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DC Protests Leaked Supreme Court Draft Opinion

On May 2, crowds descended upon the Supreme Court as a response to a leaked report from Politico, sharing a drafted opinion written by Justice Sam Alito declaring that Roe v. Wade will be overturned.

Roe v. Wade is the landmark abortion rights case from 1973, declaring that the Fourteenth Amendement guarantees the right to privacy, therefore the decision to have an abortion as it’s a private choice between a woman and her doctor. Conservative politicians throughout the country have been making attempts to undermine the protections provided through Roe v. Wade, and many fear that those efforts have become successful as the Supreme Court has drafted an opinion saying exactly that. This opinion is not a final opinion, meaning that there is not a definitive decision made yet through law.

After the story broke, demonstrators headed out to the Supreme Court to voice their concern and to mourn the political freedoms that they may lose.

Zara Morris, a sophomore at American University, went to the Supreme Court as soon as the draft was leaked to join other demonstrators. “I decided to go down with some friends tonight because it was important to me to show up and stand up for abortion rights,” Morris said. “Since we are physically close to the Supreme Court in DC where these decisions about what we can do with our bodies are made, we decided to take the trip to the front of the Supreme Court to demonstrate our distress and dissent.”

Women throughout the country are angry, rallying and protesting against the opinion. 

 “As soon as I heard about the leaked draft opinion I was furious,” Morris said. “After the Trump administration, it feels like civil liberties are constantly being jeopardized and our government has become extremely regressive. The thought that if I ever need an abortion and I would have to go to extreme lengths to obtain the medican care after the procedure is outlawed is terrifying.”

Pro-Choice advocates lined the front of the court with candles, sitting down and sharing messages of despair and anger on signs, alongside other protestors chanting messages such as “Abortion is Health Care!”. Some anti-choice demonstrators joined the crowds as well, but separated themselves to the other side of the front of the Supreme Court. 

This was just the beginning. 

On May 3, several organizations including Women’s March, Shutdown DC and Harriet Dreams organized more demonstrations at the Supreme Court, upholding what seems like an endless presence of angry, hurt and empowered women fighting for their rights. Among these organizations and events is the Mother’s Day Strike, which is hoping to “Break the economy over the course of one week by abstaining from work, shopping, entertaining; and on the home front, running a household that would fall about without your care.”

While it’s unclear what will happen to abortion access in the United States, it’s clear that the American people, specifcially American women, will not back down without a fight. 

Hannah is a senior at American University. She's studying political science with a focus on race and gender in politics. She loves writing and baking, and can typically be found with a large iced coffee and a pair of knitting needles.
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