By STEPHEN LANE
We have many health disparities in the black community. One such inequality is the mortality rate of black women during childbirth. This number is strikingly high, so high that it is not difficult to see the problem not as an individual failure of black women, but as a failure of our for-profit healthcare system.
In 2020, Indiana black women were twice as likely to die from pregnancy-related problems as Indiana white women. We see that health inequalities cannot be fully addressed or remedied in a for-profit healthcare system because the focus shifts from healthcare to profit. If you speak to many frontline health professionals, you will find that they are understaffed and understaffed as a capitalist health care system seeks to further reduce costs in order to provide the bare minimum of services while making a huge profit for the few Individuals like the CEOs of hospitals and pharmaceutical companies. The system works as it was designed to work at our expense.
Over the summer, we’ve seen nine unelected and unaccountable Supreme Court justices take away women’s right to safe and legal abortions. It is not for me to say or judge a woman who is seeking an abortion. I’m not a woman, so I don’t understand all of the factors that a woman must consider when making the decision to have an abortion. All I can do as a man is to support women, especially black women, to get the health care they need while working to raise the standard of care for black women who seek health care.
Indiana has performed fewer than 10,000 abortions since 2011 and had 79,058 live births in 2020. I support the desire and need of working class women to maintain this ministry. We know the true intent of the Supreme Court, Roe v. To bring down Wade, not exactly. However, I understand that if we are to maintain our access to safe and legal abortion, we must join forces and put pressure on those responsible to maintain safe and legal access to abortion in Indiana.
Indiana was one of the first states to enact an abortion ban, which not even a majority of Republican voters want. Most Americans support access to abortion. It is a small group of right-wing political puppets of the capitalist class who intend to use such cruelty to limit the rights of the working class, many of whom are black women.
What I stand for is our participation in the political process. We cannot stand idly by while our rights and access to health care continue to deteriorate. If this were truly democracy for and by the people, then we would not have to defend our access to abortion, which 50 years ago should have been settled once and for all. If this were a real democracy, then we should expand our access to health care. But as many of you know and suspect, this is not a democracy! We live in a world controlled by the turbulent whims of a tiny minority of white supremacists and those who look like us who are willing to follow a white supremacist agenda to limit our democratic and health rights.
We have to fight because historically we see that when we fight we win. Roe v. Wade was passed at a turbulent time in our country. People across the country believed that system change was possible and could be achieved through intensified struggle.
We invite everyone to join the Party for Socialism and Liberation on October 22 at 3:00 p.m. in Monument Circle to exercise our right to free speech and let these politicians know that we want access to safe and legal abortion and they won’t take our rights away without a fierce fight! Our politicians should not fear the will of the people and support a public referendum on access to abortion. Let the people vote like they did in Kansas.
I bet that politicians will not agree to the idea of a referendum that we can all vote on because God forbid people have a say in our political process. We must learn the lessons of history that if we don’t watch these politicians, they will continue to carry out the orders of the elite capitalists at our expense. More of our rights are withdrawn from us. But if we join forces as a diverse working class, increasing our access to abortion care for working-class women and an expansion of our healthcare from a for-profit system to a public system in the hands and control of the people. Let’s fight like hell because we can win our rights once and for all!
Stephen Lane is a member of the Party for Socialism and Liberation.