In honor of Roe v. Wade Day, we reflect on the important human right’s issue of a woman’s right to make decisions, with her doctor, regarding her reproductive health. We offer this reflection for Repro Shabbat, sponsored by the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) occurring on February 17-18, 2023. NCJW launched Repro Shabbat in 2021 as a way to highlight Judaism’s support for reproductive freedom, and to come together as a community to talk about bodily autonomy and reproductive health care. 2023 will be the first Repro Shabbat since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. Rabbi Miriam Jerris of the Society for Humanistic Judaism wrote this reflection that may be included in a Repro Shabbat program.
Reflection On Reproductive Rights & Freedom
In Humanistic Judaism the preservation of dignity for each and every individual is a core value.
Is there dignity if freedom of choice is offered only to men?
Is there dignity if freedom of choice is available only to the rich?
Is there dignity when government interferes with the decisions that belong to a woman and her doctor?
Is there dignity when the health needs of one gender are covered by insurance, and the health needs of another gender are controlled by the religious beliefs of their employer?
Dignity requires that each and every individual have access to the quality, comprehensive health care that they want and need.
Dignity requires that each and every individual has the right to choose what will happen to their body.
Dignity requires that each and every individual has the freedom to choose their own religious beliefs without government interference.
We honor reproductive freedom as a Jewish value and a right for all people.
Today we join the National Council of Jewish Women and many congregations in the United States by participating in Repro Shabbat 2023 to advocate for reproductive health, rights, and justice.