AUSTIN, Texas — In response to the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, abortion rights supporters took to the streets of Austin on Friday and will do so throughout the weekend.
The group TX4Abortion posted on Instagram that they "refuse to accept the Supreme Court's decision to strip our rights to abortion." The group held a protest at the Federal Courthouse Plaza, located at 501 W. Fifth Street, at 5 p.m. Friday.
"Roe has been officially overturned, and our basic human right to abortion has been decimated," the group wrote on Instagram. "[Sixty-seven] percent of Americans are against the overturning of Roe. We do not accept this decision."
The group also called the decision "barbaric" and "illegitimate."
Meanwhile, the mutual aid forum Street Forum ATX announced they would hold a protest starting at 5 p.m. Friday in Republic Square, located at 422 Guadalupe Street.
Laura Fennell said she got an abortion at 24. She feels this will hurt human rights for her and other women.
"I am enraged because my basic human rights are being stripped from me by a court that is completely out of step. This is like all-hands-on-deck. It is basic human rights that are being ripped away from us," said Fennell.
On the other side, Amy O'Donnell, a mother of four, agreed with the Supreme Court overruling Roe v. Wade.
"We have a responsibility to protect the most innocent among us and with regards to this issue that's babies in the womb, a responsibility to protect our babies,” said O’Donnell.
PHOTOS: Protesters rally in Downtown Austin after Supreme Court ruling on Roe v. Wade
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Beto O'Rourke also announced that he will join organizations supporting abortion rights in a "statewide rally for reproductive freedom" on Sunday at 5 p.m. at Pan American Neighborhood Park, located at 2100 E. Third Street.
Austin Police Chief Joseph Chacon tweeted Friday morning that the police department wants "to encourage those who agree or disagree with the Supreme Court's decision to express themselves but do so peacefully."
"Those who wish to express their views about this decision are encouraged to do so peacefully; violence and/or property damage will not be tolerated," Chacon said. "Those who commit illegal acts while protesting take away from the message that peaceful groups intend to communicate."
According to APD, police made two arrests on Friday night, including one for assault on a DPS trooper and another for a misdemeanor violation of impeding traffic.
While abortion rights supporters are upset with the high court's ruling, abortion rights opponents see it as a victory. A number of Texas politicians, including Gov. Greg Abbott, have also praised the justices for their decision.
"The U.S. Supreme Court correctly overturned Roe v. Wade and reinstated the right of states to protect innocent, unborn children," Abbott said in part. "Texas is a pro-life state, and we have taken significant action to protect the sanctity of life."
Britny Eubank on social media: Twitter
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