Public Health

Alito, Abortion, and Autonomy

Plus: ruminations on public health, misinformation, and media literacy


In the latest Reason Roundtable, editors Matt Welch, Peter Suderman, Katherine Mangu-Ward, and Nick Gillespie unpack the leaked draft opinion concerning abortion.

1:31: The great Dobbs debate

29:17: Weekly Listener Question: It seems to me that ostensibly "public health" or "public good" policies at their core often betray a deep condescension on the part of the "people in charge." In the case of cigarettes, Jacob Sullum says that the ban suggests that "consumers are no match for Big Tobacco's persuasive wiles," and similarly, it seems like a lot of the mis/disinformation discourse imagines the American public as empty vessels, just waiting to be filled with Russian propaganda, vaccine misinformation, claims of election fraud, or whatever the topic of the moment is, and assumes that people just simply aren't smart enough or capable to determine what's true from what isn't. Katherine touched on the importance of media literacy this week, and all of you have touched on it in different ways in other episodes, but I'd be interested in hearing more about how you see the role that personal responsibility should have in figuring out the quality of information.

46:27 Media recommendations for the week.

This week's links: 

"Josh Blackman: Sam Alito, Roe v. Wade, and Libertarians," by Nick Gillespie

"What the Leaked Abortion Opinion Gets Wrong About Unenumerated Rights," by Damon Root

"The Impact of Overturning Roe v. Wade Will Be Less Dramatic Than Abortion-Rights Activists Fear," by Jacob Sullum

"A Taxonomy To Measure Supreme Court Leaks," by Josh Blackman

"Marco Rubio Wants To Fight Abortion and Trans Battles in the Tax Code," by Joe Lancaster

Send your questions to Be sure to include your social media handle and the correct pronunciation of your name.

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Audio production by Robin Shore
Assistant production by Hunt Beaty
Music: "Angeline," by The Brothers Steve