NAME Statement on Overturning of Roe V. Wade
NAME Statement on the Overturning of ROE V. WADE
Like much of America, the NAME views the U.S. Supreme Court’s 6-3 ruling on June 24 overturning the nearly 50-year-old Roe v. Wade decision as a devastatingly backward move against women’s rights.
The decision by the majority conservative court means that abortion no longer is legal nationwide. The ruling sends the issue of how to regulate abortion back to the states. Already, 13 states across the country are enacting “trigger laws” that will ban abortions within 30 days. Several other states are expected to pass similar legislation, affecting about half of the nation.
This is despite a Pew Research Center study in June 2022 showing that 61 percent of adult Americans “say abortion should be legal in all or most cases.” The fervent political activism of anti-abortion groups, however, has chiseled and chipped away at Roe v. Wade since it became the law of the land in 1973. The court then held that a woman had the right under the 14th Amendment to decide for herself whether or not to bring a pregnancy to term.
The high court’s decision to reverse that is a tremendous setback for women’s rights, making them unable to determine health outcomes involving their own bodies. NAME realizes, though, that the court’s recent action won’t stop women from seeking abortions. Before Roe v. Wade, an estimated 1.2 million American women had illegal abortions, and an estimated 5,000 American women died each year from those unsafe procedures. NAME knows that no one wants to return to that time period in American history.
U.S. President Joe Biden on the day of the ruling called the Supreme Court decision “a sad day for the court and the country.” NAME backs Biden, who added: “Let’s be very clear, the health and life of women across this nation are now at risk.”
The president also said, “the court has done what it’s never done before — expressly taking away a constitutional right that is so fundamental to so many Americans.”
But the question after the leaked Supreme Court draft earlier this year and the official opinion this summer is what happens now to women who find themselves confronting an unwanted pregnancy. Planned Parenthood remains a stalwart in this ongoing struggle offering vital information for women in need.
Planned Parenthood first advises women with a trusted health care provider to determine how far along their pregnancy might be so they can better understand their options, including traveling to another state where abortions remain legal. For lower income women, particularly women of color, having the money for travel and the procedure may seem as impossible as walking on the moon. Planned Parenthood and other organizations are available to offer guidance and help.
Also, unlike the period before Roe v. Wade, abortion pills provide a safer alternative to in-clinic abortions for women. But Planned Parenthood advises women to know the legal risks involved before pursuing the “self-managed abortion.”
The issue of abortion has been a highly contentious and emotional in the United States long before Roe v. Wade. It remains so today and will continue as such long after the current ruling. NAME knows that first and foremost, the country has to grapple with ensuring that all children born into the United States are welcomed, loved, properly cared for and educated so that all life is valued and respected.
The nation is far from that goal. Yet, that has to remain the goal.
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