TUCSON, Ariz (KGUN) — Local High School students took a stand in the debate over abortion rights and whether the Supreme Court should strike down the Court’s earlier ruling that made many abortions legal.
Students from several schools gathered at Tucson High School, then marched to the University of Arizona’s Highland Commons.
High school students are often criticized as disengaged, uninformed and uninterested in anything but themselves. But a large group of high school students marched to UArizona to speak out on one of the hottest issues in American Public life.
Tucson High students were the first to tell KGUN 9 they were organizing a march and protest over a leaked draft opinion from the Supreme Court showing a majority of the Justices seem prepared to reverse Roe versus Wade, the more than 50 year old ruling that secured abortion rights.
Students began assembling at Tucson High shortly before 10 a.m. Soon, other large student groups joined the march to University of Arizona’s Highland Commons. Hundreds of students were there as students spoke, listened and made it clear why they felt compelled to stand up and speak out.
University High Student Campbell Finley says, “I feel like it’s important to be here because I don’t want my rights to have an abortion to be taken away, and I just feel like that’s something that I should have.“
Davin of Rincon High School says, “I’m a trans man with a uterus. I think it’s incredibly important for everyone to stand up for the women with uteruses and for other men with uteruses. In general, the movement isn’t just for women or people with uteruses.”
Alison Soleng from City High School says, “If the parent cannot take care of that kid, it’s not a good life and it’s not a life that baby deserves to live. If it deserves to live, it deserves to live a good life. And forcing a parent who cannot afford a child to have that kid, is putting the kid in more danger.”
Miles Pickering is a City High School who says, “A lot of my friends are women and was here to support all the women I know because I know a lot of women in my life that have had abortions and have had a lot of issues with birth and I want, I think all women should have that choice to have an abortion if they want.”
The students understand that Supreme Court Justices who interpret the law are not supposed to be swayed by demonstrations and public opinion but politicians who make the laws do worry about what people say and what they do with their vote. Students say even if they’re too young to vote they can still work for candidates who align with their views.
And we did see people offering voter registration sign ups. The law says even if students are not eighteen yet, they can register if they will be 18 by the time of the next general election in November.
While the rally was taking place at the UArizona campus, outside a Tucson Planned Parenthood was Pro-Love Tucson. Volunteers from the group call themselves sidewalk advocates, working to get women to make a different choice.
"A young lady that her initial is B, came and decided after talking with us, receiving our resources, to go ahead and choose life for her baby," Lucy Smith, Director of Pro-Love Tucson said. "And she is so grateful. When I visited her and she's holding her newborn baby on her chest, she said Lucy, tell women no one ever regrets choosing life."
Smith says she would like for Roe v. Wade to be overturned and that regardless of the circumstances, unborn babies should have rights.
"We just focus on no matter what the condition of conception, that's still a human life and so many women that have been sexually abused are still able to go ahead and choose to continue that pregnancy," Smith said. "And they're so grateful because they're not healing from two traumas."
Craig Smith is a reporter for KGUN 9. With more than 30 years of reporting in cities like Tampa, Houston and Austin, Craig has covered more than 40 Space Shuttle launches and covered historic hurricanes like Katrina, Ivan, Andrew and Hugo. Share your story ideas and important issues with Craig by emailing email@example.com or by connecting on Facebook and Twitter.
Denelle Veselik is an anchor and investigative reporter for KGUN 9. It's been her dream to tell your stories for the past decade. She is extremely curious and wants to continue to use her storytelling for the greater good. Share your story ideas and important issues with Denelle by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by connecting on Facebook, and Twitter.