One year after the death of RBG: Still Fighting to Uphold the Right to Control our Own Body



Ale Lewis '23, Editor-in-Chief

On September 18, 2020, feminist hero Ruth Bader Ginsburg died from cancer at 87.  Progressive for her time, Ginsburg resisted social norms and tirelessly fought for women’s rights, reproductive rights, and voting rights.  Ginsburg made the world a better place.  

As Cessa Lewis ‘23 said the night of her death, “Ginsburg moved the ball forward for gender equality and human rights, but we’re not at the finish line yet.”  Her statement rings true today.  

In this country, where women remain dramatically underrepresented in the halls of power, a near-total abortion ban took effect in Texas.  A federal judge temporarily prohibited the state from implementing the law through a preliminary injunction, however, the law can continue, for the time being, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals said Friday, October 8th.  

Under Texas law, abortion is barred once cardiac activity can be detected in the embryo.  This occurs around the sixth week of pregnancy before most women know that they are pregnant.  Texas law does not make an exception for incest or rape.  

The Texas bill bars state officials from enforcing the abortion law.  Instead, the Texas measure deputizes private citizens to sue anyone who performs an abortion or “aids and abets” a procedure.  Accusers who have no connection to the patient or the clinic may sue and recover legal fees, as well as $10,000 if they win. 

As we write this, Roe vs Wade is in peril. The new court has six people who don’t believe women should have control over their bodies and have the power to overturn the law. 

In response to restrictive abortion legislation in Texas, marches and rallies were organized across the country to support women’s reproductive rights.

650 marches were held nationwide on Sunday, October 2.  One of which was in Wilton, organized by a group of Wilton High School students.  Eighty women, men, and children chanted as they walked with signs from Trackside Teen Center along Route 7, through Wilton Center, and to Town Hall. 

The St. Luke’s Feminism Club joined the Wilton March.  We held signs that read, “The courts don’t decide our destiny, we do,” “Abortion is healthcare,” and “Our body our choice.” 

We also chanted a variety of slogans of the feminist movement,  “Hey, hey!  Ho, ho! Texas law has got to go!” 

As we walked on the sidewalk next to the energetic and lively road, cars honked in support and held up thumbs up to show their alliance with our message.  Feminists were in all different kinds of cars… “some of them had kids in the back seat, and some of them had American flags and hula girls on their dashboard.” With the encouragement and cheering from strangers, everyone marching raised their voices, smiled bigger, and subconsciously united together under a common desire to implement change.  

Founder of the Feminism Club, Cessa Lewis ‘23, said that the march lifted her spirits and showed her that we are not alone in the fight.  

“The March in Wilton was organized by teenagers, and I felt empowered chanting and holding my sign up high. I remember why America is so special. I’m reminded of its potential. Don’t lose hope! Let’s change this!”   

The march’s bakesale coordinator described why the march is important to her and what it all means:

“We live in a country where we have the right to get an abortion without fear. This has recently changed with the new Texas law that has made women everywhere scared. Today was a really important day to see everyone come out and march for our rights again. It is crazy to hear that all over the country women are marching for rights that we should have every day without fear. I definitely think that we made an impact at our rally today in Wilton.”

If Roe vs. Wade is overturned, it will put our country in line with the most restrictive countries. This isn’t about abortion. This is about jeopardizing the lives and futures of over 50% of our population.  We stand for accessible, affordable, and attainable abortions for every woman. Feminism is about more choices, not fewer.