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WNBA Players Union Speaks out Against Supreme Court Overturning Roe v. Wade

Doric SamJune 24, 2022

Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images

The Women's National Basketball Players Association released a statement on Friday reacting to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling to overturn Roe v. Wade, which eradicates the constitutional right to an abortion.

"This decision shows a branch of government that is so out of touch with the country and any sense of human dignity," the WNBPA stated. "We must recognize that when we cast a ballot it is to elect officials and to connect the dots to policies and legislation that align with our values."

The statement went on to urge people to "vote like our lives depend on it. Because they do."

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert also released a joint statement after the court's ruling:

NBA @NBA

NBA AND WNBA STATEMENT REGARDING ROE V. WADE DECISION<br> <br>NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert issued the following statement regarding today’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization: <a href="https://t.co/P13MSouB5A">pic.twitter.com/P13MSouB5A</a>

On Friday, the Supreme Court voted 5-3-1 to overturn Roe v. Wade, with Chief Justice John Roberts writing a concurring opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization while disagreeing with overturning Roe v. Wade outright.

The decision is expected to lead to abortion bans in nearly half of the states in the country. It was over a month ago that a draft opinion by Justice Samuel Alito leaked indicating the court's intentions to make such a monumental decision.

Alito wrote that Roe v. Wade was "wrong" when it was decided in 1973, as was the Planned Parenthood v. Casey decision that reaffirmed it in 1992. He suggested that the authority to regulate abortion belongs to political branches of government and not the courts, leaving the decision up to each individual state.

"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," Alito wrote.

United States president Joe Biden said Friday's decision marks a "sad day" for the country and urged people to elect officials who would be willing to "restore the protections of Roe as law of the land." The WNBPA's statement illustrated some of the issues the ruling would generate.

"This ruling provides a treacherous pathway to abortion bans that reinforce economic, social and political inequities and could lead to higher rates of maternal mortality while eviscerating rights to reproductive freedom for everyone," the statement said.

Several athletes also reacted to the court's decision online, with many of them expressing their sadness and disappointment with this blow to women's rights.

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