The national conversation regarding abortion rights and the possible overturning of the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade came to Columbia on Tuesday.
Tuesday, President Joe Biden said that a “whole range of rights” beyond abortion is in question if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, USA TODAY reported.
The president said the same arguments included in the draft opinion could also be used to strike down the right of gays and lesbians to marry as well as constitutional protections for birth control.
He released a statement calling on Congress to codify abortion rights and urged voters to elect lawmakers, who would support those rights.
Biden declined to say whether he would support changing Senate rules so legislation codifying the right to abortion could not be blocked by a filibuster.
Following a leaked draft of a Supreme Court ruling stating that the court would overturn the 1973 decision establishing a constitutional right to abortion, protestors stood with signs on the Maury County Courthouse square, opposing the possible decision that would outlaw abortion.
“This is the one issue that has been in the shadows,” said Pamela Joe Delk. “It is very important for me to be here and to take my one stand.”
Delk said she comes from a family of healthcare providers.
“Tennessee was the last to okay the suffragette movement,” Delk said. “Tennessee hangs back, and right now, I think it is time for Tennesseans to think of their rights and decide about those rights.”
The Supreme Court has confirmed the authenticity of the leaked draft written by Justice Samuel Alito.
The small group of demonstrators gathered at the Tennessee courthouse, joining others across the country who were doing the same from the steps of the Supreme Court in Washington to downtown Murfreesboro, Tennessee for example.
“The entire Alito statement that was put out is an attack on all rights starting here,”
– said Jameson Manor, a Democratic candidate running for District 64 in the House of Representatives.
“Women’s health rights are human rights and civil rights,” Manor said. “It is an attack on pretty much every social accomplishment. It is a fundamental movement that we cannot allow to continuously be taken away. Everything is on the table with the way that they wrote this statement.”
After seeing the group standing in support of the continued support of Roe V. Wade on the courthouse square, Nathan Close was compelled to join them with his own opinion.
Close sprayed the words “stop murdering babies” with black spray paint on a large whiteboard.
“I saw them out here trying to keep the legalized the of babies and I thought someone needed to stand up for those little children who are made in God’s image and murdered on a daily basis,” Close said. “The Supreme Court has not issued an opinion. There is really nothing these folks protesting are going to change at this point. I just wanted to have someone support the babies being made in God’s image.”
Joe Prinsloo, an immigrant from South Africa, saw Close standing alone and decided to join him.
“Murder is murder at any age of conception,” Prinsloo said. “We need to stand up against it. There will be no blessings that come upon this country if we keep doing what we are doing. That is the reason why I am out here.”
His wife Adele Prinsloo said she feels that endangered animals are given more protection than unborn children.
“It is not right,” Prinsloo said.
Arron Miller said he is excited to see the Supreme Court take a step toward protecting its ‘entire citizenry” and see an “unjust ruling” be struck down.