Reproductive rights supporters rally across the country : NPR

Reproductive rights supporters rally across the country : NPR


Protesters hold up signs during an abortion rights demonstration Saturday in New York City.

Jeenah Moon/AP


hide caption

toggle caption

Jeenah Moon/AP


Protesters hold up signs during an abortion rights demonstration Saturday in New York City.

Jeenah Moon/AP

Thousands of reproductive rights supporters are gathering Saturday at rallies across the country following the leak this month of a draft Supreme Court opinion that would overturn Roe v. Wade.

The draft opinion has sparked a wave of protests. More than 100 Bans off Our Bodies rallies are set to take place Saturday across the United States, from Hawaii, to California to Oklahoma to Washington, D.C.

If Roe v. Wade were overturned, at least 26 states are “certain or likely” to ban abortions, according to data from Guttmacher Institute, a research group that supports abortion rights. That could affect 36 million women, in addition to more people who can become pregnant, Planned Parenthood says.

In Washington, activists have been rallying at the Supreme Court steps since the night the draft opinion was leaked. As many as 17,000 people are expected on the National Mall for the Bans off Our Bodies demonstration, NBC4 Washington reported.

Ann Hoffman stands near the Washington Monument on Saturday.

Liz Baker/NPR


hide caption

toggle caption

Liz Baker/NPR


Ann Hoffman stands near the Washington Monument on Saturday.

Liz Baker/NPR

Ann Hoffman, 79, was among those on the National Mall on Saturday. She tells NPR she has been involved in advocating for abortion rights since the 1970s. In Hoffman’s eyes, marching might not make a difference to the Supreme Court, but it can show “that people really care.”

“It’s only the most important issue there is right now because if the leaked opinion becomes the final opinion,” she said, “it could affect all kinds of rights — not just the right of choice but the right to health care.”

Anna Lulis holds a sign that reads “women’s rights begin in the womb” in Washington, D.C.

Liz Baker/NPR


hide caption

toggle caption

Liz Baker/NPR


Anna Lulis holds a sign that reads “women’s rights begin in the womb” in Washington, D.C.

Liz Baker/NPR

Anna Lulis, a 24-year-old from Virginia, was also in the crowd. She works with Students for Life of America and was part of a small group of counterprotesters who hope Roe v. Wade is overturned.

“We wanted to make sure people knew that there was a presence out here that wasn’t pro-abortion,” Lulis told NPR. “The pro-life side, we wanted to show the Supreme Court justices that we’re here and we support them and we hope that they make the right decision.”

Abortion rights supporters march into downtown following a rally in Union Park on Saturday in Chicago.

Scott Olson/Getty Images


hide caption

toggle caption

Scott Olson/Getty Images


Abortion rights supporters march into downtown following a rally in Union Park on Saturday in Chicago.

Scott Olson/Getty Images

Meanwhile in Chicago, hundreds of protesters gathered in a park near the city’s downtown, chanting “abortion is health care” and “abortion justice.”

Paula Thornton Greear, with Planned Parenthood of Illinois, was among those in the crowd.

“We are here to say abortion is health care and to make that fact known while destigmatizing it as well,” Greear said.

Jessica Holcomb, a 31-year-old high school band director from Indianapolis, attended the Chicago rally with a big group of friends. Holcomb held a sign with a slogan she said she found online: “My body is not a democracy, it is an empire and I am the dictator.”

“Sometimes people think they have the right to decide for you and really it should be your choice,” Holcomb told NPR. “Bodily autonomy is a fundamental right and nothing should take that away from you.”

Rachel O’Leary Carmona, executive director of Women’s March, said the demonstrations can help build “community power.”

“Our role is to try to make our voices heard,” she told NPR.

Share:

Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
LinkedIn
Rachel Meadows

Rachel Meadows

Trending topics news writer who enjoys cooking, walking her dog and travel.

Related Posts