Roe v. Wade protests come to New London
New London — Fury over the U.S. Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade spilled into the streets of New London on Monday during a protest by pro-choice supporters.
“My life, my choice!” and “Hey Supreme Court, F*** you,” were some of the chants among the more than 200 people who joined together to decry Friday’s 5-4 court decision that overturned a ruling on abortion rights that had stood for nearly 50 years. There is no nationwide ban on abortions because of the ruling but some states have restrictions in place designed to be triggered when Roe v. Wade was overturned. Abortion rights remain protected in Connecticut.
“How can nine people on the Supreme Court dictate their morality to the rest of the women in the United States of America. It’s wrong,” Linda Vogel of Mystic said.
Vogel said she has worked with 13-year-olds who mistakenly got pregnant and feared that because of the Supreme Court ruling other teens would be forced to carry out “coat hanger” abortions or have children that could end up in foster homes.
“You’re going to let them bring a child into the world they cannot take care of and that their families cannot take care of?” Vogel said.
Monday’s event was organized by a newly formed student-led group called People’s Resistance, whose members led the group of protesters in the rain on a march from Parade Plaza up State Street and back.
Group member Nikoli O’Dwyer, 18, of Waterford, voiced the reasoning for the formation of the group: “I believe in the fight against tyranny and oppression and the liberation of all people from the chains of wage labor.”
Alizae Gaston, 18, also of Waterford, and Salem, an 18-year-old who identifies as a transgender man, both said part of the group’s intention in organizing Monday’s protest was to be more inclusive and welcoming the LGBTQ+ community.
“We want activism to be truly about everyone,” Gaston said.
Gaston said she viewed the Supreme Court decision as another means of government control that will unfairly impact the marginalized communities. She and others said they feared the conservative-leaning Supreme Court could take on other issues impacting the LGBTQ+ community.
Registered Nurse Denyce Thomson said abortion was a healthcare issue and said there are a number of medical reasons for an abortion. Additionally, she said unwanted births will lead to unhealthy outcomes for both the children and parents. States that outlaw abortions won’t be able to stop abortions but will end “safe abortions,” Thomson said.
Echoing that sentiment, one woman in Monday’s crowd held a sign reading, “Roe was not the start of abortions. It was the start of people not dying from abortions.”
“We can’t even provide formula in the United States to feed babies and we cannot provide adequate home and shelter… the foster home system is a mess,” Thomson said.
Thomson suggested that making the man who impregnated the woman fiscally responsible for the baby might help solve some problems. Another woman said that forcing a man to get a vasectomy until he is of a responsible age would most certainly curtail unexpected pregnancies.