Posts in category Reproductive Rights

Bodily Autonomy

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I Voted …

IVoted

NOW President Terry O’Neill

NOWPres

I Will Define Myself

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Pro-Life?

"Pro-Life"

 

The Christian Science Monitor looks beyond the "pro-life" rhetoric to the actual financial impact on women and children due to efforts to end abortion:

 

"Members of the pro-life movement spend countless dollars and hours on rallies and lobbying without providing adequate financial and emotional support for women to actually maintain pregnancies. And the majority of women who have abortions cite not being able to afford a child as one of the main reasons for their decision. ...

 

"So while pro-life Americans spend millions of dollars on events geared toward making abortion illegal, there were 1.16 million women who came to the conclusion in 2009 ... that they could not carry their child to term – many of them because of money. ...

 

"The Guttmacher Institute’s statistics show that abortion rates are higher in countries where it is illegal and procedures are often unsafe. Even more disheartening are statistics ... which showed that women who sought abortions and were turned away (because they had passed their state's gestational limits) were three times more likely to fall into poverty than women who obtained an abortion. ...

 

"A woman’s decision to have an abortion often stems from a very real and legitimate fear that she will not be able to care for a child. Pro-life supporters and activists spend incredibly large sums to take away that decision, but do not provide the equivalent practical support women need to have a baby. Is that really a fight for life? Or just a fight for a long sought-after political goal? It’s time the pro-life movement focuses its resources more on helping women and babies, not gaining legislative power that ultimately will do little to protect the unborn."

 

A Woman’s Declaration of Independence

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It’s time to declare independence, to separate ourselves from the bad habits, the stifling expectations, and the negative messages that no longer serve us (assuming they ever did).

 

It’s time to declare independence from media messages that tell us we’re ugly if we don’t look like the “flawless” images of celebrities on the screen and in the magazines. It’s time to stop buying into the manipulation and stop wasting time trying to chase an illusion that doesn’t even exist.

 

It’s time to declare independence from the belief that having the perfect body will make us worthy of love and respect. We’re already worthy of love and respect in the bodies we have now — no amount of weight loss or plastic surgery will increase our value.

 

It’s time to declare independence from dieting, from deprivation, from seeing food as the enemy. The American weight loss industry makes nearly $60 billion a year trying to convince us that we’re not good enough — if diets worked, would these companies be this profitable? It’s time to stop contributing to their false sense of hope.

 

It’s time to declare independence from body loathing, from looking at our bodies with disgust instead of love. It’s time to appreciate all of the amazing things they do for us — the jiggly arms that give great hugs, the flabby thighs that carry us through the park, the droopy breasts that fed a child, the wounded heart that still knows how to love, the exhausted brain that still manages to tell our lungs to breathe.

 

It’s time to declare independence from the oppressive labels of virgin or whore, straight or gay, feminine or masculine, and all the shades in between. Our number of sex partners do not define us. Our sexuality does not define us. Our gender identity does not define us. These traits can’t possibly define what kind of person we are or what’s in our hearts or our minds. Any attempt by others to claim otherwise is an attempt to control us, to police our behavior, and to shame us so that they don’t have to examine their own ignorance and fear.

 

It’s time to declare independence from the belief that women can bring sexual assault upon ourselves based on how provocatively we’re dressed, how flirty we act, or how drunk we get. The only ones responsible for rapists' behavior are rapists themselves. We have the right not to be blamed when others hurt us, and we have the right to feel safe in the world.

 

It’s time to declare independence from legislators who think the female body should be controlled by wealthy, middle-aged, white,  Christian, conservative men. Our bodies belong to us — it’s time to declare our freedom to make our own decisions about them. Because if we cannot, then we are truly not equal citizens and this country is not as free it claims to be.

 

It’s time to declare independence from spending so much time, energy, and money trying to fit into someone else’s idea of who they think we should be. It’s time to put ourselves first, to focus on our own desires and do what we think is right. It’s time to trust our own instincts and make ourselves proud.

 

It’s time to declare independence from shame, from the belief that we’re not good enough, not beautiful enough, not thin enough, not smart enough, not clever enough, not sexy enough, not pure enough, not feminine enough, not worthy enough. It’s time to declare that we are already enough — that we are perfectly imperfect exactly as we are.

 

It’s time to declare our independence from any force that tries to hold us down — including those forces that limit us from within.

Hillary Clinton

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Don’t Tread On Others

DontTread

Not All I Am

NotAllIAm

 

... nor will I allow others to treat me as if this is all I am:

 
  • - a uterus
  • - a collection of body parts
  • - a vagina
  • - a piece of ass
  • - a pair of tits
  • - a victim
  • - public property
  • - a virgin
  • - a whore
  • - a "before" photo
  • - a body to legislate
  • - a sexual object
  None of these things can possibly define a woman.

How Many Kids Will You Adopt?

 

There are 400,000 children in the U.S. foster care system, 115,000-130,000 of whom are eligible to be adopted. With all the "pro-life" rhetoric we hear, where's the moral outrage about their lives? Many of these children aren't the "popular" kinds to adopt (i.e., healthy, white infants), but instead are older kids, or racial minorities, or they have disabilities or were victims of abuse.

 

Instead of protesting a woman's right to make decisions about her own body & her own life, instead of protesting outside of abortion clinics & treating women's personal healthcare decisions as if they're fair game for public scrutiny ... why don't those who claim to be "pro-life" direct all this energy onto making sure children who are already born get loving families? Why don't they adopt or foster children themselves (especially the harder-to-place kids)? Why don't they advocate for gay adoption? Why don't they stop supporting abstinence-only sex education (which has been proven to be highly ineffective) & minimize the number of unwanted children in the first place? Why don't they protest against legislation that cuts funding for food & services for poor children?

 

Because if you ignore all of the above & merely want to outlaw abortion, you're really not "pro-life" -- you're just pro-birth.

  Sources:    

Slut, Defined

Harvey Milk

Your Opinion

You Deserve

Abortion Isn’t a Dirty Little Secret

Someone’s in Trouble!

Ashley Judd

(Fyi - "inter alia" means "among other things")  

Margaret Sanger

Wrong Side of History

The Rights of the Minority

The majority should not get to decide whether the minority can enjoy the same rights that they get to take for granted. This should be common sense.


This Woman Has Rights Too

I've recently started posting a few original memes here and on my Facebook fan page (which has over 2,700 fans -- so please check it out!). As an artist, I enjoy creating these images. I add a small mention of my website, Facebook page, and logo to my memes in case they're shared. Unfortunately, another fan page on Facebook, Women's Rights News (which has about 100 times more fans than I do and should know better), has shared several of these images, but cropped my info off.

 
I realize that memes are found all over the Internet and it's hard to know where most originate, but when a meme actually has the originator's info on it, it's just not cool to crop it off or cover it up! I just found out that I'm not the only one -- they've done the same thing to several other great pages, such as Feminists United. I can't contact them discreetly, since they don't have a website and they've disabled private messaging and posting to their wall on Facebook, so the only thing left is to comment on their posts, which they ignore. So Women's Rights News, since you've left me with no other recourse and since you clearly follow my page, my latest original meme is dedicated to you!
 
 
Here are links to the above memes, which were posted previously on Beauty Is Inside:
 
  1. J.K. Rowling: http://beautyisinside.com/2012/10/is-fat-really-the-worst-thing/
  2. Portia de Rossi: http://beautyisinside.com/2012/10/portia-on-body-image/
  3. Iyanla Vanzant: http://beautyisinside.com/2012/10/what-we-believe/
  4. The 1950s Kitchen: http://beautyisinside.com/2012/10/1950s-kitchen/

Why Dogs Are Better than Babies

Election 2012

Something Wrong with this Picture

It’s Hard to Be a Woman

How to Subjugate a Body

Half the Sky

"Half the Sky" is a new documentary on PBS which "... introduces women and girls who are living under some of the most difficult circumstances imaginable — and [who are] fighting bravely to change them."  


Read more about the woman in the photo, Rebecca Lolosoli.


It’s Getting Really Old

I’ll Take that Bet

Birth Control

Contrary to what many conservatives would have us believe, affordable access to birth control isn't about making taxpayers pay for slutty women to have sex. Birth control is an economic issue and a basic human right:

"Access to contraception isn't just a privilege, it's a basic human right, the United Nations says in its Population Fund's annual report, which came out on Wednesday. Lack of access to contraception, the report finds, is an economic barrier that can hinder economic opportunity and growth."

  Read more at Buzzfeed.

“This Is a Catholic Country”

This is what can happen when a country (Ireland, in this case) allows the religious beliefs of some to trump a woman's right to terminate a pregnancy: Savita Halappanavar, 31, was a dentist and was 17 weeks pregnant. She was miscarrying, but was refused an abortion even after her health started to fail. Ultimately, the fetus died inside her, and then she died shortly after from blood poisoning. It's simply disgusting how self-righteous ideology caused this woman's death:

"Savita was really in agony. She was very upset, but she accepted she was losing the baby. ... When the consultant came on the ward rounds on Monday morning, Savita asked if they could not save the baby, could they induce to end the pregnancy? The consultant said: `As long as there is a fetal heartbeat, we can't do anything.' Again on Tuesday morning ... the consultant said it was the law, that this is a Catholic country."
 


Read more at Huffington Post.


Give Birth

I love this advice! But even if you took a different path, it's never to late to grow into yourself.


We Won – Deal With It

There have been a lot of sore losers since election results were announced -- plenty of political pouting, arguing, and Facebook un-friending. The losing side wants us to stop gloating and just get on with life. Ordinarily, I'd agree, but not this time. They want us to stop now, even though all throughout election season, these same people didn't stop making inflammatory attacks and absurd claims about the Nazi-Communist-Socialist-liberal agenda, the Black man in the White House, gay marriage bringing on the apocalypse, baby killers, sluts wanting you pay for them to have sex, "legitimate" rape vs. girls who "rape easy," and so on. In spite of all this "fair and balanced" rhetoric, conservatives still lost fair and square. But now they want everyone to stop talking about the election and to shut up with all our celebrating.
 
Well, you know what? Fuck that! Fuck that, because YOU are the ones who lit the fires. YOU are the ones who started shit. YOU are the ones who fought to take away people's rights to their lives and their bodies. YOU are the ones being degrading and insulting. So damn right we're going to express how absolutely thrilled we are that we shut that shit down!
 
There's been so much bigotry throughout politics lately, an incredible amount of sexism, homophobia, and racism. And those who support those ideals -- or those who can so casually excuse them -- deserve to be called on it.
 
This is the most politically involved that I've ever been in my life, because as many other women realized -- our rights are being threatened. And I'm finding it really hard to separate people from their politics, because beliefs matter. They impact your worldview and your behavior toward others.
 
You're entitled to believe in whatever you want, but you are not entitled to impose your beliefs on me. And I don't care if it's under the guise of religion or if you believe that God Himself personally spoke to you. Because when you start forcing your beliefs on me, it becomes abundantly clear that your "traditional values" are less about following a moral code and more about oppressing others in the name of your self-serving ideology. Those are not values that I will abide by. You are not allowed to infringe on MY rights, MY body, MY choices, no matter how "righteous" or "justified" you believe yourself to be. Your beliefs do not get to trump my freedom. Your sense of entitlement over others' personal lives, your selfish belief that you have the right to control others -- these are complete and utter boundary violations. How dare you say that your beliefs matter more than mine! That kind of arrogance and lack of compassion astound me.
 

When our rights are attacked; when we're treated with condescension and our morals, maturity, and ability to make decisions about our own bodies and lives are questioned; when the definition of rape is twisted to benefit the rapist and punish women -- well, damn right we're going to take it personally! We're going to defend ourselves against insulting, selfish, and paternalistic attacks against our humanity. We're going to stand up against sanctimonious bullies who use religion and legal maneuvers to chip away at our civil rights. We're going to vote for the people who actually respect our constitutional and moral rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And we're going to question the integrity of those who are so willing to throw our rights under the bus. How dare you speak about freedom when you are so intent on attacking ours.

 

In this election, we had more on the line than you did. We had more to lose. And guess what? YOU built that. So hell yeah -- of course we're going to celebrate and we're going to do a bit of gloating about how we prevailed.

 

We won. You lost. Deal with it.

 

 

They’ve Been Terminated

Which One?

Yeah, that's probably not a good sign ...

 

Celebrate


Hey Girl, Ryan Gosling would like to celebrate with you. ;)

 

Defeated!

I Voted

Fight to Keep Your Rights

Hey Girl

Reproductive Rights & Economics

Remember

A Woman’s Place


The conservative social forces conspiring to roll back the clocks on women's reproductive rights have much in common with the forces that tried to keep women from having voting rights. In an attempt to undermine suffragettes' struggles to gain rights that men were able to enjoy, these women were demonized as ugly, masculine, bad mothers, morally challenged, promiscuous, childish, and emasculating to men. Nearly 100 years have passed since then, but not much has changed:

 

“The social pressures that resisted suffrage can’t be underestimated. ... It wasn’t just that women had to fight for the right to vote, but women had to fight for the right to speak in public to be able to advocate for their own rights. ...

 
The battle for suffrage wasn’t just about the legal right to vote, but it was also about women’s ability to be public figures, not confined to the home. It was more broadly about women’s role in society. ...   "The messages you find on anti-suffrage postcards from the 1910s are not dissimilar from what you might hear from Rush Limbaugh or Bill O’Reilly today in the 2010s. Suffragettes were drawn as conniving coquettes, ugly, mean spinsters or, worse, ugly, mean wives who left their families helpless as they attended town-hall meetings. ...   “That was a common theme, that if women were given political power they would crush men and upset the gender roles in society, particularly in the family. ...   “We operate with this zero-sum mentality, which is, if women gain rights, men lose them. ... You see the same sort of idea that if people of color or ethnic minorities make gains, whites therefore lose something. So if men only understand their identity in relationship to being bigger than women, then it’s a trade-off. You see it in dozens of anti-suffrage postcards, showing men being hurt if women advance. Human beings seem to operate with this mentality where if you expand the rights of some, it diminishes the rights of others, instead of collectively expanding the rights of all of us as a people.”  

Read more here:

 

Madeleine Albright

Madeleine Albright, 1st woman to become United States Secretary of State, appointed by former President Bill Clinton ...

 

Girls Just Wanna Have …

Don’t Set the Clock Back

Women as Livestock

“God’s Will”

“The Rape Thing”

Infuriating, yet not surprising news of the day: Another middle-aged conservative mansplainer, Washington State Republican representative John Koster, discusses how "the rape thing" is not a good enough reason for a woman to have an abortion:

"'Incest is so rare, I mean, it's so rare,' he said. 'But the rape thing - you know, I know a woman who was raped and kept the child, gave it up for adoption, and she doesn't regret it.' He added, 'On the rape thing, it's like, how does putting more violence onto a woman's body and taking the life of an innocent child that's a consequence of this crime - how does that make it better? You know what I mean?'"

Yes, Rep. Koster, I know exactly what you mean -- and it makes you "the asshole thing".

Wake Up

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