Sights & Sounds from July 23-31

The Overturning of Abortion Rights Is ILLEGITIMATE! 
This Decision Must Not Stand.

Received from Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights:

New York City

BETTY and Friends at the Arch:
An Evening of Celebration and Resistance in the Park

On Wednesday, July 27, the band BETTY hosted BETTY and Friends at the Arch, a celebration of music and resistance at Washington Square Park. Singer Felice Rosser of FAITH NYC opened the performances with a soulful call to stand up. Sophia Ramos unleashed ferocious fury and attitude that got the crowd dancing and cheering. Madge Dietrich led everyone to sing an old Woody Guthrie tune against fascism. BETTY brought passion and energy to the stage with their wit and wonderful harmonies. All those who gathered from different walks of life and all generations, including many who had just been passing by and got drawn in, were gelled together with a sense of rhythm and defiance. Aly Palmer, of BETTY, who curated and emceed the evening, interspersed the performances and speakers with deep history of Washington Square Park. She shared how 20,000 people are still buried under the park, mostly those who were destitute or enslaved. She shared of the public lynchings that took place in the park for many years. But she also shared the massive protests and rallies and freedom struggles that converged there—the famous walk out of women from the shirtwaist factory, more recent marches for Black Lives and against the overturning of Roe—connecting today's struggles with those of the past. Jasmine Logan, of Middlechurch, spoke of the need for revolutionary love and the reality that until all of us are free, no one is free. Antonia Kirkland, of Equality Now, spoke against the horror of losing abortion rights and of the need to pass the Equal Rights Amendment. Sunsara Taylor spoke on behalf of Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights and, after celebrating the diversity and unity of the crowd, challenged people to resist the pull to retreat into communities of like-minded people and into one's own life, but instead to gather our strength to face the fight of our lifetimes that is coming to defeat the rising forces of fascism and win a whole better future and world. She briefly invited people to tune into The RNL—Revolution, Nothing Less!—Show on YouTube that she co-hosts.

Sunsara Taylor speaking at the BETTY concert at Washington Square Park.

 

Sunsara Taylor speaking at the BETTY concert at Washington Square Park, July 29.   

After the performances ended, people stayed and mixed it up with people they didn't know before. Many visited the table of Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights and got literature from the other organizers there. In these dangerous times, we need much more of this kind of unity and diversity, culture and community of resistance.

Los Angeles

Screencap of LA Times coverage of Abortion Rights civil disobedience at the LA County Museum of Art

 

Screencap of Los Angeles Times coverage of Abortion Rights civil disobedience at the LA County Museum of Art, July 29, 2022. 

Thursday, July 29: Three people with Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights, LA and Vets Rise 4 Roe were forcefully arrested for participating in a non-violent civil disobedience and performance art piece on the steps of Chris Burden's “Urban Lights” at the LA County Museum of Art.  Two activists chained themselves to the posts of the iconic statue amidst fake body bags, hangers, and fake blood. They were covered in blood in a dramatic action to bring attention to all the lives this decision affects. Read more.

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Riverside, California

July 30, Riverside, California. Thirteen Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights activists were unjustly arrested at a small, peaceful protest held at the Historic Riverside Courthouse. The action was organized by Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights, Inland Empire to demand the Federal Government restore the right to abortion nationwide. The next day 5 of those arrested were released with no charges. But the other 8 are still being held, charged with conspiracy to commit a crime and felony vandalism. The protesters had used temporary chalk and kid’s paint to make a political statement that: Forced Motherhood Is Female Enslavement! As she was being taken away in handcuffs, Luna Hernandez, a Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights organizer and member of the Revolution Club said, “In a so-called sanctuary state, we are getting arrested for using washable paint and chalk while the lives of women and young girls across this country are being violently disrupted. We won’t go back, we won’t submit.” Olivia Merritt, an organizer with Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights said, “Calling people gathering for a protest a conspiracy is aimed at suppressing political speech. When people everywhere need to be demanding Abortion On Demand and Without Apology, no one should accept this.”

RU4AR put green handprints on Riverside Courthouse to protest overturn of Roe v Wade.

 

Washable-fingerpaint green handprints on Riverside Courthouse.    Photo: RU4AR

"Forced motherhood is female enslavement" chalked by RU4AR in front of Riverside Courthouse.

 

Chalked in front of Riverside Courthouse    Photo: RU4AR

Chicago

July 23, RU4AR activists protest in Chicago.

 

On July 23, there was a rally followed by a March of about 50 people led by some women motorcyclists. The rally included a powerful speech by Patricia Wallen where she addressed the attacks, an ER doctor who talked about what it means that Roe has been overturned for patients with exposure beyond what people know. One of the bikers spoke. There were speakers from RU4AR and the Revolution Club.    Photo: RU4AR

July 30, Lollapalooza concert-goers enthusiastically greet the RU4AR activists passing out materials

 

Chicago, July 30, Lollapalooza concert-goers enthusiastically greet the RU4AR activists passing out materials    Photo: RU4AR

Austin, Texas

July 28, RU4AR activists protest in Austin, Texas.

 

July 28, RU4AR activists protest in Austin, Texas.    Photo: @tx4abortion

Seattle

July 29, RU4AR activists protest in Seattle.

 

July 29, RU4AR activists protest in Seattle.   

July 29, RU4AR activists protest in Seattle with green smoke.

 

Seattle, July 29, RU4AR activists protest in Seattle with green smoke.   

Honolulu, Hawaii

July 23, RU4AR activists protest in Honolulu.

 

July 23, RU4AR activists protest in Honolulu, Hawaii.    Photo: RU4AR

July 23, RU4AR activists protest in Honolulu.

 

July 23, RU4AR activists protest in Honolulu, Hawaii.   

Brea, California

July 23, RU4AR activists protest in Brea, California.

 

  July 23, RU4AR activists protest in Brea, California.    Photo: @SallySanders

July 23, RU4AR activists protest in Brea, California.

 

July 23, RU4AR activists protest in Brea, California.    Photo: @SallySanders

Protests in Other Cities:

Indianapolis

July 25, Indianapolis, Indiana. As many as a thousand abortion rights protesters gathered on the first day of a special session of the State Senate to discuss a Republican proposed abortion ban. People changed, “Not the church, not the state, women must decide our fate.” There were clashes with a group of about 60 anti-abortion protesters. Inside abortion rights protesters packed the statehouse which seats up to 500 people. Protester William Bell said he fears banning abortion will put women’s lives at risk as they desperately turn to dangerous illegal means to terminate a pregnancy. His sister, Becky Bell died in 1988 when she was only 17-years-old from an illegal abortion. Betty Sturtevant held a sign that read, “I marched 50 years ago so my three daughters and six granddaughters didn’t have to.” A 24-year-old fourth-year IU medical student, Raiven Owusu, is training in OBGYN training and said it is "scary" seeing people's reproductive rights under attack.

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West Virginia

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University of Michigan Medical School

Ann Arbor, Michigan

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