“Without abortion, I would not be here,” said Ms. Rains, who stood in the plaza with her 5-month-old daughter, Hendrix, and 3-year-old son, Jagger. At five months pregnant in November 2020, she said, she started losing large amounts of blood, forcing her medical providers to perform an abortion to save her life.
“I very much wanted my daughter,” she said, “but I was bleeding and there was nothing they could do.”
For some, protesting the draft opinion was not just about protecting the right to abortion.
Lillian Penafiel, 35, and her wife, Emi Penafiel, 44, worried about what the court’s ruling could mean for marriage equality, LGBTQ rights and voting rights.
“They’ve been very clear, especially what was written up, that our rights are going to be so threatened as well, too, that’s why we’re nervous,” said Emi Penafiel. “They’re coming after all of it.”
Many parents came with their children. Sonia Reiter, 41, who is pregnant, brought her 5-year-old son, Casio Coleman, to the march to educate him on the importance of choice, she said.
“Casio, how did we talk about today’s protest, what’d we say?” Ms. Reiter asked her son her. “If someone wants to be pregnant, they should be pregnant — and if they don’t want to be pregnant?”
“They shouldn’t,” he replied, beaming at his mother.
In Los Angeles, protesters filled Grand Park in front of City Hall and chanted phrases such as, “We won’t go back, we won’t back down!” An estimated 5,000 people were on hand.