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Ohio Valley residents voice opinions on Court’s abortion case reversal

Protesters gather outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Friday, June 24, 2022. The Supreme Court has ended constitutional protections for abortion that had been in place nearly 50 years, a decision by its conservative majority to overturn the court's landmark abortion cases. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — Ohio Valley residents voiced their opinions, or lack thereof, Friday afternoon following the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the Roe v. Wade case, which will allow states to ban abortion.

The majority of people asked to give their opinion on the matter declined to do so, either completely or by claiming they had “no opinion.” Yet others were passionate with their responses. Out of around 20 people questioned outside the Ohio Valley Mall and Ohio Valley Plaza, only seven offered up their opinions.

Most who did give a response felt opposed to the recent decision that will allow the banning of abortions on a state-to-state bases.

Shania Phillips of Bethesda said she did not agree with the decision, adding that she thinks it’s “crazy.” She brought up cases of rape and how a woman should have the choice of whether to have her attacker’s baby.

“Everyone should have the right to make their own decision,” Phillips said.

April Galberth of Wheeling said she felt the Supreme Court’s decision was “bull.”

“Every woman should be able to make that choice. The government shouldn’t be able to tell them what they can do with their body,” she added.

Scott Lucas of Shadyside said the court should have left the case alone.

“Even though we’re one of only six countries in the world that allows abortion past 15 weeks, I think they should have just let it be. There’s no reason to overturn it. I think it’s a big gift to the Democrats come midterms,” he said.

Stephanie Kline of Wheeling was also upset with the overturning. She said that a woman has a right to choose what happens to her own body.

“They should have left it alone,” she said.

One man walking by did not wish to be quoted, though he did voice his opposition to the decision, stating that it is a woman’s right to choose. He also had some foul words regarding the Supreme Court.

Although she is opposed to abortion, a woman who only revealed that her first name is Megan, echoed other local residents’ opinons.

“Regardless of the situation, it should be the woman’s choice. Abortion is not good thing, but it’s her body, it’s her choice,” she said.

Sharon Fodale of Bellaire, on the other hand, said she was “very in favor” of the court’s decision and agreed that justices made the right choice in leaving it up to the states.

“We’ve lost our way in America,” she said.

Meanwhile, one local women’s organization weighed in on the decision. The YWCA Wheeling pointed out that while women everywhere recently celebrated the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the civil rights law that prohibits sex discrimination in educational institutions receiving federal funds, the Supreme Court decision Friday represents “10 steps backward” by ending federal constitutional protection of the right to an abortion.

“YWCA Wheeling has been considered a champion of women and their rights since 1906 and the right to an abortion has affirmed for almost half a century that women who experience pregnancy should have agency over their bodies and their futures,” the YWCA states. “This decision has devastating consequences for young women, but especially victims of domestic violence and human trafficking, sexual assault and incest who experience forms of control that impact reproductive choice. Without this access, the trajectory of these women’s futures will be limited, and the consequences will be felt by them, their families and communities.” Executive Director Lori Jones elaborated.

“This threat to reproductive healthcare is a threat to gender and racial justice. We cannot be silent when this core tenet of our mission is attacked,” Jones said. “Being able to decide if and when to have children has been and should remain a very personal and constitutional right.” According to the statement, the YWCA Wheeling will continue to stand with women and all those affected by the overturning of Roe v. Wade. The organization states it will uphold the mission to eliminate racism, empower women, and promote peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all.

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