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“CRÓNICA DE UNA MUERTE LARGAMENTE ANUNCIADA”

August 05, 2022

No, it’s not the title of García Márquez’s novel.

We are referring to a day that will live in all our memories – the Supreme Court’s recent ruling revoking the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that recognized the federal constitutional right to abortion.

For five decades, Roe v. Wade has been under constant attack from opponents of reproductive rights, surviving repeated legal challenges and being reaffirmed on multiple occasions by the Supreme Court. 

However, with a 6-3 conservative majority on the bench, the end of Roe v. Wade was probably only a matter of time. And indeed, it has come to pass.

Justice Alito—who wrote the majority opinion—and the other Justices who shared his opinion—Thomas, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh and Barrett—held that abortion was not a protected right under the Constitution. They also said that the weakness and wrongness of the Roe decision outweighed the importance of the fact that women had relied on it for decades when making important personal decisions.

Reversing Roe is impactful news. But with the Supreme Court’s predictable shift to the right, it might be just the beginning of a dire perspective for the Latinx community.

OVERTURNING ROE V. WADE AFFECTS MINORITIES THE MOST.

It is already difficult for women of color to access affordable health services, including safe resources. This decision that turns back time will no doubt impact them more.

For example, the legalization of abortion in 1973 increased women’s labor force participation and fuelled household income and economic growth. However, today this is uncertain territory. If a woman is pregnant and needs to travel, will she always be allowed to keep her job?

Working and low-income women seeking abortions may have to travel to distant parts of the nation to terminate pregnancies. If a woman already has kids, who will take care of them while she travels? How will she pay for travel and accommodations? If she is still a girl, young and alone, and has to go through with the pregnancy, how will she raise a child?

For these and more reasons, women who cannot access abortion care face significant financial distress, including higher amounts of debt and increased rates of bankruptcy and eviction, according to a working paper published recently by the National Bureau of Economic Research.

Latinas, in particular, are often confronted with financial, cultural and language barriers, with the abortion stigma from the conservative part of their family or community.Therefore, they are often alone.

Latinx constitute one of the most uninsured groups in the country, especially those who do not speak English. According to census data, 1 in 4 Latinx don’t have health insurance coverage. And, even though they make up 18.7% of the U.S. population, 21% of abortion patients in the U.S. are Latinas.

As the New England Journal of Medicine wrote, worldwide experience has demonstrated that restricting access to legal abortion care does not substantially reduce the number of procedures. It reduces the number of safely-performed abortions, leading to increased morbidity and mortality since many of these procedures are forcefully clandestine.

The abortion stigma exists in many Latinx communities. It stems from religious beliefs and the idea that abortion is contrary to the female ideals of sexuality and motherhood.. It can cause psychological suffering, and it weighs terribly on Latinas.

“ABORTO SI, ABORTO NO, ESO LO DECIDO YO”

Because for many women, the fight for Roe v.Wade is about more than abortion: It is about freedom. Moreover, a Pew Research Center survey found that in 2021, 61% of Hispanics in the U.S. believed abortion should be legal.

This women’s chant for reproductive justice translates to, “To have an abortion or not have an abortion, the decision is mine.” And it sums up the drive that rallies some states and many organizations, big and small, to offer resources that help women access reproductive care.

There are resources available, and many can be found online, from abortion clinics to associations that help with money and care.

The list of resources is growing by the day. Here are some links that can be consulted as aggregators of resources, including resources in Mexico, helping Latinas in the US and we will be sharing on our Twitter page any new ressources available for Latinas seeking an abortion.

TRUST WOMEN

As progressive Democrat Megan Hunt said: “75% of women who get this procedure already have kids … are not stupid. They’re not childish. They don’t need us to condescend to them.”

Let’s endorse progressive politicians that will fight for women’s rights, and let’s fight alongside them.

NARAL Pro-choice America has endorsed six candidates: Florida State Senator Annette Taddeo; North Carolina State Senator Jeff Jackson; former Las Cruces, NM Councilmember Gabe Vasquez; Oregon Labor Commissioner Val Hoyle; Oregon community leader Jamie McLeod-Skinner; and Oregon State Representative Andrea Salinas. As they say, ”It is more important than ever to elect candidates who will fight to protect and advance our fundamental freedoms.”

Do you know where your representatives stand on reproductive freedom? Or how you can help the cause?

The following links provide a quick and easy overview of the subject. And you can take it from there!

https://www.prochoiceamerica.org/?utm_source=splash_page

https://wewontgoback.com/

ESTO NO SE ACABA HASTA QUE SE ACABA

“It ain’t over ‘til it’s over,” as Yogi Berra famously said.

The 2022 midterm elections come just as the Supreme Court ruling shatters abortion rights and access in the United States. And the fall of Roe forecasts dangerous times for LGBTQ rights. The moment to get informed and take action is right now.

Conservative Justice Clarence Thomas wrote: “In future cases, we should reconsider all of this Court’s substantive due process precedents…”

Among those were rulings that established gay rights and contraception rights, which Thomas called “demonstrably erroneous decisions.”

As you can see, this fight is necessary because this new ruling curtails our control over our lives and futures—more dramatically so for Latinas— and it is also a door to a slippery path.  We have to repeat this: We cannot forget Thomas’ statement.  He said that not only was Roe wrong, but the entire idea of the court recognizing the existence of constitutional rights not explicitly found in the text of the Constitution was flawed.

Therefore the court may very well reconsider the 1964 decision on the right of any couple to use birth control, the 2002 decision on the right of same-sex couples to engage in private consensual sexual acts and the 2014 decision on the right of same-sex couples to marry.

We can all fight together! For women’s rights now and whatever is necessary for the future.

 

Let us know what you think.  Are we, as women, involved enough? If you are not, we want to know, and we’d like to know why. We want to hear from you and help you find the tools you might need!

Contact us at: hi@moirastudio.com, and our podcast at: clem@latinxyzpod.com

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