Abortion Should be a Woman’s Choice

As Supreme Court justice nominee, Samuel Alito, moves one step closer to nomination, the question that is left ringing in the ears of most women is, will he have the power to overturn Roe v. Wade?

Will I still have the right to legally choose abortion in this country?

It is, for me, and countless other women, a very scary prospect. What is even scarier is the rather passive reaction to these attacks by the leading pro-choice organizations of Planned Parenthood and the National Organization of Women.

We are left wondering what we can do to fight for our civil right to choose, other than sending the odd email to our senators or congressmen. And judging from the Democrats unwillingness to openly speak out against Alito or to filibuster his nomination, these letters and emails will do little in the fight to win abortion rights.

I am left remembering the radical women’s liberation movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s that marched in the streets, demanded legal abortion on command without apology.

It was precisely this organized and radical fight back against sexism and women’s oppression that won abortion rights in the first place. However, ever since Roe v. Wade was passed, roll back after rollback has been made on abortion, with little fight back from what became the leading abortion rights organizations.

Abortion rights have digressed so much that today, in the state of Vermont, abortions are only performed at one clinic (Planned Parenthood here in Burlington) and only one day a month. This means that it is extremely difficult for a woman living in Brattleboro to be able to make it up to Burlington on that one specific day, having to take time off work, etc. Basically, even though abortion is still legal, they are extremely hard to come by.

And now even the basic right to abortion is at stake. A strong fight back is needed. We need to make sure that the people in power know that they do not have control over our bodies – that our health and right to a life we choose should not be controlled by laws decided by a few people sitting on high in the Supreme Court.

We need to foster the anger that so many women are feeling, and demand to keep abortion legal – not only that, but we need to up the ante, and echo what our sisters of the Women’s Liberation movement demanded: free abortion on demand, without apology!

Over three decades ago, ordinary women stood up and said that they deserved equal rights and the abilities to control their own bodies. We need to do this again, to make sure that the next generation won’t have to relive these battles.

Anyone who is interested in helping to build a solid front against abortion restrictions and for women’s rights, come to a meeting of the International Socialist Organization to discuss the implications of Alito’s nomination and what we can do, Wed. Feb. 1st at 7:30 pm in Lafayette 102.