Feminist at MLK Event: ‘We Can’t Lose a Generation to the Tea Partiers’
(CNSNews.com) – Eleanor Smeal, president of the Feminist Majority Foundation, blamed the Tea Party for efforts nationwide to limit abortion and protect religious objection to contraceptives.
“We’re going to fight back,” Smeal said at the Black Women’s Roundtable and Black Youth Vote event on Thursday in Washington, D.C., to mark the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s ‘I Have a Dream’ speech. “We are not going to give up the ground we have right now, but most importantly, we must go forward.
“We cannot lose a generation to the Tea Partiers,” Smeal said.
Thirteen states have passed laws to ban abortion after 20 weeks gestation, with five of those laws being blocked or ruled unconstitutional through court challenges, according to the Charlotte Lozier Institute, the research arm of the pro-life advocacy group, Susan B. Anthony List.
The results of a July poll by ABC Washington and the Washington Post, however, showed a majority favoring limits on abortion.
“Reflecting underlying unease with abortion, more say it should be legal without limitation only up to 20 weeks (as in some recent state laws), as opposed to about 24 weeks, as the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in the landmark Roe v. Wade case; the division is 56-27 percent (an additional 8 percent volunteer that it should never be legal),” a July 25 ABC report on the poll said.
The mandate in the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, to force businesses to provide insurance coverage that covers abortion-inducing drugs has sparked a wave of lawsuits seeking protection for employers and employees who have a religious objection to the drugs.
Smeal also praised the “Moral Monday” movement in North Carolina opposing GOP legislation, including restrictions on abortion, and Wendy Davis, the Texas Democrat state legislator who staged a filibuster to try to defeat the 20-week abortion ban law.
Smeal also invited people to attend an Oct. 2 protest in Ohio. The state has one of the strictest abortion laws in the country, including a 24-hour “Informed Consent Law” that requires abortion providers to tell women the age of their unborn baby and the risks of abortion and also requires parental consent for minors seeking an abortion.
Ohio abortion providers also must also have formal access to a nearby hospital in case an emergency arises during the procedure.
Thursday’s event focused on the contributions women have made to civil rights in the 50 years since King’s iconic speech on the Washington Mall.