Inevitably, as pro-choice activists we face people who simply do not understand the need for a reproductive health movement. Roe is the law of the land, what’s the big deal? Nine times out of 10 my infuriated response dives straight into an explanation of Hyde, the erosion of protections in the states, and what it means now that we have legally lost the right to have an abortion for health reasons alone. But now I have an addendum, health care reform and the inevitable loss of private health insurance coverage of abortion.
Though I am ecstatic we are on our way to passing historic legislation that will help millions of Americans, I have never been more dedicated to promoting reproductive justice. The mainstream pro-choice movement has officially lost its way and we, as reproductive justice activists, need to fill their gap. I woke up this morning to an email from Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood, four paragraphs in she merely notes that the Nelson amendment stands. If Planned Parenthood is going to settle, who is going to fight?
I understand we all want to improve health care for as many Americans as possible, and that unfortunately we do not have the political climate to get truly comprehensive health care to everyone, but we already compromised on abortion with the status quo. Why do we have to set ourselves back farther? Who does that help? Why are we again leaving behind poor women?