As reproductive freedom is imperiled by the U.S. Supreme Court’s right-wing supermajority and Republican-led state legislatures, advocates rallied in Washington, D.C. on Saturday — the 49th anniversary of the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling — while abortion rights supporters called on lawmakers to pass legislation to codify Roe as the “law of the land.”
Rights defenders gathered outside the U.S. Supreme Court in the nation’s capital, where Sam Goldman of Rise Up for Abortion Rights and Refuse Fascism led demonstrators in chanting, “We refuse to let the Supreme Court decimate women’s rights and their humanity.”
“We refuse to go back,” the crowd roared. “No surrender! Abortion on demand and without apology!”
“It’s the 49th anniversary of Roe v. Wade and if we don’t fight like hell it could very well be the last,” Goldman warned.
Nancy Northrup, CEO, Center for Reproductive Rights said in a statement Saturday that “it seems Roe is just barely hanging on by a thread.”
“The United States stands in stark contrast to the rest of the world, where we’ve seen a trend of liberalizing abortion laws over the last 25 years,” she noted. “Most recently… Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled to decriminalize abortion. South Korea liftedIts abortion ban, which dates back to 1968, was repealed in 2018 The people of Ireland are now able to enjoy 2018 overwhelmingly voted to repeal the country’s constitutional ban on abortion.”
“The United States is an outlier, moving down a dangerous and backward path of regression of rights protections,” Northrup added.
Get involved in the fight for abortion rights!
Abortion on demand, without apology! https://t.co/KJuiY9es39
— Refuse Fascism (@RefuseFascism) January 22, 2022
Prominent U.S. lawmakers joined activists to call for the codification, by the passage of the legislation, of reproductive rights. House-approved Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA), which, as Right to Decide CEO Dr. Raegan McDonald Mosley explains, establishes “a right to abortion care across the country” while enshrining “the right for people to receive abortion care without medically unnecessary restrictions, such as mandatory waiting periods, biased counseling, and mandatory ultrasounds.”
Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.) tweeted Saturday: “It’s difficult to think that my daughter’s generation may not have the same freedoms as mine or my mother’s. Reproductive justice is essential to social equity and an individual’s economic security. The Senate must act by passing the Women’s Health Protection Act.”
Abortion bans don’t stop abortions, they just make them harder and riskier to get. It is about life and death. It’s about racial, economic, and gender equality. It’s about reproductive freedom. https://t.co/fv8rZ4w7Nn
— Rep. Barbara Lee (@RepBarbaraLee) January 22, 2022
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) tweetedThat “abortion is a constitutional right, period. If men were giving birth, this would be a questionable situation. We must stand up and defend a woman’s right to control her own body. We must pass legislation to codify. Roe v. Wade as the law of the land.”
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) tweeted: “I grew up in an America where abortions were illegal, but those with resources still got them. Roe v. WadeSaved lives and helped millions to take control of the future. We can’t let Republicans turn back the clock. We must pass #WHPA, and codify. Roe.”
Roe V. Wade, which was issued 49 years ago, guaranteed the right to an unplanned pregnancy. Fast forward to today and abortion rights are under direct attack.
Let’s end the filibuster, pass the Women’s Health Protection Act, and safeguard the right to abortion. pic.twitter.com/WjJfO0GVlm
— Pramila Jayapal (@PramilaJayapal) January 22, 2022
Saturday also saw a large anti-abortion demonstration rallies and marchesAll across the U.S. RoeThe Supreme Court’s ruling this year will leave everything hanging in the balance Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health OrganizationA case involving Mississippi’s 15-week ban.
Planned Parenthood reports that in 2021, more than 100 laws limiting reproductive freedom were passed. One of the most severe is Texas’ six-week abortion ban, which does not allow for incest or sexual rape and offers incentives for vigilantes to report violations of the law.
“If Roe v. Wade is struck down, it’s estimated that 26 states would immediately move to outlaw abortion with ‘trigger laws’ that make abortion immediately illegal,” McDonald Mosley saidIn a statement Saturday.
“Other states have pre-Roe abortion bans on the books or have legislatures that would immediately pass laws to ban abortion,” she added. “The result would be devastating for those who lack the resources to travel to a state where abortion remains legal.”
Access to abortion is not guaranteed by the right to it. It has been difficult for many to access. Now it’s even worse. There were 600+ restrictions introduced in ’21 alone, and 100+ were signed into law – a RECORD number in the last 49 years. #RoeAnniversary pic.twitter.com/FI4CCN7nIY
— Planned Parenthood (@PPFA) January 22, 2022
Rise Up for the Abortion Rights, acknowledging that transgender people and gender non-binary people can also become pregnant and have abortions. said:
The attack on abortion rights forms part of a patriarchal Christian fascist plan that targets contraception as well LGBTQ rights.
Denying the right to abortion hits poor women, and especially Black and other women of color, with vicious consequence—tightening the chains of both white supremacy and the subjugation of women.
Women are forced to have children against their will if they are denied the right to abort. This reduces women to baby-making machines, which can cause horrific physical, emotional, societal and psychic violence. Inducing women to have unplanned and/or dangerous pregnancies is a big deal. It takes away their bodies, safety, sexual autonomy, aspirations, and life-long relationships in the service patriarchal dominance.
While numerous GOP-led states continue their assault on reproductive freedom, others — notably California and Vermont — are moving to protect reproductive rightsLegislation or policy implementation.
“It is fundamentally wrong to have access to safe and essential abortion care dependent on what state you live in and/or how much money you make,” said Power to Decide’s McDonald Mosley. “It is time we pass the Women’s Health Protection Act.”
🚨ACTION ALERT: Today is 49 years old. #SCOTUSThe Constitution of the U.S. guaranteed the right to abort. However, that right is being challenged today. Many people consider abortion a right in title only. pic.twitter.com/NglqGlcDs2
— Center for Reproductive Rights (@ReproRights) January 22, 2022
“We urge the immediate passage of this critical legislation in order to prevent states from turning the clock back on all the progress made since Roe v. Wade was decided,” she added. “We must also demand that state policymakers protect coverage and access to abortion care. This is how we can ensure that all people can achieve reproductive wellbeing.”