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How Abortion Rights Were Won

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The Case for a FIGHTING Women’s Rights Movement
Monday, March 6

For the past 40 years, abortion rights in the U.S. have been slowly chipped away, state by state, restriction by restriction. Today, we even face the potential overturning of Roe vs. Wade itself. While we still have the legal right to abortion on the books, millions of working-class and poor women around the country have no access to abortion because our abortion providers have been bullied into the shadows and restrictions have made it near impossible for folks to obtain abortions in counties all over the US. The right wing, pro-birther movement has set the terms of discussion, making women feel ashamed of abortion and gaining ground in the public eye. But socialists understand that in order for women to be free, all people must have control over their reproductive health. The right to choose an abortion is one very important aspect of this.

Recently a debate has emerged around our movement’s strategy in the fight to defend Planned Parenthood and all abortion providers from the right wing’s attempts to shutter our clinics. A growing number of people are fed up with the right wing assault on our health care and want to challenge them with spirited defenses of abortion rights wherever they try to attack our clinics. Planned Parenthood has argued in favor of their long-ineffective strategy of ignoring the pro-birthers, and instead directing people to lobby the politicians and rely on police to handle the bigots.

Join the socialists for a discussion of how the legal right to abortion was won in the first place, and hear the socialist case for an unapologetic women’s movement that challenges the right and clearly, unapologetically defends abortion rights within a broader movement for women’s liberation.

Our Speakers are:

Allison Emmet, BC’18, was a founding member of the Columbia/Barnard Fight for $15 branch, and has organized with Student Worker Solidarity and the Collective Advocacy Project. In the 2015-2016 school year, Allison held a prominent leadership position in the Columbia University Democrats before resigning late in the spring semester due to ethical concerns and political disagreements. She joined the International Socialist Organization at the start of this year.

Camila Quarta, CC’16, was one of the students who filed a federal complaint against Columbia University to the Office of Civil Rights for its mishandling of cases of sexual violence. She has appeared on CNN talking about the issue and was featured in New York Magazine’s September 2014 issue on “the Revolution Against Campus Sexual Assault.” She is a long-time member of the International Socialist Organization and a contributor to Socialist Worker newspaper.

To learn more, check out the following resources:

Why we need to protest the anti-choicers by Lichi D’Amelio
The lessons of our counter protest by Jen Roesch
How do we push sexism back to the fringe by Elizabeth Schulte I
Why we’re getting ready for action on March 8 by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
Theorizing women’s oppression by Sharon Smith

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