Courtesy of Joe Flood via Flickr under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Following the leaked information that the right to an abortion may be challenged, on June 24 the Supreme Court ruled to overturn Roe v. Wade; a 1973 court ruling that protected abortions under the Constitution. The reversal of this ruling has caused backlash and disappointment in the United State’s government as those with a uterus now have less autonomy over their own bodies. While several other countries currently protect the right to a safe abortion, the U.S. is showing its citizens and the world that allowing religion to interfere in our politics is okay. Our government is continuing to police the bodies of minority groups who have consistently had less rights than cisgender males. This new norm has issued in a less progressive nation that does not value a person’s right to choose how and when they have a pregnancy.

Although this ruling has overturned the protected right to an abortion, 16 states currently protect them while 13 have trigger laws that have already gone into affect to no longer protect this right. Some states have already banned abortions causing legal battles and confusion to arise surrounding the issue. These states are now persecuting doctors and those involved in supporting abortions while others are requiring the review of a medical board or the court to determine if case by case abortions should be permitted. 

This reversal decision does not only affect abortions, but may lead to other court decisions that were also based on the right to privacy being reversed. Justice Clarence Thomas has already expressed that he plans to challenge access to contraceptions and the right to same-sex marriages. Roe v. Wade being overturned has proven to be a tipping point that will continue to limit and oppress minority groups who have been fighting since the birth of this nation for equal rights and recognition. 

With many upset and fearing for their futures in this country, the blame of this decision has fallen ultimately on the government as a whole. Former President Donald Trump packed the Supreme Court so it leaned to the right, but left-leaning politicians did not do enough to prevent it and are still not doing enough. Roe v. Wade could have been codified by President Joe Biden but was not. Now, Democrats are urging their supporters to donate money instead of working to pass legislation that will allow more protection of our rights. Instead, grassroots organizations have been at the forefront of combating this issue. The upcoming elections are now so much more important as people should add the abortion stance of those who run for office as another thing to consider when voting. 

Limiting access to abortions will not stop them, it will only limit access to safe abortions. This decision simply restricts the rights of people with a uterus. Abortions will continue to take place causing those seeking them to travel to states where they are legal or take matters into their own hands through unsafe procedures. This will unfairly disadvantage lower income and communities of color. 

Abortions are not just sought after in the case of a rape or medical emergency, a fact that the Supreme Court has chosen to ignore. Ultimately, persons who can get pregnant should be able to determine if they wish to continue with their pregnancy. This decision should not fall on men, lawmakers, religious leaders or those who simply disagree with the act. Abortions are a means of healthcare, and pro-life supporters often fail to support programs that aid these children once they are born — programs such as  welfare, foster care and gun control. 

The U.S. claims to have separation of church and state, but this decision has shown that religion may never be fully separated from the government. Christianity, along with other religions, is thousands of years old and the Bible does not even address abortion. The idea that life begins at its creation is wrong and science has proven that an embryo does not become a fetus until week 10 of a pregnancy. We should instead educate our population and critically examine religion so that it is modernized to support our current civilization and needs.

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