Fighting for Women’s Reproductive Rights

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Written by Lindsay Wong

It’s astonishing how little control women have over their own bodies in a great amount of countries around the world. As most of the world’s states are structurally based on being patriarchal, women still suffer from inequality and are given much less rights than their male counterparts. At the moment, women have fought hard for their reproductive rights, which largely relate to pregnancy and abortion issues. More than 800,000 American women every year seek out abortions and many encounter obstacles in the process. Despite a strong fight, it is incredibly difficult for women to advance their reproductive rights and gain more control over their own bodies.

Even though the US is supposedly one of the more progressive countries in the world, it is difficult for women to end a pregnancy, especially those from low-income backgrounds. In 1973, the Supreme Court made the monumental landmark decision to protect a pregnant woman’s liberty and choose to have an abortion without too much restrictions or limitations from the government. It is essentially pro-choice and allows women to have more freedom with their own bodies. The ruling made abortion legal in many circumstances and women no longer had to risk their lives if they wanted to abort. Since then, more than 1200 restrictions have been placed on abortions. However, despite many blue states granting more abortion rights, roughly half of the American states are hostile towards abortion. The fight for reproductive rights will be much harder in these states.

People seeking abortions are usually facing dire circumstances that could threaten their livelihood and wellbeing. Many abortion clinics require parental consent, but some girls have abusive or unavailable parents, making it almost impossible to obtain the consent needed to have the abortion. To discourage women to go through with the process, some doctors even feed them lies and myths about abortion as they do not want to incur the costs of aborting the baby. Abortion myths that are simply not true cause people to become hostile against it and adopt the wrong mindset about it. in the fight for reproductive rights, these myths must be cleared up.

At the moment, it seems like abortion rights supporters are losing the fight against the pro-life community and leading politicians. In the fight, it is easy for people to overlook the fundamental issue – women are suffering because of this longstanding abortion war. Teenagers are turned away at pharmacy counters if they cannot show proof of age when buying contraception. Birth control prices are relatively high in many countries around the world. The health of women is being threatened in the abortion war as lots of women are forced to find ways to abort their baby that are not legal or protected by the constitution. Obtaining safe, legal and essential reproductive healthcare should be a top priority for all countries. Necessary services include accurate and comprehensive sex education at schools, affordable contraception, domestic violence resources, affordable childcare, safe maternal healthcare and abortion services. Nevertheless, the enactment of the Affordable Care Act in the early 2010s provided American women with insurance that covered much of the services listed above. Voting to protect women’s reproductive rights is also essential and supporting pro-choice politicians and parties will certainly be beneficial. The fight is not over.

Sources:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/the-long-fight-for-reproductive-rights-is-only-getting-harder/2020/05/12/2fda9f2a-8326-11ea-878a-86477a724bdb_story.html

https://www.reproductiverights.org/press-room/huffington-post-fight-womens-reproductive-rights-winning-losing-abortion-war-Roe https://www.aclu.org/other/keep-marching-what-you-can-do-protect-reproductive-freedom