BEYOND MERE SURVIVAL


amendment 48
October 1, 2008, 1:08 pm
Filed under: gender violence | Tags: , , , , ,
  • i have been trying to stay out of the election talk and of current events because they seem to flood every space available already. i started writing because i wanted to put out there a personal, experiential perspective on things that are political, but that are also part of everyday life. however somethings are just to a level on insanity right now i might have to branch out every once in a while. as a person that works with survivors of violence, and a mother of 2 daughters, and a survivor myself i couldn’t believe the proposed amendment 48 that will be up for voting on nov 4th,  here is a quick breakdown of the facts:
  • Fetal (or in this case, even embryonic) “rights” trumping women’s rights? Check. The amendment would officially change the definition of “person” to include “any human being from the moment of fertilization,” therefore endowing all embryos in the state (whether they’re implanted in a woman’s body or not) with “inalienable rights, equality of justice, and due process of law.” 
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  • Co-opting feminist language? Check. The group backing the amendment is called Colorado for Equal Rights.
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  • Not just anti-abortion, but anti-contraception? Check.“This amendment would make the pill and IUDs illegal because they keep a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus.”
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  • Ties to “some of the most virulent paramilitary antiabortion groups in the nation”? Check. Dr. James Patrick Johnston — who is linked to groups like the violently Army of God — is handling the “national outreach” to antichoice doctors and pharmacists on behalf of Amendment 48.
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  • A coordinated, national effort masquerading as “grassroots”? Check. There has been tons of laudatory coverageof Kristi Burton, the 21-year-old face of the embryos-are-people-too movement. But really the Colorado campaign — as well as a similar attempts in Georgia, Oregon, and Montana — were coordinated by a national group, the ultraconservative Thomas More Law Center.
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  • A disproportionate effect on young women, women of color, incarcerated women, and low-income women? Check. Defining a fertilized egg as a person doesn’t just restrict access to abortion, contraception, cancer treatment, and fertility treatment. It opens the door to charges of child endangermentagainst pregnant women, typically those who are women of color or low-income. Basically, it allows for the policing of pregnant women’s bodies and behavior. And which pregnant women get policed? Usually not those who are white and wealthy.
  i don’t want to go on an analysis of why i think this is fucked, because it think it’s more effective if each one of us does that for themselves, but it you are against it,here’s what you can do:

Please help defeat Colorado Amendment 48, which you may know as the “personhood” amendment. Amendment 48 would define the term person to include a fertilized egg in our state constitution.
A narrow minority with an extreme political agenda is pushing this amendment, the first of its kind in the country. It threatens quality health care and patient privacy.
It is hard to believe, but Amendment 48 would actually change Colorado’s constitution to deny women access to things like birth control, in-vitro fertilization, as well as banning all abortions, even for rape and incest victims or to save the life of the woman.

That’s why the Denver Post has already called Amendment 48 “absurd”. You’d think most Coloradans will see how ridiculous Amendment 48 is, but we can’t take any chances. It’ll take all of us working together to defeat it. Start by adding your name to the petition opposing Amendment 48.

http://www.protectfamiliesprotectchoices.org

Thanks!



what do you do about bumper stickers?
April 28, 2008, 12:36 pm
Filed under: gender violence | Tags: ,

so, yesterday, after a nice sunday little day trip to greencastle to see “‘Life After Death: New Leipzig Paintings from the Rubell Family Collection”, i got stuck at a light behind a car with this sticker blaring at me.

initially i just felt my heart racing and i got so angry, the adrenline rushing to my brain and images flashing of punching the driver while yelling at him about his ignorance and sense of entitlement (incidentally it’s a man feeling like he has the right to speak for 93% of women).

then i came to my senses a bit more, and started thinking about the blatant sensationalism and lack of truth behind the bumper sticker’s claim. though even if i knew that ,it still felt hurtful and accusatory.

where did the sticker’s makers get the statistic that 93% of women regret having an abortion? is this sense of regret in any way fueled by the continual shaming, shunning and aggression faced by women who choose to terminate their pregnancies?

i certainly don’t regret abortion, i am thankful i was able to make that choice. i am sick of being told i should be ashamed of it, or regret it, or how to feel about it by people in the street with grotesque pictures of aborted fetuses, media pundits and now even disembodied messages in traffic.

even in the radical community, at least in bloomington, having an abortion is a secret, something that makes people uncomfortable and shifty.

i thought about trying to get out of the car and start a conversation with the driver, before the light turned green and i had to wake up from my daze. that’s what it’s so frustrating about bumper stickers, or any messages where there is no expectaion of dialogue or exchange of ideas.

you are in your car, i am in mine and WHAM!, i am gonna hit you with my rethoric without any chance for you to react. i guess this is my attempt.