Yesterday I woke up with my usual brain fog and full-body ache after another busy week at work.
I lay on my bed, kept my eyes closed, and pressed my temples hard with my two thumbs, slowly putting myself back together before I got ready for brunch with my sister.
After a few minutes, still in bed, I grabbed my phone from the bedside table drawer to check the overnight news.
Then I saw the first headline trending on Twitter:
“U.S. Supreme Court strikes down landmark abortion decision Roe v. Wade.”
My body stiffened. My heart sunk. My stomach churned.
Yet my brain spun into overdrive, panicking about the seriousness of this ruling.
I could not fathom the fact that the United States of America—the Land of the Free—would regress to become the real-life Gilead as depicted in “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
That people would be denied access to safe reproductive health care.
That people would be deprived of their freedom to choose and to live as they will.
That people’s right to safety and privacy would be violated.
Shocked. Devastated. Furious.
Many people have said this before, and I will say it loud again:
The overturn of Roe v. Wade is never about protecting lives; it is about power, control, and oppression.
And now it has paved the way for more attacks on human rights, equality, and justice.
Women, BIPOC, LGBTQIA+ communities, and ethnic minorities will suffer immensely. They will be cut off from their potential and trapped in the world of poverty, struggle, and discrimination.
Some people may wonder why I care so much about Roe v. Wade.
Because this is not just an American problem but also a real threat to humankind.
It can happen in any country in the world.
It’s shown us how fragile the democratic system is. How easy it can be manipulated and abused. That our fundamental rights can disappear quickly if we don’t hold our elected officials accountable.
For a long time, many of us have taken our safety, freedom, and basic rights for granted.
Many of us have naively believed that our government and legal systems will always protect us and act in good will.
Many of us have become complacent amid the comfort of our possessions, status, and privileges.
Many of us have been taught not to talk about or get involved in politics to avoid conflicts and negativity.
However, staying silent is no longer an option.
Complacency is complicity.
The overturn of Roe v. Wade is the much-needed (and final) wake-up call to America and the world.
I know many of us are feeling despair and defeated right now while witnessing so much hate, violence, and division in the world.
But we must stay hopeful and persevere.
Let’s feel all the feels, be kind to ourselves and each other, and then take actions together.
Protest. Write. Educate. Donate. Vote.
Look at the Australian election in May, 2022.
Our country chose to say no to racism, sexism, climate inaction, and institutional corruption after nine years of conservative coalition rules. Together we elected a new federal government that comprises a record number of female and indigenous representatives and is diverse in backgrounds, cultures, and life experiences.
Many Australians also voted favourably toward the Greens and independent candidates whose campaigns primarily focused on a stronger response to the climate crisis.
Progressive change is possible.
Fight with what we have: love, compassion, and reason for those who cannot fight for themselves.
It’s time to get loud, stand up against injustice, and defend our collective rights and liberty.