Rage. Probably political rage. Maybe just personal rage. Lots of sarcasm and cynicism. Also pretty pictures.

If those who oppose abortion really believes that abortion is murder, they should be supporting programs that would make it easier for poor women to afford to carry pregnancies to term. Instead, they’re doing the opposite. Overwhelmingly, those who oppose abortion also want to cut welfare and medicaid. Without these programs, the number of women who choose abortion because they cannot afford to carry a given pregnancy to term will rise. Further, they are working against things like paid maternity leave, subsidized daycare, and universal health insurance for children, programs which would likely decrease the number of women who choose abortion because they cannot afford to carry a pregnancy to term. And in this specific case, conservatives want to penalize a poor woman who chooses to carry a pregnancy to term by making it harder for her to make ends meet.

How I Lost Faith in the “Pro-Life” Movement (via azspot)

PerSe1010: This article is a must-read for any and all. “Pro-life”, “Pro-Choice” - doesn’t matter. The excerpt honestly doesn’t do it justice…it’s a long read, but worth it.

Texas Ends Funding of Planned Parenthood, Leaving 1,000s in the Lurch

abaldwin360:

AUSTIN, Texas (Daily News) — Texas can cut off funding to Planned Parenthood’s family planning programs for poor women, a state judge ruled Monday, requiring thousands to find new state-approved doctors for their annual exams, cancer screenings and birth control.

Judge Gary Harger said that Texas may exclude otherwise qualified doctors and clinics from receiving state funding if they advocate for abortion rights.

Texas has long banned the use of state funds for abortion, but had continued to reimburse Planned Parenthood clinics for providing basic health care to poor women through the state’s Women’s Health Program. The program provides preventive care to 110,000 poor women a year, and Planned Parenthood clinics were treating 48,000 of them.

Planned Parenthood’s lawsuit to stop the rule will still go forward, but the judge decided Monday that the ban may go into effect for now. In seeking a temporary restraining order, Planned Parenthood wanted its patients to be able to see their current doctors until a final decision was made.

“We are pleased the court rejected Planned Parenthood’s latest attempt to skirt state law,” attorney general spokeswoman Lauren Bean said. “The Texas Attorney General’s office will continue to defend the Texas Legislature’s decision to prohibit abortion providers and their affiliates from receiving taxpayer dollars through the Women’s Health Program.”

read more

All I can do right now is facepalm.

Planned Parenthood is way more than the <3% abortions that seem to make everyone fluff up and get red behind the ears. Think about the preventative care and actual primary healthcare they provide as the majority of their services… I’m talking about Cancer Screenings, Women’s annual gyno exams, obstetrics - yes, obstetrics, std testing for men and women and other healthcare treatment. As someone working in the healthcare industry it baffles me - why would anyone want to de-fund an organization whose goal is to keep people safe and healthy and promote responsible sexual behavior - at affordable prices? I just don’t get it. Whatever your opinion is on abortion - healthcare equals not only “life,” but better quality of life. Stop this nonsense.

http://www.plannedparenthood.org/health-topics/

Andy Stephenson and Kathryn Sloane will stand trial in what their supporters say will be a landmark case concerning freedom of expression.

The pair were arrested in June last year outside Wistons abortion clinic in Brighton, after they refused to take down a 7ft by 5ft illustrated…

The Abortion Diaries is a documentary featuring 12 women who speak candidly about their experiences with abortion. The women are doctors, subway workers, artists, activists, military personnel, teachers and students; they are Black, Latina, Jewish and White; they are mothers or child-free; they range in age from 19 to 54. Their stories weave together with the filmmaker’s diary entries to present a compelling, moving and at times surprisingly funny “dinner party” where the audience is invited to hear what women say behind closed doors about motherhood, medical technology, sex, spirituality, love, work and their own bodies.”

simplyopinions:

stfuconservatives:

barefootrunaway:

m-03:

bronzebasilisk:

ryunwoofie:

sonneillonv:

autumn-and-eve:

erinsmomma:

How can someone stand behind abortion, when you have a life inside of you that God created for you? How can you say that this life isn’t worth it? If you can’t take care of the baby for whatever circumstances than there is always adoption available to couples who can’t conceive, but still want the joy of being parents. OPEN YOUR EYES! God has bigger plans for us all that we don’t even realize the picture.

Excuse me but it appears your baby is actually upside downDid you take Sex Ed freshman year because babies come out headfirst

Hi, OP!  As someone who was given up for adoption, allow me to call bullshit on your little post there!  You see, when I was adopted, I was a white-skinned, healthy, neurotypical infant, which basically put me at the top of the list, right underneath white-skinned, healthy, neurotypical MALE infants!  There’s only one kind of infant people wanted to adopt more than me!  I was SOOO lucky!  But if you actually bothered to look at the information readily available on the interwebs, you would be aware that the majority of people who are forced to rely on abortion for family planning are poor people and people of color.  Of course, those two demographics intersect, thanks to the institutionalized racism of our society!  Neat huh?!
Of course, even babies of color are not in high demand with couples looking to adopt.  Many who do want to adopt outside their race choose to go outside the country, where laws are less strict and the process is often less expensive.  Of course, most of the infants adopted this way are obtained in unscrupulous fashion, but who cares about that when you’re saving a little Korean or African baby from the horrible fate of growing up in Korea or Africa???  And all those children who have birth defects, are born with diseases or disabilities, or have other issues… WELL.  Who wants to invest that kind of expense and time?  Why would you adopt someone broken, LOLOL?!
Granted, there are some wonderful people who understand the system a little better, and make it a point to try and give POC and disabled children a good home.  But they make up a very small fraction of potential adopters!  This difference in supply and demand leaves a lot of children stuck in the foster system, where their chances of being adopted diminish with every passing year, and their chances of being physically or sexually abused INCREASE!  Isn’t that wonderful?
And of course, we haven’t even talked about the person who is giving birth to the baby!  I know you probably think pregnancy is a wonderful, happy time, and for some people it is, but it is also one of the greatest health risks a person can take. I love my son very much, and from the day I found out I was pregnant with him, I wanted him!  But I also nearly died giving birth to him.  You see, I had pre-eclampsia, the most commonly fatal birth complication in the world.  My blood pressure was 180 over 130!  At twenty-two years old, I was actually headed for a stroke, hah hah!  How funny is that?  And all it took was missing a single pre-natal appointment during which my blood pressure rose to dangerous levels and my body tried to kill both me and my son.  Those seizures sure were fun, as was the emergency c-section performed without anesthetic!  And being chained down while the operation was performed, because I was delirious and wouldn’t stop trying to fight off the doctors, that was a BLAST!  It was great for my husband too, since he almost lost his wife and child in just forty-five minutes.  You can imagine how thrilled he is at the prospect of me ever getting pregnant again.  Babies are certainly cute, but pregnancy can have massive health complications, and I know it’s such a bummer, but they are PERMANENT.  :(  My abdominal muscles never recovered from being hacked through with a scalpel, and the flood of hormones caused by late pregnancy have changed things from heartburn (never used to have it, now, all the time!) to my emotional reactions (I cry when I see pictures of kittens now.  I used to be tough).  These are changes I did not ask for, cannot control, and cannot fix!  And many people go through worse!  I know, right?  Unbelievable, but go look up the word ‘episiotomy’ and then look up ‘birth rape’ and I’m afraid you’ll find some stuff that just isn’t very shiny.  Plus, the studies actually show that people who carry a baby to term, give birth, then give it up for adoption suffer HIGHER rates of post-pregnancy complications like post-partum depression and post-partum psychosis, general depression, and other mental health issues.  Adoption actually isn’t good for the person giving birth at all!
I’m afraid the picture you chose to use there is also pretty disingenuous.  I know, I know, it seems like nitpicking.  I’m not trying to be mean!  :(  But that picture shows a fully developed, viable infant, and most abortions are performed when the fetus isn’t even a fetus - it’s a blastocyst.  That’s just a clump of cells.  Seriously! You can totally find pictures on the interwebs and they’re not even gross, LOLOL!  Later-term abortions are usually performed because of health complications, though some of our intrepid state legislators are trying to change all that!  They care so much about people who are pregnant, you see, that they want to force them to carry dead or dying fetuses inside them until their body either becomes infected while it rots in their tummies (this is called sepsis, and it makes people very sick, and can even kill them!), or forces it out naturally in a gush of blood and fluids!  Isn’t that so caring of them?  I’m so glad they’re around to make those decisions for me!  And if a pregnant person is not allowed to terminate an unviable fetus, in some states, they have to carry the child to term, give birth to it, and then watch it die in their arms because its lungs weren’t developed, or its brain formed outside its skull, or any of a million possible birth defects that will kill you just as quick as lickity-split!  Isn’t that wild?!  Of course, these people go through terrible grief, and as I mentioned, some of them may get sick and die from not being able to abort dead or dying fetuses.  But I guess that’s just A-okay with you, huh?
Basically, I think before you suggest adoption as a universal alternative, you should actually go do some research on adoption.  And before you condemn abortion, you should do some research on abortions - not the stuff your church is giving you, the stuff the real doctors are saying.  Go to Planned Parenthood (if they haven’t all been closed down, ROFLMAO!) and request whatever information they have on the process, the statistics of who has abortions and why… and actually, all of that is on the interwebs!  Isn’t technology AMAZING?
And in closing, since I’ve been asked this question many times and I know it’s coming?  Yes, I realize I am here talking to you because I was not aborted.  But the thing is, if my mother had chosen abortion, I wouldn’t know the difference, so it wouldn’t matter to me.  And if she decided that choice was best for her, then that choice would have been best for her, and I would never want to take that choice away from her.  As it is, since I was given up for adoption, and since I have seen the statistics on how badly people who give their children up for adoption suffer, I have spent much of my adult life worrying about her, whether she’s healthy, whether she’s okay, and feeling that if she did suffer from any of the common post-birth symptoms, it is at least partially my fault, even though she made that decision on her own.  Which is silly, I know, but at some point, all children have to stare down the consequences of their parents’ having them.  For some, that’s poverty.  For others, a life-time of their parents struggling to treat and care for a severe illness or disability.  For others, it’s wondering if their mother ever got over giving them away, and wishing you could reach out and assure her that it’s okay, she doesn’t have to be haunted.
May your birth control never fail!

Pro.

Sonneillonv deserves a mother fucking standing ovation here.

Reblogging because of Sonneillonv. Your google-fu is formidable!

bam.

^ All the commentary, and also: why are pro-life graphics always SO GODDAMN CREEPY???
-Jess

perfect commentary

simplyopinions:

stfuconservatives:

barefootrunaway:

m-03:

bronzebasilisk:

ryunwoofie:

sonneillonv:

autumn-and-eve:

erinsmomma:

How can someone stand behind abortion, when you have a life inside of you that God created for you? How can you say that this life isn’t worth it? If you can’t take care of the baby for whatever circumstances than there is always adoption available to couples who can’t conceive, but still want the joy of being parents. OPEN YOUR EYES! God has bigger plans for us all that we don’t even realize the picture.

Excuse me but it appears your baby is actually upside down
Did you take Sex Ed freshman year because babies come out headfirst

Hi, OP!  As someone who was given up for adoption, allow me to call bullshit on your little post there!  You see, when I was adopted, I was a white-skinned, healthy, neurotypical infant, which basically put me at the top of the list, right underneath white-skinned, healthy, neurotypical MALE infants!  There’s only one kind of infant people wanted to adopt more than me!  I was SOOO lucky!  But if you actually bothered to look at the information readily available on the interwebs, you would be aware that the majority of people who are forced to rely on abortion for family planning are poor people and people of color.  Of course, those two demographics intersect, thanks to the institutionalized racism of our society!  Neat huh?!

Of course, even babies of color are not in high demand with couples looking to adopt.  Many who do want to adopt outside their race choose to go outside the country, where laws are less strict and the process is often less expensive.  Of course, most of the infants adopted this way are obtained in unscrupulous fashion, but who cares about that when you’re saving a little Korean or African baby from the horrible fate of growing up in Korea or Africa???  And all those children who have birth defects, are born with diseases or disabilities, or have other issues… WELL.  Who wants to invest that kind of expense and time?  Why would you adopt someone broken, LOLOL?!

Granted, there are some wonderful people who understand the system a little better, and make it a point to try and give POC and disabled children a good home.  But they make up a very small fraction of potential adopters!  This difference in supply and demand leaves a lot of children stuck in the foster system, where their chances of being adopted diminish with every passing year, and their chances of being physically or sexually abused INCREASE!  Isn’t that wonderful?

And of course, we haven’t even talked about the person who is giving birth to the baby!  I know you probably think pregnancy is a wonderful, happy time, and for some people it is, but it is also one of the greatest health risks a person can take. I love my son very much, and from the day I found out I was pregnant with him, I wanted him!  But I also nearly died giving birth to him.  You see, I had pre-eclampsia, the most commonly fatal birth complication in the world.  My blood pressure was 180 over 130!  At twenty-two years old, I was actually headed for a stroke, hah hah!  How funny is that?  And all it took was missing a single pre-natal appointment during which my blood pressure rose to dangerous levels and my body tried to kill both me and my son.  Those seizures sure were fun, as was the emergency c-section performed without anesthetic!  And being chained down while the operation was performed, because I was delirious and wouldn’t stop trying to fight off the doctors, that was a BLAST!  It was great for my husband too, since he almost lost his wife and child in just forty-five minutes.  You can imagine how thrilled he is at the prospect of me ever getting pregnant again.  Babies are certainly cute, but pregnancy can have massive health complications, and I know it’s such a bummer, but they are PERMANENT.  :(  My abdominal muscles never recovered from being hacked through with a scalpel, and the flood of hormones caused by late pregnancy have changed things from heartburn (never used to have it, now, all the time!) to my emotional reactions (I cry when I see pictures of kittens now.  I used to be tough).  These are changes I did not ask for, cannot control, and cannot fix!  And many people go through worse!  I know, right?  Unbelievable, but go look up the word ‘episiotomy’ and then look up ‘birth rape’ and I’m afraid you’ll find some stuff that just isn’t very shiny.  Plus, the studies actually show that people who carry a baby to term, give birth, then give it up for adoption suffer HIGHER rates of post-pregnancy complications like post-partum depression and post-partum psychosis, general depression, and other mental health issues.  Adoption actually isn’t good for the person giving birth at all!

I’m afraid the picture you chose to use there is also pretty disingenuous.  I know, I know, it seems like nitpicking.  I’m not trying to be mean!  :(  But that picture shows a fully developed, viable infant, and most abortions are performed when the fetus isn’t even a fetus - it’s a blastocyst.  That’s just a clump of cells.  Seriously! You can totally find pictures on the interwebs and they’re not even gross, LOLOL!  Later-term abortions are usually performed because of health complications, though some of our intrepid state legislators are trying to change all that!  They care so much about people who are pregnant, you see, that they want to force them to carry dead or dying fetuses inside them until their body either becomes infected while it rots in their tummies (this is called sepsis, and it makes people very sick, and can even kill them!), or forces it out naturally in a gush of blood and fluids!  Isn’t that so caring of them?  I’m so glad they’re around to make those decisions for me!  And if a pregnant person is not allowed to terminate an unviable fetus, in some states, they have to carry the child to term, give birth to it, and then watch it die in their arms because its lungs weren’t developed, or its brain formed outside its skull, or any of a million possible birth defects that will kill you just as quick as lickity-split!  Isn’t that wild?!  Of course, these people go through terrible grief, and as I mentioned, some of them may get sick and die from not being able to abort dead or dying fetuses.  But I guess that’s just A-okay with you, huh?

Basically, I think before you suggest adoption as a universal alternative, you should actually go do some research on adoption.  And before you condemn abortion, you should do some research on abortions - not the stuff your church is giving you, the stuff the real doctors are saying.  Go to Planned Parenthood (if they haven’t all been closed down, ROFLMAO!) and request whatever information they have on the process, the statistics of who has abortions and why… and actually, all of that is on the interwebs!  Isn’t technology AMAZING?

And in closing, since I’ve been asked this question many times and I know it’s coming?  Yes, I realize I am here talking to you because I was not aborted.  But the thing is, if my mother had chosen abortion, I wouldn’t know the difference, so it wouldn’t matter to me.  And if she decided that choice was best for her, then that choice would have been best for her, and I would never want to take that choice away from her.  As it is, since I was given up for adoption, and since I have seen the statistics on how badly people who give their children up for adoption suffer, I have spent much of my adult life worrying about her, whether she’s healthy, whether she’s okay, and feeling that if she did suffer from any of the common post-birth symptoms, it is at least partially my fault, even though she made that decision on her own.  Which is silly, I know, but at some point, all children have to stare down the consequences of their parents’ having them.  For some, that’s poverty.  For others, a life-time of their parents struggling to treat and care for a severe illness or disability.  For others, it’s wondering if their mother ever got over giving them away, and wishing you could reach out and assure her that it’s okay, she doesn’t have to be haunted.

May your birth control never fail!

Pro.

Sonneillonv deserves a mother fucking standing ovation here.

Reblogging because of Sonneillonv. Your google-fu is formidable!

bam.

^ All the commentary, and also: why are pro-life graphics always SO GODDAMN CREEPY???

-Jess

perfect commentary

(Source: )

abaldwin360:

Do they really believe that abortion is murder? (a handy dandy chart, courtesy of Alas, A Blog!)

Almost none of their policies make sense if they really see no difference between the death of a fetus and the death of a four-year-old. However, nearly all their policies make sense if they’re seeking to make sure that women who have sex “face the consequences.” are punished. After years of seeing this pattern repeated again and again, it’s difficult to take them at their word.

The Virginia Legislature has passed this law that allows — or mandates — that a woman who wants to have an abortion… they’re forcing women to get a vaginal probe. And it’s not for any medical reason — it’s just really to shame you if you wanna have an abortion. And (these) are the same people who say that ‘Obamacare is invasive.’ There’s nothing in ‘Obamacare’ that mandates the state put in an electronic dildo in your vagina — and that’s what’s going on under Republican auspices.

BILL MAHER, remarking on Virginia’s personhood bullshit, on Real Time (via inothernews)

Just so ya know…

(via theoppressedlittlefetus)

But don’t you know the uterus is now a federally protected property? 

(via feministhistorian)

think-progress:

Virginia is poised to pass legislation that would require women to endure this invasive ultrasound, for no medical reason, before receiving an abortion. 

think-progress:

Virginia is poised to pass legislation that would require women to endure this invasive ultrasound, for no medical reason, before receiving an abortion. 

abaldwin360:

On the gurney lay a young woman the color of white marble. The red pool between her legs, ominously free of clots, offered a silent explanation.

“She arrived a few minutes ago. Not even a note.” My resident was breathless with anger, adrenaline, and panic.

I had an idea who she went to. The same…

NEW STUDY: “Birth and abortion rates among U.S. teens fell to record lows” due to “increased use of contraceptives”

think-progress:

The teen abortion rate in 2008 dropped to the lowest rate seen since 1972 at 17.8 per 1,000 teen girls and women, the analysis found, and was down 59 percent from 1988 when the abortion rate peaked at 43.5 per 1,000 teen women. — The Guttmacher Institute, a nonprofit sexual health research group

pantslessprogressive:

The front page of the New York Times on January 23, 1973 was nothing if not eventful.
The country learned of two major events that morning: Former President Lyndon B. Johnson died from a heart attack and the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of Jane Roe of Dallas County, Texas.
39 years ago today, on January 22, 1973, the Supreme Court in a 7-2 decision ruled that Texas’s criminal abortion statute, which made abortion illegal except “for the purpose of saving the life of a mother,” violated the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment, effectively legalizing abortion during the first trimester of a woman’s pregnancy.
In March 1970, Jane Roe argued the state’s abortion statute was “unconstitutionally vague” (two other complaints were filed along with Roe’s - from a physician and a married couple - but both were later dismissed). 
Justice Harry Blackmun authored the Roe v. Wade opinion. While I urge you to read Roe v. Wade in its entirety if you haven’t, here are a few key points made by Blackmun:
Broader rights in earlier times: Blackmun wrote that abortion was a more acceptable practice during the adoption of the Constitution and throughout most of the 19th century compared to the time of the Roe v. Wade opinion.

”[…] a woman enjoyed a substantially broader right to terminate a pregnancy than she does in most States today.”

The abortion procedure is no longer dangerous: A common argument against abortion was that the procedure was too dangerous and placed a woman in danger. Therefore, state laws criminalizing abortion argued state regulation existed to protect a woman’s maternal health. The Roe v. Wade decision states modern medical techniques made abortions safer than they had been in the past, writing that abortions performed before the end of the first trimester are “relatively safe.” Therefore, Blackmun wrote, the state’s concern for protecting women from a dangerous medical procedure had “largely disappeared.”
The right to privacy includes a woman’s decision to terminate a pregnancy: Blackmun wrote that, although the right to privacy is not explicitly referenced in the Constitution, a multitude of previous decisions referencing a right to privacy made it “broad enough to encompass a woman’s decision on whether or not to terminate a pregnancy.” He writes that the state does indeed have a “compelling state interest” in regulating abortion - “safeguarding health, in maintaining medical standards, and in protecting potential life” -  and that the right to privacy is not absolute. The decision rules that the state has a compelling interest at “viability” (24-28 weeks into the pregnancy) and can regulate abortion after the end of the first trimester “in ways that are reasonably related to maternal health”.
The Constitution does not recognize an unborn child as a person: The Court ruled that an unborn child is not a “person” under the Constitution, specifically the 14th Amendment.

“In short, the unborn have never been recognized in the law as persons in the whole sense.”

While they make this assertion, they explicitly write that they will not answer the question of whether or not life begins at conception.
The decision:
“…for the period of pregnancy prior to this ‘compelling’ point [at approximately the end of the first trimester], the attending physician, in consultation with his patient, is free to determine, without regulation by the State, that, in his medical judgment, the patient’s pregnancy should be terminated. If that decision is reached, the judgment may be effectuated by an abortion free of interference by the State. […]
Measured against these standards, Art. 1196 of the Texas Penal Code, in restricting legal abortions to those ‘procured or attempted by medical advice for the purpose of saving the life of the mother,’ sweeps too broadly. The statute makes no distinction between abortions performed early in pregnancy and those performed later, and it limits to a single reason, ‘saving’ the mother’s life, the legal justification for the procedure. The statute, therefore, cannot survive the constitutional attack made upon it here.”
The dissent: Justice Rehnquist wrote the dissenting opinion. He disagreed with the Court’s lack of restrictions on a woman during the first trimester of her pregnancy and argued that the right to privacy was not applicable in this case.

“Texas, by the statute here challenged, bars the performance of a medical abortion by a licensed physician on a plaintiff such as Roe. A transaction resulting in an operation such as this is not ‘private’ in the ordinary usage of that word. Nor is the ‘privacy’ that the Court finds here even a distant relative of the freedom from searches and seizures protected by the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution…”

Why choice still matters today: 

Numerous states across the country have enacted laws just in the past year to restrict abortion services. From the Guttmacher Institute (including photo above):

Fully 68% of these new provisions, 92 provisions in 24 states, restrict access to abortion services, a striking increase from last year, when 26% of new provisions restricted abortion. The 92 new abortion restrictions shattered the previous record of 34 abortion restrictions adopted in 2005. About the only bright spot for reproductive rights supporters was the defeat in Mississippi of a ballot initiative that would have sharply restricted women’s access not only to abortion but also to various contraceptive methods by defining a person under state law as “a human being from the moment of fertilization.”

Today we are surrounded by GOP presidential hopefuls who wish to criminalize abortion, some even in the case of rape and incest.
“The child did nothing wrong,” says Rick Santorum.
Mitt Romney, 2002: “I will preserve and protect a woman’s right to choose, and am devoted and dedicated to honoring my word in that regard.” 
Mitt Romney today: ”My view is that the Supreme Court should reverse Roe v. Wade and send back to the states the responsibility for deciding whether they’re going to have abortion legal in their state or not.”
Newt Gingrich says he’ll end “taxpayer subsidies for abortion by repealing Obamacare, defunding Planned Parenthood and reinstating the ‘Mexico City Policy’ which banned funding to organizations that promote and/or perform abortions overseas.” While Newt said earlier this year that he didn’t think life began until “implantation,” he changed his tune later to say he believes life begins at conception.
Ron Paul, this week: “I see abortion as a violent act. All other violence is handled by the states — murder, burglary, violence. That’s a state issue.So don’t try to say that I’m less pro-life because I want to be particular about the way we do it and allow the states the prerogative.” His website clearly outlines his views: “Not even the most radical feminist would find it okay to tear apart a recently-born baby just because it is not wanted by its mother. All other considerations aside, the only reason many individuals can support abortion with a good conscience is because they believe it’s not murder… and that unborn babies do not count as human beings. Ron Paul has delivered more than 4,000 babies. He believes that human life starts at conception, and that casual elimination of the unborn leads to a careless attitude towards all life.”
I still find it a complete joke to assume that being pro-choice indicates a leaning towards radical feminism. But these GOP candidates, plus numerous Republican governors across the country, seem convinced. There is nothing radical about viewing my right to privacy in my decision whether or not to get an abortion as a right that truly makes me proud to, say, be here and not there.
Throwing aside any language of a state’s “compelling interest,” a right to privacy, etc., my belief that life does not begin until viability had led me to decide that I simply don’t want the government legislating my uterus. Think that’s radical? Take a number.
[Photo: Chellie Bowman participates in a pro-choice rally in Jackson, MS, in 2006. Credit: Barbara Gauntt, The Clarion-Ledger]

pantslessprogressive:

The front page of the New York Times on January 23, 1973 was nothing if not eventful.

The country learned of two major events that morning: Former President Lyndon B. Johnson died from a heart attack and the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of Jane Roe of Dallas County, Texas.

39 years ago today, on January 22, 1973, the Supreme Court in a 7-2 decision ruled that Texas’s criminal abortion statute, which made abortion illegal except “for the purpose of saving the life of a mother,” violated the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment, effectively legalizing abortion during the first trimester of a woman’s pregnancy.

In March 1970, Jane Roe argued the state’s abortion statute was “unconstitutionally vague” (two other complaints were filed along with Roe’s - from a physician and a married couple - but both were later dismissed). 

Justice Harry Blackmun authored the Roe v. Wade opinion. While I urge you to read Roe v. Wade in its entirety if you haven’t, here are a few key points made by Blackmun:

Broader rights in earlier times: Blackmun wrote that abortion was a more acceptable practice during the adoption of the Constitution and throughout most of the 19th century compared to the time of the Roe v. Wade opinion.

”[…] a woman enjoyed a substantially broader right to terminate a pregnancy than she does in most States today.”

The abortion procedure is no longer dangerous: A common argument against abortion was that the procedure was too dangerous and placed a woman in danger. Therefore, state laws criminalizing abortion argued state regulation existed to protect a woman’s maternal health. The Roe v. Wade decision states modern medical techniques made abortions safer than they had been in the past, writing that abortions performed before the end of the first trimester are “relatively safe.” Therefore, Blackmun wrote, the state’s concern for protecting women from a dangerous medical procedure had “largely disappeared.”

The right to privacy includes a woman’s decision to terminate a pregnancy: Blackmun wrote that, although the right to privacy is not explicitly referenced in the Constitution, a multitude of previous decisions referencing a right to privacy made it “broad enough to encompass a woman’s decision on whether or not to terminate a pregnancy.” He writes that the state does indeed have a “compelling state interest” in regulating abortion - “safeguarding health, in maintaining medical standards, and in protecting potential life” - and that the right to privacy is not absolute. The decision rules that the state has a compelling interest at “viability” (24-28 weeks into the pregnancy) and can regulate abortion after the end of the first trimester “in ways that are reasonably related to maternal health”.

The Constitution does not recognize an unborn child as a person: The Court ruled that an unborn child is not a “person” under the Constitution, specifically the 14th Amendment.

“In short, the unborn have never been recognized in the law as persons in the whole sense.”

While they make this assertion, they explicitly write that they will not answer the question of whether or not life begins at conception.

The decision:

“…for the period of pregnancy prior to this ‘compelling’ point [at approximately the end of the first trimester], the attending physician, in consultation with his patient, is free to determine, without regulation by the State, that, in his medical judgment, the patient’s pregnancy should be terminated. If that decision is reached, the judgment may be effectuated by an abortion free of interference by the State. […]
Measured against these standards, Art. 1196 of the Texas Penal Code, in restricting legal abortions to those ‘procured or attempted by medical advice for the purpose of saving the life of the mother,’ sweeps too broadly. The statute makes no distinction between abortions performed early in pregnancy and those performed later, and it limits to a single reason, ‘saving’ the mother’s life, the legal justification for the procedure. The statute, therefore, cannot survive the constitutional attack made upon it here.”

The dissent: Justice Rehnquist wrote the dissenting opinion. He disagreed with the Court’s lack of restrictions on a woman during the first trimester of her pregnancy and argued that the right to privacy was not applicable in this case.

“Texas, by the statute here challenged, bars the performance of a medical abortion by a licensed physician on a plaintiff such as Roe. A transaction resulting in an operation such as this is not ‘private’ in the ordinary usage of that word. Nor is the ‘privacy’ that the Court finds here even a distant relative of the freedom from searches and seizures protected by the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution…”

Why choice still matters today: 


Numerous states across the country have enacted laws just in the past year to restrict abortion services. From the Guttmacher Institute (including photo above):

Fully 68% of these new provisions, 92 provisions in 24 states, restrict access to abortion services, a striking increase from last year, when 26% of new provisions restricted abortion. The 92 new abortion restrictions shattered the previous record of 34 abortion restrictions adopted in 2005. About the only bright spot for reproductive rights supporters was the defeat in Mississippi of a ballot initiative that would have sharply restricted women’s access not only to abortion but also to various contraceptive methods by defining a person under state law as “a human being from the moment of fertilization.”

Today we are surrounded by GOP presidential hopefuls who wish to criminalize abortion, some even in the case of rape and incest.

  • “The child did nothing wrong,” says Rick Santorum.
  • Mitt Romney, 2002“I will preserve and protect a woman’s right to choose, and am devoted and dedicated to honoring my word in that regard.” 
  • Mitt Romney today: ”My view is that the Supreme Court should reverse Roe v. Wade and send back to the states the responsibility for deciding whether they’re going to have abortion legal in their state or not.”
  • Newt Gingrich says he’ll end “taxpayer subsidies for abortion by repealing Obamacare, defunding Planned Parenthood and reinstating the ‘Mexico City Policy’ which banned funding to organizations that promote and/or perform abortions overseas.” While Newt said earlier this year that he didn’t think life began until “implantation,” he changed his tune later to say he believes life begins at conception.
  • Ron Paul, this week: “I see abortion as a violent act. All other violence is handled by the states — murder, burglary, violence. That’s a state issue.So don’t try to say that I’m less pro-life because I want to be particular about the way we do it and allow the states the prerogative.” His website clearly outlines his views: “Not even the most radical feminist would find it okay to tear apart a recently-born baby just because it is not wanted by its mother. All other considerations aside, the only reason many individuals can support abortion with a good conscience is because they believe it’s not murder… and that unborn babies do not count as human beings. Ron Paul has delivered more than 4,000 babies. He believes that human life starts at conception, and that casual elimination of the unborn leads to a careless attitude towards all life.

I still find it a complete joke to assume that being pro-choice indicates a leaning towards radical feminism. But these GOP candidates, plus numerous Republican governors across the country, seem convinced. There is nothing radical about viewing my right to privacy in my decision whether or not to get an abortion as a right that truly makes me proud to, say, be here and not there.

Throwing aside any language of a state’s “compelling interest,” a right to privacy, etc., my belief that life does not begin until viability had led me to decide that I simply don’t want the government legislating my uterus. Think that’s radical? Take a number.

[Photo: Chellie Bowman participates in a pro-choice rally in Jackson, MS, in 2006. Credit: Barbara Gauntt, The Clarion-Ledger]

abaldwin360:

socialismartnature:

Abortion rates are higher in countries where the procedure is illegal and nearly half of all abortions worldwide are unsafe, with the vast majority in developing countries, a new study concludes.

Experts couldn’t say whether more liberal laws led to fewer procedures, but said good access to birth control in those countries resulted in fewer unwanted pregnancies.

About 47,000 women died from unsafe abortions in 2008, and another 8.5 million women had serious medical complications. Almost all unsafe abortions were in developing countries, where family planning and contraceptive programs have mostly levelled off.

“An abortion is actually a very simple and safe procedure,” said Gilda Sedgh, a senior researcher at the U.S.-based Guttmacher Institute, designated by the World Health Organization as an official Collaborating Center for Reproductive Health. “All of these deaths and complications are easily avoidable,” said Sedgh, the study’s lead author.

Dear anti-choicers, see, here’s the thing. When you outlaw something that there is demand for, people aren’t going to stop doing it. They’re just going to find a way to do it that may not be as safe.

You call yourself pro-life, but outlawing abortion will go a long way in causing more death from unsanitary “back alley” abortions.

PerSe1010:

pantslessprogressive:

“This is something that is relatively new. Looking in her eyes, I couldn’t come up with an answer to defend the exemptions for rape and incest. And over the course of the last few weeks, the Christmas holidays and reflecting on that…all I can say is that God was working on my heart.” - Rick Perry, at last night’s Personhood USA “tele-town hall” gathering. Perry was referring to a meeting with Personhood USA spokeswoman Rebecca Kiessling who, according to The Daily Beast’s Michelle Goldberg, was “adopted after her mother, a rape victim, tried and failed to abort her.”

From the article:

The event demonstrated that a commitment to banning all abortion, even in cases of rape, incest, and threats to a woman’s health, is now the normative position among the party’s presidential contenders. […]

Each of the candidates, who spoke separately and took a couple of questions each, took the same hard-line position. The differences were on the margins. Bachmann distinguished herself with her dishonesty, claiming at one point that Obama is “putting abortion pills for young minors, girls as young as 8 years of age or 11 years of age, on [the] bubblegum aisle.” (Obama, of course, recently overrode an FDA recommendation to make emergency contraception available over the counter for all ages, infuriating women’s-health activists.) [read more]

These four candidates have all signed Personhood USA’s pledge to shove the government in my uterus “defend all innocent human life.” Ron Paul tacked an addendum to the pledge [PDF].

I never used to understand how abortion was even an issue for a voter to consider when deciding on a presidential candidate. Roe v Wade has been law for decades. Then the Tea Party/Right Wing Nuts got voted into state and national Congresses. They started taking away our rights and completely ignoring the law in favor of religious beliefs. Calling “god” into the equation. Women are losing their status as humans and becoming more and more akin to property in the political eye. We are losing our rights to control our own bodies. This is TERRIFYING. Keep your government out of my uterus. Unless you have experienced an unwanted pregnancy for any reason at all you have no right to presume to make such judgments. And to say that a raped woman, a victim of incest, or that a woman whose life is endangered by said unwanted pregnancy must carry that fetus to term and deliver with no regard for her physical or psychological well-being - Fuck You. 

Call your senators and tell them that it’s outrageous that women in the military who become pregnant from rape cannot use their health insurance to cover abortion care. It’s wrong that servicewomen’s health insurance doesn’t cover abortion in these tragic circumstances simply because of anti-choice politics.

Senators are set to vote on this issue this week. Please raise your voice one more time and call your senators today.