The U.S. Supreme Court's decision to strike down Roe v. Wade on Friday will have far-reaching implications that will ripple throughout the entire country.
Ultimately this decision makes the decision to keep or end a woman's pregnancy political and up to the states to decide, Laurie Zoloth, Professor of Religious Ethics at the University of Chicago, said to KCBS Radio's Melissa Culross just minutes after the decision was announced.
"It takes away the federal protections that Roe v. Wade provided for people to make their own decisions or decisions with their clergymen – with their rabbi, with their imam, with their pastor, and their doctor – and makes it a matter of state law," she said.
Each state will now make its own determinations as to when life begins, and when pregnancies have to go forward.
"This is essentially a theological decision," she said.
For instance, Jewish people abide by a different set of rules than other faiths. "There are times in the life of a Jewish woman in which pregnancy has to be ended to protect the life and the health of the mother," said Zoloth, who's Jewish herself.
Which is allowed under the Jewish set of laws, she said. The Supreme Court decision effectively eliminates the right of this group of women to choose.
"It's choosing one religious idea of when life begins in many states and making that a matter of law," said Zoloth.
The decision also ignores the implications of women becoming trapped by pregnancies they don’t want, setting aside needs for care and support, which are also often religious ideals.
"It goes right against the notion of religious freedom," Zoloth said, "because there are many religious traditions that say not only is abortion permitted, but it can be mandated in some cases."
This decision may cause people of faith to increasingly engage in acts of civil disobedience. "It happened before," she said, "it happened before Roe v. Wade, and it will happen again."