Prince Harry Makes Rare Statement For A Royal On The Overturning Of Roe V. Wade

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Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

Article updated on 19/07/22: After Meghan Markle spoke out against the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe V. Wade, which previously gave women a constitutional right to abortion, Prince Harry has made his stance known on abortion rights.

The Duke, who Markle previously said sees 'the world so similarly' to her and described as a 'feminist', called the recent rolling back of constitutional rights a 'global assault on democracy and freedom' during a visit to the United Nations in New York.

'This has been a painful year in a painful decade,' he added. 'We're living through a pandemic that continues to ravage communities in every corner of the globe,' he noted, referencing the effects of climate change, disinformation and the war in Ukraine.

Prince Harry, who's lived in California since 2020, after stepping back from royal duties in the same year, also paid tribute to his later Mother Princess Diana and wife at the event.

This was after he spoke about former South African President Nelson Mandela's legacy.

Referring to South Africa, the royal said: 'It’s where I felt closest to my mother and sought solace after she died. And where I knew I’d found a soulmate in my wife.'

Article originally published on 01/07/22

Meghan Markle has given a rousing, damning statement on the Supreme Court's decision to repeal Roe V. Wade, advocating strongly for women's choice and updating the world on Harry's position too.

A week ago, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, which had previously promised a constitutional right to abortion since 1973, and now, Meghan Markle has spoken out about her and husband Prince Harry's stance on the matter.

The change in law advocates Mississippi's ban on abortions after 15 weeks and means half of the states in the US are expected to introduce new restrictions or bans.

Prior to now, in 1992, the Supreme Court's ruling in Planned Parenthood v Casey restricted abortions from happening for non-medical reasons as early as the first trimester, meaning some states already have confining measures in place.

This includes a requirement that young women involve their parents or a judge in the abortion decision.

Joined by journalist and activist Gloria Steinem, Markle spoke to former CNN chief White House correspondent and News Not Noise founder Jessica Yellin about the overturning of Roe v. Wade and the future of women's reproductive rights.

Markle, who in 2020 opened up about having suffered a miscarriage and her thoughts on reproductive rights as a mother, expressed her gratitude for having her children - Archie, three and Lilibet, one - and elaborated on reproductive rights as a mother.

The 40-year-old told Vogue: 'I know what it feels like to have a connection to what is growing inside of your body.

'What happens with our bodies is so deeply personal, which can also lead to silence and stigma, even though so many of us deal with personal health crises.'

Photo credit: SOPA Images - Getty Images
Photo credit: SOPA Images - Getty Images

She added: 'The more that we normalise conversation about the things that affect our lives and bodies, the more people are going to understand how necessary it is to have protections in place.'

Markle asserted: 'Nobody should be forced to make a decision they do not want to make, or is unsafe, or puts their own life in jeopardy', highlighting the importance of women being able to feel physically safe.

'Frankly, whether it’s a woman being put in an unthinkable situation, a woman not ready to start a family, or even a couple who deserve to plan their family in a way that makes the most sense for them, it’s about having a choice.'

The Duchess of Sussex spoke about the risks women face in the states where abortion is illegal, saying: 'This is having a very real impact on women’s bodies and lives starting now.'

She continued: 'Women are already sharing stories of how their physical safety is being put in danger.

'Women with resources will travel to get an abortion, those without might attempt to give themselves one at tremendous risk.

'Some will have to source abortion pills from unregulated pharmacies. Others who are pregnant and find themselves in a medical emergency will be at the mercy of doctors and lawyers to determine if a procedure that is needed to save her life can even be done at all.

Photo credit: SOPA Images - Getty Images
Photo credit: SOPA Images - Getty Images

'What does this tell women? It tells us that our physical safety doesn’t matter, and as a result that we don’t matter. But we do. Women matter.'

On the impact of state abortion regulations on black women, Markle said: 'Women of colour and especially Black women are most impacted by these decisions because most of us don’t have the same access to health care, economic opportunity, mental health resources…the list goes on.'

She added: 'It’s difficult to overstate what this decision is going to do to these communities.'

Markle touched on the importance of men getting involved in championing women's reproductive rights, saying: 'Men need to be vocal in this moment and beyond because these are decisions that affect relationships, families, and communities at large.

'They may target women, but the consequences impact all of us.'

Speaking of Prince Harry, she added: 'My husband and I talked about that a lot over the past few days. He’s a feminist too.

'And his reaction last week was guttural, like mine. I know that for so many women right now, there is a sentiment of despair.

When previously speaking at a London Forum in 2018, Markle said 'Harry and I see the world so similarly'.

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