By Maddy Majewski, Abigail Turner, Abbi Pflum & Kaylee Homerding
People Should Do What They Want to Do.
On May 5th, 2022, UW- Green Bay students rallied together to demonstrate their right to gather and their right to free speech. Although it wasn’t a UW-Green Bay event, many students came out to support the cause.
After the Supreme Court had an accidental leak of the Roe v. Wade draft to have states individually regulate abortion rights and laws, there was a lot of controversy and discussion looming in the country. The UW-Green Bay campus was not an exception; many students saw this as an opportunity to gather outside and have a peaceful rally.
This rally had roughly 160 people in attendance on campus. The group first met on the grounds of campus outside of the University’s Union. Then, there was a walk throughout campus, where the attendants of the event took their signs and voices around campus. This included students, teachers, and the university officers overseeing and conducting the event.
Throughout the week when this rally was being planned, many people on the campus had many different views. There were many rumors that counter-protestors would be in attendance at the rally. Because of these rumors, the organizers of the event took precautions to make sure everyone in attendance at the event was safe to voice their opinions.
One of the organizers of the event, Hannah Beauchamp-Pope, helped set up these precautions. “When notified of counter-protestors while planning our recent rally, we designated people to a Peace Team to be able to deescalate situations. As mentioned, it was to University Police when meeting with them, so they were aware of the social environment that day.” With those plans in place, the students were able to voice their concerns with little to no worry.
Lieutenant AJ Walker, a campus police officer overseeing the event, shared that the day the protest went on was his 4th day employed with UW-Green Bay. Prior to this, he was employed in Green Bay as a police officer. When asked about how he felt about the protest, Walker shared, “I believe in free speech, rallies, and protests. I think it is a core component of being an American as long as it’s done without violence, and it is done respectfully.”
Ted Evert, a senior at UW-Green Bay, shared that he was “glad the draft was released to the public, as the ‘drafting of this is the misuse of politics disguised in judicial textualism.’ I would be against the overturning of Roe v Wade. It has been functionally overturned for several months now. People should do what they want to do. I am good with abortion up to 9 months.”
With the SCOTUS leak, there is a lot of controversy in the world. The students of UW-Green Bay took to the streets to voice their concerns. The rally went along smoothly, and there were no counter-protesters that were in attendance. There were no incidents to report on.