Like many of you I was not very surprised when the Supreme Court overturned the landmark case of Roe vs. Wade on Thursday, June 24, 2022. I still held out hope that the landmark case that made abortion legal for 49 years would still prevail. But the court ruled in a 5 – 4 conservative majority in Dobbs vs. Jackson’s Women’s Health Organization with Justice Samuel Alito leading the opinion to overturn Roe and put the decision of abortion back in the hands of the states. There are eight states that immediately banned all forms of abortion and then 13 states have “trigger laws” that go into place 30 days after the ruling. Then there are five more states that will more than likely input some kind of ban on abortion. Justice Samuel Alito, stated that, “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start.” He felt that the decision was weak from the start, and it divided the country in many respects. This will also affect some forms and access to contraception for many women.
What this means is the most vulnerable women – who are adults will lose access to healthcare and some will have to have carry an unwanted pregnancy, to full term. The poorest women in the country will no longer have access to a healthy abortion and they will once again be the marginalized group of people who are disproportionately facing poverty and discrimination. Some women could face criminal charges for trying to deal with a very private and personal decision. There will even be healthcare providers who will be prosecuted for trying to help women have a choice about their own bodies.
What this decision means is that women no longer have complete autonomy over what happens to their bodies. Their families can be ridiculed and shamed for trying to make the best decision for their particular family at the time. No one wants to be put in a situation where they are the mercy of a state government that really does not care about them. This decision means that more women will rely on back-alley abortions and the infant mortality rate and female mortality rate will increase. It means that decisions that were once private or no longer a private matter. This decision will likely cause the poverty rate to increase because women make up 47.7 % of the global workforce. Most of the progressive economics in the world allow abortions on demand in the 1st, 2nd and in most instances 3rd trimesters. They know that women need fair and equal access to healthcare and an abortion is considered healthcare. If you deny women control of their biological autonomy with unnecessary restrictions then, you limit their ability to earn a living for their families. This will affect the economy of the country in the long run. This can cause the female to live below the poverty line and raise children that live below the poverty line.
This decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade means to me a return to a time when women were considered second class citizens. It means that we must fight that much harder for women’s reproductive rights and young girls and women will no longer have the same protection under that law that I grew up with. It is time to tell the Supreme Court and Congress that you do not control a female’s body and you do not have the right to tell them what to do with their bodies. You see women who have the money can travel to another state and obtain a legal abortion but, a poor woman does not have the same option. It is time to say no to such outdated laws and philosophy. It is time to realize that woman have the same rights and abilities to live a free and fulling lives as most American citizens and to stop denying access to healthcare for women to limit their potential. It is time to say no to the ultra-conservative movement in this country. It is time to fight for women’s rights.