Wednesday, May 22, 2019

"We Will Not Go Back": #StopTheBans on abortion across the country! Speak out at Foley Square!

Scenes from the #stopthebans rally  at Foley square

All my life,  I’ve heard people  debate it.
It’s been decades of fighting for autonomy.
 But why do men really care what women do?
Why do men feel the compulsion to control women's bodies?
Why the fixation on control?

That could be your next book, Caroline chimes in. 

I asked my students before their last exam in our human sexuality class.

“Control” notes one student.  
“Power,” declares  another.

All semester we talked about family planning and efforts to reduce poverty and combat abuse.
Women know when they can handle it. 
Without Planned Parenthood and reproductive choice, 
these concepts are rendered mute.
More kids, more poverty, more neglect, 
translate into more abuse.
The beat goes on. 

Its all about power,  my students repeat.

The Criminalization of Women’s Bodies Is All About Conservative Male Power,” notes Laurie Penny in the New Republic. “The goal of the wave of anti-abortion laws in America is to put female sexuality under strict and brutal state control.

Accordingly, Planned Parenthood responded, organizing a series of national speak outs:
“We mean, come on. A woman's right to choose is a woman's right to choose. Period. Time to get out in the streets, AGAIN, as people are trying to take our rights away,” announced Sing Out Louise before the rally.  They’d be there as well.

“Its like groundhog day,” I thought riding my bike over to Foley Square after  the action, thinking  about the  Casey Decision from  1992 when a majority on the court upheld  Roe vs Wade.
The NY Times declared:
“The Center held.”

Almost three decades later,  the center is gone.  Kennedy, whose moderate voice guided the bench, has stepped down, replaced by a right-wing ideologue.
This is part of why there so  many of us at the Kavanaugh Hearings and  Confirmation Protests last fall. We saw what was coming.

“Its like the US is  stepping backward,” notes one  of my students.
History moves forward, backward, ever zigging and zagging in an anything but linear path. 
A half century later, women’s rights seem endure one step backward after another.

Arriving at the Foley  Square, I greet Diane and Jenny and  Anne and the others from Rise  and Resist.

“Pro life that’s a lie!!! They don’t care if women die!”
“Abortion is healthcare. Healthcare is a right!!!!”
People chante.

“It’s a new dynamic” notes Diane.

It feels like things have changed.
But we’re still out rising and resisting.

Sing Out Louise was performing pro choice anthems, like the Church Ladies  used to.
Brian,  aka Harmony Moore, was even there.

“Rise and Resist,” SOL sings to the tune of YMCA.
“Rise and Resist.”

Followed by a hopeful, Somewhere Over the Rainbow for our times:

Virginia Vitzthum posted a note:
1 min ·
Yesterday's turnout inspires me that Rise and Resist, Gays Against Guns, Sing Out Louise, the Laurie Arbeiter army, Revolting Lesbians, Reverend Billy, Rude Mechanical Orchestra, and oh yeah, all women and people who care about women, can pull together the mother of all field trips to DC to shut this down. The people united......"

See you tomorrow, Diane said as I was leaving. 
What’s tomorrow?

The Deutsche Bank Oral arguments.

See you tomorrow.

Will the courts do their job?

It's good to see them offering a check and balance.

Can democracy save itself?

We shall see.

"Oral Arguments to Occur in Trump Fight Over Bank Subpoenas

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