Next Week is the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion inUnited States
Over the past 40 years we have seen opponents make numerous attempts to overturn the Roe v. Wade decision and to outlaw public funding for abortion care entirely, but recently, these efforts have become way too extreme. Government funding for abortions has been illegal since the Hyde Amendment passed in 1976, but it’s so much more than that. If public funding was outlawed, no woman could use her private insurance to cover an abortion. In a society with the internet and technology more present and user friendly– and therefore influential–than ever before, we’ve seen more and more women and girls taking matters into their own hands; risking their lives because they are denied access to safe and legal abortions.
According to the Guttmacher Institute’s 2012 Report, currently 26 states mandate abstinence-only education. It baffles me that politicians in those states could possibly be against abortion when they’re not even educating their constituents on sexual health in the first place. Before we can even have an abortion debate (although I don’t believe there ever should be one) we need to look critically about how states in our nation chose to educate their young people.
It is now more important than ever that we stand behind Roe v. Wade and fight tooth and nail to keep it around because it has helped so many women. Opponents are trying every tactic in the book, even attacking the building specifications of facilities that offer abortions and trying to require building alterations that are so expensive these facilities couldn’t keep operating. This would ultimately affect women that would need to use their insurance to obtain the abortion.
This also relates to women that never received options for contraceptives, and are now facing an unintended pregnancy that they can’t possibly support. Outlawing Roe v. Wade would affect all women negatively, especially women in communities of lower socioeconomic status. Politicians and several religious groups see abortion as valid only in instances of rape and danger to the life of the mother, but they are in the minority. Abortion care is often a necessary medical procedure and the majority of the country sees it as valid and important; access to it shouldn’t be restricted for only those who can afford it. Neither should it be outlawed at all because women will seek other unsafe ways to obtain the care they need. Currently a campaign is going on Tumblr entitled “Not In her shoes,” where women send pictures from all over the country discussing why abortion should be kept safe and legal.
We need to protect Roe v. Wade now more than ever because individuals and groups of every persuasion are trying to control a woman’s body, and citing things like “legitimate rape ” can’t result in pregnancy. With individuals like this in our public offices it’s imperative that we stand up for every woman so that she may the best decisions for her own body. So I shout Roe v. Wade for another 100 years and beyond!!!
To read more on the Roe v. Wade anniversary check out: The Pew Forum