RiseUp4AbortionRights organized protests on December 1, the one-year anniversary of when the Supreme Court heard arguments as they prepared to overturn legal abortion in the Dobbs v Women’s Health case. The protests raised the Green Bandana (#Green4Abortion) which has become the international symbol of uncompromising struggle in the streets to demand:
THE OVERTURNING OF ABORTION RIGHTS WAS ILLEGITIMATE!
Women Need: LEGAL ABORTION on DEMAND & WITHOUT APOLOGY NATIONWIDE!
FORCED MOTHERHOOD = FEMALE ENSLAVEMENT
Sunsara Taylor (pictured above), a co-initiator of Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights and co-host of the RNL – Revolution, Nothing Less! – Show, said, in calling for the protest: “When they overturned abortion rights, the fascist majority on the Supreme Court insisted they were not banning abortion outright, ‘just’ sending it back to the states to decide. But a just society does not put women’s most fundamental rights – to their bodies, their reproduction, their very lives – up for a vote. Women are not incubators! Everyone who cares about women’s lives and the future overall needs to take up the Green Bandana and struggle in the streets for legal abortion on demand and without apology everywhere!”
Merle Hoffman, co-initiator of Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights and CEO/Founder of Choices Women’s Medical Center: “The illegitimate overturn of Roe has thrust every woman and girl in this country into second-class citizenship. We may live in so-called ‘safe states,’ but as long as one of us does not have the right to decide when or whether she will become a mother, none of us are safe and none of us are free. The right to reproductive justice is the front line and bottom line of women’s freedom. It is a fundamental right, and like the right of free speech, the right to worship, to vote, and to assemble, we cannot leave this decision, this transcendent right which is the moral property of women, to the prejudices and craven ambitions of state politicians. The Power of the State MUST stop at our skin!”
New York City:
Protesters rallied in front of the Thurgood Marshall United States Courthouse in Manhattan.
An attorney who formerly worked in the NYC prosecutor’s office spoke to the growing threat of women’s menstrual cycle being monitored by authorities via phone apps, women being investigated that have miscarriages for possible illegal abortions, and women leaving states where abortion is illegal being forced to prove they are not pregnant to prevent pregnant women from having an abortion out of state.
A protester dressed as the Grim Reaper held a sign of a woman that died when abortion was illegal and spoke about the women that will loose their lives in states where abortion is illegal.
A person read a statement that Dr. Heather Costello, an emergency room physician, had written about the medical and psychological dangers of forced pregnancy.
Another person spoke to how the overturning of the right to abortion and the continuing attacks on abortion rights are part of a growing fascist movement that is determined to criminalize abortion nationwide. Others spoke to how abortion bans are about controlling women, not about protecting “babies.” Some spoke to the devastating effect abortion bans are having on women and girls.
A high school student spoke about the need for people to be in the streets protesting like we did in the spring.
All of this was to make the point that people need to be in the streets in a Green Wave like the women in Latin America to force the government to restore legal abortion on demand and without apology nationwide.
On December 1st, a small group of Bay Area activists from RiseUp4AbortionRights, the Raging Grannies, Progressive Unity, and Ruth Sent Us held an action right after a storm in front of the San Francisco Federal Courthouse. The Raging Grannies had turned our demands for nationwide legal abortion into a musical art form and performed songs to strengthen our fighting spirit and resistance.
RiseUp activists incorporated an element of street theater to show the reality of what women and girls have to hear on a daily basis throughout this country, as well as what people fighting for abortion rights hear from those who find excuses NOT to join this fight and turn away. See photos and local coverage of this action here.
One of the activists was wearing bloody pants, had her hands covered in blood, and had a shirt on that said “YOUR NAME HERE” showing that the horrors of abortion bans are not just headlines of news articles – it can happen to anyone and it is ALREADY happening now in over a half of this country. She signified all those women, girls, and pregnant people whose lives are literally on the line right now. We invited other protesters to take cards with the excuses and the horrific things women have to hear. We asked people to read them out loud directly to the bleeding woman and to pin those cards onto her clothes.
Some of the cards read “You’ll be fine! Just wait for the next election and vote more democrats in!”, “If you didn’t want to get pregnant, you should’ve kept your legs closed!”, “It’s all God’s will! I’m praying for you!”. Other messages addressed the affects of abortion bans on access to life-saving medications for cancer, lupus and other illnesses in light of the fascist plans to revoke the FDA approval for the drugs used both for abortions and for the treatment mentioned above, as well as the denial and blindness of the false sense of safety people have in the “blue” states (“I live in a “blue” state, I don’t have to worry about it.”, “Stop making such a big deal out of it! We’ll always have abortion pills & sanctuary states!”)
Although we hear it on a daily basis, saying all of it out loud while looking into the eyes of a “dying” woman and seeing her covered in these pinned quotes had a powerful effect on people. Some of the Grannies in particular were moved to speak out afterward and shared their touching personal stories and their anger towards the way women are still treated in this country now.
Social Media – round up post
A NYC high school student who participated in the student walk outs before Roe was overturned spoke about the need for people to be in the streets protesting like we did in the spring.— Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights (@riseup4abortion) December 6, 2022
“If I can do it, you can do it too…”#RiseUp4AbortionRights #Green4Abortion#abortionrights pic.twitter.com/bIMItx9HPm