Well, first, a premise is an assumption proposed as a starting point and an interpretation is the meaning derived from a communication after the fact, so they are two very different things. And since I used her exact words, I wasn’t providing an interpretation. That’s why I felt confident I did not misinterpret (to BKS) what she was saying.
But if you are interested to know how I interpreted her words for myself, then sure, I can translate her language into my own if you like. For example, where she cites the Court in Casey as having acknowledged “the State’s power to restrict abortions after fetal viability, if the law contains exceptions for pregnancies which endanger the woman’s life or health” I took that to mean she felt the court had already established that the state legitimately has the power to restrict abortions after fetal viability so long as there are exceptions for medically necessitated abortions to address danger to the life or health of the carrier. (I don’t say ‘woman’, as Ginsburg did, in consideration of young pregnant teens and those who are not fully female either physically or in gender identity.) Or where she says “the State has legitimate interests from the outset of the pregnancy in protecting the health of the woman and the life of the fetus that may become a child.” I took that to mean the state has two independent interests–one in protecting the [carrier] and the other in protecting the life of the fetus (if it has the potential to become a child). I did not take that to mean the state has a conjoined interest in protecting the two as one. My reasoning there does not come from Ginsburg herself, but from common sense. I think she referred to “the fetus that may become a child” for two reasons. One is to emphasize that a fetus is not a child, and as such does not have the full status (and protections) of legal personhood. The other is that some fetuses will sometimes have something seriously wrong with them. They are alive, but they do not have the potential to become a child. I think Ginsburg was suggesting that in such cases, the state does not have a legitimate interest in protecting the life of a fetus where it does not have the potential to become a child. And if that’s the case, it would make sense for the state interests in protecting the life of the carrier and fetus to be segregated. If they were conjoined, then that would mean the state ceases to have a legitimate interest in protecting the lives of both the carrier and the fetus in cases where the fetus does not have the potential to become a child. And I’m pretty sure Ginsburg would strenuously reject such a notion.
In my view, the main problem in Ginsburg’s formulation is that it is ambiguous what she means by “may” become a child. In her view, the state’s interest in protecting the fetus begins at the onset of pregnancy. This makes some sense in cases where, for example, pollutants, contaminants, disease vectors, physical trauma, drugs or intoxicants could induce early developmental problems which could cause damage that might carry over into personhood, and cause permanent harm to a future member of society, and thus, potentially harm or burden society. So could the state tell a pregnant woman that she has to curtail her alcohol consumption even if the woman fully intends to abort? Does “may become a child” cease to apply once there is the intent to abort? If it ceases to apply, then there is nothing about that which inherently restricts it to early pregnancy, in which case the mere intent to abort a viable late term fetus would also strip the state of its interest in protecting its life. But if the intent to abort does not strip the state of its interest in protecting the life of the fetus, then there is nothing about that which inherently restricts it to late pregnancy, in which case the state’s interest in protecting the life of the fetus could extend to banning even early abortions (except those which are deemed medically necessary). I’m pretty sure neither of those outcomes would set well with Ginsburg.
But I’m still curious why you would refer me to Ginsburg’s dissent in the first place, suggesting that I might find it interesting. Even if you hadn’t read where I had already quoted from this opinion, the Brooks article that Totten was reacting to was only about late term abortion bans, and these bans have been including exceptions for the life and physical well-being of the carrier–which means they are, effectively, only bans on late term abortions which are not medically necessary. That would appear to be entirely in keeping with the principles set forth in the Ginsburg opinion, in which case presumably she would not find these late term bans Constitutionally objectionable. Is that what you were hinting at?