The Freedom Rides are a powerful symbol, but we—and Stop Patriarchy, which began an “Abortion Rights Freedom Ride” on July 30—should think deeply about what they mean in conversation with the history of abortion rights.
Currently, Pennsylvania has two enacted buffer zones, in Pittsburgh and Harrisburg, and a proposed bill to establish buffer zones across the state. But like the legal fate of buffer zones in the country following the McCullen decision, the bill remains “in limbo.”
Operation Save America protesters gathered outside the headquarters of the Jackson, Mississippi, police department Monday. Inside, fellow anti-choice activists were facing criminal charges associated with protest activities.
The bill, known as An Act to Promote Public Safety and Protect Access to Reproductive Health Care Facilities, was rushed through the legislature after the state’s buffer zone law was struck down in June.
The legislation was filed in direct response to the Supreme Court’s McCullen v. Coakley decision, which found Massachusetts’ 35-foot buffer zone law to be unconstitutional. Gov. Deval Patrick has supported the legislation from the beginning and is expected to sign it.
Called “An Act to Promote Public Safety and Protect Access to Reproductive Health Care Facilities,” the bill was proposed in response to a June Supreme Court ruling that dealt a blow to buffer zone advocates.
I have seen countless women reduced to tears and shaking, just for trying to access the health care to which they are constitutionally entitled. That isn’t peaceful assembly. That is harassment, hiding behind the First Amendment.
According to the Roberts Court, Massachusetts had not shown that it tried to address clinic protests in a less restrictive means than enacting a fixed 35-foot buffer zone.
Zachary Klundt is accused of vandalizing All Families Healthcare in March, destroying much of the clinic. The destruction was so complete that the clinic was closed indefinitely.
Flanked by lawmakers and supporters, Democratic New Hampshire Gov. Maggie Hassan signed a bill Tuesday that will create a 25-foot buffer zone around the five clinics that provide abortion services in the state.