The Last Decade Was Disastrous For Abortion Rights. Advocates Are Trying To Figure Out What’s Next.
This year, the battle over abortion rights reached a fever pitch. That’s what this entire decade was building toward.
Ema O'Connor BuzzFeed News Reporter
Posted on December 17, 2019
As the decade draws to a close, the national right to abortion is in the most vulnerable place it’s been in decades.
Since 2010, hundreds of laws restricting abortion access have been enacted all over the country, making the procedure less attainable and forcing abortion clinics to close. The US has gone from having around 1,720 facilities that perform abortions in 2011 to 1,587 in 2017 (the last year reproductive rights group Guttmacher Institute surveyed). As of this year, there are six states with only one abortion clinic left. Twenty-five abortion bans were signed into law in 2019 alone, leading to nationwide protests. Though all, so far, have been blocked by the courts, a major fight over abortion rights at the Supreme Court is yet to come.
The Last Abortion Clinic in West Virginia
Nov 18, 2019
The Women’s Health Center in Charleston, West Virginia is an unassuming, single-story beige brick building in a shabby neighborhood, just steps from the train tracks and a crisis pregnancy center, a shuttered vape shop, and a row of small homes surrounded by chainlink fences. I visited the center, the last abortion clinic in the state, on a Wednesday in June, one of the two days each week that the clinic performs abortions. Christopher McComas, 52, stood by the entrance to the clinic’s parking lot, equipped with a cell phone that he trained at everyone who approached the clinic.
“Hey brother, can I talk to you for a second? Please, for a second? Do you think it’s going to be a boy or a girl? Does it have blue eyes, or maybe brown eyes?” McComas yelled at one couple, a tall photo of a blood-covered fetus propped up by his side. “God loves you, please don’t do this ma’am! I beg you not to do this! It could be a boy or a girl,” he continued to yell at the couple as they entered the clinic, shielded by a large umbrella held by a clinic escort. “It could have brown hair!”
Democratic White House candidates face grilling on abortion
AFP•June 22, 2019
Columbia (United States) (AFP) - Democrats running for US president in next year's election sat down with voters on Saturday to outline their stance on abortion, a long-simmering issue newly inflamed by attempts to curtail it nationwide.
With abortion now among the most-discussed topics in the presidential race, the candidates aimed to impress an audience cheering "Who decides? We decide!" at the conference put on by family planning organization Planned Parenthood.
As Passions Flare in Abortion Debate, Many Americans Say ‘It’s Complicated’
“It has become so loud, going both ways. And the divide is only getting bigger,” said Jeannie Wallace French, a Democrat who opposes abortion.
By Jeremy W. Peters
June 15, 2019
PITTSBURGH — Abortion is an issue that Lynndora Smith-Holmes goes back and forth on. “Six of one, half dozen of the other,” she said the other day as she finished her lunch break. “Does it go back to people having abortions in back alleys? Haven’t we overcome that?” she asked, questioning the restrictive laws passed recently in states like Alabama and Kentucky.
At the same time, Ms. Smith-Holmes, who works for a day care center in the Allentown neighborhood of Pittsburgh and votes Democratic, said there should be limits. And she is not comfortable with the idea of taxpayer money going to fund abortions — a position that has become almost impossible to hold in the Democratic presidential primary. “Who’s paying for these?” she wondered.
Think abortion rights is a "divisive" issue? Only to the political class
Yes, a fundamentalist minority passionately opposes abortion, but most Americans want it to be legal and accessible
January 17, 2019
The ascendance of Brett Kavanaugh means that the Supreme Court now likely has the fifth vote necessary to overturn or gut Roe v. Wade, making it possible not just for the states but Congress to end legal abortion. The media narrative around this fight will likely, as it has for decades, portray abortion rights as a "divisive" issue that splits Americans right down the middle, suggesting that any overturn of Roe, however unsettling and unfortunate it may be, still reflects widespread popular sentiment.
This narrative would be wrong. In reality, opposition to abortion rights — like opposition to premarital sex, contraception or gay rights — is only a fetish for a minority of Americans involved in fundamentalist Christian subculture. While a fair number of Americans may express ambivalence about abortion, just as they might still feel shame about premarital sex or discomfort around LGBTQ people, ultimately they prefer a system that values sexual freedom and the right to privacy.