You will never stop having an abortion

When the news broke, I felt like Charlton Heston in the final scene of the film The Planet of the Apesmore than inside The Scarlet Maiden by Margaret Atwood.

Posted at 5:00 am

When he understands that humanity destroyed the earth with the atomic bomb by seeing the remains of the Statue of Liberty when he thought he was on another planet. “The bastards, they did it. Bloody hell! I will not repeat to you all the words of the Church and the saints that I sent down from heaven on St. John’s Day, because it happened on that day.

It took only a few ultra-conservative Supreme Court justices to see Roe v. Wade and set women’s abortion rights back 50 years. As a result, young women of childbearing age in the United States today have fewer rights than their mothers and grandmothers. Never in my life have I seen such a setback in a democratic country that has long been considered a vanguard of progress. I’m approaching menopause and feeling almost lucky to have access to infertility in this darkening world for women, from Afghanistan to our immediate neighbors.

I’ve had one abortion in my life and I’ve driven a Cadillac. It was done by a professional and super nice doctor, trained by Henry Morgentaler, who listened to jazz while I was floating on a sedative and my friend, who is the same today, was holding my hand. Everything went well and since then I haven’t cried at night and told myself I could have been a mother. I have never been ashamed of my choice, which has been respected. I came at the right time as abortion was not legalized in Canada until 1988.

My grandmother and aunt weren’t so lucky. They were very good friends and performed abortions themselves, not to avoid a scandal, but because after several children they didn’t want any more children. My grandmother found herself bleeding in the hospital, the doctor insisted that she tell him the name of her abortionist, but she refused to protect her friend. They could have ended up in jail on the sole charge of the doctor who ignored them. They told their daughters all this without shame, and I admired them a lot for that.

Women have always resorted to abortion and will continue to do so, whether forbidden or not. They will never stop refusing to force an unborn child on them. Whether it comes from a rape or a crazy sex night.

The ban only takes the United States back to a time when women were desperate to have abortions by any means necessary.

I can never find hard enough words for those suckers on the Supreme Court who decided this. Someone should come and tell me about the danger woke up now, because that’s certainly not where this historic slip-up came from. Read journalist Chris Hedges, who wrote in 2007: American Fascists – The Christian Right Attacks America (published in French by Lux last year) on the influence of the American evangelical far right, which supported Donald Trump as God’s messenger. He also believes that what united the attackers during the attack on the Capitol was Christian fascism. “This attack is just one example of the anti-democratic ethos embodied by the Christian right, which includes the celebration of gun culture,” he explains in the introduction to the 2021 book. “When these people are about re-creating ‘traditional values,’ what they’re really talking about is restoring white supremacy,” he says. That’s what they’re nostalgic for; White patriarchy. Megachurches are patriarchal organizations run by white men. The latter only lend a religious tinge to the hypermasculinity that defines all forms of fascism. »

In his book fascism in actionRobert O. Paxton called the Ku Klux Klan America’s truly fascist movement, and today’s religious extreme right is its heir.

Chris Hedges, journalist

Let’s face it, it’s the women of the most vulnerable communities who will suffer the most from this decision, because a white judge will always have the means to send his loved one to New York for an abortion.

I can’t believe American women have to take the torch for a fundamental right that saves women’s lives that we hoped for. But I’m confident that they will because they no longer have a choice – they really do.

Must see the documentary the janit by Tia Lessin and Emma Pildes recently produced by HBO to understand what American women risk returning to. It’s a moving portrait of a small group of seven activists who, between 1968 and 1973, decided to provide safe and affordable abortions – we gave what we could – through a secret network. They had to call “Jane” on a number. They came to pick you up at a certain place, they had found places to perform abortions. They had learned that from a man named Mike, a rather nice man who had heard of a doctor’s intervention himself and who made more money from abortions than from construction work. “It was my best medical experience and it was illegal,” says one of these women, who remembers the contempt and lack of solidarity among many doctors at the time. “We were just normal women trying to save women’s lives. We wanted every woman who contacts us to be the heroine of her own story,” concludes one Jane. Between 1968 and 1973, the Janes performed approximately 11,000 abortions.

The Janes were eventually exposed — and it’s worth the detour to tell the story of the cops who weren’t quite sure what to do with it — but they avoided jail for the simple reason that abortion became legal and the charges fell in 1973 . Practically saved by the bell.

There is no doubt that women will not hesitate to reconstruct secret networks if necessary, which is appalling. What worries me, however, is the current context. Abortion rights came in the wake of progressive movements, it’s a bit like saying ‘we did it’ to ourselves, and public opinion has been positive. Right now there are right wing Christians who will be busy enforcing the law because they have just won a fight and their agenda will not stop there. We don’t do all this to become careless. The battle will be bitter, and in a context where American women have more freedom to bear a gun than to bear a child or not, how far will they go to defend their rights and their future? I’ve come to this in my mind, I’m so angry.

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