Women take to the streets across the US to protest Texas abortion law
Women’s rights advocates in Texas and across the nation launched a series of 660 marches today in protest against the state’s most restrictive abortion law.
A crowd of more than 1,000 protesters gathered at the Texas Capitol, in Austin, as people chanted ‘Abort Abbott,’ in referenced to Texas Gov. Greg Abbot who signed into law a measure that bans abortions after six weeks in August.
The Austin protests was duplicated across as protestors gathered in Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Columbus, Houston, Topeka, New York City and Washington D.C. in solidary of women’s reproductive rights.
The demonstrations come days before the start of a new term for the Supreme Court that will decide the future of abortion rights in the United States, after appointments of justices by President Donald Trump strengthened conservative control of the high court.
Hundreds gathered in Austin, Texas, to kick off the 660 marches scheduled on Saturday in a nationwide protest of the Texan six-week abortion ban that was passed into law in August
Protestors in Los Angeles marched down the streets in solidarity of the women in Texas on October 2
Women’s rights advocates marched with the Women’s March banner in Los Angeles
Protestors in Topkea, Kansas, also joined in to show their support for women’s reproductive rights
Protestors also gathered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to march in support of abortion rights in the US
Protestors in Washington D.C marched along the capitol as they made their way to the Supreme Court as the high court prepares for a new term that could decide the future of abortion rights in the country
The march is part of ‘a fight to secure, safeguard, and strengthen our constitutional right to an abortion,’ Rachel O’Leary Carmona, executive director of the Women’s March, said in a statement.
‘And it’s a fight against the Supreme Court justices, state lawmakers, and senators who aren´t on our side – or aren’t acting with the urgency this moment demands.’
The first Women’s March of the Biden administration headed straight for the steps of the Supreme Court.
Many thousands of women filled a square near the White House for a rally before the march.
They waved signs that said ‘Mind your own uterus,’ ‘I love someone who had an abortion’ and ‘Abortion is a personal choice, not a legal debate,’ among other messages.
Some wore T-shirts reading simply ‘1973,’ a reference to the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, which made abortion legal for generations of American women.
Protestors across the nation held up signs and yelled chants in support of women’s rights. One person wrote over their own sign to read that they were someone who had an abortion
Protestors in Philadelphia stood against the Texas law. One male protestor held a sign that read, ‘Her Body, Her Choice!’
Many of the protestors in Washington D.C. had signs alluding to the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a women’s rights champion
Each protest varied in size. A smaller amount of protesters gathered in Columbus, Ohio, to show their support
One protestor wore a bloodied outfit of Lady Justice with a woman’s reproductive organ crucified on a cross
Another person dressed up as a character from the The Handmaid’s Tale to protest restrictions’ on women’s rights
Maria Shriver, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas, left, attended the Los Angeles march as the organization’s leadership stood against the Texas law
Protesters chanted and yelled into microphones as they stood by the Texas capitol building in Austin
Elaine Baijal, a 19-year-old student at American University, took cellphone photos with her friends and their signs as the event started. She said her mother told her of coming to a march for legal abortion with her own mother in the 1970s.
‘It’s sad that we still have to fight for our right 40 years later. But it´s a tradition I want to continue,’ Baijal said of the march.
The march comes a day after the Biden administration urged a federal judge to block the nation´s most restrictive abortion law, which has banned most abortions in Texas since early September. It’s one of a series of cases that will give the nation’s divided high court occasion to uphold or overrule Roe v. Wade.
The Texas law was a focus of the speakers.
‘We´re going to keep giving it to Texas,’ Marsha Jones of the Afiya Center for Black women’s health care in Dallas, pledged to the Washington crowd. ‘You can no longer tell us what to do with our bodies!’
Alexis McGill Johnson, the president of Planned Parenthood nationally, told of women forced to drive many hours across state lines – sometimes multiple state lines – to end pregnancies in the weeks since the Texas law went into effect.
Along with the protest in Austin, Texans gathered in Houston to speak out against the law
Protestors in Kansas marched to the Statehouse in Topeka to voice their opposition
One protestor in Ohio lifted a sign that simply read ‘Trust Women’ at the state’s capitol building
People gathered at the Ohio Statehouse, in Columbus, to advocate for women’s abortion rights
New York City protestors marched with signs asking for abortion rights and the defense of Roe v. Wade
Hundreds of protestors in Washington D.C. marched down Pennsylvania Avenue
‘The moment is dark… but that is why we are here,’ Johnson told the crowd packed into Freedom Square and surrounding streets. With the upcoming Supreme Court term, ‘No matter where you are, this fight is at your doorstep right now.’
Speaking at an unrelated event in Maine, Republican Sen. Susan Collins called the Texas law ‘extreme, inhumane and unconstitutional’ and said she´s working to make Roe v. Wade the ‘law of the land.’
She said she´s working with two Democrats and another Republican, and they´re ‘vetting’ the language of their bill. Collins declined to identify her colleagues, but said the legislation will be introduced soon.
An opponent of women’s access to abortion called this year’s march theme ‘macabre.’
‘What about equal rights for unborn women?’ tweeted Jeanne Mancini, president of an anti-abortion group called March for Life.
The Women’s March has become a regular event – although interrupted by the coronavirus pandemic – since millions of women turned out in the United States and around the world the day after the January 2017 inauguration of Trump.
Trump endorsed punishing women for getting abortions and made appointment of conservative judges a mission of his presidency.
Without Trump as a central figure for women of varied political beliefs to rally against, and with the pandemic still going strong, organizers talk of hundreds of thousands of participants nationally Saturday, not the millions of 2017.
Latina comedian and activist Cristela Alonzo hosted Saturday’s rally in Washington, which featured speeches from many advocates and providers of abortion access. Actress Busy Philipps and swimmer Schuyler Bailar were to take part.
Security in the capital was much lighter than for a political rally a few weeks ago in support of Trump supporters jailed in the Jan. 6 insurrection.
No fence was placed around the U.S. Capitol, with the Capitol Police chief saying there was nothing to suggest Saturday’s rally would be violent.