"Maybe they'll think of me differently. I hope they don't."
May 11, 2015 9:35 AM   Subscribe

In some parts of America, the accessibility of abortion has remained unchanged, but not in great swaths of the country — not in places such as Texas, where more than half of the clinics have closed since 2013, or in South Dakota, where the single clinic has a mandatory 72-hour waiting period between appointment and procedure, or in Wyoming, where there is one private provider and no clinics in all the state's 98,000 square miles, and where the nearest facility Emily could find an appointment was six hours away.
One woman's long drive to end a pregnancy.

Over 14 million Americans live in states with only one abortion provider.

In addition to Wyoming (population 584,153; 97,093 sq. mi.) are Arkansas (population 2,966,369; 52,035 sq. mi.) Mississippi (population 2,994,079; 46,923 sq. mi.), Missouri (pop. 6,063,589; 68,742 sq. mi.), North Dakota (population 739,482; 69,001 sq. mi.), and South Dakota (population 853,175; 75,811 sq. mi.).

The remaining abortion providers in the above-mentioned states are:
Little Rock Family Planning Services in Little Rock, AR [medication abortions may also be available at Planned Parenthood in Fayetteville]
Jackson Women's Health Organization in Jackson, MS
Reproductive Health Services, via Planned Parenthood in St. Louis, MO (previously: Missouri abortion waiting period bill: a veto override is imminent)
Red River Women's Clinic in Fargo, ND
Planned Parenthood in Sioux Falls, SD (previously: Do you take precautions or chance it?)
Emerg+A+Care in Jackson, WY

More reading on the ongoing push to shutter abortion providers across the United States:
★ Daily Beast, January 2013: The geography of abortion access (previously: Abortion in America)
★ ThinkProgress, January 2014: 'Women Will Still Find A Way': A look inside Missouri's last abortion clinic
★ Slate's XXFactor, July 2014: The Christian Compassion of Dr. Willie Parker, the Doctor at Mississippi's Last Abortion Clinic (previously: The Abortion Ministry of Dr. Willie Parker)
★ Cosmopolitan, November 2014: What it's like to run the only abortion clinic in your state
★ Slate's Medical Examiner, March 2015: Mississippi's only abortion clinic attacked: Governor can't stop legal procedure, so vigilantes vandalize it
★ MSNBC, April 2015: Mississippi's last abortion clinic fights to stay open – and out of SCOTUS [warning: auto-playing video]

And for future reference, just in case: Women on Web (previously).
posted by divined by radio (49 comments total) 75 users marked this as a favorite
 
Fantastic (depressing) roundup; thank you.

We have come a long way backwards, baby.
posted by rtha at 9:45 AM on May 11, 2015 [17 favorites]


I want the legislators responsible for this shit to take that same car ride, sleep in the same hotel, feel the same cramps. Goddamn them.
posted by angrycat at 10:01 AM on May 11, 2015 [5 favorites]


Great post btw
posted by angrycat at 10:02 AM on May 11, 2015


Excellent OP, thank you.

I sometimes wonder what world the people who want to make abortion illegal want -- and these links give an indication. Basically, a world that makes life for women in the United States as close to a living hell as possible.
posted by blucevalo at 10:03 AM on May 11, 2015 [1 favorite]


I forget where I saw this, but as to the closed clinics in Texas, both pro-life and pro-choice people claimed "victor" or "martyr" status, saying the closures were a direct result of of 2013 legislation. But Planned Parenthood was simply changing its model to reflect many new realities (fewer OBs who perform abortions, decrease in abortion rates, etc.)--close the regional centers that would be difficult to bring up to code and open a new mega-center in a big city. They've opened several of these lately, a few here in Texas. They could then blame the new laws for "driving them out of business" and get some mileage out of that--remember all the fundraising emails? Wendy Davis?--when in fact they were in the process of implementing a new business model.
posted by resurrexit at 10:04 AM on May 11, 2015


Sharmila Rudrappa: If America Really Cared About Mothers, Reproductive Health Care Would Be Available to All
Patel’s case is horrific, but how might the outcome have been different if she had access to easily available, affordable reproductive care, which I understand as far more comprehensive than simply abortion provision? What if women and children had the right to broad sex education including contraception and not just abstinence; deeper understanding about pregnancies; comprehensive, easily accessible and high quality prenatal care; equally excellent and accessible post-natal care; and, emotional support for mother and child?

Infant mortality rates, defined as the number of deaths of children less than one year of age per 1,000 live births, are high in the U.S. A 2014 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report says despite the fact healthcare spending is significantly higher than any other country in the world, a baby born here is less likely to see its first birthday than one born in Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, and Belarus. Infant mortality rates are an important indicator of a nation’s health because it is associated with maternal health, quality and access to medical care, and public health practices. Infant mortality rates are higher in Indiana than the national average, with far worse outcomes for black infants than others.

Maternal death is greater in the U.S. than in 40 other countries, including almost all other industrialized nations; and unsurprisingly, black women are four times more likely to die from pregnancy-related conditions when compared to white women. Admittedly Indiana is not as bad as Texas, Mississippi, or Louisiana in overall child well being, but more has to be done to support mothers in their mothering activities.
posted by zombieflanders at 10:06 AM on May 11, 2015 [12 favorites]


I sometimes wonder what world the people who want to make abortion illegal want

I always wonder how much of this is about demographic unease.
posted by corb at 10:09 AM on May 11, 2015 [1 favorite]


People forget this country was founded by Puritans.

Ask your doctor if birth control is right for you.
posted by cjorgensen at 10:09 AM on May 11, 2015


Then there's the Scott Walker gem.
posted by cjorgensen at 10:12 AM on May 11, 2015


"both pro-life and pro-choice people claimed "victor" or "martyr" status"

What? Those are two different statuses.... Yes, the anti-women people declared themselves victors, because they were. And the pro-women folks declared themselves martyrs, because state legislatures were reducing reproductive health access. These are not the same thing.

"when in fact they were in the process of implementing a new business model."

Um, yeah, Planned Parenthood is a non-profit.

Planned Parenthood donations are going up because there is a successful anti-abortion movement across the united states that wants to reduce reproductive rights; and they are winning. Those that support reproductive rights want to do something to help.
posted by el io at 10:14 AM on May 11, 2015 [19 favorites]


They could then blame the new laws for "driving them out of business" and get some mileage out of that

Given that the laws were quite clearly intended to make it harder to keep clinics open, that seems fair.

close the regional centers that would be difficult to bring up to code and open a new mega-center in a big city.

Right: Texas's HB2 made targeted changes to the requirements that clinics had to meet to stay compliant (specifically, meeting the same standards as an ambulatory surgical center, as well as requiring them to be within 30 miles of a hospital that granted admitting privileges to a doctor in the clinic-- something that clinic itself has no control over). Saying that they closed regional centers because it would be 'difficult to bring [clinics] up to code' is, essentially, the same as saying that the new laws drove them out of business, not an alternative explanation.
posted by cjelli at 10:21 AM on May 11, 2015 [25 favorites]




I forget where I saw this

I'm gonna take a wild guess and say it was in some bullshit anti-choice newsletter e-blast.
posted by poffin boffin at 10:24 AM on May 11, 2015 [40 favorites]


When I was younger and my brain was not fully formed, I sketched a business plan for a company that would offer budget travel packages to fun-and-cool-to-teens destinations with beaches and amusement parks in locales where abortion happened to be legal and easily accessible.

I gave it up after about fifteen minutes for two reasons. #1: I couldn't figure out how to advertise to the target market without using sleazy techniques or triggering massive negative PR. #2: I read that states had begun passing laws making it a felony to transport minors across state lines for purposes of having abortions.

My time and efforts are better spent making the US a place where one doesn't have to resort to dog-whistle advertising or lawbreaking to ensure one's reproductive rights.
posted by infinitewindow at 10:26 AM on May 11, 2015 [3 favorites]


if you look at those 14 million people with access to only one abortion provider, you'd see that they are actually chronically under-served for a host of other medical specialties, plenty of towns without even a MD.

This is part and parcel of the fact that large parts of the US are and have been for two generations (at least) economically devastated and largely hidden from view.
posted by ennui.bz at 10:49 AM on May 11, 2015 [10 favorites]


I was thinking about this the other day: it's so obvious, but why do people always refer to "killing" a baby, when a suffering dog or cat gets to be "put to sleep?" You would never, ever say, "Oh, yeah, I killed my dog last night," because instead of the hugs and sad emojis, you'd get dirty looks.

Meanwhile, the tiny beings who wouldn't have a chance to live with any quality of life can't get "put to sleep" like they deserve, because some assholes run around trying to kill the people who want to make the procedure gentle and safe.
posted by St. Hubbins at 10:53 AM on May 11, 2015 [8 favorites]


This experience is mirrored up north, where a PEI refuses to provide in-province services and doesn't pay the travel costs to get to a private clinic hours away.

Its neighbor province, New Brunswick, recently cut off funding to the province's only private clinic, forcing it to close. Activists raised $125,000 and are now re-opening it. It did, however, get rid of the rule requiring women to get not one, but two, doctors to sign off on their abortion.

Plus the feds have been ducking making a decision on RU-486 for years now.

Anti-abortion lobbyists have stopped focusing at the national level argument because they are very aware that the bare minimum service required by rights (and administered by the states and provinces) in both the U.S. and Canada can be made so prohibitively useless through lack of funding/legislative barrier that it effectively renders your rights meaningless.

A lot of it is now falling under the guise of austerity and being unable to afford all things to all people, and oh by the way this polls well with older, conservative voters. It's bloody sad.
posted by buoys in the hood at 10:54 AM on May 11, 2015 [5 favorites]


Indiana forced the closure of a Planned Parenthood clinic in a southern county (one that did not provide abortions, like most of them don't) a couple years ago. The clinic provided basic health care and stuff like HIV testing. That county is now experiencing a huge HIV outbreak. There is one (1) doctor in the county's main town, and the nearest HIV clinic is 3 hours away in Kentucky.

But people who advocated closing Planned Parentood clinics *really* love babies and value life.
posted by rtha at 11:02 AM on May 11, 2015 [35 favorites]


I forget where I saw this, but as to the closed clinics in Texas, both pro-life and pro-choice people claimed "victor" or "martyr" status, saying the closures were a direct result of of 2013 legislation. But Planned Parenthood was simply changing its model to reflect many new realities (fewer OBs who perform abortions, decrease in abortion rates, etc.)--close the regional centers that would be difficult to bring up to code and open a new mega-center in a big city. They've opened several of these lately, a few here in Texas. They could then blame the new laws for "driving them out of business" and get some mileage out of that--remember all the fundraising emails? Wendy Davis?--when in fact they were in the process of implementing a new business model.

Setting aside for a moment the fact that this explanation for the reduction in availability of women's reproductive health services doesn't really make any sense, Planned Parenthood is not actually a business, it's a non-profit. The idea that women's reproductive health, and especially abortion procedures themselves, are corrupted by the profit motive is an especially detestable and profoundly hypocritical right-wing talking point, and it has no place in a rational discussion.
posted by clockzero at 11:06 AM on May 11, 2015 [25 favorites]


That's nonsense about Texas Planned Parenthood "implementing a new business model." Do you have any idea how hard it is to keep a clinic open when the law tells you that your building must meet a slew of pointless building codes that cost a million dollars to comply with? Or if your doctors can't get the totally unnecessary admitting privileges at a local hospital?

And as for fewer doctors providing abortions, that's because they're not learning how in medical school, because the teaching hospitals don't want to get in trouble with their conservative boards of directors and big donors. And it's not required of anyone to learn even though it's a basic medical procedure that 1 in 3 women will have in her lifetime. Hell, if you were a newly minted doctor, why would you OPT to follow a career path that means you'll be harassed and picketed and have your name and address and photo published to anti-choice websites and potentially lose your job because of the stigma of being an abortion provider? You can make WAY more money just doing Pap smears or delivering babies, and not have to worry about taking a different route home from work every day, lest you get followed.

THAT is why clinics in Texas closed down.
posted by cowboy_sally at 11:36 AM on May 11, 2015 [15 favorites]


Planned Parenthood is not actually a business, it's a non-profit.

I had someone at work the other day say, hey, no worries, this isn't a contract we're negotiating, it's just an agreement, so don't worry about that language you don't like. Sure thing, bud.

If Planned Parenthood weren't run like the business that it is, it would have been out of business long ago. Call it profit, call it instances in which quarterly revenues exceeded quarterly expenses, assets exceed liabilities, whatever--but they're running a business. And their business model had been, well before the Texas and other state legislative efforts to bring regional clinics up to ambulatory surgical clinic standards, to move out of the regional business and into the mega-center business to account for (1) fewer docs doing abortions, (2) fewer women wanting them, and (3) whatever business, er, non-profit, reasons motivated this change.
posted by resurrexit at 11:41 AM on May 11, 2015


Abortion access in the Dakotas and some other states is even worse than it appears at first glance. Both Fargo, ND and Sioux Falls, SD are on the eastern border of their respective states. Rapid City, SD is about a 400 mile drive to Sioux Falls. Williston, ND -- the heart of the oil boom -- is also another 400 mile drive, this time to Fargo. Take geographic isolation, add mandatory waiting periods that make receiving services a multi-day ordeal, and you have an additional defacto restriction on abortion.
posted by nathan_teske at 11:42 AM on May 11, 2015 [1 favorite]


Oh and, another reason Texas Planned Parenthoods were forced to shut down is because they were ousted from the Texas Women's Health Program. Which not only shuttered abortion clinics, it shuttered clinics that didn't even PROVIDE abortions. Great move.
posted by cowboy_sally at 11:51 AM on May 11, 2015 [2 favorites]


And their business model had been, well before the Texas and other state legislative efforts to bring regional clinics up to ambulatory surgical clinic standards, to move out of the regional business and into the mega-center business to account for (1) fewer docs doing abortions, (2) fewer women wanting them, and (3) whatever business, er, non-profit, reasons motivated this change.

Until you provide a citation for this I'm just gonna keep calling this out as the biased bullshit that it is.
posted by poffin boffin at 11:51 AM on May 11, 2015 [37 favorites]


If Planned Parenthood weren't run like the business that it is, it would have been out of business long ago.

This is so broad as to be meaningless. That's a statement you can make about literally any non-profit and have it be true. Consequently, it says absolutely nothing about any particular non-profit, nor about the distinction between for-profit and non-profit organizations.

If [a church of your choice] wasn't run like the business that it is, it would have been out of business long ago -- think of, say, parish consolidations and church closings in recent years, which are absolutely driven by the economic realities of running a church).

If the ACLU wasn't run like the business that it is, it would have been out of business long ago -- they have to keep defending high-profile cases or no one will give them money.

If the Salvation Army wasn't run like the business that it is, it would have been out of business long ago -- they can't just give those clothes away to everybody and expect to stay in business.

Yes, non-profits need money to operate. But they do not -- as Planned Parenthood does not -- operate to make money.
posted by cjelli at 11:55 AM on May 11, 2015 [19 favorites]


Until you provide a citation for this I'm just gonna keep calling this out as the biased bullshit that it is.

The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists already did it two years ago:
“The Texas bills set a dangerous precedent of a legislature telling doctors how to practice medicine and how to care for individual patients. ACOG opposes legislative interference, and strongly believes that decisions about medical care must be based on scientific evidence and made by licensed medical professionals, not the state or federal government,” said ACOG Executive Vice President Hal C. Lawrence, III, MD.

“The Texas bills are a compilation of over-reaching measures to control when, where, and how a woman has an abortion,” said ACOG Texas District Chair Lisa M. Hollier, MD, MPH. “The bills are not based on sound science, despite our efforts to provide the legislature with the best available medical knowledge. The bills would erode women’s health by denying the women of Texas the benefits of well-researched, safe, and proven protocols.”

The bills would ban abortion after 20 weeks and impose other widespread restrictions that would close many of the state’s abortion clinics, decrease the number of doctors who meet the additional requirements for providing outpatient abortions, and decrease access to essential women’s health care. For example, the bills would require physicians who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles, allowing abortions only in surgical clinics and setting a higher standard than for other procedures with similar low risk such as colonoscopy. The fact is that abortion is one of the safest medical procedures. The risk of complications from abortion is minimal, with less than 0.5% of abortions involving major complications.

All women, including the women of Texas, must have the legal right to abortion, unconstrained by harassment, unavailability of care, procedure bans, or other legislative or regulatory barriers, including those posed by these Texas bills.
TL;DR: SB1 and similar bills are purely straight-up anti-choice, "we only believe in regulations when they are unscientific and deal with women's uteri," concern trolling BS.
posted by zombieflanders at 11:55 AM on May 11, 2015 [20 favorites]


I had someone at work the other day say, hey, no worries, this isn't a contract we're negotiating, it's just an agreement, so don't worry about that language you don't like. Sure thing, bud.

Right. It's important to be clear about what we mean, and use the right terms to describe things.

If Planned Parenthood weren't run like the business that it is,

Again, you persist in your error. It's not a business, even though money is involved; it's a non-profit. Again. This is not a matter of opinion.

it would have been out of business long ago. Call it profit, call it instances in which quarterly revenues exceeded quarterly expenses, assets exceed liabilities, whatever--but they're running a business.

They're not running a business. They're running a non-profit that provides reproductive and related health services, which have to be paid for of course, but they do not have investors or stock ownership or any of the other hallmarks of actual businesses.

And their business model had been,

They do not have a "business model" because they are not seeking to make a profit. That's the whole point. They have a model of operation, but that's not at all the same thing.

well before the Texas and other state legislative efforts to bring regional clinics up to ambulatory surgical clinic standards, to move out of the regional business

Again, they are not a business.

and into the mega-center business

Planned Parenthood is not a business

You keep saying something that is demonstrably untrue. I can't imagine why you'd expect anyone to take any associated commentary seriously.
posted by clockzero at 12:01 PM on May 11, 2015 [25 favorites]


As someone who has sat on the board of a nonprofit, nonprofits often still need business licenses, thus making them businesses, regardless of any other status.
posted by corb at 12:05 PM on May 11, 2015


["What's a nonprofit" is something of a derail here, folks.]
posted by LobsterMitten at 12:08 PM on May 11, 2015 [2 favorites]


I wonder if the fact that the lone abortion provider in Wyoming is in Jackson Hole is connected to the fact that the town is a big resort area for the wealthy and well-connected.
posted by dhens at 12:11 PM on May 11, 2015 [4 favorites]


I don't know how you can read about all of the death threats and killings and stand here and try to say that the people who work at Planned Parenthood are in it for the money.
posted by domo at 12:17 PM on May 11, 2015 [24 favorites]


As someone who has sat on the board of a nonprofit, nonprofits often still need business licenses, thus making them businesses, regardless of any other status.

The point here isn't about the title of paperwork that needs to be filed (only in some jurisdictions, by the way) in order to solicit donations or run an organization that provides services in exchange for money. buys supplies, pays employees, etc.

The point is that, institutionally, Planned Parenthood is a unique kind of health-care provider which does not purport or attempt to profit from the provision of reproductive health services, especially to low-income people. Right-wing misogynists have long attempted to falsely portray PP as some kind of callous capitalist enterprise, aborting babies left and right for nothing more than profit. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. It's a smear tactic, and at a time when women's health and agency is under heavy attack by people who'd rather see women literally die than have access to control over their own bodily autonomy, health and long-term well-being, it's a very suspicious misrepresentation to insist upon.
posted by clockzero at 12:22 PM on May 11, 2015 [18 favorites]


And as for fewer doctors providing abortions, that's because they're not learning how in medical school, because the teaching hospitals don't want to get in trouble with their conservative boards of directors and big donors.

Or, the state is attempting to force them to stop teaching it; see UNC and ECU
posted by damayanti at 12:28 PM on May 11, 2015 [9 favorites]


Or, the state is attempting to force them to stop teaching it; see UNC and ECU


Yes, though (thankfully?) lawmakers stripped that stipulation out of the bill; now it's just HIPAA-violating reporting requirements and a 72-hour mandatory delay for women seeking a safe, legal medical procedure.
posted by cowboy_sally at 12:33 PM on May 11, 2015 [5 favorites]


You keep saying something that is demonstrably untrue. I can't imagine why you'd expect anyone to take any associated commentary seriously.

See, and here I'm not taking him seriously because resurrexit is a username I'm only familiar with as the result of my tendency to remember the pseudonyms of dudes who proudly flaunt their anti-choice views online, here on MeFi and elsewhere. So I've been confused as to why anyone has bothered to respond to him at all, because facts don't sway people who are operating on that plane. Reality is not going to reach up and swat them out of their cloud of willful ignorance. Statistics will not make them suddenly cognizant of the rank immorality of their feverish antagonism toward the idea of women as human beings, particularly women who choose to pursue the safe, legal reproductive health procedures to which the whims of natal biology have left #yesallmen most blessedly immune. When you're interacting with someone like that, it's pretty safe to take it as read that they will not be taking anything like "facts," "citations," or "observable reality" under advisement.

To that end, out of respect for Emily and every other woman who has been made to suffer like her due to the actions of our great nation's overwhelmingly male anti-choice parade, I'm just going to continue to flag those comments as the blisteringly obvious derails they are. And what the hell, I'm gonna throw some money at an abortion fund for each derail attempt while I'm at it, let's say, $25 per woman-hating whinge? I think that makes $50 so far. Dear anti-choicers: The volunteers, employees, and recipients of the National Network of Abortion Funds thank you for your devotion to the cause.
posted by divined by radio at 12:45 PM on May 11, 2015 [47 favorites]


Likewise, you can throw money at Medical Students for Choice, which funds abortion health care education for medical students with no access to it in their curriculum and advocates for its inclusion as part of medical school, since--after all--women will need medical care in cases of fetal death, spontaneous miscarriage and non-medical professional provided abortions, regardless of the legality or availability of abortion on demand without excuse and it is very dangerous for women when doctors are not taught how to care for them.
posted by crush-onastick at 12:55 PM on May 11, 2015 [20 favorites]


Okay, all I could find that wasn't from a pro-life website (the horror--thankfully no one here ever cites to the Guttmacher Institute on account of bias) was this article about the new mega-center in San Antonio (where it already had a surgical clinic) and this one about closing clinics as a result of budgetary issues, Medicaid, etc., though the laws were "a factor": "On the same day the bill became law, Planned Parenthood announced in a surprise move it's closing clinics in Bryan, Huntsville, and Lufkin. But Planned Parenthood says the closings are more related to cuts in its funding....'It's a heartbreaking decision to have to make but it's a practical one. We did not close any clinics in 2011 when we got the first major funding cut. Within about six months to a year of the announcement of that first major funding cut about 60 other family planning clinics closed down across Texas,' explained Melaney Linton."

tl;dr: don't blame just the laws for the clinic closures; the market has been changing for a long time, and PP has adjusted its "totally altruistic, not at all business-like" model of providing services in response to those market conditions.
posted by resurrexit at 1:41 PM on May 11, 2015


tl;dr: don't blame just the laws for the clinic closures; the market has been changing for a long time, and PP has adjusted its "totally altruistic, not at all business-like" model of providing services in response to those market conditions.


Except for the fact that those clinics were closed due to a law passed by the state that cut funding to Planned Parenthood. That's not "the market", that's the state yanking money from them in an attempt to shut them down. This isn't a business deciding "Oh, this area isn't profitable, it's time to move out", it's "We literally cannot keep these clinics open anymore even though we want to".
posted by damayanti at 1:49 PM on May 11, 2015 [34 favorites]


all I could find that wasn't from a pro-life website (the horror--thankfully no one here ever cites to the Guttmacher Institute on account of bias)

When your last few comments have been unsupported assertions and unscientific anti-choice propaganda, a condescending tone is probably the last rhetorical tool you should resort to.

As for the rest of it, damayanti hits the nail on the head. And of course we could go into how the "market" has actually been several decades of regulatory capture by anti-choice groups, but that's a topic the Blue has covered pretty comprehensively.
posted by zombieflanders at 1:53 PM on May 11, 2015 [8 favorites]


[One comment deleted. At this point, I'm going to suggest people drop the "is Planned Parenthood closing clinics because of inexplicable market forces" thing, since it's so far outside the realm of reasonably-addressable ideas. resurrexit, I will also ask you to leave this thread alone at this point.]
posted by LobsterMitten at 2:23 PM on May 11, 2015 [7 favorites]


I forget where I saw this

"Are you sure it was a book, Peter? Are you sure it wasn't NOTHING?"
posted by We put our faith in Blast Hardcheese at 3:15 PM on May 11, 2015 [5 favorites]


35 years. That's how long I've been trying to protect women's rights to ethical medical treatment in the United States. 35 fucking years. From having my mom sign a permission slip when I was 15 so that I could be a clinic walker, to my doctoral thesis on feminist bioethics, to lobbying and campaigning and funding for clinics, and making women's health my key issue on whom I vote for...35 years I've been on this goddamn barricade, and I'm starting to finally come to grips with the idea that my generation will be the only one that had even a glimmer of reproductive freedom from menses to menopause. I, and thousands like me tried. We really, really tried. But we were no match for the entrenched patriarchy that considers uterus bearers as a brand of subhuman, and considers poor women less than that.

I think we've lost the war, and all that is left is to hold the lines in the last bastions of reproductive freedom. There is no help coming from policy. There is no help coming from the public. There is no help coming.

I don't even know what to do, now that I live in a country where legislators just passed a resolution saying that women with nonviable fetuses must carry it to full term, sepsis be damned. And the Texas Teahadist that sponsored the bill said, "suffering is part of gods plan for women. It's in genesis." People applauded.

If every woman who has availed herself of family planning, from birth control to abortions, stood with us, we might still have a chance to save the next generation from becoming slaves to their uterus...but I've got 35 years of experience that says they won't, because sexual women are still frowned upon in this provincial puritanical nightmare.

We've lost. I'm lost. I don't know where to go from here.
posted by dejah420 at 3:40 PM on May 11, 2015 [45 favorites]


Speaking of Texas, a good piece from the Texas Observer today about the patchwork of abortion funds and individuals helping people access abortion that has developed.
posted by cowboy_sally at 6:23 PM on May 11, 2015 [2 favorites]


As someone who has sat on the board of a nonprofit, nonprofits often still need business licenses, thus making them businesses, regardless of any other status.

No one means "run that organization like one that had to file a certain kind of license" when they say "run that organization like a business"; they mean "run that organization like one with certain organizational goals and values centered around making a profit". This is why organizations that haven't, in fact, filed a business license can be said, or exhorted, to be run like a business, for instance.

If something is a business only insofar as it's filed a certain license, then the answer to the question "is it being run like a business?" is "has it filed that license?".
posted by kenko at 9:47 PM on May 11, 2015 [2 favorites]


This story and the information related make me so angry for all the women affected. I've put my donation in to Medical Students for Choice as suggested above.

And the Texas Teahadist that sponsored the bill said, "suffering is part of gods plan for women. It's in genesis." People applauded.

This ought to be a joke. I wish it was a joke.
posted by greenish at 2:57 AM on May 12, 2015


@dejah420: 'We've lost. I'm lost. I don't know where to go from here.'

Sometimes it feels like that doesn't it? Here in the UK, we've just had our right wing leaders somehow re-elected for another 5 years in order to force more misery onto the poorest in society and foster their ideas of hatred and selfishness on everyone.

I suppose we just have to keep on speaking and donating when we can.
posted by Myeral at 4:05 AM on May 12, 2015 [1 favorite]


Watch the US Congress tomorrow. The House will be passing new abortion restrictions with brutal requirements for underage rape and incest victims, and onerous restrictions for everyone else.

HR 36: The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act sponsored by Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ), bans any abortion after 20 weeks, INCLUDING women with non-viable fetuses.

Rape victims must seek counseling or medical attention at least 48 hours before their procedure...just in case they want to keep the rapists sperm donation, forcing women to make multiple trips if they haven’t already sought counseling. The counseling can’t take place at an abortion clinic.

For those younger than 18 who are victims of rape or incest, the crime has to be reported either to police or to “a government agency legally authorized to act on reports of child abuse,” as well as mandatory "counseling" before said victim is "allowed" to have an abortion.

“The new language is alarming in a number of ways,” writes Robin Marty at Dame Magazine. “Even without abortion alternatives information being forced upon her, the idea that potentially unwanted counseling would be a hoop a survivor of sexual assault must jump through in order to ‘earn’ an abortion is deplorable.”

Written in April: All The 2015 Anti-Abortion Legislation That's Been Passed So Far
posted by dejah420 at 7:31 PM on May 12, 2015 [7 favorites]


The House approved a bill banning abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy in a party-line vote on Wednesday.

The legislation, which also requires a 48-hour waiting period, informed consent forms and mandatory counseling for victims of rape and sexual assault before abortions, passed 242-184, with 4 Republicans in opposition.

Four Democrats voted for the measure. Rep. Jody Hice (R-Ga.) voted present. The four Republicans who voted agains the bill were Reps. Charlie Dent (Pa.), Bob Dold (Ill.), Rodney Frelinghuysen (N.J.) and Richard Hanna (N.Y.).

The four Democrats who supported it were Reps. Henry Cuellar (Texas), Jim Langevin (R.I.), Dan Lipinski (Ill.) and Collin Peterson (Minn.).

“In no way shape or form is a 20-week fetus viable. There’s no evidence of a 20-week fetus surviving, even with intensive medical care,” Dr. Hal Lawrence, the executive vice president of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, told reporters on Wednesday.

Wednesday’s vote marks the second time in three weeks that the House has voted on legislation related to abortions. House Republicans also voted late last month to overturn a D.C. law prohibiting workplace discrimination based on reproductive health choices.

The first action of this congress, was an abortion bill. Abortion is a fetish to these people. In the antique sense of the word...an object around which mysticism is wrapped.

They have abortion on the same shelf of their mind as they store new earth theories and intelligent design, and stone age beliefs. There is no rationality here, there is only Zule.
posted by dejah420 at 9:48 PM on May 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


Wanted to drop this here: The Satanic Temple is challenging anti-abortion laws in Missouri. Salon interview link, IndieGoGo link.
posted by ghostbikes at 4:54 PM on May 17, 2015


« Older I breathe deeply, banish all distractions, and...   |   Two Sisters, Two Views of Gay Marriage Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments