BILL MOYERS: This week marked 40 years since the Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade overturned many federal and state restrictions on a woman’s right to an abortion. You have to be of a certain age to remember how, before abortion became legal, a woman could be tormented by an unwanted pregnancy that she was forced to carry to term by the police powers of the state. In that Dark Age leading up to the Court’s decision, America’s most trusted news man Walter Cronkite of CBS tried to make sense of the debate, and the danger.

WALTER CRONKITE on CBS Evening News: The illegal termination of pregnancy has reached epidemic proportions in this country. The laws which govern abortion are broken an estimated one million times a year, three thousand times a day, for various medical, social and economic reasons the laws do not recognize as valid. The conflict between the law and reality has resulted in a national dilemma. Only recently have our abortion laws been openly questioned, as a dialogue begun among doctors, lawyers and clergymen.

DR. ALAN GUTTMACHER on CBS Evening News: The law’s against you, your colleagues are against you, and it makes a very unhappy feeling. You hate to be a doctor under these conditions. This is simply puritanical punishment, that’s all we’re doing. We’re not thinking this thing through we’re punishing.

DR. ROY HEFFERNAN on CBS Evening News: An abortion is a shock, it’s an abnormal procedure. In my opinion, it’s murder. In my opinion it is a very cowardly form of murder because it’s the murder of an innocent little embryo that has not harmed anyone, that cannot defend itself in any way. […]

WOMAN #1 on CBS Evening News: I believe I’m about 9 weeks pregnant now. I have had dreams for the past two weeks about abortions, of horrible things happening to me. I can’t sleep, and I need help from someone but I just don’t know who to go to. […]

WALTER CRONKITE on CBS Evening News: This married couple felt that they would be unable to adequately raise another child. The wife was criminally aborted in a motel on the west coast.

WIFE on CBS Evening News: The operation was performed in the kitchen of the motel using some of the kitchen equipment, using a telephone book, chairs and so forth. About halfway through he turned to my husband and said, “How can you expect me to take dangers like this myself for such a low fee? Don’t you have some savings that you could utilize and pay me more money?”

HUSBAND on CBS Evening News: He said he wanted twice as much. That is, another $200. It wasn’t clear that he would go ahead and finish the operation if I didn’t pay him the extra money, but I didn’t, at that time, want to argue or even, of course, delay the procedure.

BILL MOYERS: Roe v. Wade only intensified the debate. And forty years later, the forces opposed to abortion – still driven largely by conservative religious beliefs and activists – have never given up. They seem more determined than ever. State by state, they have been winning their fight for new restrictions. According to the Guttmacher Institute, a pro-choice research center on reproductive health care, "More than half of all U.S. women of reproductive age… now live in a state that is hostile to abortion rights, whereas fewer than one-third did a decade ago.” Even so, a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll shows that seven in ten Americans think the Roe v. Wade decision should stand. And for the first time ever, a majority believes abortion should be legal in all or most cases.

I’ve asked two champions of a woman’s freedom to make her own healthcare decisions to come talk about their resolve in the face of fierce opposition from the right. Jessica González-Rojas is Executive Director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health. She is an Adjunct Professor of Latino and Latin American Studies at the City University of New York and has taught courses on reproductive rights, gender and sexuality. Lynn Paltrow is Founder and Executive Director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women. She has served as a senior staff attorney at the ACLU's Reproductive Freedom Project, and recently published this study in the American Journal of Public Health, “Roe v Wade and the New Jane Crow.” Welcome to you both.

LYNN PALTROW: Thank you.


BILL MOYERS: Before we get to what you're up against 40 years after Roe versus Wade, I want to ask you a question from your own experience, long experience in both cases of working with women. What does compulsory childbearing mean to a woman? What are the effects of knowing that you are not free to decide for yourselves whether to become a mother or not?

LYNN PALTROW: Well, we know that when abortion is criminalized before 1973 in the U.S. when abortion providers aren't available, many women will do what they have to do to take control of and responsibility for their reproductive lives. And if that means ending a pregnancy in any way they know how. That might be taking a poison, it might be using a knitting needle, it might be leaving the country, it might be asking somebody to beat them up.

It might be attempting suicide. For women what's true throughout history is that they will do what they need to do.

And if you have a legal system that says the state may prevent you from making key decisions about your health, your life, and your family, then you are really in some other status of personhood. And so for some women, historically, their ability to be full and equal participants in society really depended on whether they could end a pregnancy.

And that was the thing that would keep them from finishing college, having access to all of the things that they might have access to, participation in society. For other women, because of race discrimination or economic disability, they might be able to get an abortion and still not be able to have the children they want, to educate the children they had and keep them safe. So it really has to do with, how do we define women in our society? Are they full and equal participants? And the best way, the seemingly sort of neutral way of undermining their personhood is to focus on the issue of abortion.

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: For us, our slogan is "Health, dignity, and justice." And when you think about compulsory pregnancies, it's taking away health, dignity, and justice from a woman. Many of the women, the Latinas that we work with that have experienced abortion are in their twenties, have a child already, and are--

BILL MOYERS: And why do they want an abortion?

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: Because they're not in an economic situation they--

BILL MOYERS: They can't afford a second child?

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: They perhaps can't afford a second child, they want to go to school, they might be at a point in their career. The reasons range, quite frankly. It's really important that women that we work with, mostly Latina, immigrant, women of color, those are the margins, low income, are able to access their rights in a way without barriers and further bureaucratic obstacles to get the care that they need.

BILL MOYERS: And this union between religion and the state that we know has, you know, for a long time, church and state combined to keep, to make contraceptives obscene. How do you explain this religious determinism on the part of so many opponents of abortion?

LYNN PALTROW: Well, there's sort of two ways of looking at it. I mean, many people don't know that abortion became criminalized in the United States not as a result of merely a religious movement, but as part of the effort of white male doctors to professionalize, to gain control over medicine from midwives and herbalists.

And also, in response to a very similar moment in history that we're in now. It was a point in which there was a great deal of immigration, where native white birth rates were falling, and there was the first beginning of the suffrage and feminist movement, arguing that women shouldn't have to, that women should have a say in whether they have intercourse with their husbands.

And the people who were asking legislature to criminalize abortion were arguing that that had to be done to keep women in their place, to ensure that native white birth rates continued to grow and to maintain control over women.

And it's as if we're in that moment again, where Americans, an America in which it is no longer going to be a white majority, in which it feels like white birth rates are falling, and you see people turn to religion and you see people turn to very old notions about how society should be.

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: For us in the Latino community, we know that many of us are Catholic or religious. And we find that it's so out of step with the realities of women's lives today. And many Latinas, in fact 90 percent of married Catholic Latinas use a form of birth control that's banned by the Vatican. And it's just been a battle we've been dealing with for quite a number of years. And it's just been stepping up over the years.

BILL MOYERS: You both are so much younger that I wonder if you can imagine the feeling of relief among so many women when the Supreme Court struck down the power of men, or anyone, to insist that you bear a child before you're ready. Has anybody ever talked to you about that sense of liberation that came?

LYNN PALTROW: Well, I had the privilege, earlier on in my career, there was a campaign by NARAL to collect letters from people, men and women, describing why they had had an abortion, or somebody they knew had an abortion. And I had the privilege of reading hundreds of letters.

And what was so amazing about them is that they wrote that they had abortions not because, "I had a right to choose," or "I was exercising my right to bodily-- you know, my body, my right." They were all talking about the most fundamental aspects of liberty.

You know, "I needed to finish my education." "I had a child with a disability. I wanted to be able to be home and take care of that child and my husband was going to Vietnam, my father-in-law was sick." They were talking about basic, you know, human relationships and responsibility.

And the thing about Roe that's so interesting is that, or, if I may make the comparison, when Brown v. Board of Education was decided, I think it was understood as an incredible affirmation of the humanity and civil rights of African Americans.

BILL MOYERS: Desegregating the public schools.

LYNN PALTROW: Desegregating the public schools, rejecting separate and unequal. But the truth was, it really didn't desegregate the schools even until today. Roe v. Wade, which was won, the whole idea of women's equality under the Constitution was in its infancy. There had been almost no decisions in 1973 recognizing discrimination against women as prohibited by the Constitution.

Roe v. Wade comes down, and it's not understood as an affirmation of women's personhood, that we don't lose our human rights when we become pregnant. But almost overnight, the public health situation dramatically improved, not only because women had access to legal abortion, but they didn't have to carry to term pregnancies when they weren't healthy. And so it was a dramatic change in the practicality. But what we're still very much fighting is an understanding and a respect for the fact that women, whatever their decisions are during pregnancy, remain full persons under the law.

BILL MOYERS: “Time Magazine” recently looked at Roe versus Wade and concluded, "Getting an abortion in America is in some places, harder today than at any point since it became a constitutionally-protected right 40 years ago..." Does that jive with your experience?

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: Absolutely. We’ve seen these type of restrictions that are being put in place, and to very clearly and blatantly be an effort to prevent abortions from happening. And what's happening is that women's healthcare is suffering. Their decision making is being threatened. They're losing dignity and self-determination. So this creates many barriers for our women to be healthy and make choices that they want for their families.

BILL MOYERS: And your experience is it harder today than it was 20 years ago, 30 years ago?

LYNN PALTROW: I think something like more than 90 percent of all counties don't have abortion providers. I want to point out that most probably that many counties also don't have birthing centers, where women can go and have an alternative to an over-medicalized birth.

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: So when you're targeting clinics that provide abortion care, those clinics are also providing prenatal care, they're providing cervical cancer screenings, they're providing breast screenings, and sexuality education.

So when you're targeting those clinics, and those clinics have to shut down, you're also depriving a whole community from basic, basic health services that are critical.

BILL MOYERS: I wanted to ask you, you talked about this, about economic issues involved in these decisions. How much of this is an issue of class? I ask because the late Congressman Henry Hyde from Illinois, who sponsored the Hyde Amendment way back in 1976, that prevents Medicaid from funding abortion care, he said this, quote, "I certainly would like to prevent, if I could legally, anybody having an abortion. A rich woman, a middle-class woman, or a poor woman. Unfortunately, the only vehicle available is the Medicaid bill." Which means that poor women have been affected by the crusade against abortion. How do you see this playing out in your work?

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: I think of Rosa Jiménez, who was a 27-year-old college student. She had a five-year-old daughter. She was getting a nursing degree. She really wanted to, you know, succeed in this country. And she faced an unintended pregnancy.

And because she was low income, because she was a recipient of Medicaid, she was denied access to an abortion because of the Henry Hyde. And she sought a back-alley abortion and died as a consequence. So this has real implications. She was the first known victim of the Hyde Amendment. And I'm sure these stories happen many times over. And women are just disproportionately impacted. Particularly, again, those at that margins and who are most vulnerable.

BILL MOYERS: You remind me of some statistics I saw the other day, from the Guttmacher Institute. It reports that among poor women, the rate of unintended pregnancy is five times higher than for higher income women. And four in ten women who have abortions are poor. What do you make of that from your own work?

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: That, you know, because women don't have access to some of the basic healthcare to prevent pregnancy, so the fact that contraception is often out of reach. For Latinas, for example, 97 percent of sexually-experienced Latinas have used a form of contraception, but consistent use has been a problem.

So that's when they fall under an unintended pregnancy situation. And they're often scrambling to get abortion care. Often money, borrowing money from friends or trying other avenues. So where some of them are able and successful to get the abortions, there's also so many unintended pregnancies that go term because of these policies.

LYNN PALTROW: Well, it's also a strategy. Until recently, especially, the only Supreme Court successes in eliminating abortions for many years had been when they combined abortion with a vulnerable, less politically-powered group. So the abortion in young women, or abortion in women of color and low-income women.

And they would get restrictions passed there. That clearly isn't enough. And they're expanding it and expanding it. Which is why, suddenly, we recognize the war on women, because it's affecting white women too. But there has always been this war on women--

BILL MOYERS: You think there is a war on women?

LYNN PALTROW: I think there has always been, whether you look at how Native American women were treated from the beginning of this country's origins, to sterilization abuse, or Puerto Rican women and white women who were perceived to have, to be mentally disabled, we have always used reproduction and fought against women's freedom and liberty, whether it was women in slavery, women winning the vote, every inch of our freedom, including our reproductive freedom, has been hard won and there has been a backlash.

And we're in a very big backlash now. I think it's so big that's what's happened is that women are beginning to recognize that what's at stake is more than abortion. It is their personhood. Their ability to be full, equal, constitutional persons in the United States of America.

BILL MOYERS: So given what you both have said, why are abortion rights still an issue of public policy and debate?

LYNN PALTROW: First of all, I mean, it's very clear, there’s a fair amount of history now that says at a point when political organizing on the right was not going to be as successful working on race issues explicitly, there really was this political decision that said, "Look, if we focus on issues like abortion and gay rights, we can rally evangelical Christians and others to advance really our economic agenda, of moving our tax dollars to the few and the wealthy."

And it has just been a very effective political movement, because it has been able, I think, to successfully portray itself as only being attacking abortion, only attacking this decision by certain women to end their pregnancies, and according to them, kill their babies.

And so it's a very popular because it looks like they're just defending some notion of life for fertilized eggs, embryos, and fetuses, something that seems very abstract and beautiful to many people, without really exposing what they're really doing, which is creating the basis for removing pregnant women from the community of constitutional persons, for jeopardizing maternal, fetal, and child health, and creating what we're really seeing as a new Jane Crow.

BILL MOYERS: And Jane Crow, not Jim Crow, but Jane Crow meaning?

LYNN PALTROW: Well, you look at the abortion issue, with the so-called personhood measures and anti-abortionhood measures. What they are really doing is creating precedent for a permanent underclass of all women. We have seen that women are being arrested, detained, forcibly subjected to medical intervention disproportionately so, African American women, disproportionately in the South. And again, it's not, it's about, under the guise of being just about abortion. It's really about creating a set of precedents that would allow the state to control, surveil, and punish a woman from the moment she conceives.

BILL MOYERS: And you have been, frankly, losing in state after state, right? I mean, there are now 92 or 94 more provisions on state laws than existed several years ago.

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: I think the anti-choice movement's getting creative. What we saw recently in Virginia and we saw it in the federal level, but they are now doing this in the state level are things like the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act, which is an effort to ban race-selective or sex-selective abortion.

And this is a policy that is not seeking to protect and advance civil rights. But rather to target women of color, particularly about their reproductive decision. So the grand hypocrisy here is that, where they're trying to protect the fetus, oftentimes it's up until birth, right, because these policy makers are not the ones advocating for healthcare and, you know, care for children and food stamps.

Those policies, which would really help enhance the lives of children, but they're not doing that. What we're seeing is that they're looking to restrict women's rights, and as you said, treat them sub-people. And for us, we work with immigrant women.

And we're seeing efforts to repeal the 14th Amendment, Birthright Citizenship Clause. So it's interesting, so it's saying, "Okay, well, you know, we want to repeal the status of the child born in this country." So they're looking to protect fetuses. Whose fetuses are they looking to protect? So that's the question we ask.

LYNN PALTROW: Sixty-one to 70 percent of all women who have abortions are already mothers. So the women that they're calling murderers, who they're comparing their collective actions to a genocide or a holocaust, are the women they're entrusting to raise their children, to raise our children, the next generation of taxpayers, and with very little support, with little healthcare, with little economic security.

And they're talking about them in a way that ultimately leads down the road to where women are actually getting arrested for murder, who suffer still births and miscarriages. Where they are actually starting to arrest women who have abortions.

And we saw when people were asked to vote on the reality of these laws, when they're exposed through so-called personhood measures, that they were votes on this in Colorado and Mississippi where they come out and they say, "What we're really trying to do is create complete separation of eggs, embryos, and fetuses from the pregnant women, authorize the state to use that as an excuse to control pregnant women," people say, "No way."

BILL MOYERS: But in Alabama, the State Supreme Court in Alabama has interpreted the term "child" to apply to fertilized eggs and embryos. Which means, doesn't it, that women can be prosecuted for endangering the fetuses?

LYNN PALTROW: And that is what it does mean. And that's not-- what that was, and it's very interesting that you should raise that, that was judicial activism. And what they did was they judicially enacted a personhood measure. Had they put it to a vote to the citizens, we trust that, like in Mississippi, people in Alabama would've voted it down. This is rank, judicial abuse of power.

BILL MOYERS: We've seen devastating cuts in state budgets on women's health issues across the country. Most dramatically in my home state of Texas, which is governed, as you probably know, by Tea Party Republicans and the religious right. What are the consequences, the real, live consequences of those cuts?

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: We work with a group of women in the Rio Grande Valley, which borders Mexico. And those women are really, truly facing the repercussions of those cuts. Already, the clinics were really far away, they had a lot of challenges for transportation to their clinics.

Well, I was there a couple months ago when they said they drove 45 minutes to a local clinic to get birth control, and they were turned away because the cuts dissipated those programs. And we're hearing story after story, and we recently did a human rights report in Texas where we heard one woman swim back to Mexico, cross the Rio Grande Valley, risk separation from her family, because she was not getting basic healthcare. So the repercussions are very real in our community.

BILL MOYERS: I've actually read, and one of the reasons I was eager to have both of you here, I've read that the pro-freedom movement, pro-choice movement is fragmenting somewhat among generational lines. That your generation, Jessica, sees reproductive issues from the Roe versus Wade generation. Is the movement sort of stuck in the past when choice was the optimal virtue and an end in itself? Or you think that's just a news analysis?

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: Well, I think, yeah, I think, I know the young people today are so supportive of reproductive rights and justice. And I say reproductive justice because it broadens the--

BILL MOYERS: Yeah, that's a term I haven't--


BILL MOYERS: --heard very often.

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: Yeah. Reproductive justice really broadens the movement to incorporate things like socioeconomic status, immigration status, sexual orientation, gender identity. It's really inclusive and much more holistic than looking to protect just the narrow, legal right to abortion.

But really looks at the full range of reproductive healthcare and bringing women's full identities into their work. So it's really centered in a social justice framework. And that really resonates with young people. So we work with many young people who are tremendous advocates that are writing about this.

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: In Texas in particular, we're seeing women again, they're in many different ages, women who are older and have young children, want to protect that right for their children, you know, standing up and saying that "What's happening in Texas is wrong and we need to fight back."

And they're showing up at their legislator's office. These are women who don't speak English, live in the Rio Grande Valley, many of them don't have running water in their homes. I mean, they're very, very marginalized from society in a way. But they're stepping up, they're letting their voice be heard, and they're saying that this is wrong.

LYNN PALTROW: There's a big difference, something that might look to one person like fragmentation might be broadening and really engaging a younger generation. And it won't look exactly the same, but it might be much bigger and much more effective.

There's been a sort of sense of the middle of the country is too fundamentalist, too conservative, too red. But we're working on the third Take Root Reproductive Justice in the Red State Conference in Oklahoma, that's coming up in February. The first year 100 students came, the second year 200. We expect more this year.

And they are everywhere, because you can have all sorts of rhetoric, but you can't deny the actual experience of women. And that is that they have to deal with their reproductive lives as part of their whole lives and their personhood. And they're seeing that these attempts for any of these, many anti-abortion laws, that they're understanding this.

They're really not just about abortion. If you pass a law that says, "A pregnant woman seeking an abortion has to have a transvaginal ultrasound." Well that's a precedent for saying, "As a pregnant woman, you lose your right to consent to what medical tests you're going to be subjected to." Not just in the abortion context, but in every context. And so there's, I think, a rising up and an understanding that this is about their personhood. It's connected to their right to vote and their right to citizenship.

BILL MOYERS: So let's move beyond that a moment and let me ask both of you, what do you think over the last 40 years has been the impact of abortion on issues like dating, marriage, family structure? You say that it's not just about the pregnancy, that it's about some larger phenomenon. So how has abortion changed us culturally and behaviorally?

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: Well, I was going to say that, you know, reproductive justice is being able to make the decision if, when and how you create a family. So abortion is an important piece of that decision, or within the spectrum of the decision. So, you know, when I think about my son, what I want for him is to be able to get full, medically-accurate, culturally-competent sexuality education as a young person.

I want him to be able to access contraception if he needs it. I want him to be able to talk to the medical provider, parents, family, friends, in a way that's nonjudgmental. You know, these are the kind of things I want to create that foundation. And then, you know, again, when creating a family, to be able to access the full range of care when deciding to make that decision.

So you know, it's a life spectrum that you're dealing with and at many different stages. And I always remember, you know, a woman spends about 30 years trying not to get pregnant, and then about five years, for those who want to have a family, trying to get pregnant. And that's a big chunk of someone's life. So ensuring that they have access to the care that they need at every stage is so critical.

LYNN PALTROW: So, legal abortion has dramatically improved the lives and health of women and families for the reasons I talked about a little bit earlier. That before Roe, women were dying from illegal abortions, they were hurt as a result of them.

But I think the question ultimately is that, or the issue, ultimately, is that Roe in some ways was this huge step forward in acknowledging the humanity and personhood of women. 84 percent of all women, by the time they're 40, have gotten pregnant and given birth. This is 84 percent of the political base. And their experiences aren't just about having an abortion. They're about having a baby. And having a good kind of birth and a bad kind of birth.

And having a pregnancy loss that was supported or a pregnancy loss that wasn't. About struggling to get pregnant, about struggling not to get pregnant. This is what it means to have, you know, ovaries and a uterus. And we can at least say those things, even vagina on television now. And that makes it more possible to imagine a country where men and women and families are all treated with respect and have access to all the healthcare they need, not divided up by reproductive health or anything else, but because you're a person.

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: I think if we, if the way the country thought of women would change, I think we'd see a radically different country. And we wouldn't see things like legitimate rape or women in binders. I mean, these kinds of comments really speak to how people think about women. And it's so problematic. And I think this election told us a story that we're not going to put up with that, right?

We're going to reject this type of language. We're going to reject these types of policies. Particularly in Florida, was looking to pass an amendment that would further restrict abortion access.

And Florida's a state that has a lot of communities of color, large Latino population. And that measure was defeated, which we wanted it to be, by 54 percent, which was huge. So I think, you know, as we see these policies come down, I think women are seeing what's underneath them, right? And how they're treated, their dignity, and started to rise up and reject them.

BILL MOYERS: How do you explain the sexual ignorance revealed by so many candidates in that campaign? Do you find some men don't get it?

LYNN PALTROW: One thing many people don't know about Roe v. Wade, is that it wasn't just Jane Roe, Norma McCorvey. But there was a married couple that wanted to challenge the Texas anti- law that criminalized abortion. And they appeared as John and Mary Doe. And they said, look, Mary Doe has a health condition that if she becomes pregnant and it continues forward, she might die. And this is very bad for her. There's no 100 percent safe contraceptive. So if we don't have the possibility of legal abortion, it not only risks her health, but it interferes in, I think they called it, "their marital happiness."

And interestingly enough, the Supreme Court threw them out of the case. They said, you don't have standing. Your interest in marital happiness is too distant from what we're talking about here. And which, I think means that in 1973, the Supreme Court hadn't accepted heterosexuality.

But what they really did too, which I think is a shame, is they really had-- I wonder if they had kept that couple in, whether men's role in pregnancy and the outcomes of the intercourse would've played a much healthier and more honest role. Every pregnancy has had a man involved. We live in a country where women are blamed for everything, for having abortions, for having too many children.

But there's a man involved in every one of those situations. And very often we then move to, "Well, then he should have a right to control her or decide for her." But no, just they have to be in the conversation. And I'm very sad that the Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade pushed them aside.

BILL MOYERS: Your report on Jane Crow sounds fascinating. Where can my viewers find out more about it?


BILL MOYERS: And where can people go to find out about your work?

JESSICA GONZÁLEZ-ROJAS: And we have a campaign called “Soy Poderosa,” which means "I am powerful" in Spanish. And this is where we're telling the stories of activists throughout the country, women and men and families, about how they support women's decision making.

BILL MOYERS: Lynn Paltrow and Jessica González-Rojas, thank you very much for being with me.


LYNN PALTROW: Thank you for having us.

Jessica González-Rojas and Lynn Paltrow on Abortion Rights Activism

As we note the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Bill discusses the fierce challenges facing the reproductive rights movement with Jessica González-Rojas, Executive Director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, and Lynn Paltrow, founder and executive director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women. Though a majority of Americans now believe abortion should be legal in most cases, anti-abortion forces showing no sign of relenting. A study by the Guttmacher Institute reported that state legislatures passed 92 provisions restricting a woman’s access to reproductive health care in 2011 — a number four times higher than the previous year.

“What’s happened is that women are beginning to recognize that what’s at stake is more than abortion,” Paltrow tells Bill. “It is their personhood — their ability to be full, equal, constitutional persons in the United States of America.”

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