The fight for abortion rights takes to the streets across the US on Saturday, with hundreds of demonstrations planned as part of a new “Women’s March” aimed at countering an unprecedented conservative offensive to restrict the termination of pregnancies Is.
The fight has intensified as Texas adopted a law on September 1 that banned nearly all abortions, sparked a de facto legal guerrilla war and a counterattack in Congress, but with few public demonstrations so far.
Two days before the US Supreme Court, which will make a final decision on the contentious issue, due to reparations, nearly 200 organizations have called on abortion rights defenders to make their voices heard from coast to coast.
The major event will be held in the nation’s capital, Washington, where thousands are expected to march to the Supreme Court, which nearly 50 years ago in its historic Row v. Wade verdict recognized women’s right to abortion.
The court, now lined with conservative justices by former President Donald Trump, is set to go in the opposite direction.
It has already refused to block Texas law and has accepted to review a restrictive Mississippi law that could provide an opportunity to reverse its precedent.
Rallies are planned in the capitals of these two conservative states, Austin and Jackson, as well as in more than 600 cities in all 50 states. According to organisers, around 1.25 million people are expected across the United States.
“Together, we are joining hands to advocate for a country where abortion is not just legal – it is accessible, affordable and defamatory,” organizers of the Rally for Abortion Justice said in a statement.
The group called on Congress to ensure abortion rights in federal law, to protect them from any possible reversal by the Supreme Court.
A bill to that effect was adopted a week ago in the House of Representatives, which is controlled by Democrats but has no chance of passing the Senate where Republicans have enough votes to block it.
In 2017, the first “Women’s March” was held a day after Trump’s inauguration, rallying millions of opponents of the Republican billionaire who had been accused of sexism.
Since then, due to internal divisions over allegations of anti-Semitism leveled against one of the organisers, other demonstrations have failed to turn out in such large numbers.
But that page seems to have been turned.
“This year, we are united with a coalition of nearly 200 organisations,” the organizers said. Participants will include small feminist groups, community and local organizations as well as family planning giants, Planned Parenthood.
“We are once again taking to the streets for the first time in the (Joe) Biden era,” the statement read. “Because change in the Oval Office hasn’t stopped the political, perverse and patriarchal desire to regulate our bodies. If anything, it has intensified.”
That growth has been fueled by Trump’s appointment of three conservative justices to the Supreme Court, prompting local conservative elected officials across the country to launch an anti-abortion campaign.
So far this year, 19 states have adopted 63 laws restricting access to abortion.
If the High Court reverses Roe v. Wade, every state would be free to ban or allow abortion.
This would mean that 36 million women in 26 states — nearly half of American women of reproductive age — would lose their legal right to abortion, according to a Planned Parenthood report released Friday.