Rise, My people! Now!
By HINA AHMAD
The recent anti-abortion ruling is not taking our country backward. It is moving our nation forward, but to a future, that is going to be far more sinister than the pre-abortion era. Here are a few reasons for my concern:
As a woman of South Asian descent and co-leading a three-decade-old organization serving the South Asian community, I know the anti-abortion ruling will not affect all women equally. It will disproportionately harm and hurt women of color.
I will be fearful to search online for an abortion pill or a clinic for the women who come to my organization for help. It is very likely that my online search history can be used against me in myriad ways in this post-Roe, surveillance era.
Women coming into my organization for help from another state will be leaving a trail of their location data that can then be used against them.
I have every reason to believe that the tyranny of the mostly male-led supreme court will not stop at abortions but will move forward to reverse contraception, same-sex marriage, and racial segregation, yes even racial segregation.
And I can list a few more reasons, but you get my point.
So, what do we do and where do we go…? I suggest we make a few concrete demands from those whom we elected.
*The Biden Administration must immediately open abortion clinics on federal lands in states that have banned abortion. This will help women avoid travel and a myriad of other expenses that they cannot afford to seek abortion in States like mine.
*The tyranny of the Supreme Court can and must be ended by “codifying” the right to abort. We elected our representatives to represent us, and if they do not, we must throw them out this November.
*Now that we know beyond a reasonable doubt that the supreme court has become a dangerous political institution and has abdicated its duty to render justice and is instead meting out unjust laws, we must limit their service term to no more than ten years.
*In the interim, we must remain agitated and re-commit ourselves to help women access abortions and other reproductive health care and to protect them from the harsh burdens we all will inevitably face.
We can neither afford our nation to go backward nor can we allow our country to go forward with laws that set us on a path of self-destruction for future generations to come.
Rise my people. If not now, then when and if not us then who!
(Ahmad is Deputy Director of the South Asian Network headquartered in Artesia, CA)