People in Minocqua rally against recent near-total abortion bans in eight U.S. statesSubmitted: 05/21/2019
Story By Rose McBride

People in Minocqua rally against recent near-total abortion bans in eight U.S. states
MINOCQUA - Dozens of women dressed in red cloaks and white bonnets marched through Minocqua.

The outfits were meant remind us of Margaret Atwood's 1985 novel The Handmaid's Tale, where women are turned into servants whose sole purpose is to have children.

The women wearing them warned that fictional future could become reality.

"It's a very frightening prospect that we are stepping back in time," said Jean Roach. 

Roach marched through Minocqua Tuesday because she remembers a time before Roe v. Wade where women had to turn to dangerous methods make decisions about their bodies.

"I have friends when I was in college who had to have illegal abortions, a very scary and unsafe situation," said Roach.

Roach says laws against it didn't stop women from having abortions, they just were unregulated. 

"Legalizing abortion made the situation safe for those who choose to have an abortion for any number of reasons," said Roach. 

Roach was one of dozens of women and men in Minocqua protesting recent laws passed in southern states placing near total-bans on abortions. 

Marches like the one the Northwoods Progressives organized in Minocqua happened all over the country Tuesday. 

Pro-lifers hope the law changes eventually end up with the supreme court overturning Roe v. Wade. 

Marchers held signs saying, "Stop the war on women" but marcher Kristen De Bruyne says it's more than just a women's issue. 

"I see it as a human rights issue and a poverty issue and [economic], it's not just a reproductive or women's rights issue in general," said De Bruyne. 

Human rights issues mean something else in the Catholic Church: the right to life. 

Father Michael Tupa of Nativity of Our Lord in Rhinelander says women and men have the responsibility to protect an unborn child.

"The right to human life is the first and most fundamental of all human rights," said Fr. Tupa. 

The Church is against all abortions. The recent bans bring into question the separation of church and state for some of the women protesting, saying it's an attack on women by lawmakers who shouldn't have control over their bodies. 

The Wisconsin Assembly approved four abortion-related bills last week, including one that would prohibit abortions based on the fetus's race, sex or defects. The Senate will vote on the bills in June.

No state lawmakers who we contacted Tuesday were available to talk about the bills. 

Governor Evers said he will veto the bills if they make it to his desk. 

Text Size: + Increase | Decrease -
| Print Story | Email Story
Sponsored in part by HodagSports.com


WASHINGTON - House Democrats say they will hear testimony from Justice Department whistleblowers and attempt to slash the agency's budget, efforts they say are in response to Attorney General William Barr's defiance of Congress and "improper politicization" of his job.

+ Read More

MADISON - Protesters shut down a six-lane state highway that feeds into downtown Madison for a second day on Tuesday, as Gov. Tony Evers called for the Legislature to pass a law to reduce the use of police force and urged a united battle against racism.

+ Read More

Play Video

CRANDON - James Aldridge rides his bicycle for five hours a day between his home in Crandon and Rhinelander, where he works as a traveling nursing assistant.

Three men in Crandon decided to help James trade in two wheels for four.

Scott Brass, his brother Todd and friend Michael Renkas all started a fundraiser to buy Aldridge a car.

Their initial goal was somewhere in the $1,000-$2,000 range.

That fund now has roughly $16,000 in it.

+ Read More

STEVENS POINT - The education program at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point was ranked second in the nation for the second year in a row, according to Study.com.

+ Read More

Play Video

NORTHERN WI - With low enrollment numbers and rising expenses during the COVID-19 pandemic, some child care facilities will have to permanently close.

Even prior to the pandemic, Wisconsin faced issues with how many centers were available to take in kids. And with COVID 19 lingering, facilities have taken a hit in enrollment.

For Little Sunshines Learning Center in Three Lakes, owner Rachael Kirby says her facility went from full capacity to 20 percent enrollment when the pandemic hit.

"During the safer at home order we had very low attendance," Kirby said. "We were just taking in children from essential workers, it hasn't been easy by any means.

And since the lifting of the safer at home order, Kirby says enrollment is still not back to normal.

"It's hard for business, some businesses are being offered from employers to have hours at home which means they keep their children home," Kirby said. "We're still probably at 40-45 percent enrollment at this time."

She's not alone.

+ Read More

RHINELANDER - The protests related to the death of George Floyd started in Minneapolis and  they've now happened in over 100 cities across the country  and Monday night, Rhinelander hosted a peaceful protest of its own.

The protest kicked off at the Oneida County Courthouse around 6:00 p.m Monday evening.

Newswatch 12 spoke with a couple of protesters about why they decided to advocate for this in Northern Wisconsin, their reasons ranged from standing up against police brutality to making minorities feel comfortable here.

Protester Keziah Williams-Alloway says she was happy with yesterday's turnout and tone.

"I'm extremely happy that it went peacefully there was some citizens that it was maybe not going be peaceful i am so glad that it was," said Williams-Alloway.

+ Read More

MADISON - Key races in Wisconsin came into clearer focus Monday, the deadline for candidates to file nomination papers to get on the November ballot.

+ Read More
+ More General News