Abortion Rights: Now More Than Ever
Last week the Supreme Court's conservative members struck down Roe v Wade, rendering abortion illegal in nearly half of all US states.
Abortion is health care. And it is our fundamental human right and yours—no matter what anti-choice people say—to access this care if we encounter problems in a pregnancy, AND to make our own decisions whether to undergo an abortion.
Access to abortion means life instead of death to some who are pregnant, and can offer life opportunities to others. Not being able to access an abortion can have severe effects on mental as well as physical health and cause economic precarity that can last for life. This is especially the case for Black and Brown people who are pregnant, since racial disparities and economic status make all forms of health care more difficult for many to attain. Abortion saves lives.
Losing Roe v Wade is a strike against privacy rights as well as bodily autonomy—these two things are inextricably intertwined. Anti-abortion activists have spent 50 years teeing up this moment and using the Supreme Court as well as state governments to do their work. Roe v Wade is not the only social change we’ve seen since the mid-20th century that is at risk. The principles that gave us Roe also gave us legal birth control, decriminalized sexual conduct (gay and non-marital sex being two of the most notable), same-sex and interracial marriage, expanded trans rights, and much more. It is not only cis women who have a stake in this fight.
Good Vibrations is outraged about this: Everything we stand for is on the line in a post-Roe world. We already know we help people understand their sexuality in ways conservative communities and schools would not allow. We see adults who don’t know about the way their bodies (or their partners’ bodies) function. Sex education is part of our mission because almost everyone needs, and deserves, more information about sex than they already have. Sex education is vital to bodily autonomy. It is vital for sexual safety—and for setting and negotiating boundaries. It is important for people of every gender and orientation—including asexual people. And the forces in this country that seek to shut down abortion rights are not likely to make sex education better.
Whether any given person would choose abortion at any point in their lives is not our business. But it IS our business to help people understand their sexuality and their bodies. Along with selling toys and products for people who want more joy and pleasure in their lives, we also sometimes help pick up the pieces that result from poor (or no) sex education and access to birth control. And so we understand firsthand that access to abortion is necessary. Beyond this, we understand that limiting any access to abortion care without making birth control and comprehensive sex and fertility information a universal priority is the height of hypocrisy. These things make abortion less necessary by helping to prevent unwanted pregnancy in the first place! Yet anti-abortion activists do not fight for them.
What can we do? Speak up and speak out! Register to vote! Hold politicians accountable. And donate, if you can, to funds that support abortion rights, especially for those who are impacted now by state-level anti-abortion actions and the loss of Roe v Wade.
Some organizations and activists are working to support reproductive justice, protect abortion access, and/or get people who need abortions to clinics—those who are doing this work deserve your support: https://secure.actblue.com/donate/fundabortionnow