As the war on women sallies forth, the state of reproductive rights scales backward in time.
Despite recent legislation and the expansion of abortion rights in certain parts of the nation, the tide is largely turning in the opposite direction. A recent Pew Poll found that now, more Americans view abortion as immoral, with religion playing a large part in these sentiments.
It is these types of sentiments that propel politicians of the “pro-life” movement to seek more limited abortion rights. Texas officials have successfully defunded Planned Parenthood this year, and Arizona leads the nation in having the most clinic closures of any state, with many more facilities closing in other states as well. Judging from these events, all of this only looks to be the beginning.
When and where will the line on restrictive abortion rights be drawn? Extremist politicians believe anti-choice legislation supports women’s rights, when in fact it only limits accessibility and criminalizes the women who seek abortions. Furthermore, low-income women often do not have enough time to save money for abortions, and Plan B contraceptives remain difficult to obtain even if it is available over the counter.
However, while all of these events no doubt remind you that the war on women is continuing on, the fight is far from over. Here are three actions you can take to support reproductive health rights:
1. End the Shame and Stigma Around Abortion
The conversation about this issue is often heated and escalates into a greater argument, making it easy to forget about the actual women who have decided to have an abortion. The conversation on abortion is an intricate one, but should always be shared on one’s own terms and in one’s own words — not the words of politicians or officials. The 1 in 3 Campaign aims to support this idea by allowing women to share their own story for others to learn from and collectively end the stigma around abortion.
2. Demand an End to the Attacks on Science and Women’s Health
Politicians have imposed state restrictions on medical abortions on the basis of arguments that have nothing to do with women’s health. As a result, women are at risk of making medical decisions without proper procedural knowledge or research. The attacks on science and women’s health need to end in order for women to make informed decisions concerning abortions. Help defend these rights by signing this petition.
3. Tell Congress to Draw the Line
The Bill of Reproductive Rights is a historic effort spearheaded by thousands of concerned citizens who want equal reproductive rights for all. The bill calls for U.S. Congress and the President to guarantee and protect reproductive rights as fundamental human rights and stop the attacks by politicians who want to take those rights away.
Watch the video below to support the Center for Reproductive Rights in their efforts, then spread the word and talk to your friends and your local politicians about this extremely important issue.
It’s important to remember that small steps matter. While these three ways of supporting reproductive health won’t amend all the problems within the reproductive health sphere, they will help women in your community and at the national level. For as much power as politicians have in taking away reproductive rights, individuals have just as much impact and agency in taking steps to protect their health and the health of those around them.
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