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Dozens rally in Bend to oppose new abortion laws


A pro-choice group rallied at a downtown Bend intersection Tuesday evening to show their support for reproductive rights.

About 70 people gathered to protest what they call an attack on human rights, in the form of new, very restrictive abortion laws adopted in several states. It was one of several such protests held around the country.

One of the rally organizers, Dr. Amber Keyser, said the rally was held to stand up for communities across the country faced with abortion bans and restrictions.

She added that for her, this is also a gender equality issue that needs to be addressed.

“The reality is we are not going to get to gender equity in this country if women can’t make choices about when and if they want to have children,” Keyser said. “And so these laws really represent an assault on women to live their fullest lives.”

Keyser added that the country needs to see better education about reproduction.

Those involved in the rally said they feel women should be able to make their own decisions surrounding abortions.

Helen Seidler said she believes this is a freedom that needs to be protected, and an important nationwide conversation that needs to happen.

“I’m pro-life. I have grandchildren, I love my children, its a really important part of human existence,” Seidler said. “But life is complicated, it’s gray, it’s messy, and I think we need to leave room for decisions to be made that fit into somebody’s life.”

Governors in Kentucky, Ohio and Georgia have all signed bans on abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected, while Alabama’s governor signed a measure making abortion a felony in nearly all cases.

Those who support the abortion laws said they’re welcoming legal challenges to start a conversation and hopefully a U.S. Supreme Court case that could reconsider and possibly overturn Roe vs. Wade.

None of the new laws has taken effect yet.

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