Statement on the overturning of Roe vs. Wade

As feared, the United States Supreme Court, in a 5-3-1 decision, today overturned Roe vs. Wade, which has been a precedent in the US since 1973. This places the burden for protecting a woman’s right to choose fully on each individual state, many of which have already enacted (or plan to soon enact) bans on abortion. Even worse, this makes a nationwide ban on abortions a real possibility.

When a draft version of this court opinion leaked in May, I wrote that overturning Roe vs. Wade would be “disastrous for both the right to bodily autonomy and to women’s, trans, and nonbinary healthcare.” I still believe that to be the case.

Today I am saddened, angry, and dismayed by this ruling that will endanger the health and safety of so many. But I am also motivated to speak out, speak up, and act as a strong ally to those who are most affected by this.

As I said in May, I strongly believe the decision to have an abortion is a personal choice, and that anyone with the ability to become pregnant should have the power to choose what’s right for them. 

Many of you reading this may be feeling powerless, scared, and frustrated today. I’m feeling all of those things, too, and I’m planning to channel that emotion into action. This is a huge setback for women’s rights, there’s no way to sugar coat that. But that means we all have the opportunity to step up, organize, and fight. 

One thing you can do is donate to an abortion fund in your state, or to Planned Parenthood, which provides vital healthcare (not just abortion care!) to so many people. And perhaps the most important thing you can do is vote. We have a midterm election coming up in the US later this year, and I’m calling on everyone to do whatever is necessary – donate, volunteer, knock on doors, phonebank – to elect representatives to our government who will stand up for women’s rights and healthcare.


Shervin Talieh