Lovers/Haters: South Dakota (and others) and The City of Love

25 Mar

Haters: South Dakota government

Let’s be honest – South Dakota conservatives have been trying to pass anti-choice legislature for years – but this is the first time they’ve actually been successful. Not only were they successful, they passed a law that is unprecedented since Roe v. Wade – forcing a woman to wait 72 hours and undergo counseling before allowing her to have an abortion. And by “counseling,” I mean undergo shameful outright lies at the hands of severely anti-choice, vitriolic “counselors” at crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) – who were called out recently for their lies. In fact, New York City passed a bill stating that all CPCs must disclose exactly what they offer – meaning they can no longer lie about offering abortion options or any false tactics to convince unsuspecting women to come in and get shamed by hypocrites. Oh yeah, those seem like reliable sources. South Dakota = EPIC FAIL.

Planned Parenthood will be suing the state for violation of constitutional rights.

Read more: South Dakota Passes Tougher Regulations on Abortions

Or you could read this entirely misinformed article (just the title shows the writer’s ignorance): South Dakota Abortion Law Empowers Women

Honorable mentions go to Nebraska, Idaho, Kansas, and Alabama for all enacting bans on abortion in some way. Keep drinking of the haterade.

Lovers: New York City

I know this happened last week, but I’m still feeling the love! As mentioned above, New York legislators signed a bill that forces CPCs to have truth in advertising – all centers must now explicitly state on any advertising and on their websites exactly what services they provide. Sad day for CPCs, since they can no longer now pretend like they provide all reproductive choice options under false pretenses. *tear* Mayor Michael Bloomberg was quoted that he’s against abortion, but supports a woman’s right to choose. That’s the basic idea of pro-choice – nobody likes abortion. No, really. Nobody.

Read more: New Law Means Extra Scrutiny For Crisis Pregnancy Centers In NYC

Journal study published on CPCs: Deception, Lies, and Manipulation: Behind Crisis Pregnancy Centers

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The fight to be woman

23 Mar

Photo: Above the Law

In the face of all of the anti-women legislature that’s being pushed through our government, it can be difficult to stay hopeful. Let’s not forget, however, that women have been working for centuries to improve their quality of rights. Below I’ve listed a reminder of a few issues that women have dealt with along the way to get us where we are:

– Starting in 1839 with Mississippi, states began to pass laws allowing women to own property separate from their husbands. Before this, any money or property that a woman had going into a marriage became the property of the husband. These laws did not extend to marital property rights, however – in divorce law, husbands still generally kept legal custody of children and property.

– In 1848, the first women’s rights convention was held in Seneca Falls, NY. Debates lasted for two days and at the end, 68 women and 32 men signed a Declaration of Sentiments, which set the agenda for the women’s rights movement. A set of 12 resolutions was adopted, calling for the equal treatment of men and women under the law and voting rights for women.

– In May of 1869, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton formed the National Woman Suffrage Association. Their primary goal was to secure voting rights for women by means of a Congressional amendment to the Constitution.

– In 1920, suffragists finally achieved their main goal – the constitutional right for women to vote.

– 1963 brought about the Equal Pay Act, requiring men and women earn equal wages for equal work. Before this, women could be paid less, even if they worked harder or had more laborious jobs than men. As we know, the wage gap has lessened, but not been eradicated – women still earn .77 to the $1.00 that men earn.

– In 1973, as we all know, the U.S. Supreme Court passed a law allowing women to have (rightful) reproductive choice – states could no longer restrict women from choosing to have an abortion during the first three months of pregnancy.

Other areas of struggle: Women prostitutes were prosecuted while their male customers remained unpunished (still an issue to this day); women earned the right to divorce in the mid-1800s, but were not looked upon favorably until mid- to late-1900s; women would be prosecuted at maximum sentence for shooting a man, but men would have a much lighter sentence. I could continue on for pages, but you get my point.

We know what struggle means and we can keep fighting for our innate rights. Equality is not just a possibility – it’s our future.

Read more:
http://www.infoplease.com/spot/womenstimeline1.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_women_in_the_United_States
http://www.america.gov/st/peopleplace-english/2007/February/20070226171718ajesrom0.6366846.html
http://msmagazine.com/blog/blog/2011/03/21/how-women-became-citizens-hint-it-didnt-happen-overnight/

Celebrating Women’s History Month: Victoria Woodhull

22 Mar

“Woman’s ability to earn money is better protection against the tyranny and brutality of men than her ability to vote.”

Photo: McHenry County Turning Point

My woman of honor this week might be a little less familiar to you, but Ms. Victoria Woodhull and her sister, Tennessee, became the first women to establish a banking and brokerage firm on Wall Street called Woodhull, Claflin & Company around 1870. It should be noted that this was a time when women were expected to be managing money from the home, not in a bank. This was a huge step in the women rights movement. But this was just the first step. In 1870, Victoria decided to run for presidency – the first woman in U.S. history to do so. Obviously, she didn’t win, and considering that she supported ideas such as free love when women weren’t even allowed to vote, that’s not too surprising. Victoria didn’t let that stop her. In 1871, she became the first woman to deliver a memorial to the House Judiciary Committee – about women suffrage. The leaders of the Women Suffrage Movement were so impressed that they asked her to speak at their convention – the following day. The speech Victoria delivered at the convention catapulted her into suffrage leadership – in fact, she became known in newspapers as “the ablest advocate on Women Suffrage.”

Unfortunately, having that much sway in such a tumultuous time meant that she had powerful enemies, and these enemies didn’t stop until they had taken Victoria out of the game. Victoria was cornered during a speech at Steinway Hall, where she was badgered into sharing that she was a free lover, which turned the crowd against her. Things went downhill from there, but Victoria remains a champion of women rights to me. She proclaimed that women should be free to love whomever they choose, emphasizing the injustice of shaming women for doing what men do without consequence. That’s my kind of lady.

Read more about Victoria Woodhull:
http://www.lkwdpl.org/wihohio/wood-vic.htm
http://www.victoria-woodhull.com/whoisvw.htm

“Women must rise from their position as ministers to the passions of men to be their equals. Their entire system of education must be changed. They must be trained like men, [to be] independent individuals, and not mere appendages or adjuncts of men, forming but one member of society. They must be the companions of men from choice, never from necessity.”

For Japan with love

18 Mar

Lovers/Haters has been suspended for this week – today we’re honoring Japan’s struggles with a day of silence. Join us in a day of silence by clicking here: http://www.forjapanwithlove.com

Celebrating Women’s History Month: Simone de Beauvoir

15 Mar

This has always been a man’s world, and none of the reasons that have been offered in explanation have seemed adequate.

Photo: Cultural and Critical Theory Library

Simone de Beauvoir’s works have fascinated me for years. Although I’m not a philosopher, I am interested in sociology and the way certain people have stood out during their time in history – and Beauvoir certainly did that. Beauvoir was an existentialist in the 1900s and wrote prolifically on philosophy, politics, and social issues. One of her most well-known works, The Second Sex, published in 1949, detailed women’s oppression and remains a foundational work of contemporary feminism. According to Trinity College, the treatise was “the definitive declaration of women’s independence.” She is certainly a woman to celebrate.

Read more about Simone de Beauvoir: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/beauvoir/

One is not born a woman, one becomes one.

 

 

Lovers/Haters: Kansas and Senate

11 Mar

Per usual, there has been more hate than love for women going around lately – here’s the tops for this week.

There has been a lot of hate going on lately, especially surrounding abortion. Here’s one that I thought was particularly ridiculous:

Haters: Kansas

Kansas “Mega Bill” Would Deny Non-Profit Status to Abortion Providers

On National Day of Appreciation for Abortion Providers, no less. Seriously? Anti-choicers, can’t you just go away?? That’s just ridiculous. You look at one thing that you don’t agree with and so obviously the entire organization must be punished. Planned Parenthood provides some abortions – well, that means that their years of providing low-income women with pap smears, birth control, and education is a waste! Sinners! A nonprofit hospital provides an abortion – forget about their life-saving surgeries and years of caring for sick! Hellfire for them!

Shut up. Seriously, just shut up.

Thankfully (yes, I saved the better for last)…

Lovers: U.S. Senate

Senate Blocks Anti-Choice Push; States Keep It Up

I’m not going to lie – I was a teensy bit worried that the Senate wouldn’t come through on this for us. I thought they would, but the fear was there. I don’t think I need to say what could have happened if the bill had passed. I’ll let Nancy Keenan of NARAL speak for me:

“We commend fair-minded senators for rejecting the anti-choice House leadership’s efforts to defund Planned Parenthood and dismantle the nation’s family-planning centers,” said Nancy Keenan, president of the Washington-based NARAL Pro-Choice America, in a press statement following news of the vote.

We do, too! Thank you, Senate!!

Anti-choice legislation is still being pushed in many, many states. And let’s not forget that the budget STILL hasn’t been settled, so funds could still be eliminated. Our work is certainly not done. Let’s make sure that we continue to support women!

Celebrating Women’s History Month: Ida B. Wells-Barnett

10 Mar

“If this work can contribute in any way toward proving this, and at the same time arouse the conscience of the American people to a demand for justice to every citizen, and punishment by law for the lawless, I shall feel I have done my race a service.”

Photo: ElegantNatural

Ida B. Wells-Barnett (1862-1931)

In continuation of celebrating Women’s History Month, today I’d like to honor Ms. Ida B. Wells-Barnett. Wells worked tirelessly against the overwhelming prejudice against Black people and helped establish the organization that eventually grew into the NAACP. At one point, she left the country to avoid being killed and worked to gain supporters in England. She also worked to promote the rights of women, providing a fantastic example of how feminism and anti-racism can work hand in hand to eradicate injustices.

“What becomes a crime deserving capital punishment when the tables are turned is a matter of small moment when the negro woman is the accusing party.”

Read more:
http://www.lkwdpl.org/wihohio/barn-ida.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ida_B._Wells
http://www.duke.edu/~ldbaker/classes/AAIH/caaih/ibwells/ibwbkgrd.html