The following statement was released May 20 by Alyson Kennedy, Socialist Workers Party candidate for mayor of Dallas.
The Socialist Workers Party and its 2019 slate of candidates across the country call on working people and all supporters of women’s rights to join the growing protests against the accelerating assaults on a woman’s right to choose abortion.
Thousands mobilized in cities throughout Alabama May 19 to demonstrate against a bill adopted there a few days earlier outlawing virtually all abortions. The law criminalizes any doctor who performs an abortion, making the medical procedure a Class A felony punishable by up to 99 years in prison.
Join demonstrations being organized on May 21 and 25 in cities across the country to protest attempts to outlaw abortion!
This is about more than the Alabama ban. Since the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision legalizing abortion in 1973, opponents of women’s rights have chipped away at our access to abortion. Waiting periods, parental consent laws, unnecessary requirements imposed on clinics, restrictive time limits and other arbitrary regulations have been put in place in state after state.
Missouri legislators passed a law May 17 that would ban abortions if a fetal heartbeat is detected. Similar laws have been passed in Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi and Ohio. In Texas, the House of Representatives just approved a bill barring local governments from contracting with abortion providers or their affiliates — even for services like sexual health education and contraception.
Defending the right to choose abortion is fundamental to a woman’s control of her own life and to winning full social, economic and political equality. This is essential to strengthening the unity of the working class to fight against the unrelenting assaults of the employers and their government.
There is majority support for this right in the U.S. We must continue to mobilize in independent public street actions. Advice that we should rely on Democratic or Republican party capitalist politicians is a dead end. The assault on abortion rights is bipartisan.
The fight for the right of women to family planning, including safe and secure birth control and abortion, is essential to winning women’s emancipation.
And it is a key question for the working class worldwide. Large outpourings of women in South Korea, Ireland, Argentina and elsewhere show support for the right of women to choose whether and when to have an abortion is growing and it can be won. Central to the fight is the organization and mobilization of women and all working people independent of the bosses and their parties.
The May 21 actions should be the beginning of continued protests that will win growing numbers to press for women’s right to equal protection under the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. This means that no government should be permitted to interfere with anyone’s right to determine their own health care and family planning.