A protest was held at CSUN today in response to the leaked draft opinion suggesting that the Supreme Court will overturn the landmark abortion rights case Roe v. Wade.
“As you’ve heard by now, a leak of the Supreme Court draft on Roe v. Wade has revealed that the court is about to overturn abortion rights,” Tina Beyene, assistant professor of CSUN’s Department of Gender and Women’s Studies, said in an Instagram post. “Please join some of us from Gender and Women’s Studies and the Women’s Research and Resource Center today at 2 p.m. in front of Sierra Tower to make signs and hold a rally.”
The draft opinion of the Supreme Court justices, published yesterday by Politico, was signed by Justice Samuel Alito and suggests that the high court supported the decision to overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade case that legalized abortions nationwide. Although the opinions were collected earlier this year, the Supreme Court has yet to issue an official ruling in the case and isn’t expected to decide until late June or early July.
“Roe was egregiously wrong from the start. We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled,” the draft opinion states, referencing the 1992 Planned Parenthood v. Casey case that affirmed the constitutional right to abortion services. “It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.”
The protest was organized by Shira Brown, director of CSUN’s Women’s Research and Resource Center, with support from Beyene. It started in front of Sierra Hall, where interested students, faculty and staff were able to gather and create posters.
Many CSUN students and faculty began to chant phrases like, “My body, my choice,” during the first hour of the protest. Then they marched in front of the University Library toward the University Student Union while carrying signs promoting abortion access and denouncing the Supreme Court’s potential decision.
Students continued to pass by Sierra Tower and join the demonstration even after the group of protestors made their way to the USU. Although today’s protest was a sudden one, Brown noted that they will be returning for another day of rallying tomorrow at 2 p.m.
“It’s not necessarily about changing peoples’ minds,” Brown said. “It’s about expressing that concern [about what this will mean going forward].”