Reproductive rights rally held at FGCU on Wednesday

Reporter: Lauren Leslie Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:
A reproductive rights rally on campus at FGCU. (CREDIT: WINK News)

A reproductive rights rally was held on campus at Florida Gulf Coast University on Wednesday just weeks after Roe V. Wade was overturned by the Supreme Court.

It’s important to note that while this took place on the FGCU campus, it wasn’t affiliated with the university in any way.

Dozens of students showed up in support of reproductive rights, but they say it’s about a lot more than that.

Both sides came out during the reproductive rights rally at FGCU. (CREDIT: WINK News)

Grace Brannigan, who organized the event, tells WINK News that the big issues on campus encompass a wider fight for civil rights.

“It’s Roe v. Wade and it’s marriage equality, you know, the ability to get an abortion, the ability to have access to healthcare, like that and the right to get married and to love people regardless those are the things that really deeply concern us here,” Brannigan said.

For other students, the concern is hyper-focused — When does life begin?

When asked, four of the students said it begins at conception.

“We’re not here to, you know, have ourselves be a higher moral of anything; we’re not here to do that,” said James Boatman, a demonstrator who support’s the Supreme Court’s decision. “We’re just here to present another point and we’re here to have a conversation.”

People that supported the Supreme Court decision at the FGCU rally. (CREDIT: WINK News)

“Speaking from someone who has two adopted siblings, I couldn’t imagine my life without them, and to say that they shouldn’t be around because somebody didn’t want them just breaks my heart,” said Casey Krahmer, a demonstrator in support of the Supreme Court’s decision.

Whether you support abortions or are against abortion, one thing is certain, the overturning of Roe V. Wade has inspired many people to take action.

“I think it’s really important for young people to understand how our government works and to get involved and find an issue that inspires them and find their place,” said Dr. Cindy Banyai, a Democratic candidate for Florida’s 19th Congressional District seat.

For the group marching, it’s civil rights. Brannigan is hoping everyone can be civil in expressing their viewpoints.

“I like to encourage my fellow students to care about each other first before they care about each other’s political opinions. I would like to encourage every young person here in Southwest Florida to vote,” Brannigan said.

Voting was a major topic at the demonstration. Students were encouraged to take the time and listen to candidates, and then get to the polls. The last day to register to vote is July 25.

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