Roe v Wade: More protests expected this weekend amid fury and angst over Supreme Court abortion ruling

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On Friday, the Court overturned the 1973 decision known as Roe v. Wade, sparking protests that are expected to continue throughout the weekend.

Smaller gatherings of people celebrating the decision are also taking place.

As states began enacting abortion bans and some clinics stopped offering the procedure, abortion rights advocates took to the streets in major cities.

“It’s like seeing the train coming your way,” said Julia Kaluta, 24, one of many abortion rights activists gathered in New York. “And you finally get hit by it. And it hurts even more than you ever thought it would.”

More protests are expected Saturday and Sunday in cities large and small, including New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Illinois, Texas, New Mexico, California and more. .

“It’s a betrayal of women…it’s a giant leap backwards…It opens the door to the threat of other rights and freedoms,” said Natasha Mitchell, 41, of Denver. “I’m lucky to live in a state that respects women’s reproductive rights, but I fear for women who don’t.”

Colorado Democratic Gov. Jared Polis signed a bill in April codifying abortion rights in the state.

Police use tear gas to disperse the crowd

President Joe Biden described it as a “sad day” for the United States. He plans to “continue to find solutions” to guarantee the right to abortion, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters on Saturday. She declined to provide details about potential executive actions regarding abortion that the administration is considering.
In Phoenix, law enforcement used tear gas Friday night to disperse a crowd of abortion-rights supporters after they “repeatedly banged on the glass doors of the state Senate building,” it said. Arizona Department of Public Safety spokesman Bart Graves told CNN.

In Eugene, Oregon, 10 people were arrested Friday night in a protest dubbed “Night of Rage” in response to the ruling, according to a statement from Eugene police. Those arrested were between the ages of 18 and 29, the statement said. Nine people were charged with disorderly conduct, one of whom was also charged with resisting arrest and another with harassment, police said.

Police said protesters began gathering just before 9:30 p.m. Friday night outside a medical building in downtown Eugene. The crowd grew to more than 75 people who blocked roads and vehicles, police said. At one point protesters were seen throwing rocks or other objects and an unknown person also threw smoke bombs at police officers, the statement said.

As news of the decision emerged Friday morning, abortion rights advocates and opponents also rallied outside the Supreme Court in Washington, DC.

One man – standing amid signs reading “Roe is dead” and “I am the post-Roe generation” – sprayed champagne in the air above others who were celebrating.

In New York, scores of demonstrators gathered in Washington Square Park to protest the decision, even though New York state law will remain in place to protect abortion rights.

There were anti-abortion activists on site, but they kept a low profile and there was no confrontation seen by the CNN crew marching with the protesters. At least 20 people in the city have been “taken into custody with charges pending” after demonstrators marched to protest the decision, according to the New York Police Department (NYPD).

No other details were provided of the arrests.

These are the states where abortion rights are still protected after the Supreme Court struck down Roe v.  wade

Mia Khatcherian, who lives in New York, said she feels guilty knowing abortion is legal in her home state, while those living in other states will be subject to anti-abortion laws .

“I want women in other states to see the wave of support — that the number (of protesters) sends a message,” said Khatcherian, 32, the daughter of a Filipina mother and an Armenian father. “Knowing that women of color are going to bear the brunt of this decision” made the house, raging on social media, an impossibility, she added.

Black women accounted for the highest percentage of abortions performed by women seeking the procedure in the United States in 2019, receiving 38.4% of all abortions performed, according to data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention the United States. They also had the highest abortion rate, 23.8 abortions per 1,000 women, according to the data. Hispanic women requested 21% of all abortions in 2019, the data shows.
Additionally, black women who are pregnant or have just given birth in the United States are three to four times more likely to die than their white counterparts, according to the CDC.
Abortion bans are already in effect in at least six states: Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma and South Dakota.

And as of Saturday, 13 states have passed laws banning abortion in light of the ruling. These states are Arkansas, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Tennessee, Utah, and Wyoming.

In some cases, the laws take effect immediately, while in other states they will take effect after a certain period of time or upon certification by state officials.

Abortion providers have canceled dozens of appointments

Already, abortion providers in Arizona and Arkansas have begun shutting down abortion services.

Family Planning Associates, Planned Parenthood Arizona and Tucson Choices in Arizona have at least temporarily suspended abortion services while the legal ramifications of the decision are assessed, according to posts on their websites.

Dr. DeShawn Taylor, who operates Desert Star Family Planning in Phoenix, said his clinic has canceled about 20 abortion appointments originally scheduled from Friday through next week.

“We are committed to keeping our doors open if we can, to be able to provide abortion care, once it is safe to do so. I believe we will be in dark times for a while, hopefully- for not too long, but I believe the pendulum will swing back.”

Supreme Court overturns Roe v.  wade

On Friday, the Arizona State Senate Republican Caucus released a memo saying the state must immediately enforce the pre-Roe law, which bans most abortions unless the procedure is necessary to save the life of a mother.

In Arkansas, Little Rock Planned Parenthood canceled between 60 and 100 appointments for people who had abortion procedures planned or were in the process of planning, Dr. Janet Cathey told CNN.

“There were patients who said they were in their car and on their way and asked us, ‘It’s going to be okay, isn’t it?’ And we had to tell them, ‘No, we have to obey the law,’ Cathey told CNN.

“Most patients were desperate or panicked,” she added.

Cathey said the patients were given contact information for Planned Parenthood’s office in Overland Park, Kansas, adding that her office had “arranged for some to be transferred there.”

Little Rock is about a 7 hour drive from Overland Park. But for those patients in southern Arkansas, the travel time is closer to 10 hours, Cathey said.

“We were seeing people from Louisiana and Texas coming to see us as well. Some called from Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma. They’re going to be affected as well,” she added.

Leaders move quickly to protect abortion rights

In some states, local leaders have taken steps to protect and expand abortion rights, particularly in light of the potential influx of patients from states that ban legal abortions.

California Governor Gavin Newsom on Friday signed a law that protects against potential civil action from out of state for anyone performing, assisting or receiving an abortion in the state. It also protects non-California residents who seek reproductive health care in the state.

These U.S. companies will cover travel expenses for employees who need abortions

In Mississippi – where the abortion ban is due to go into effect 10 days after its attorney general certified the Supreme Court decision – the owner of the state’s last abortion clinic insisted on staying open during this period to provide services.

Diane Derzis, who runs the Jackson Women’s Health Organization in Jackson, Mississippi, said she’s not giving up and her doors are open.

“I will tell you that any patient who contacts us, we will see him. We will make sure to see him during these 10 days,” Derzis said Friday during a press conference. “A woman shouldn’t have to leave the state to get medical care.”

Derzis said his team plans to open a new clinic in Las Cruces, New Mexico, where they will continue to provide services.

CNN’s Gregory Krieg, Virginia Langmaid, Natasha Chen, Sara Smart, Claudia Dominguez, Cheri Mossburg, Kiely Westhoff, Alta Spells, Nick Valencia, Faith Karimi and Hannah Sarisohn contributed to this report.

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