Like many of you, I am devastated, sickened, and furious at the Supreme Court's recent decision.
On June 24, the Supreme Court released its opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, and in so doing obliterated 50 years of women’s constitutional right to an abortion.
Despite months of forewarning after the leaked opinion, I still cried.
Removing the federal protections offered under Roe places the health of MILLIONS of Americans at risk. Almost half of all states have some form of trigger law to restrict or outlaw abortions now that Roe has been overturned. (Check here for an interactive, up-to-date map)
Let's say it loudly for those in the back:
Making decisions about your own body is a fundamental human right.
Healthcare is a fundamental human right (and yes, abortion IS healthcare).
And while this impacts all of us, this decision disproportionately affects lower income individuals and families, as they may lack the resources, access, or even job flexibility to seek the care they need. It disproportionately affects BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ individuals and families. As a recent Well+Good article pointed out:
This [means] forcing unwanted pregnancies in a country with no paid maternity leave, no subsidized or free child care, a lack of comprehensive mental-health support, unfair stereotypes for women in the workplace who have children, and one of the highest maternal mortality rates for a developed nation—a rate that is three to four times even higher for Black people.
I'm a mother of two young girls, a sister to five lovely women, an aunt, a friend, a colleague. I focus my business on helping women.
I'm surrounded by women--and every. single. one. is affected by this decision.
I ache both for those I love and for those I'll never know. I ache for the young girls who will be forced to carry children their bodies, minds, and lives aren't ready for. I ache for those young and old that find themselves pregnant after an assault, an abusive relationship, or other situation beyond their control. I ache for the mother who could die from a much-wanted pregnancy, or who must continue to carry and birth a child that won't survive. I ache for the mother who learns she is no longer pregnant, despite desperately wanting to be, and cannot seek the D&C she needs to move on. I ache for the children who will lose their mothers because they couldn't get the healthcare they needed.
The ability to control what happens to your own body--which is already taken from us too often--is only further eroded each day. I am infuriated and heartbroken.
Still, somehow we must move forward. While I honor the paralysis that has gripped me these past few days, I also recognize my responsibility. Empowerment, knowledge, and community are our core values here at Emerald Law, and I will continue to embody those through my actions. If you are able, join me. Let's channel our anger and grief into support for those that desperately need us now. By supporting the organizations that offer services, lobby for state and federal laws, and also provide care, counseling, and transportation, we can make an actual difference. Not sure where to start? Check out this article from W Magazine for a list of organizations to support on local and national levels.