Women’s ability to fully participate in our economy for themselves and their families are enabled by their right to choose when and whether to have or expand a family. Sandra Day O’Connor was a lawyer and mother who overcome discrimination to become the first woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. Writing for the court in Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pa. v. Casey (1992), Justice O’Connor affirmed the court’s decision in Roe v. Wade establishing a woman’s right to choose abortion, pre-viability, as a limitation on the power of the government. She went on to address Roe’s effect on equality for women, “The ability of women to participate equally in the economic and social life of the Nation has been facilitated by their ability to control their reproductive lives.” Decades later, Justice O’Connor’s assertion is even more true.
This legislation worsens the outlook for women’s equality in Georgia.
Like Justice O’Connor and most women, I have multiple roles. I am a mother, grandmother, and a woman who is the leader of the ACLU of Georgia. In each role, I am committed to protecting the rights of women. I affirm that motherhood is a right that may be chosen and never, ever coerced— and to defend that principle. Governor, we will see you in court.
Andrea Young is executive director, ACLU of Georgia.