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60 La Jolla seniors march for reproductive rights

Residents of the Casa de Mañana retirement community protest the U.S. Supreme Court ruling overturning the Roe v. Wade decision on abortion.

Though they are past their own reproductive years, about 60 residents of La Jolla’s Casa de Mañana retirement community marched in support of reproductive rights July 10 and to demonstrate their opposition to the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent ruling overturning the court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that guaranteed a constitutional right to abortion.

During the protest — organized by the 85- to 103-year-old residents — the demonstrators gathered on the Casa de Mañana lawn along Coast Boulevard, many holding signs. Some then walked around the block while the others stayed out front.

“Fifty years ago, I celebrated the passage of Roe v. Wade. ... Never did we think that 50 years later, we would be mourning its demise,” said resident Alice Yee. “I’m here to say I am still fighting the battle. I’m 103 and I’m going to keep fighting.”

She said the overturn of Roe v. Wade “is one more indication of women’s rights being controlled. Women should have the right to control their own bodies. We don’t talk about whether men should have the right to a vasectomy. We don’t talk about men being able to access contraceptives. It’s a very personal decision and women should be able to make that decision.”

La Jollans celebrated the nation’s Independence Day on July 4 with homespun parades, but no large-scale public fireworks display for the fifth consecutive year.

Resident Melvin Cohen said he was there because “as a physician I have seen so many problem cases that I think abortion should be absolutely legal.”

Susan McLeod, who was involved in the women’s movement in the 1970s, said: “I can’t believe we have to do this again. I want my granddaughter to have the same rights that I did. It’s as simple as that.” ◆