Party for Socialism and Liberation Holds Memorial Day Abortion Rights Rally

Building on its abortion rights rally that drew more than 500 people, the Springfield Party for Socialism and Liberation plans to march from City Hall on Memorial Day.

“It’s to keep the pressure on,” PSL member Lucy Mayfield told the News-Leader. “If those in power don’t know people aren’t happy, they won’t do anything to stop it.”

After a draft Supreme Court opinion striking down the constitutional right to abortion was leaked earlier this month, PSL held a “Defend Roe! Emergency Rally” in Park Central Square. The protest drew more than 500 people who opposed efforts to restrict abortion across the country and in Missouri.

Asked about the strong response to their previous rally, Mayfield said it was proof that abortion proponents “no longer take Roe v. Wade for granted.”

PSL’s “March to Protect Abortion Rights” will take place on May 30 at 10:00 a.m. – starting at City Hall and past Cox-North Hospital to Washington Park, where there is will have speeches and a rally.

“We went this route because Cox-North is obviously a health care facility. Abortion is health care. People should be able to get abortions at Cox in Springfield, but they can’t. do now even before Roe is knocked down,” Mayfield said.

The local branch of PSL is linked to a national Marxist political party which, on its website, claims that socialism can only be achieved through the “revolutionary overthrow” of capitalism and the state.

And Springfield PSL does not shy away from these policies in their advocacy for abortion rights.

“We don’t think the reforms are enough because they’re being taken away,” Mayfield told the News-Leader. “Roe v. Wade is a good example of that. We still want these reforms to be there because they help people right now. But we want people to have those freedoms forever.”

At their earlier rally, PSL member Seth Goodwin said abortion rights “was not a handout from the benevolent ruling class.”

“Roe was a victory for the struggling masses, the women’s movement and the marginalized people who took to the streets.”

He called on people to continue “taking back the power for ourselves”. Cries for socialism garnered some of the loudest applause at the rally.

A large crowd of around 500 people attendedÊthe Defend Roe!  Emergency rally at Park Central Square in downtown Springfield on Friday, May 6, 2022. The protest took place after a draft Supreme Court opinion leaked showing it would overturn the landmark 1973 Roe decision vs.  WadeE.

Ari Patton, another Memorial Day march organizer, said Democrats were as complicit in overriding abortion rights as conservatives on the Supreme Court.

“We are mobilizing as part of a national effort to pressure our lawmakers to codify abortion as a legal right. This could have been done quite easily in the Senate by passing the Health Protection Act. women’s health. But she was dead before she hit the Senate floor because that’s clearly not a priority for Democrats,” Patton told the News-Leader.

“Democrats have had 50 years to codify abortion and they have instead chosen to threaten to use abortion rights as a bargaining chip to get conservative voters to reluctantly vote for them. Therefore, we go down in the streets to put pressure on them but also to raise awareness that voting democrat is no longer enough.We need direct action to guarantee the right to abortion.

But PSL Springfield doesn’t believe their revolutionary goals will hurt the broader fight for abortion rights in relatively conservative Springfield. Their organizing efforts have helped groups less radical than themselves, Mayfield said – pointing out that their members were attending and volunteering at another abortion rights rally organized by Planned Parenthood.

More than anything, PSL’s organizing around abortion aims to provide “community” for those in southwestern Missouri “who are seeing their right to bodily autonomy taken away from them,” Mayfield added.

“Any gathering is about bringing people together and letting them know they’re not alone. We live in a very individualistic culture and that can be very isolating. So I think it’s important for people to realize that even when you live in an area dominated mainly by conservatives, you are still not alone.