Abortion activists gather during Biden’s speech in Philadelphia

Amid President Joe Biden’s most momentous speech in administration history Thursday, Sept. 1, in Philadelphia, abortion activists for a national coalition rallied with signs to protest the historic Roe v. calf Reversal, demanding Democrats do more to support abortion seekers and return court ruling.

Rise Up 4 Abortion Rights is a movement that grew out of recent SCOTUS activities, which knocked out abortion protection laws at the federal level and delegated the issue to individual states. In the courtyard next to Independence Mall, activists stood with signs that read “Legal Abortion Nationwide Now!”.

Abortion activists were identifiable by the color green, which all activists designed in their clothing, signage, and flyers. Koyuki Chen, one of the leading protesters in the courtyard, sang alongside her peers while Trump supporters gathered in a group beside them.

“No Trump, no KKK. No Fascist USA,” the activists shouted to a scattered crowd of onlookers hoping to catch a glimpse of Biden’s remarks.

Chen engaged with the surrounding crowd as anti-Trump protesters shouted at her.

“I don’t know what Biden is talking about here, but I’m pretty sure he’s talking about the growing fascism in our society, and the question is how do you actually take that?” Chen told AL DÍA.

The president’s speech follows a recent increase in the administration’s condemnation of MAGA Republicans, a group of fringe conservatives who support former President Donald Trump and are characterized by some of his most radical right-wing views, including a total ban on immigration and abortion. Misinformation about public health and deep divisions between parties.

“That’s what’s at stake here. And right now the judiciary is being taken over by Christian fundamentalists. We are so close to fascism,” Chen added as she fended off some Trump protesters trying to engage with her in close proximity.

“Hold back,” she said to one of the men with a MAGA flag on his back.

Local authorities surrounded the area next to the Biden speech after a tense exchange between two groups. Photo: Carlos Nogueras / AL DÍA News

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is known as a sanctuary for abortion seekers inside and outside the state, and while Roe’s decision didn’t disrupt continued reproductive health care, state Democrats are conducting policy hearings in several counties to identify inequalities in care that were active in a Roe-protected world.

“People don’t even know they have access in Philadelphia,” Chen noted.

Many low-income communities are often left on the sidelines when it comes to talks about access to safe abortions. In Philadelphia alone, black women are four times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes.

“Part of building this movement is to make it broader where renunciation is not stigmatized. It’s a part of our lives every day (…) part of destigmatizing is actually expanding it, and wearing the color green is part of that,” Chen continued.

Racial differences play a punitive role when it comes to reproductive health care.

For Black women, access is often a matter of life and death.

“The good people, the decent people don’t rise up. I challenge decent people to actually take a stand. To go beyond voting. We need to change public opinion in our society (…) We in the majority are actually breaking with this notion that voting is the only way to bring about change. I’m talking about nonviolent resistance, but being on the streets and calling on people to actually answer the call,” Chen noted while discussing historical resistance movements that achieved equal rights for marginalized groups.

“How did black people get the right to vote? How did women win the right to vote? It wasn’t by voting, and that’s hard for people to see. It was fighting in the streets. Changing public opinion, making the impossible possible,” she added.

As the court observed larger crowds ahead of Biden’s speech, police were on the fringes, monitoring surrounding activity. No arrests were reported during the speech.

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