A Message From The President

June 2022

The Athena Society supports the position that the decision to have an abortion is a personal one.  Further, this decision should be an informed choice. Consistent with this position, Athena opposes any governmental interferences with an individual’s right to decide when or if she should bear children.

Dear Athena Members,

As you know, last week the Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade stating, “we therefore hold that the Constitution does not confer a right to abortion.  Roe and Casey must be overruled, and the authority to regulate abortion must be returned to the people and their elected representatives.”  Because of this ruling, 26 of the 50 states are certain or likely to ban abortion to the fullest extent possible without federal protections under Roe.  Marginalized communities, including people of color, people with low incomes, young people, LGBTQ, immigrants and people with disabilities will be hit the hardest by this far-reaching decision, according to the Guttmacher Institute.

Even though the overturning was predicted in light of the leaked draft opinion, it was still shocking and set off emotions of ecstasy and of despair nationwide.  As we continue to reflect on this landmark ruling that rolls back 50 years of decisions that “protected the liberty and equality of women,” it is essential for us to stay informed and engaged because the fight for reproductive rights has just begun anew.

Anti-abortion advocates, who have spent decades accumulating power in state legislatures and the federal judiciary, have drafted model legislation to ban abortion in every state and layer in criminal penalties.  Because as the ruling declared, abortion is “not deeply rooted in the Nation’s history and traditions,” the same could be said about the rights to birth control, same-sex marriage, and interracial marriage.  So, the decision to overrule Roe has ignited battles that will shape legal, political, health, and economic battles in the U.S. for years to come.

Regardless of ones’ views, the Court correctly asserts that the ruling “allows women on both sides of the abortion issue to seek to affect the legislative process by influencing public opinion, lobbying legislators, voting, and running for office.  Women are not without electoral or political power.”

So, as we plan for our upcoming year, your involvement in our community action efforts and attendance at our programs is encouraged and needed as we learn, lead, influence, support, and speak up for the equality of women, including a woman’s fundamental right to body autonomy.

When we all work together, we can affect change!

J. Denise Jordan