Walkout occurs outside of AMU for Roe v. Wade initial draft opinion

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Photo by Josh Meitz

Students gathered in the lawn between the Alumni Memorial Union and Schroeder Hall to protest the leaked Roe v. Wade initial draft opinion at 10:30 a.m. The walkout lasted approximately 45 minutes and participants marched around campus with signs supporting the pro-choice movement.

Many un-affiliated Marquette University “niche” instagram accounts, such as @muslowalkers and @marquette_affirmations, encouraged students to join the walkout and wear green to show their support. @muyikyaks planned the walkout and encouraged the other accounts to promote it.

It’s possible that abortion will become illegal in Wisconsin if Roe v. Wade is overturned.

Ryan Larder, a sophomore in the College of Arts & Sciences and Marquette University Student Government outreach vice president, said he hopes the walkout makes a statement.

“I hope it shows the Supreme Court and it shows everyone that we do not stand for this, we don’t stand for our rights to be violated…We’re showing them in a state right now that does not support us. We’re out here fighting and I think that’s amazing,” Larder said.

 

Participating students walked from the AMU lawn, under the Raynor Bridge, past the St. Joan of Arc Chapel, past the Olin Engineering Building and reconvened on the other side of the AMU.

Grace Segreti, a junior in the College of Arts & Sciences and Marquette College Democrats membership director, spoke to those who gathered at the AMU.

“The whole entire Marquette community just heard us. They heard our voices and they will continue to hear us…We need to keep fighting, we need to keep our voices loud,” Segreti said at the walkout.

Following Segreti’s speech the students headed towards Church of the Gesu and stopped at 12th Street and Wisconsin Avenue.

Katelyn Hodgson, a first-year in the College of Arts & Sciences, said she attended the walkout today to fight for people in marginalized groups who would be significantly affected if Roe V. Wade was overturned.

“I have an orange donor sticker on my drivers license and if somebody else doesn’t, it doesn’t mean that after they passed away their organs can be taken,” Hodgson said. “So if I have to give up my body for the life of something that isn’t even a person yet, a corpse gets more rights than I do depending on that orange sticker.”

Though the leaked draft would indicate the Court’s intention to overturn Roe v. Wade, a final decision may not come within the next two months. Erin Burke, a sophomore in the College of Arts & Sciences, said she is worried what will happen if the decision is overturned.

“I think it’s going to be an absolute hellfire…It’s not a matter of abortion versus not abortion, it’s a matter of health care,” Burke said.

The walkout was attended by Marquette students across the gender spectrum. Matthew Torkilsen, a sophomore in the College of Communication, said he attended the walkout to show solidarity for the cause.

“This is something that my mom and my mom’s mom fought for. I didn’t think that this was something we’d need to continue fighting for in my generation,” Torkilsen said.

This was the second protest following the leaked draft of the Roe v. Wade opinion to pass through campus.Wednesday, May 4, a group of Milwaukee community members marched from Red Arrow Park to the Planned Parenthood on 22nd Street and Wisconsin Avenue.

“I also want to remind everyone healthcare is not a privilege it’s a human right,” Segreti said at the walkout.

This story is developing

Kim Cook, Bailey Striepling, Isabel Bonebrake, Josh Meitz, Clara Lebrón, Phoebe Goebel and Emily Sacco contributed to this report.

This story was written by Julia Abuzzahab and Megan Woolard. They can be reached at julianna.abuzzahab@marquette.edu and megan.woolard@marquette.edu and on Twitter @Juliaabuz and @MeganWoolard4