“It’s not the moment to be quiet. It’s not the moment to go home and fix your dinner and watch TV. This is the moment for you to march. It is a moment for you to be angry. It is a moment to let them know that we do care,” said Lakeesha Harris to the crowd at a pro-choice rally in New Orleans.
Men and women are condemning the recent moves by some state governments to severely restrict or even ban abortion in their states. Women all over America are saying “my body, my life, my choice.” Women have been fighting for centuries for the right to control their own lives and be treated equally in every aspect of life. Now the limited gains that women have made in America are under assault. Women are saying, “We Won’t Go Back,” “Stop the Ban,” and “Forced Gestation is Torture.”
Across the country, outrage is growing at the moral hypocrisy of this orchestrated, campaign to set back the movement for women’s rights and equality.
“To say you are pro-life because you block a woman’s right to choose and then block health care for pregnant women, children, persons with pre-existing conditions is the height of hypocrisy and looks nothing like the love of Jesus,” tweeted Rev. Dr. William Barber, a leader of the Poor People’s Campaign.
LaShawn Erby, a co-founder of the Black Lives Matter Lansing chapter, told a crowd protesting the attack on women’s rights in Lansing that women don’t need anyone policing their bodies and urged the people to become active in the upcoming election to enact progressive change.
“It’s like a war on poor people,” said a woman from Texas who described the restrictions on abortion in an interview with a branch of the Reuters news agency. Single and broke, she could not afford the $600 cost of a surgical abortion at a clinic. She had a self-induced abortion. “It sucked,” she said. “It was like we were back in the days of the Wild West, like we have to figure this out by ourselves and just grit our teeth and get through it.”
To deny millions of women safe, affordable reproductive health services and the right to choose is not only an outright attack on health care itself. It is a part of an overall assault on the growing women’s movement. For the past several years, women and their families have been in the streets demanding women’s equality and that government provide for the people, not corporate America. This movement has not gone unnoticed by the powerful, so it is being attacked.
“We need a society that cherishes and cares for every child, and a society that respects the rights of the women,” said Ethel Long Scott, Executive Director, Women’s Economic Agenda Project.