By Kelly Werthmann

DENVER, Colo. (CBS4) – At the west steps of the state Capitol Tuesday afternoon, about 200 Coloradans rallied for rights they fear are on the brink of being stripped away in America.

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“I am so sad and so mad that five people could choose to take away our rights as women and as citizens of the United States,” said Kristen Winkel, an abortion rights advocate.
Emotions always run high when it comes to abortion rights. For some, the possible overturn of Roe v. Wade will have deep impacts.

“Abortion rights is a racial issue,” said activist Kayla Gonzales Garcia, as the crowd cheered. “Before Roe v. Wade, women of color have died twelve times more than white women from unsafe abortions.”

Gonzales Garcia shared her experience of having an illegal abortion in Peru. She said she feared for her life, unsure if she would wake following the procedure. She is angry women in this country could suffer the same pain and uncertainty, especially women of color.

“The fact that the Supreme Court, a bunch of white people and men, are trying to overturn Roe v. Wade is just disgusting,” she said.

Many men turned out for the rally, including Charlie Hindman. He said he, too, is angry.

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“People like me that don’t have uteruses, I don’t think I should have any say in the matter,” he told CBS4. “I want to make sure that we don’t slide backward where [women] have to get unsafe healthcare treatment.”

And those who’ve spent decades fighting for abortion rights and women’s health find it hard to believe the battle continues.

“Roe v. Wade passed when I was a sophomore in college,” Winkel said. “I always knew there was a chance, but I never thought the day would come.”

Many state lawmakers came out of the capitol to join the afternoon rally, including Representative Leslie Herod and Senator Julie Gonzales. Some spoke of the work they’re doing to protect abortion rights, but also said it’s up to everyone else to get out and vote.

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“It’s now up to you to turn out the vote to stop more of these Republican candidates that are trying to overturn our rights,” said Senator Sonya Jaquez Lewis. “What they are doing is a gross invasion of our rights. We must stop it.”

Kelly Werthmann