Albuquerque community members  took to the streets again on Saturday, May 7 to protest the leaked Supreme Court draft opinion that would overturn Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, cases that provide constitutional protection for abortion in the U.S. under the doctrine of privacy granted by the Fourteenth Amendment.

The protest was organized by the Party for Socialism and Liberation to continue motivating people to fight back and not fall into apathy while calling for the Democrats in Congress to act to protect abortion rights.



“We have to keep up the energy, and we have to remind people that we can't stop just because we came out right after it happened. That doesn't mean that we need to lay down and say that it's done, you know. We got to keep going, keep putting pressure on, especially on the Democrats because they have the power to change this and they're not doing (it),” PSL organizer Margaux López said.

A large crowd marched from the Pete V. Domenici Courthouse to the plaza in Old Town and back again, stopping to hear from speakers in both locations. The speakers talked on a range of topics, including experiences getting abortions, the need to include trans voices and the disproportionate effect this will have on low-income individuals seeking abortions. Kuveni Scanlan spoke about his back-alley abortion.

“I come from a place where abortions are completely illegal, but that never meant that abortions did not happen. At 13 years old, I was raped. I got pregnant; I had to get a back-alley abortion and, because of that, my body will forever be messed up. But because of that abortion, I now can create a life for myself. I got to go to college. I got to pursue my passion,” Scanlan said.

One protester, Siah Millas, attended the march in the midst of having to evacuate her home due to forest fires in nothern New Mexico, feeling the need to still show up. Isa Jaramillo, a PSL organizer, related the draft opinion with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the amount of death it has caused in the nation.

“Women will die in a nation where 1 million people have just died of COVID because profit comes first. Outlawing abortion has the most severe impact on poor and working-class women and the LGBTQ community,” Jaramillo said.

The protest organizers chose to march to Old Town because it is a location that attracts tourists, and abortion rights are something that will affect everyone across the nation, according to López. They also said that it's important to tell stories of people who get abortions to normalize it so more people understand how low risk and normal of a procedure it is.

“That's what lowers the stigma against abortion because even if people are pro-choice, they can still be really afraid to get an abortion or not understand how it works. I think that by normalizing it and showing that it is normal healthcare and it's not something to be afraid of, that'll help to de-stigmatize it,” López said.

Madeline Pukite is a beat reporter at the Daily Lobo. They can be contacted at news@dailylobo.com or on Twitter @maddogpukite