From the July-August 2022 issue of News & Letters
Chicago—Well over 3,000 women, men and gender diverse people overran downtown Federal Plaza on June 24, spilling into the streets demanding abortion rights and castigating a U.S. Supreme Court whose legitimacy is no longer recognized by the citizens it oppresses. While abortion rights are safe in Illinois—for now—that didn’t damp down the tremendous anger at the Court and the Republicans who appointed the deeply misogynist judges who lied their way into their positions.
Homemade signs were everywhere: “You are not pro-life, you are pro-control!” A sign with the picture of the six anti-abortion judges and the message: “They lied and women and girls will die!” “Abortion bans are rooted in white supremacy!” “We dissent! Fuck you SCOTUS!” was a popular message said in different ways by different signs and speeches.
Some things that were different stood out. There were many more men present than at other abortion rights marches. A sobering change was that a number of women were crying, expressing what this inhuman ruling means to millions, destroying hope, destroying lives, and that it will lead to women dying.
‘THIS AIN’T OVER!’
Cindy Plante spoke for many there when she told Block Club Chicago: “This is an untenable situation. We are in a position now to have less rights than our moms in a country that supposedly stands for freedom. For us to be going backwards now when so many others are liberalizing abortion rights, I don’t even quite have the words. We need to make this country ungovernable if this is gonna continue.”
After the rally we took over the streets. Women on bikes and skates led us through Chicago, blowing whistles, banging drums, urging people in stores and offices to join us and sitting down in a usually busy intersection for a moment of silence. I think most of us there agreed with another sign that was a warning to those who want to drive women back to the dark ages: “This ain’t over!”