A Leap Backwards in Time
Reproductive Rights and Justice

A Leap Backwards in Time

 

The Foreseen Horror 

I remember once hearing a common urban myth. If you put a frog in boiling water, it would immediately leap out. However, if you placed that frog in cold water, which you slowly heated up, it would remain there until it boiled.

 

 

Although an urban myth, it appears painfully relevant now. 

With over fifty years of bullying, lobbying, and stacking of the legislative, executive, and judicial branches, from the far right, the recent ruling issued from the USA’s top court, while no less horrific in its magnitude and implications, was the ever-present heating of the water all around us.

 

 

Last Friday, the US Supreme Court voted to overturn the 1973 landmark ruling Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion nationwide.

The case; Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization, in which Mississippi’s only abortion clinic challenged the state’s effort to ban abortion after 15 weeks; saw the destruction of nearly 50 years of precedent.

 

 

Writing for the majority; pertaining Justices Clarence Thomas, Brett Kavanaugh, Amy Coney Barrett, and Neil Gorsuch; Associate Justice Samuel Alito recognized no such right within the constitution, which guaranteed abortion access. 

 

 

On the other hand, conservative Chief Justice John Roberts, while supporting the Mississippi ban, voiced that they would not have overruled Roe v. Wade. What minuscule comfort that will afford the millions of women across the country, whose rights are not as inalienable as the nation likes to purport they are, is beyond me.  

 

 

Opposing the ruling were the three liberal Justice Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan, who noted that said decision would discard women’s rights from the moment of fertilization.  

 

In contrast, however, the Court’s majority opinion appears not to represent the very nation they claim to serve. 

 

 

 

Also read: Texas Abortion Law: Women’s Rights Are Under Attack, Again

 

  

A Voiceless Population 

A CBS/YouGov poll has demonstrated that, by greater than a 20-point margin, Americans viewed the decision as regressive, with women, by more than three to one, deciding that said ruling will make women’s lives worse, as opposed to improving them.

 

 

What’s more, as a forecast of further dangers to come, those unfriendly towards Friday’s ruling are prone to think that the Supreme Court will someday curtail or limit, gay-sex, same-sex-marriage and birth control accessibility. 

 

 

Regrettably, such a prediction appears on the cards as, in a separate opinion penned by Justice Thomas, he prompted his fellow justices to reconsider other court cases which established the right to gay sex, gay marriage, and the right to access contraception.

 

 

As the facade of impartiality falls away from the highest court of the land, the broken, malicious, and sadistic nature of the system remains for all to see, along with experiencing the fallout of said ruling. 

A fallout that proceeds without pause.

 

 

Immediate & Short Term Impact 

The decision will have devastating immediate and short-term consequences, as a study produced prior to the ruling estimated that as many as 100,000 women would be unable to access abortion within the primary year of the ban, with 75,000 of those women giving birth as a consequence.

 

 

Forced to bear a child that is unwanted, possibly the product of rape or incest, curtailing the futures and women across the country, along with the psychological and physiological harm that can come from this, is nothing but cruel. 

 

 

Cruelty shared by others in power as, in line with the above, States are wasting no time with at least 26 of whom had already, or are likely to do so, made moves to halt all abortion-related activity in their territory, according to the Guttmacher Institute. 

 

 

The arcachic ruling made, along with associated measures, however, have not avoided a fierce response.

 

 

 

Backlash

The Supreme Court ruling has galvanized Democrat voters to participate in the upcoming mid-term elections, along with, more so now, them favoring a nationwide federal law that would legalize abortion.

 

 

Furthermore, at the authority level, across the US, dozens of elected prosecutors have added their signature to a letter affirming their commitment to not launch legal proceedings against those who have an abortion, including certain officials in states where there would certainly be an abortion ban.

 

 

Despair & Hope

While the ruling, and certain states’ responses, have caused nothing but anguish to those whose rights have been viewed as nothing more than a political football since the nation’s inception, there is hope.

 

Aside from the midterm elections, which will be the populous’s best hope in safeguarding reproductive rights at the federal level, there is grassroots level action.

 

Protests, strikes, and mass mobilization are tools used for countless years throughout human history. 

 

Allowing the streets to witness the anger of those whose rights are stripped away and abused so easily, women can make the nation and world hear their voices.

 

 

Shake the establishment until it sees reason. 

 

My body. My Choice. 

 

 

 

 

Also read: Decriminalization of Abortion in Mexico Might have a Ripple Effect Across Latin America and Beyond

I am an anti-capitalist feminist who wants the world to shout, scream and push us towards a better future. I work to highlight systemic socio-economic and political issues, across the globe. I do this by connecting the contemporary landscape with its foundational horrors, as to explain why we are where we are, in addition to how we may navigate out of it. You can read my blogs and find more of my work at https://medium.com/@simrunjitbans.

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