January, 2015. GRR honors the 42nd anniversary of Roe v. Wade in its new video by remembering what life was like before 1973. We all remember the meaning of “the coat hanger” — a symbol of desperate pregnant women with few options and little hope. Many tried a variety of household tools — like coat hangers — to disrupt early pregnancies when legal, safe abortions were not available. One GRR member recounts her medical training in a hospital with an entire unit of women suffering from horrible infections, some of them lethal, all caused by illegal abortions. Roe v. Wade was meant to end this calamity by making safe, legal abortions available throughout the United States. Today, it’s one of the simplest, safest medical procedures performed.
Happily, many people no longer know the symbol of the coat hanger. But federal and state legislatures across the country are under pressure to limit or completely outlaw the availability of safe abortions, an essential reproductive health service. GRR wants everyone to remember the suffering of women before Roe v. Wade. We won’t go back!