Em-URGE-ing Voices

Age: 21

School: Scripps College

Major: Political Science and French Studies

Hometown: Rancho Cucamonga, California

Favorite writer: Sloane Crosby, Lemony Snicket, Margaret Atwood, John Darnielle

Favorite sex scene from a movie/TV/book: When Daenerys actually bonds with Drogo and proceeds to rock his world in the Game of Thrones show. Sexy and sweet too! :)

Hidden talent: Eating excessive amounts of Pad Thai and then going out for ice cream.

Posts By: Summer

What the Drop in the Abortion Rate Won’t Tell You

It’s official, America. According to the newest study on abortion rates from the Guttmacher Institute, the national abortion rate is now in decline.  According to the study by Rachel Jones and Jenna Jerman, the abortion rate declined to 16.9 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–44 in 2011.  In comparison, the recorded peak of the American abortion rate was in 1981, with 29.3 per 1,000 and the lowest since 1973 (16.3 per 1,000).  Since 2008, the abortion rate has fallen wholly 13%. It’s easy to get excited about numbers like these from either side of the aisle.  For anti-choicers, fewer abortions is always a good thing. For reproductive justice advocates like myself, fewer abortions may reflect fewer unintended pregnancies and therefore more reproductive freedom and autonomy. But a closer look at… Read more »

Make Roe Real: How I Make My Personal Life Political

This week marks the 41st anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the famous Supreme Court Case that “guaranteed” the right to abortion to American women. But as we discussed just last month, subsequent court cases like Planned Parenthood v Casey seriously compromised the Roe promise, especially for young people. Limited funding and restrictive laws like parental notification requirements make it hard for young and low-income people to get the abortion care that they may need. There are many ways to help make the promise of Roe real for everyone. As a young, generally broke, over-committed college student I sometimes worry that I don’t have the monetary or social capital to really make a difference. But then I remember that the personal is political and by sweating the small stuff, fighting the… Read more »

Project Unbreakable and New Young Organizing

Sometimes social justice can be exhausting. Trying to convince the general public that issues like abortion, birth control, and sexual violence aren’t only important for women, blogging consistently, attending meetings, organizing protests – a social justice advocate’s work is never over. This work can be emotionally draining and every once in a while, I find my commitment wavering. I’m tired, I’m busy, and I’m stressed about my future so why should reproductive justice be one of my priorities? At times like that, when I feel tired and unsure and dare I say uncommitted, I turn to blogs like Project Unbreakable. The site, founded in 2011 by then 19-year-old Grace Brown, features pictures of survivors of sexual assault holding one or more posters with the words of their attacker. These startlingly… Read more »

Why Should This 21-Year-Old Woman Care about Paternity Leave?

So often the conversations around reproductive justice focus solely on what happens to a person and their (sometimes potential) fetus before birth – contraception, abortion care, safe sex, and sex education.  Especially as a young person who is in no rush to start a family, what matters most me today is access to the contraception and abortion care which will enable me to make informed and conscientious choices about my future family life.  At age 21, on the cusp of graduating college and moving on to “the real world,” babies weren’t high on my Christmas list and they won’t be for quite awhile.

Five Colleges, One Definition, and Whole Lot of Complications: How My College Consortium Addresses Sexual Assault on Campus

Once or twice a month, my inbox has the misfortune of receiving a “Notification of Sexual Assault/Misconduct” from my college’s administration, detailing a recent assault that occurred on my campus.  Or an assault that didn’t occur on my campus.  While I am a student at Scripps College, these messages often don’t relay information about Scripps students.  Instead, they are forwarded to our student body from the Dean of Students at Pomona, Claremont McKenna, Pitzer, or Harvey Mudd Colleges, the other four schools making up our Claremont College (or “5C”) community.  As part of a close-knit five-college (and two graduate schools) consortium, where students from all of the institutions are integrated academically and socially, when sexual assault occurs between students at the 5C’s the appropriate response is often complicated.  For victims,… Read more »

Roe v. Wade, Young People and the Supreme Court

ThinkProgress recently published a fantastic yet depressing report on the Supreme Court’s gradual and subtle weakening of Roe v. Wade which has effectively nullified the right to an abortion in the United States. For many young people, reports like these may be one of the first instances where court cases that occurred after Roe v. Wade become visible. Planned Parenthood v. Casey has serious implications for young people in the United States, specifically legal minors and those who may need financial assistance. In Casey, the Supreme Court ruled that a state could impose 24-hour waiting periods and parental consent requirements without violating Roe v. Wade’s abortion guarantee. But for many young people, requirements like these effectively violate their right to the entire offering of reproductive choices.

You Have the Right to Pleasure

When I was in middle and high school, sex education was short, uncomfortable, and hardly comprehensive.  I remember sitting in a classroom with about 30 other students my senior year (a little late, if you ask me…) watching my PE teacher squirm in front of us, pausing intermittently. “So, I mean, what you all really need to know is, uh, so when the, uh, when the, um, the penis…” Queue giggles.

We’re All Anti-Rape, But Are We All Anti Anti-Rape Wear?

The feminist internet blew up last week in response to AR Wear, a company that purports to offer a product “that will offer better protection against some attempted rapes while the work of changing society’s rape culture moves forward.”  They are essentially anti-rape underwear – shorts that can’t be removed or cut off the body in the hopes of stopping a potential rape from happening.

Slut Shaming on Halloween and Why Your Voice Matters

Halloween weekend(s? – my college had two for some reason) is officially over but the controversies surrounding Halloween costumes persist.  October is always an interesting month to be a social activist on the internet – the volume of posts on the racist or sexist nature of different costumes is astounding and the important conversations that develop out of them commendable.  And today I want to draw attention to another unfortunate American Halloween tradition: slut shaming. You may have seen the image currently making the rounds of a young woman from ASU who attending a Halloween party in the nude.  While the reasoning behind her costume (costume?) is interesting (did she just not prepare early enough and threw this together last minute? Is she making an avant garde statement about bodies?… Read more »

Dear Emily Yoffe: I Don’t Need Your Advice. Please Stop, Seriously.

Lots of you may have already seen Slate’s recent article “College Women: Stop Getting Drunk.” For those of you who haven’t, Emily Yoffe, the author of Slate’s “Dear Prudence” column, argues that because sexual assault in college is seriously linked to alcohol consumption (and I agree) college-aged women need to stop drinking so much, which will in turn make them responsible for their actions and their safety and apparently reduce the amount of sexual assault.  Yoffe also says that this doesn’t mean you don’t get to have fun in college because she herself has only been hungover three times and had a lot of stupid fun as a young person. Where drunk college women are irresponsible and blame things like alcohol and rapists for what happens to them, Yoffe “always… Read more »