-week abortion ban was denied, and is in place while it winds up to the Florida Supreme Court.

The law, passed by the Florida Legislature and signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in April, banned most abortions after the 15th week of pregnancy. Pregnant women can still get an abortion if their health is threatened or if their baby has a “fatal fetal abnormality.” A pregnant woman is also required to wait 24 hours after a doctor’s visit to get an abortion.

So, both pro-life and pro-abortion activists and advocates are watching the outcome of this case closely.

It always amazes me that the same people crying that guns should not be in the hands of anyone younger than 21 years of age are also demanding that 16 year olds have the right to abortion, and three year olds are mature enough to choose their gender and should have access to puberty blockers without parental consent.

It is this schizophrenic reasoning (or lack thereof) that compounds the already difficult circumstances of Jane Doe 22-B.