Neither side is ready to close the abortion gap

The following is a lightly edited transcript of comments made by Rakim Brooks during a news week Episode of The Debate on bridging the abortion gap. You can listen to the podcast here:

Emotions will be tense, and as with any difficult conversation, I’m not sure if sides that disagree will be immediately ready to speak up. One of the questions we honestly have to ask ourselves is whether our country officials and our government are capable of having these talks. The citizenry will of course start having these conversations, but it will just be a case of power politics — where Republican majorities in certain states say, “The conversation is over, we’re ending abortion,” and in democratic states you have a similar conversation : “We say the conversation is over. We allow abortions.”

Protest against abortion rights
A new poll found support for abortion rights in the US has hit a record high. Here activists participate in the Women’s March Foundation protest for abortion rights at Los Angeles City Hall on May 14, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.
Sarah Morris/Getty Images

My hope would be that we allow some time to pass before we change regimes. I know that hope will not come true. But that has to be the approach of doing our best to talk to each other about what our interests are. When my grandmother died, she was on a ventilator. She had suffered a stroke. And in this case the state said I could choose to take her off this ventilator or let her live and told me there was little chance she would come back from the stroke. If the state stepped in and said, “We’ll keep her on the ventilator and you have to keep monitoring her. You can’t decide that you take her off the ventilator and end her life with it for sure.” that would have annoyed me. It would have upset me quite a bit. And I’m trying to convey that to people in a different context on the subject of abortion.

Rakim Brooks is President of the Alliance for Justice Action Campaign.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own. Neither side is ready to close the abortion gap

Rick Schindler

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