‘Rock for Roe’ raises awareness about Arizona ballot initiative to return abortion services, expand reproductive rights
TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court ended constitutional protections for abortion last Friday, several protests, marches and rallies have taken over streets and sidewalks across Pima County.
Tuesday night, several performers used music to amplify their cause. ‘Rock for Roe’ drew hundreds of people to Hotel Congress.
“We knew this was going to happen, but it actually happening on Friday was just a gut punch to human rights, to women’s rights,” said Shack McCoy, who co-founded Arizonans for Reproductive Freedom in May. “You just felt helpless.”
McCoy quickly turned helplessness into action. Arizonans for Reproductive Freedom is working to get a constitutional amendment on Arizona ballots this November.
“I could give you 100 stories just since Friday of people who have been put in terrible positions because Roe was overturned,” said Amy Fitch-Heacock, co-founder of the Tucson Women’s March. “In Arizona, all abortion care ceased. We are talking about even some care that is causing doctors to think twice when they have to save the life of a mother.”
McCoy feels the ruling set society back 50 years. Bob Pawson, who is with Tucson Pro-Life Action, says that’s not a bad thing.
“We are not taking away anybody’s rights,” he said.
Pawson says everyone is alive because their biological mother went through with a pregnancy.
“There’s no right anywhere - even before the constitution or before the declaration - there never existed a right to murder people, no matter how small they are,” said Pawson, “even in the womb.”
Pawson believes life begins at fertilization and says only ectopic pregnancies should be terminated, as the egg will not survive and it can be life-threatening.
He calls the ruling a ‘victory,’ but says it’s not the only victory he seeks.
“[I’m advocating for] a total end to abortion, at least elective abortion,” Pawson said.
Pawson says he will continue his ministry, connecting people with pregnancy care centers like Hands of Hope Tucson.
Those planning to return abortion services to Arizona are also just getting started.
“Abortion itself polls very well,” said Fitch-Heacock. “We know that 80% of Arizona voters strongly support having abortion be legal in some or all cases. Arizona is in a really unique position because we do have some time to get something on the ballot before November. So, we don’t have to wait for legislators to make it harder on us.”
“Bodily autonomy; that’s what it’s all about,” McCoy said.
Arizonans for Reproductive Freedom will need to get 356,000 signatures for their ballot initiative before July 7. Volunteers colleting signatures say thousands of people have already signed.
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