Amanda Shires Pens Op-Ed for ‘Rolling Stone’ Demanding More Artists Stand Up for Abortion Rights

June 3, 2022
Amanda Shires Pens Op-Ed for ‘Rolling Stone’ Demanding More Artists Stand Up for Abortion Rights

Last month, just days after a Supreme Court draft ruling was leaked showing that Roe v. Wade could be overturned Amanda Shires spoke up, sharing deeply personal news on social media. She tweeted, “Recently, I had an ectopic pregnancy, On August 9, 2021 my fallopian tube ruptured. On August 10, my life was saved…these are some dark days.”

Today, the songwriter, solo artist and intermittent member of her husband Jason Isbell’s 400 Unit band wrote an op-ed for Rolling Stone on how important abortion rights are and called upon other artists to speak up using their platforms.

In the op-ed, Shires shared more details about her experiences in recent years; she wrote, “When I was hospitalized in Texas on August 9, 2021, with a ruptured fallopian tube caused by an ectopic pregnancy. For those who are unfamiliar, it is impossible for an ectopic pregnancy to go to term. I would have died; my daughter, Mercy, would have lost her mother; my husband, Jason, would be a widower. I was lucky. This happened to me two and a half weeks before Texas’ abortion ban went into effect. And I was still dealing with all of it two and a half weeks later.”

Shires explained the reason for her writing the op-ed aside from her personal experiences. She noted that while it is true the majority of people are in favor of women’s reproductive rights, she is writing to reach the others; she also said that sharing these stories gives strength to others who have yet to stand up or share their own. She also reminded readers that access to abortion and reproductive healthcare is not just about terminating unwanted pregnancies and that if you take away access to reproductive healthcare, we’d be killing moms like her. She then asked, “Where would that leave my own daughter?”

After sharing some hard facts, (like Demographer Diana Greene Foster’s 10-year study, which tracked both people who had abortions and people who were denied abortions, proved that when people can’t have an abortion, it affects their mental health, their economic standing, their overall well-being and that 95% of study participants who did have an abortion still stand by their decision) Shires wrote about the upcoming election and a recent march.

“We have to work hard now to mobilize and help people vote. The election is November 8. You don’t see a lot of men speaking up, and every voice is helpful. Which brings up the question, why were Jason and I, and Margo Price, the biggest celebrities — quasi-celebrities — at the march in Nashville?” she asked. “Why didn’t more people show up and speak up? I know everyone is scared of losing their rung on the ladder, but there are more important things, I think, than your fame. Not saying something is not helping.”

She furthered this point by writing, “We have Olivia Rodrigo and Phoebe Bridgers speaking up, and Ariana Grande. Where are our Nashville folks? They aren’t helping. Are they just going to sit around and drink beer? I want Garth Brooks out there telling people that women’s health is a priority. That’s what I want. Why not? What does he have to lose?”

Shires concluded her piece by sharing her hopes. She wrote, “My best hope is that people continue to get angrier and that the folks who have been fighting so hard for so long, and are already tired, find some strength to keep fighting and also to mobilize others, especially youth, along the way. I hope that if Roe v. Wade is overturned, it causes such a fucking uproar that we end up with more rights than we had before.”

Read the full op-ed here.

Amanda Shires is scheduled to perform at Relix Studio on June 13. Learn more here.