The latest example of abortion advocacy outreach is currently located on the I-25 between Albuquerque and Santa Fe, New Mexico. For the purpose of shock value, a billboard reads,” Rape is about power and control. So are abortion bans.” The group ProgressNow New Mexico is opining for legalized abortion, and the campaign has released other billboards as well, such as the one on the side of a truck that circled New Mexico’s Capitol building, displaying statements like:
“Voted against abortion access? We didn’t forget.”
“Keep abortion safe and legal.”
The director of communications for the pro-choice organization, Marianna Anaya, spoke about how “2020 will be a decisive year for the future of abortion access.” Anaya voiced how “critical” it was that anti-abortion groups and lawmakers be exposed for being “violent and cruel.”
ProgressNow is equating abortion bans to rape because the act of sexual assault takes place because “the abuser wants to assert power and control over [their] bodies.” The group says that the politicians and “anti-abortion extremists” are acting in a similar vein by attempting to control women’s bodies by banning abortion.
The creation of the billboards was a reaction to efforts being made to challenge Roe v. Wade. A survey conducted by Forward Together found 74% of New Mexicans to be “in favor of women having the right to make their own abortion decisions.” While Pew Research Center found 61% of Americans support legalized abortion, this is only true in “most or all cases.”
When asked more specific questions, such as the pregnancy’s gestational age and the reason for the abortion, polls have found 70% of people are in favor of significant abortion restrictions. With most Americans supporting things like waiting periods and informed consent laws, the motivation for reducing abortions is clearly not based in a desire to control a woman’s body. Rather, it is to prevent the exploitation of women that leads to an innocent human being deprived of life.