On August 29, seven Reproaction activists met at the Boone County Courthouse in Columbia, Missouri, for a visibility action. We united as a part of Reproaction’s Stop Prosecuting Abortion campaign, which exposes the logical consequence of abortion bans: sending people to jail for their pregnancy outcomes. Anti-abortion movement leaders claim these laws will only punish abortion providers, but that abhorrent idea in itself fails to acknowledge the fact that providers and patients are not always mutually exclusive, and that people who self-manage their abortions are already being prosecuted across the nation.
In a recent article, Missouri Association of Prosecuting Attorneys President Tim Lohmar said that “it’s clear to prosecutors that charging pregnant women was not lawmakers’ intent when they passed the law.” Lohmar went on to say he “can’t imagine any prosecutor in their right mind” would prosecute pregnant women under the new law. This “new law” includes an eight-week abortion ban and a ban on abortions based on signs of Down syndrome, and both measures are currently blocked by a federal judge while challenges play out in court. Lohmer’s statement is supposed to set people at ease, but we know we must hold him and other politicians accountable.
That’s why Reproaction organized the visibility action at the courthouse. During the action, we held Stop Prosecuting Abortion signs as we showed support for people who choose abortion. Our activists enthusiastically spent the hour talking to folks coming out of the courthouse and walking by on the sidewalk. Next time, we hope you will join us!
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