Give Women Back Their Reproductive Rights

Caroline Fahey, Shen Pen Contributor

Have you ever found yourself thinking back at the history of the United States and being ashamed? Well, even though you may think our country has progressed over the years, we have actually gone back in time in many issues including women’s rights, regarding abortion. Women no longer have full rights to their own bodies in various circumstances.

The debate and controversy between being pro-choice or pro-life has taken off ever since the overturn of Roe V. Wade by the U.S Supreme Court, in 2022.  Roe V. Wade was the Supreme Court ruling that granted the right to abortion as a constitutional right. 

Why should women have the right to abortion? Many women experience a variety of factors that may cause them to be unable to birth and/or raise a child, including but not limited to, sexual assault, reproductive health issues, low income, incest, etc. Some young women may simply just have dreams and goals that having a child may prevent them from achieving. According to the New York Times article based on “Tracking The States Where Abortion Is Now Banned,  Abortion is prohibited without exception to rape and/or incest in 13 states. Abortions in these states, specifically in Wisconsin, make abortion fall under a felony charge. 

The controversy of the right to abortion stems from people who are “pro-life”, meaning they are completely against abortion and think it is murder. Their evidence in support to their opinion usually relates to their belief in Christianity, where the bible says that murder is a sin . However, not everyone follows the same religion and the bible never actually uses the word “abortion”. 

The termination of abortion in many states put women, or any gender that owns a uterus, in danger. Due to the defunding of Planned Parenthood in pro-life states, some people may resort to unsafe abortion practices that can put their health and/or life at risk. It will also cause people seeking abortions to go out of their way and travel out of state to get the procedure done safely. In June 2022, Texans travelled an average of 400+ miles for access to abortion care (4x farther than last year), according to Planned Parenthood’s Official Instagram Account. 

Another issue is the point of view of those who are against abortion. Most people who have a strong pro-life position are predominately men who do not have uteruses, and do not know what it is like to be pregnant or have a baby. Within the Supreme Court, eight out of thirteen members are men ( There are few female representatives that advocate for pro-choice and the right for women to have control over their own bodies. 

In order to end the control over women’s bodies by restricting abortion, advocacy and voting is important! Speaking up for the topic ultimately will help the community to fight anti-abortion restrictions and will give women their reproductive rights back. If you or someone you know is in need of reproductive care, there are still many states that have abortion legalized and practice safe procedures. Especially, New York.