A 1973 decision by the United States Supreme Court that established abortion as a constitutional right of every woman, was overruled on Friday by a 6-3 vote. The ruling will block access to safe abortions for women living in about half of the states in the US, in many cases, effective immediately. The overruling of verdict in the Roe V Wade case has generated widespread concern and outrage, not only in the US but globally too.
With 21 states already having laws or constitutional amendments in place to prohibit the ability to terminate a pregnancy, states will now decide on the issue of abortion rights. Without federal protections in place, four more states are anticipated to outlaw abortions as soon as possible.
Numerous public figures have expressed sadness over this Supreme Court decision. Former US First Lady Michelle Obama wrote in an open letter “I am heartbroken today. This is what our mothers and grandmothers and great-grandmothers lived through, and now here we are again. This horrifying decision will have devastating consequences, and it must be a wake-up call, especially to the young people who will bear its burden.”
US Vice President Kamala Harris, who traces her roots to India from her maternal side, too expressed her concern on social media, “Millions of women in America will go to bed tonight without access to the health care and reproductive health care their mothers and grandmothers had for 50 years. A constitutional right has been taken from the people of America.” In a separate tweet, Harris urged to use the power of their vote in the upcoming mid-term elections in the US. “My message to the American people: You have the power to elect leaders who will defend and protect your rights. And as the president said, with your vote, you can act. You have the final word. So this is not over,” she wrote.
Indian-American Celebs React To Roe V Wade Overturn
Author and activist Padma Lakshmi tweeted, that abortion procedures won’t stop just because Roe V Wade is overturned. “This will only prevent safe, legal abortions from taking place…This is a catalyst for a public health crisis…I wish more people understood that the decision to have an abortion is deeply personal and complex. It’s a decision that should be treated with compassion and empathy, not vilified or criminalized,” she pointed out, also adding that the right to decide when to start a family or not is a choice every individual should be able to make on their terms when the time is right for them. “This freedom and dignity is something we should all fight to preserve.”
Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal pointed out in her tweet that US has the worst Black maternal death rate in the developed world. “My heart is broken thinking about how many lives this decision will endanger, disproportionately Black women’s lives. Congress can’t stand idly by and watch this happen,” she added.
New York-based Indian filmmaker Mira Nair also expressed her solidarity with the women in the US by sharing pictures from a pro-choice protest on social media.
Suggested Reading: Abortion Laws For Women: Why Is The Womb So Heavily Legislated?
Feature image credit: Los Angeles Times.