After Texas passed the nation’s most restrictive abortion law — and the Supreme Court refused to step in to block the measure on Wednesday (Sept. 1) — the reaction from outspoken artists such as P!nk, Barbra Streisand and Lauren Jauregui was swift and unequivocal.
“Have we gone backwards in time?” asked Streisand about the law that prohibits abortions after around six weeks — at which time many women are not even aware they are pregnant. “Isn’t it interesting how putting on a mask is ‘violating their body’ but abortion rights is not?”
Abortion rights advocates fear that the new Texas law is the most significant effort to date by anti-abortion advocates to reverse the landmark 1973 Roe V. Wade decision that legalized abortion. The law, which does not make any exceptions for rape or incest and very few for health reasons, basically means that abortion is effectively banned in the second most-populous state in the country.
“I stand in solidarity with people in TX who, as of today, face an extreme 6-week abortion ban. This ban, #SB8, will be the blueprint for bans across the US. Unless we do something about it,” wrote P!nk and St. Vincent, who both included the trending hashtag #BansOffOurBodies in tweets on Wednesday. Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello wrote “The future is now” along with an ominous poster featuring a red-robed handmaid from The Handmaid’s Tale along with the Texas flag and the chilling message “Don’t mess with Gilead.”
The new Texas measure is so wide-ranging that it gives private citizens the right to sue abortion providers and anyone who helps a woman get an abortion, down to someone who gives a woman a ride to a clinic or provides any financial assistance to get that abortion; the private citizens who bring the suits don’t have to have any connection to the people they are suing, according to NPR. To aid in this effort, Texas Right to Life has set up what it’s calling a “whistleblower” site where citizens can upload anonymous tips about people they believe are violating the law.
Jauregui posted a series of tweets following the passage of the law, hinting at the widespread potential fallout from the ruling, while specifically pointing out what some have described as a $10,000 “bounty” that the complainant can receive in damage compensation if the person accused of providing aid is found guilty.
“This is happening right now in Texas. This is happening right now in Texas,” wrote Jauregui in the first of four tweets about the law. “This will have immediate and DEVASTATING consequences. It is about so much more than whether or not someone will abort a fetus. There are so many psychological, economic, social, and health conditions that influence these kinds of decisions.”
See some of the tweets below.
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