The American Civil Liberties Union has been slammed over a tweet which altered a famous quote from the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg about abortion rights, replacing the word ‘woman’ with ‘person’ and swapping female pronouns with ‘they.’
‘The decision whether or not to bear a child is central to a [person’s] life, to [their] well-being and dignity… When the government controls that decision for [people], [they are] being treated as less than a fully adult human responsible for [their] own choices,’ the ACLU posted in a photo on Twitter on the one-year anniversary of Ginsburg’s death on Saturday.
The ACLU removed the term ‘woman’ and altered the pronouns to be inclusive of trans and non-binary individuals who might also seek an abortion.
But critics slammed the organization for ‘erasing women’ from a quote by such a famous women’s right advocate.
The ACLU tweeted an altered version of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s quote about abortions rights, replacing the word woman and female pronouns with inclusive language
Ruth Bader Ginsburg, pictured in 2018, stood as one of the most prominent figures in modern women’s rights in America. She co-founded the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project in 1972
Twitter users voiced their outrage against the ACLU’s move to remove the word ‘woman’
‘The ACLU literally erasing women,’ wrote Greg Scott, of the conservative Alliance Defending Freedom group.
Dave Weigel, of the Washington Post, wrote that changing the quote was not a good look for the ACLU.
‘The pronoun wars are bad and silly but editing a Ginsburg quote to remove any reference to “women” looks so clumsy.’
Author Colin Moriarty likened the change to George Orwell’s novel, 1984.
‘You have become the exact type of language-bending Orwellian institution you once opposed,’ he wrote about the ACLU.
Twitter User Maya Forstater added, ‘You removed the word woman? From abortion rights? From the woman who co-founded ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project? Unreal.’
Many on social media criticized the ACLU’s tweet
While there were those who understood the ACLU’s intention to be more inclusive, some said changing the quote directly was not the proper way to include trans and nonbinary people.
‘Yes, her quote seemly fails to include trans individuals who become pregnant, but altering her words is a step too far,’ wrote twitter user Brian Wilcox.
Another Twitter user with the username bkb82308 wrote, ‘guys, you’re making a joke of this. That’s not what she said. That’s not the quote. It’s ok. We know that not just women get pregnant. It’s like in the constitution when they just refer to men. It’s ok. we know what it means today. breathe.’
Other Twitter users understood why the ACLU chose to alter the word ‘woman,’ but some ultimately said it might have been a step too far
Ruth Bader Ginsburg, pictured in 1977, worked with the American Civil Liberties Union to fight for the rights of American women, including their right to an abortion
Along with wanting to celebrate Ginsburg, who co-founded the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project in 1972, the ACLU wanted to address the current issues involving the access to abortion.
This month, Texas passed one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the nation.
The Texas law prohibits abortions once medical professionals can detect cardiac activity, which is usually around six weeks and before some women even know they are pregnant
Dr. Alan Braid, a doctor from San Antonio, admitted this past weekend in a Washington Post opinion column that he had carried out the procedure, becoming the first Texas abortion provider to publicly reveal he violated the law that took effect on September 1st.
A woman carries a sign calling for access to abortion (pictured) at a rally at the Texas State Capitol on September 11, 2021 in Austin, Texas. Texas Lawmakers recently passed legislation, including SB8, which prohibits abortions in Texas after a fetal heartbeat is detected on an ultrasound, usually between the fifth and sixth weeks of pregnancy
A woman participating in a protest with others (pictured) against the six-week abortion ban at the Capitol in Austin, Texas, on September 1, 2021. The Justice Department is asking a federal court in Texas to issue a temporary restraining order or a preliminary injunction against a new state law that bans most abortions in Texas
Prosecutors cannot take criminal action against Braid, because the law explicitly forbids that.
The only way the ban can be enforced is through lawsuits brought by private citizens, who don’t have to be from Texas and who are entitled to claim at least $10,000 in damages if successful.
And former attorneys in Arkansas and Illinois filed separate state lawsuits Monday against the doctor.
‘I fully understood that there could be legal consequences – but I wanted to make sure that Texas didn’t get away with its bid to prevent this blatantly unconstitutional law from being tested,’ Braid wrote.
Two federal lawsuits were already making their way through the courts over the law, known as Senate Bill 8. In one, filed by abortion providers and others, the Supreme Court declined to block the law from taking effect while the case makes its way through the legal system.
It’s still proceeding in the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals. In the second case, the Justice Department is asking a federal judge to declare the law invalid, arguing it was enacted ‘in open defiance of the Constitution.’