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. 

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