On Wednesday, a trio of anti-abortion measures continued to wend their way through the Texas State Legislature, buoyed by Republicans’ expectations for a more conservative Supreme Court. A Senate Health and Human Services Committee hearing included testimony from NARAL Texas legislative intern Maggie Hennessy, whose speech decrying SB 415 ended abruptly when Committee Chairman Charles Schwertner (R-Georgetown) smashed his gavel quite hard on the glass table, which was later shown to have cracked. Seems like ridiculously bad optics for a guy trying to crack down on women’s reproductive rights, but what do I know?
Find the rest of the article here on Jezebel.
This is just one example of how the abortion, reproductive health and reproductive justice debates are not nearly as black and white as debating politicians would like people to believe. Each and every one of these decisions is deeply personal and deeply felt and definitely not something women need overbearing “help” with.
The deepest grief I ever experienced was over the loss of a life that I, myself, ended. I was so traumatized by the entire experience that I was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.
I had all the symptoms: flashbacks, nightmares, panic attacks. I would obsessively replay the scene in the abortion clinic over and over again in my mind, desperately wanting it to un-happen. I would have sacrificed a limb instead, if I could have. But that wasn’t the choice I was given.
My options were to lose a pregnancy or lose my life, and… well, I guess you could say I chose life.
I had been overjoyed when I found out I was pregnant. I thought there might be a little trouble at first because I suffer from a number of chronic health problems that would no doubt be difficult to treat without medication, but I figured they would all be manageable. Continue reading…
The latest landslide of anti-choice legislation coming through in Texas has been justified by one supporting legislator: “Suffering is part of the human condition, since sin entered the world.”
Isn’t the point of laws, the point of creating a civilized society, to minimize suffering? Isn’t it our legislators’ jobs to see to it that we create a world where dignified life for everyone is possible? And as far as sin, well, we’ve been saying from the beginning of the great reproductive justice debate – legal and medical matters (especially of the masses) should not be influenced by a single person’s understanding of a god.
Why is this so difficult to understand? When the religious arguments of the anti-choice movement are stripped away – as they should be, because we have this glorious thing called separation of church and state and thus the right to not have someone else’s religion dictate parts of your life – what’s left is medical science, and each individual’s personal choices. Those choices are rarely easy either, and if people who identify as pro-life were really that, they would be spending more time educating people about how their bodies work, passing out contraceptives and setting up connections and funds for families who find themselves in difficult spots rather than shaming women and preaching.
The past four years have been nothing short of devastating for abortion rights in the United States. From 2011 to 2015, 231 abortion restrictions were enacted across the country, leaving the majority of American women in states that are outright hostile to reproductive healthcare. Thirteen states have enacted bans on abortion at or before 20 weeks, some without exceptions for rape, incest or the health of the pregnant person. In fact, states like Alabama and North Dakota have passed bans at 12 and six weeks, respectively – a point at which many don’t even know they’re pregnant. Earlier this year, House Republicans proposed (then sheepishly shelved) a federal ban on abortion at 20 weeks. These laws are all designed for one purpose: to force today’s sharply divided Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade.
But these laws aren’t harmless judicial test cases. They have a real-world impact and do immediate, lasting damage while they wait out their day in court. These bans are wrong, dangerous, and should be roundly opposed. Here are five reasons why:
It’s not very often that we find anything dealing with abortion that isn’t emotionally, politically or religiously charged, which to some degree is understandable. It’s a touchy subject, with as many voices as there are mouths (even those mouths that really don’t have a clue what they’re saying.) This comic from Oh Joy Sex Toy takes a medical approach to what is in reality one of the safest medical produces we have today, giving an outline of what women who are considering an abortion are looking at going through with actual resources for further research.
“Why should women be paid equal to men? Men have been in the working world a lot longer and deserve to be paid at a higher rate. Heck, I’m a working mom and I’m not paid a dime. I depend on my husband to provide for me and my family, as should most women… and if a woman does work, she should be happy just to be out there in the working world and quit complaining that she’s not making as much as her male counterparts. I mean really, all this wanting to be equal nonsense is going to be detrimental to the future of women everywhere. Who’s going to want to hire a woman, or for that matter, even marry a woman who thinks she is the same, if not better than a man at any job. It’s almost laughable. C’mon now ladies, are you with me on this?”
This quote and article are viral on Facebook right now, with people swinging from utter shock to staunch anger. Shock over the ignorance of the quote and anger over the injustice of it being used to slander Ann Romney. There’s controversy over whether she actually said this, but my thinking is that it doesn’t matter. Even if her words weren’t these, her and her husband’s sentiment is in line with this thinking. Romney is the current embodiment of the war against women, and if he is elected, we will get a return to the 50s.
Welcome to Wombs in Rebellion, the newest blog from the writer of Invisible Ink and Ayslyn’s Corner! Recently a question was posed to me—what could you talk about all day long until you’re absolutely sick of it? Writing, yes, religion, philosophy, customs and culture, yes. But the one that takes the cake is women’s rights, women in culture and the myriad world of reproductive justice. Thus, this is a forum for all things female.
Now, I know there are already a ton of blogs and sites out there for just these topics, and while it makes for a lot of reading material, it’s a good thing. It means a lot of people have opinions and they believe enough in what they think to find a public voice. So here I shall add my own voice, and my guest bloggers shall add theirs, and you may add yours. What gives us the right to add our voices to these conversations? Simple, we are women.
What does it mean to be a woman? It means being the smile that greets others in the morning sun, the laughter that brings our friends closer. We are the mothers who care for the world and each person in it; we are the sisters at in-house slumber parties who listen to secrets about drama and boys; the daughters who give new reasons to live and live well. We are the breath in the wind, woven into the roots of the earth’s trees and the moonlight streaming from above. We are the Goddess, and the Goddess is each of us. We bring babies into this world with blood and pain, and hold hands as lives are extinguished.
What does being a woman mean to you? And if you label yourself otherwise, how do you perceive women?