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Freedom of speech

Law and Gender

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

2013

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The North Carolina Woman’S Right To Know Act: An Unconstitutional Infringement On A Physician’S First Amendment Right To Free Speech, Ryan Bakelaar Jan 2013

The North Carolina Woman’S Right To Know Act: An Unconstitutional Infringement On A Physician’S First Amendment Right To Free Speech, Ryan Bakelaar

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The North Carolina Woman’s Right to Know Act represents the crossroads of the Supreme Court’s First Amendment, informed consent, and abortion-related jurisprudence. The Act requires physicians to perform an obstetric ultrasound, verbally convey specific information regarding ultrasonographic findings, and communicate a host of other information to patients seeking abortions. The purported goal of the Act is to ensure that physicians obtain appropriate informed consent from such patients. By compelling a physician to convey this information, the State violates the physician’s First Amendment rights. Indeed, the State may not compel an individual to convey the State’s ideological message. Further, any statute …