US women’s national team star Megan Rapinoe called Friday’s US Supreme Court decision overturning a woman’s constitutional right to an abortion “sad” and “cruel”.
The Supreme Court on Friday voted 5-4 to set aside the Roe v. Wade, a decision expected to lead to abortion bans in about half of the states. The ruling came more than a month after the leak of a draft opinion by Judge Samuel Alito showing the court was ready to take the momentous step, and it was backed by the court’s conservative majority.
Rapinoe was among the athletes who spoke out against the verdict on Friday.
“I wish we could just talk about football today, but obviously the ruling on Roe vs. Wade, which takes precedence over everything, is hard to put into words,” Rapinoe said during a USWNT availability ahead of Saturday’s friendly against Colombia at Dick’s Sporting merchandise park in Commerce City, Colorado. “What a sad day this is for me personally, you know, for my teammates, for all the people out there who will be affected by this.
“We know that the lack of abortions does not stop people from having abortions. It discourages people from performing safe abortions. I want to encourage people to understand all of the different aspects involved in the fall of Roe v. Wade for so many, actually for everyone will have across the country. I just can’t underestimate how sad and how cruel this is. I think the cruelty is the point because it’s not pro-life by any means.”
Alito wrote in the final statement that the original 1972 decision on Roe and a 1992 decision reaffirming it (Planned Parenthood v. Casey) “were wrong on the day they were decided and must be reversed.” .
Alito wrote that the authority to regulate abortion rests with the political branches of government, not the courts. It is up to the states to decide.
Three of the court’s liberal justices, in a joint dissent, wrote that the decision would bring “mourning” for the tens of millions of American women who would lose “basic protections of the Constitution.”
In a statement, the National Women’s Soccer League wrote that the ruling “denies the people of this country full liberty and equality, which are the cornerstones of a just society.”
The statement added: “Reproductive rights are human rights. Our work is not done until every individual has the same freedoms as their neighbors. We will continue to make our voices heard.”
Individual NWSL teams also released statements condemning the decision and joined the WNBA players’ union and a number of prominent athletes on social media.
Rapinoe’s UWSNT teammate Lindsey Horan called the decision a “step backwards for our country,” adding that she was “shocked and still trying to absorb it all.”
Their coach, Vlatko Andonovski, offered his players his full support.
“Being with these athletes makes me feel compelled to support them with whatever I have right now. I want to be there for them,” he said.
In Friday’s concurring opinion of Justice Clarence Thomas, he also called for the review of Lawrence v. Texas, which protects the right to same-sex romantic relationships, and Obergefell v. Hodges establishing the right to same-sex marriage.
Rapinoe, who is engaged to WNBA star Sue Bird, tearfully said she was “scared” about the future following Friday’s decision.
“I absolutely believe gay rights are being attacked,” she said. “I have absolutely no doubt that we will see laws emerging from state to state that will eventually come to this radical court. I have no confidence that my rights will be upheld by the court. I have faith in our country and I have faith in the people and I have faith in the voters. And if you ever needed a damn motivation to choose to get involved – literally, lives depend on it.
https://www.espn.com/soccer/united-states-usaw/story/4690486/megan-rapinoeuswnt-slam-cruel-overturning-of-roe-v-wade Megan Rapinoe, USWNT slam ‘cruel’ overturning of Roe v. Wade