Screen Capture / TVSA
District 2 Councilman Jalen McKee-Rodriguez speaks from the dais on Tuesday.
After the rancorous public comment session for Tuesday's city council vote
on a resolution supporting abortion rights, District 2 Councilman Jalen McKee-Rodriguez had choice words for some anti-abortion activists in attendance.
McKee-Rodriguez, one of nine San Antonio council members who supported the resolution, sent his "love and gratitude" to those who shared their personal abortion stories during the marathon session. However, he said he was "disgusted" by the behavior of activists who sought to embarrass and denigrate them.
What follows is a full transcript of the McKee-Rodriguez's comments:
I also want to publicly reprimand those of you who have villainized and antagonized those who came up here today to [give their personal testimony]. None of us are owed these stories, and you are not entitled to anyone else's experiences or pain. They should not have to tell you about their sexual assault or about their health complications or give you any reason why they did or did not get an abortion.
There were also some people with ugly intent who were taking pictures and videos of those who did come up here to share personal stories, with the intent of mocking them and endangering them. That was very unkind and a very harmful action, and I'm hopeful that you will reflect on that and grow up.
I see the signs also that "Equity begins at birth." In reality, equity begins when you focus your resources on communities who have been marginalized, under-resourced and ignored. And that includes healthcare. So, what has been said — and what has been ignored countless times — is that in some instances, forced births lead to the death of the pregnant person. To take away the right to abortion is murder, and that is not equity.
So, to many of you on the other side, I hope for your growth and your willingness to listen, because it has not been demonstrated today. There is nothing that can be said that you haven't heard before, and you have made a conscious decision not to listen.
It is also a privilege for you to walk in here and hold signs that say, "Adoption is the healthier option." I implore each of you to lend your support to one of the 52,397 Texas children in foster care or the 3,800 children and teenagers in Texas awaiting adoption. I also implore you to support those who do seek to adopt, because there are real and true barriers to adoption for people like me and my husband.
I also encourage you to join us in Austin this next session to fight for gun law reform, and I'm sure we can agree that guns kill people — and that seemed to matter to you today.
Also Jane Roe — Norma McCorvey — was paid off to become an anti-abortion activist, and she acknowledged this before her death. So, you thought you ate that, but you did not.
Lastly, while you're here today, there is a pro-life elected official somewhere making sure that their mistress has access to an abortion.
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