After a pro-life stunt stole Tuesday morning headlines in San Francisco, reproductive rights supporters will gather at the Federal Building for a 5 p.m. rally to protect the imperiled, 49-year-old Supreme Court Roe v. Wade precedent.
Multiple groups, including Women’s March, the National Mobilization for Reproductive Justice, and others organized nationwide action hours after news of a leaked draft opinion overturning Roe was first reported by Politico. The unprecedented leak appears to represent the most recent and significant step backward for reproductive rights, under a Supreme Court which shifted rightward after three consecutive Republican appointments and the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Women’s March executive director Rachel O’Leary Carmona, called the draft decision a “worst-case scenario come to life”:
If and when this decision takes effect, the consequences will be unbearable — and for many women, lethal. That is no exaggeration. But it’s also no exaggeration to say that women will fight back like we always have. We won’t take this lying down.”
At the Supreme Court in Washington Tuesday, opposing groups of protesters were separated by a buffer zone as crowds grew on both sides to express themselves. Many of the antiabortion demonstrators had left by Tuesday afternoon, the Washington Post reported.
Protest action is planned for Tuesday evening in major cities including Seattle, Philadelphia, Chicago, Los Angeles, Austin, New York City and others. Advocacy group Rise Up 4 Abortion rights is also calling for a walkout from school and work Thursday at noon, and a national week of action and protest starting Sunday.
Jesse Garnier is the editor and founder of SFBay. A Mission District native, he also teaches journalism as associate professor at San Francisco State University.