You’re f*ckin it up, Indiana

So I haven’t written about Purvi Patel yet. Or the spike in HIV cases. Or the RFRA. I think it’s party because I’ve been too numb and scared and bewildered and trying to grok what’s going on in Indiana. And across the country. Across my country. So let’s break up this overwhelming set of circumstances and take them in smaller bits. Today let’s talk about Purvi Patel.

For an explanation of who Purvi Patel is and the ordeal that she’s been put through, check out this article from The New York Times, Purvi Patel Could Be Just the Beginning.

Someone was just sentenced to 20 years in prison for aborting a fetus. This just happened in the United States of America, y’all. The first person in US history to be convicted of feticide for aborting her own pregnancy.

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Pregnancy Doesn’t Have To Be A Crisis

I just spent the last twenty minutes digging through the website of a “pregnancy and family resource center” located here in the Twin Cities. The organization that I was reading about looks like they have a pretty decent program, focusing on providing prenatal care, helping with getting medical insurance, providing physical resources (cribs, clothes, diapers, food, etc.), support groups, referrals to mental health programs and housing programs, and life skills and job skills training. Because you know where this is going, dear reader, there was of course the conspicuous lack of “abortion” or “pregnancy termination” referral in the many services that the group offers. I finally found the language I was looking for in one of the testimonial videos in which they advertise that they offer prayer and talk about “women in crisis.” [Read more…]

Local Lefty Liberal Progressive Hippie Things

I have two reading recommendations and one restaurant review for you from the land of spoon and cherry.

Robin Marty – Joining the Other Side

Robin Marty is an independent journalist, well-known for her articles on reproductive justice. She is based in Minnesota, the author of Crow After Roe, and she has recently published an article on Contributoria called Joining the Other Side. The article is about the week she spent in Washington D.C. this January observing the annual March for Life…ugh…celebration. She speaks about watching die-ins, clinic protests, panels and sharing drinks with anti-abortion activists like Jill Stanek and Troy Newman at after parties.  [Read more…]

Today in Pro-Lifers Annoy Me News

Did you hear about Oklahoma abortion doctor Naresh Patel who did some illegal, horrible things and was consequently investigated, arrested and had his medical license pulled? Yeah, so did every anti-abortion supporter and organization in the country. And boy are they gloating about that and using it as an excuse to rally the troops. They’re trying to paint Patel’s arrest as the turning of the tide, as a sign that Americans are starting to see that abortion is an arrest-worthy crime. [Read more…]

#7in10forRoe

Today is the 42nd Anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision. Between work, and planning for this weekend’s FTBConscience 3, and coincidentally, tonight’s last minute quasi-emergency drive to the OBGYN with a friend who just went through a miscarriage and subsequent evacuation – the same process as an abortion – two days ago (she’s doing just fine), I ran out of time to do the super-awesome post that I had planned to do on Doe v. Gomez.

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Men Don’t Get Abortions

CN: Use of gendered pronouns. Words like men and women are blurry with respect to reproduction and pregnancy, but I am sticking with convention to address the claims and assumptions of this video.

It took me a few days to get around to watching this four-minute video because I knew that I didn’t have the even to deal with it. But tonight I’m feeling like I can do it. Let’s all do it – together!

We’re opening with a shot of a church and some somber but hopeful music. The videographer has spliced together the stories of three men, each one sitting in a church pew. They introduce themselves by name and then go on to share that they’re all Christians.

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Clinic Escort Training – Twin Cities, Minnesota

Whole Women’s Health-Twin Cities – the clinic where I escort – is holding a call for volunteers and escort training tomorrow morning. This will be our second open call, and unlike this past winter, the weather will actually be above freezing!

Five people in vests standing in a room with a statement stenciled on the wall nearby, "We are not a gang in the usual sense of the term, we are a gang for justice. – Gulabi Gang"

Some of the Whole Women’s Health clinic escort team.

If you are interested in volunteering with the clinic as an escort – or maybe you have an interest in getting involved in other ways – come on down to Whole Women’s Health tomorrow morning at 7am. There will be coffee and donuts (first come, first serve), a Do and Don’ts of Clinic Escorting training, and a then a chance to observe on the sidewalk and have antis lecture you on the evils of abortion!

Now who doesn’t want that?

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RH Reality Cast

I’ve finally started listening to RH Reality Cast, and I’m enjoying the hell out of it. If if there’s one thing that I enjoy more than reading Amanda Marcotte’s caustic wit, it’s hearing her passionate take-downs of patriarchal, religious, and right-wing bullshit flow from my car speakers. A new half-hour episode airs every Monday, so it’s always an exciting, blood-boiling start to the week. This week Amanda warns us that Todd Akin is back in the news, this time wanting us all to believe that we just didn’t understand what he meant by “legitimate rape” (from his infamous quote in 2012), she interviews Teddy Wilson about the Operation Save America harassment and trespassing currently taking place in New Orleans, and of then there’s my favorite segment, The Wisdom of Wingnuts.

If you like hearing from strong women who don’t mince their words when they’re pissed off about attacks on reproductive freedom and sexual health, you might want to try out RH Reality Cast.

Planned Parenthood Solidarity Event

It’s that time of the year again! Good Friday marks the annual organized anti-Planned Parenthood vigil here in the Twin Cities and it’s celebrated with much somber walking, very pray, so clutching of rosaries and wow crosses outside of the St. Paul Planned Parenthood:

Anti-choice crowd hangs out by the fence and stares at the prochoice celebration with sadness, contempt, anger and pleading.

Anti-choice crowds line the fence and stare over at the pro-Planned Parenthood celebration with a mixture of anger, contempt, pleading, sorrow, curiosity and indifference.

And on the other side – a celebration of accessible and legal abortion, comprehensive reproductive options, sex education and outreach:

A line of Planned Parenthood supporters walking with signs of support.

This year a bunch of jerks – not satisfied with marching with their anti-choice brethren – decided to make a nuisance of themselves on “our” side of the rally. As always with these harassers, they’re not satisfied unless they’re edged right up to the public property line, which was particularly annoying because they were standing between us and our food trucks. Buttheads. These special friends had a penchant for screaming about hellfire and damnation. For the most part we all minded our manners, but me, Niki and our friend Chris couldn’t resist stopping for a quick photo op:

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 Happy atheist trio mocks your angry sky fairy – Mwuahahaha!

We had happy music, warm drinks and supportive signs. We took pictures and laughed and raised money and cheered and ran to give hugs when we saw friends and supporters arrive to join in the march. It was a great time.

Me and fellow clinic escort Niki M. in our clinic escort vests.

Me and fellow clinic escort Niki take a photo at the march in our vests – shiny!

Happy Lich Jesus Day, everyone!