Holding coat hangers and signs high above their heads, nearly 20 protesters stood at the corner of Nesconset Highway and Route 112 shouting “Keep your hands off our bodies,” and “We won’t go back.”
The locals, organized by the North Shore Peace group, came out in protest decrying several states’ moves to severely restrict abortion, including Alabama, Georgia, Ohio and Missouri. In Alabama’s case, abortion will be restricted to only in cases that the woman’s health is in danger. It also restricts abortion for people who are victims of rape, and doctors who perform abortions could face up to 99 years in prison.
The laws have largely been seen as attempts to move abortion to the plate of the U.S. Supreme Court in the hopes that landmark case Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortions, would be overturned.
Protesters held coat hangers high above their heads to symbolize the instrument used when abortions were illegal to perform
“backroom” unsanitary abortions, often out of desperation.
“I’m speechless, I just don’t know what to say anymore,” said Myrna Gordon, a protest organizer.
One protester, Janet Sklar, had a charm necklace that she plucked out of her shirt and laid over her sign. One charm, a coat hanger, had been on that necklace for close to 40 years.
“We were marching in the ʼ70s for this, and look how far we haven’t come,” she said.