In a year filled with momentous events, from war to mass shootings, the decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to remove constitutional protection for abortion was equally consequential, if not more so. In its reversal of half a century of abortion rights, the justices outraged one group of Americans and gratified another.

The 200-plus pages of the opinion will be studied for years, even decades. And that’s because, as political scientist Morgan Marietta writes, the reversal of Roe shows a changed Supreme Court. While the past 50 years on the court were dominated by a view that the Constitution is a living document where “the meaning of the document’s language changes as the beliefs and values of Americans change,” now the court is dominated by virtually the opposite view, writes Marietta, who teaches at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell.

In this view, and in the opinion overruling Roe, “the Constitution is static until officially altered by amendment” and “does not evolve on its own without public approval.”

Which means, ultimately, that the battles over what were once considered protected rights move from the Supreme Court to states. Where you live will now determine whether you can get an abortion, writes Marietta. And possibly, in the future, whom you can marry.

We have a range of stories today for you on the court’s decision, from what it will mean for state courts to what happens now that so-called “trigger laws” have been triggered.

We’ll be having much more for you on these complicated topics in the next few days; if you have any particular aspects you feel need to be explained by experts, please reply to this email.

Naomi Schalit

Senior Editor, Politics + Society

Anti-abortion protestors celebrate the overturning of Roe v. Wade outside the US Supreme Court on June 24. Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

‘A revolutionary ruling — and not just for abortion:’ A supreme court scholar explains the impact of Dobbs

Morgan Marietta, UMass Lowell

A Supreme Court scholar untangles the ideas that undergird the historic ruling overturning the Constitutional right to an abortion.

Temporary security fencing surrounds the U.S. Supreme Court building, ahead of its decision on abortion. Stefani Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

State courts from Oregon to Georgia will now decide who – if anyone – can get an abortion under 50 different state constitutions

Stefanie Lindquist, Arizona State University

State supreme courts have a relatively low profile in the US. That’s going to change now that they will be under political pressure to decide whether abortion is protected in state constitutions.