Hundreds in Lincoln spend Independence Day protesting against abortion restrictions

10/11 NOW at 5
Published: Jul. 4, 2022 at 5:34 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - Hundreds of Lincoln people spent hours Monday holding up signs outside the Capitol sharing messages that read “My Body, My Choice” and “Stars and Stripes and Reproductive Rights.”

A group of protesters hold pro-choice signs at abortion access rally Monday.
A group of protesters hold pro-choice signs at abortion access rally Monday.(KOLN)

The My Body My Choice rally, which kicked off at 10:00 a.m. and ran all afternoon, was organized by Mary Wistrom. Wistrom, from Lincoln, said for her, protecting abortion rights in the post-Roe era, is about protecting kids, as well as women.

“I was in foster care and I know what it feels like to not be wanted or cared for. I went through a lot of years wondering who I was and I don’t want any other children to suffer,” Wistrom said.

She also said holding the event on the Fourth of July was not a coincidence.

“We don’t have freedom,” Wistrom said. “I thought it was important to make a stand today because we don’t have freedom on this day.”

Local politicians spoke, including City Councilor James Michael Bowers and Lancaster County Commissioner Christa Yoakum who urged Nebraskans to vote for pro-choice politicians in upcoming elections.

“We need to keep abortion legal in Nebraska,” Bowers said.

One of those candidates, is Robin Richards, who is running for district 12 in the legislature.

“This is the first stepping stone in our freedom to decide what happens in our lives, what happens with our bodies, what happens in our doctors offices,” Richards said. “They have announced they won’t stop there so I’m announcing we won’t stop either.”

Right now in Nebraska, abortion remains legal up until the 22 week of pregnancy. Governor Pete Ricketts and Speaker of the Legislature Mike Hilgers have said they could call a special session to try and pass a complete abortion ban in the state, but recently said they won’t call a session until they’re sure they have the votes to pass it. A similar bill failed to pass in the most recent legislative session.

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