HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Several hundred people joined together on the Capitol steps in Harrisburg on Saturday, participating in a march and rally for abortion and reproductive rights.
It’s one of the hundreds of events that took place across the country.
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The theme of the rally was “Bans off our Bodies.” It was organized in response to the recent law in Texas banning abortions after six weeks. Pro-choice advocates say that’s before most women even know they’re pregnant.
Those advocates say reproductive rights are under attack. They made their voices heard in the streets of Harrisburg.
“Abortion is a woman’s right and as long as I am serving the good people of Pennsylvania, I will always protect that right,” Pa. Attorney General Josh Shapiro said.
“An individual needs bodily autonomy. They need the ability to make those really personal, private medical decisions without interference, without interference from politicians,” Melissa Reed, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Keystone, said.
But, that’s not the viewpoint of thousands who showed up this past Monday, Sept. 27, for a pro-life march on the Capitol steps.
“A heartbeat starts very early and it is an individual life with very distinct DNA and we have to also protect that,” Rep. Bryan Cutler, speaker of the Pa. House, said.
Politicians have tried to pass several bills restricting abortions in Pennsylvania, but Gov. Tom Wolf has vowed to veto them all.
“Our governor will stop any bans on women exercising their constitutional right and we can never ever let go of that veto pen in Pennsylvania,” Shapiro said.
“Having abortions be illegal does not stop abortions. What it does is stop safe abortions,” Bailey Monroe said.
Women at the rally say it’s not an easy decision to make, but sometimes a necessary one.
“No one is aborting healthy babies past the point where they’re actually developed and viable outside of the womb,” Sarah Hammond said. “This pre-Roe era of legislating bodies for people with uteruses is archaic. It’s invasive. It’s detrimental to our health.”