The Ongoing Struggle for Abortion Rights

The U.S. Supreme Court’s 5-3 decision overturning Texas’ onerous rules for abortion clinics blocked one line of attack used by anti-abortion activists to restrict women’s access to the procedure, reports Dennis J Bernstein.

By Dennis J Bernstein

The decision by the Supreme Court on Monday to strike down Texas’ controversial abortion restrictions is arguably the most significant ruling regarding women’s rights and reproductive freedom since Roe v. Wade.

After the 5-3 ruling, reproductive justice activist Renee Bracey Sherman, a key organizer in the struggle, spoke with Flashpoints host Dennis J Bernstein about her reaction to the decision, the significance of the victory, and the uphill battle women still face in protecting their right to choose.

U.S. Supreme Court

U.S. Supreme Court

Sherman is author of Saying Abortion Aloud: Research and Recommendations for Public Abortion Storytellers and Organizations and co-author of Speak Up and Stay Safe, a multilingual digital guide on handling online harassment.

Dennis Bernstein: This is one day you can take a moment and celebrate a very hard fought victory, a major victory, you say, for reproductive rights. What is your initial reaction to the court’s decision?

Renee Bracey Sherman: I am elated, still feeling so excited. It’s been such a whirlwind of a day. I was standing on the stage when the decision came down. We were looking out at the crowd; people were dancing, and waiting for the decision to come down. We were in front of the Supreme Court in Washington DC. The anti-choice folks had their rally on the right side, and we had ours on the left side of the Supreme Court. I was standing on the stage with abortion providers and people who had abortions, including myself. Other advocates were making speeches.

I was looking out into the sea of people, and then a huge cheer erupted from the crowd. It was such a moment that my heart skipped a beat. I started crying because abortion restrictions have been passed in states ever since the Roe v Wade decision and the Planned Parenthood v. Casey decision in the 90’s. There’s been an erosion of abortion access for so long, that to finally have such a huge win meant…

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