Today is the 38th anniversary of the landmark Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade. This decision is the cause of controversy – and relief – for many. For me, Roe is validation of a woman’s right to make decisions that concern her bodily integrity.
The right to choose has inextricable social and economic consequences. Without the ability to determine one’s reproductive future, women face being trapped in lower social, educational and financial strata, which not only impacts her life, but that of her family and community. It also gives rape victims who find themselves pregnant some peace of mind that they will not have to be further tortured by carrying to term the product of their attack.
In an ideal world, there would be no need for abortion, but sadly, with every penny that goes towards abstinence only education, that ideal fades further into the background. Medically accurate sexual education and preventative measures – birth control, condoms, etc. – need to be widely available.
Thankfully, there are many organizations that work hard to make sure this happens, and to keep a woman’s right to privacy on the law books. Several of these organizations have compiled tributes to Roe, which I’d like to share: