The following is a post from Megan Jones, an undergraduate from Temple University who is interning at Philadelphia Women’s Center
Since starting my internship at Philadelphia Women’s Center three weeks ago, I’ve learned a lot about abortion; the procedure itself, what to expect afterwards, and how to interact with women who are in the office to get an abortion procedure. But I’ve also learned the role that politics still plays in abortion rights not only in the United States, but all over the world. The 1973 Roe v. Wade landmark decision made abortion legal, but that does not necessarily mean abortion is more accessible, affordable or de-stigmatized as it was in 1973. In politics today, there are quite a few law makers who believe that abortion should not be legal, and many have been moving forward to pass a 20-week ban on abortion, like Republicans in Pennsylvania.
In order to educate and inform women about the importance abortion rights in politics, I’ve been registering people to vote. This is very exciting to me, as I have been following the 2016 Presidential Election very closely and voted in the Presidential Primaries last month. Not only is voting a privilege that not all people have, but it is also the first time I am eligible to vote, and I couldn’t be more ready. There have been more acceptance and positive political changes that have happened in recent years, like the legalization of same-sex marriage in 2015. I believe we are on the brink of political revolution, and as a young, first-time voter, it is thrilling to be a part of that.
Working at Philadelphia Women’s Center has been extremely empowering. I am helping women choose what they want to do with their bodies and help them with making a decision that would impact that rest of their lives. I have seen all of the good that abortion does for women. Political involvement in women’s reproductive rights threatens to take away all of the positive work that places like Philadelphia Women’s Center do.
So how do we separate politics and abortion? The most important way is to be informed, and vote! Knowing your law maker’s and legislator’s stances on issues like women’s reproductive rights will help you cast your vote at the polls, and help keep abortion legal.
Not registered to vote? In a few simple steps, you can be!
1. To register to vote, go to our registration page here: Register to Vote!
2. To find your PA polling place, go to https://www.pavoterservices.state.pa.us/Pages/PollingPlaceInfo.aspx
3. To find out your politician’s stances on abortion rights, visit http://www.ladypartsjustice.com/ or http://www.ontheissues.org/
4. Important dates to remember: last day to register for the 2016 Election is 10/11/2016, Election Day is 11/8/2016