October 2, 2021
Tens of thousands of people marched in all 50 US states in support of abortion rights.
They were motivated to oppose a new Texas law that severely limits access to abortions in the state.
Pro-choice supporters across the country fear that constitutional rights could be rolled back.
In the coming months, the Supreme Court is set to hear a case that could overturn the 1973 decision known as Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion nationwide.
In Washington, DC, protesters marched to the Supreme Court building. After about 20 anti-demonstrators disrupted the start of the demonstration.
“Your hands are stained with the blood of innocent children!” shouted a man, but disappeared into the crowd’s singing and applause, the Washington Post reported.
One woman who attended the rallies said she was there to support a woman’s right to choose.
“Although fortunately I have not faced this choice, there are many women who have faced it, and neither our government nor men have a say in the outcome when it comes to our bodies,” Robin Horn told Reuters news agency.
The rallies were organized by those behind the annual Women’s March, the first of which drew millions of people to protest a day after former President Donald Trump’s inauguration in 2017.
“It’s a glass-breaking moment for people across the country,” said Rachel O’Leary Carmona, executive director of the Women’s March.
She added: “A lot of us grew up with the idea that abortion would be legal and available to all of us. Seeing that in very real danger was a waking moment.”
Other rallies took place in Austin, Texas, where the state legislature on Sept. 1 enacted a law banning pregnancy terminations after discovering what anti-abortion activists call a “fetal heartbeat”, a stage when many women don’t know they’re pregnant yet.
The so-called “heartbeat law” also gives anyone the right to sue doctors who perform an abortion after six weeks. Supporters say the goal is to protect the fetus.
Politicians in many other Republican-dominated states are considering similar restrictions.
Rights groups have called on the Supreme Court to block the Texas law, but the justices ruled against approval, 5 to 4.
On December 1, the court is due to hear an appeal against Mississippi’s ban on abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy.
The ruling could overturn the landmark 1973 court ruling in Roe v. Wade, which protects a woman’s right to an abortion until the fetus is viable, the stage at which the fetus is able to live outside the womb, which generally occurs at the beginning of the trimester The third of pregnancy, that is, after 28 weeks of pregnancy.