This day ‘will live in infamy’: Celebrities denounce the end of Roe v Wade in America

Hillary Clinton, Phoebe Bridgers, Taylor Swift, Pearl Jam, Elizabeth Banks, Sophia Bush, Monica Lewinsky, and Padma Lakshmi among the first to speak out

What the decision means

Actors, authors, singers, politicians and other celebrities have expressed their distress at the decision to roll back the rights of American women, after the overturning of Roe v Wade.

The US Supreme Court announced on Friday (24 June) morning that Roe v Wade has been overturned, holding that there is no constitutional right to abortion in the country.

It is the most consequential reversal in the Court’s history and will have an immediate impact on reproductive health. The landmark 1973 case previously ensured the right to abortion in America, though individual states have continually passed laws designed to erode unfettered access.

Former presidential nominee Hillary Clinton posted on the heels of the announcement: “Most Americans believe the decision to have a child is one of the most sacred decisions there is, and that such decisions should remain between patients and their doctors. Today’s Supreme Court opinion will live in infamy as a step backward for women’s rights and human rights.”

Singer Taylor Swift confessed that she was “absolutely terrified,” in a Twitter post supporting remarks by Michelle Obama.

Phoebe Bridgers even raised the latest political developments in the US while performing at the Glastonbury Festival. The singer has previously been open about an abortion she had last year. “It’s super surreal, but I’m having the s****iest time,” Bridgers said during her set on the John Peel Stage. “Any Americans here?”

She continued: “Yeah... who wants to say ‘F*** the Supreme Court?’ One, two... F*** THE SUPREME COURT,” Bridgers shouted to bellows of agreement from the audience. “All these irrelevant old motherf***ers trying to tell us what to do with our fucking bodies. F*** it.”

One Tree Hill actor and activist Sophia Bush wrote on Friday morning: “They will never end abortion. Only safe abortion. This is not about life. It’s about control. Those motherf*ckers.”

Bush was among several commenters to suggest that the end of access to safe abortions will cause the number of illegal abortions conducted under unsafe conditions to increase.

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“GET READY, GAYS. YOU’RE NEXT,” wrote Bette Midler, echoing concerns that the Supreme Court might overturn Obergefell, the case that affirmed gay marriage rights in the US.

The band Pearl Jam also posted from the band’s official account: “No one, not the government, not politicians, not the Supreme Court should prevent access to abortion, birth control, and contraceptives. People should have the FREEDOM to choose.”

Monica Lewinsky also posted, name-checking each justice who voted with the 6-3 majority: “F*** you Roberts. F*** you Thomas. F*** you Alito. F*** you Kavanaugh. F*** you Gorsuch. F*** you Coney Barrett.”

Top Chef presenter Padma Lakshmi wrote, “We knew this was coming, but the news is nauseating nonetheless. I feel completely gutted. State and local elections are more vital now more than ever before. We need to keep fighting.”

The English singer Yungblud commented, “They just took the right to decide about someone’s own body away!”

Hunger author Roxane Gay also posted: “What ends today in more than 20 states is LEGAL abortion, women’s and people with uteri’s rights to bodily autonomy, and the fragile notion that everyone is free. Clearly, few of us are. I do not know where we go from here but this is not the end of a fight. It’s the beginning.”

Actor Elizabeth Banks tweeted, “This is devastating news for families - men and women - who believe the government should not decide when and with whom they become parents. This is not the end of this fight for human rights.”

The actor Danny DeVito expressed himself even more succinctly: “Supreme Court my ass”.

The Court’s majority decision was written by Justice Samuel Alito. “Roe was egregiously wrong from the start,” he concluded on behalf of the Court. “Its reasoning was exceptionally weak, and the decision has had damaging consequences. And far from bringing about a national settlement of the abortion issue, Roe and Casey have enflamed debate and deepened division."

A draft of the Court’s opinion was released in May 2022 in an unprecedented leak. At that time, more celebrities, including Rosanna Arquette and Amber Tamblyn, posted in protest. You can follow The Independent’s news coverage on our live blog.

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