You can see a graphic comparing the 35-foot clinic buffer zone with the Supreme Court’s luxurious 252-foot buffer zone here.
I’ve been to a couple national political conventions now where the “free speech zones” can hardly even be found by convention-goers. This has always struck me as questionable. And yet the slender measure of security afforded to visitors of Massachusetts’s abortion clinics, which have been subjected to horrific violence in the past, is unconstitutional? Seems like the justices are playing legal Calvinball here.
More recommended reading on McCullen v. Coakley: this piece and this other piece by Dahlia Lithwick on Slate. A key quote:
the First Amendment shouldn’t be a Trojan horse that swallows every other right that we cherish. I think the First Amendment and I need to see other people for a few days.
And yes, things have only gotten worse in the 24 hours since I drew this cartoon.