Make Roe Real: How I Make My Personal Life Political
Posted by Summer
January 21, 2014
This week marks the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the famous Supreme Court Case that “guaranteed” the right to abortion to American women. But as we discussed just last month, subsequent court cases like Planned Parenthood v Casey seriously compromised the Roe promise, especially for young people. Limited funding and restrictive laws like parental notification requirements make it hard for young and low-income people to get the abortion care that they may need.
There are many ways to help make the promise of Roe real for everyone. As a young, generally broke, over-committed college student I sometimes worry that I don’t have the monetary or social capital to really make a difference. But then I remember that the personal is political and by sweating the small stuff, fighting the microagressions, and unapologetically advocating for total abortion rights I can upset preconceived notions about people who get abortions. So one of the ways that I support Roe and work to make its promises real is by engaging in critical and serious conversations about abortion rights with any and everyone, even when it might be uncomfortable.
That simply means that I take my politics personally and make my personal life political. So when friends or family make an offhanded remark about teenage moms, “welfare queens,” or any other kind of people who need the protections provided by Roe, I challenge their assumptions and argue back. The work to advocate for reproductive justice rights is never over and there is no situation too insignificant to make a difference. Even if I can’t convince my grandmother that abortion rights should be universal, maybe I can show my cousin that there’s another way of thinking or maybe the guy sitting across from us will overhear our conversation and think that it makes sense. I help Roe’s promise remain real by being a vocal and enthusiastic supporter of reproductive justice in all areas of my life.
Everyone can fight to maintain Roe’s integrity in their own way, no matter how small. How will you?