ChoiceWords Blog

Posts Tagged: reproductive justice

Abortion Access Month: How (Dis)Ability Can No Longer Be Ignored

What does abortion access look like to you? For many, it’s having private insurances and Medicaid cover the cost of the procedure, creating strong networks of social support and not having to drive five hours or out of state for a clinic. September is Abortion Access Month; For the reproductive justice movement, access is more than just Roe vs. Wade. It’s access on all levels – being able to afford the procedure, erasing the stigma behind it and having a high quality clinic nearby. What the movement tends to forget in this fight is how ability can impact accessibility.

Making Reproductive Justice Truly Intersectional: Takeaways from #solidarityisforwhitewomen

Like many a Twitter addict, I spent a good part of last week tweeting about intersectionality (or the lack thereof) in feminist movement. The #solidarityisforwhitewomen hashtag started by the fabulous Mikki Kendall (@Karnythia) has garnered outstanding coverage, including a great piece written by Kendall for The Guardian. #SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen Creator, Mikki Kendal, Speaks About Women Of Color, Feminism (VIDEO) — HuffPost BlackVoices (@blackvoices) August 13, 2013

Reproductive Justice Wears Cowgirl Boots

As I was finishing up my degree in Women’s Studies, I would often take my Feminist Theory book to my favorite country bar and study in between line dances.  People would come up and ask what (and why) I was studying at a bar. When they found out I was studying feminism, they seemed quite surprised that I was also a regular at the place. After all, country music and feminism don’t mix, right? Wrong. The misconception that country music is anti-feminist is exactly that, a misconception. In reality, a lot of country music supports the feminist movement. In 1975, Loretta Lynn wrote a song called ‘The Pill’ that is about why birth control is important. She was already a well-known and respected country star by this time, and came… Read more »

Consuming Bodies: The Women We’re Leaving Behind

India just banned the use/exploitation of dolphins as entertainment, as they are now considered “non-human persons”. Blackfish, a documentary about the psychological realities other animals face when confined in captivity, has just opened in theaters (at the distress of SeaWorld). Bird brain mapping has recently revealed that birds are “remarkably intelligent in a similar way to mammals such as humans and monkeys,” but ‘bird brain’ is still an insult. And the U.S. State Department and President Obama have decided to push ahead with building the Keystone XL Pipeline’s southern half amongst numerous questionable building practices, even though the previous Keystone I Pipeline has leaked fourteen different times. But isn’t this the Choice USA blog? What does this have to do with reproductive justice? Everything. Having grown up with cats my whole… Read more »

Being a Virgin Doesn’t Make Me Pro-Life

“So you have casual sex then, right?” I cannot count how many times I have been asked this as a follow up question when I tell people I am a feminist.  While I don’t think there is anything wrong with casual sex, pre-marital sex, marital sex, group sex, kinky sex, or really any sex as long as it’s consensual; I find it interesting that this seems to be a common question to jump to.  My favorite part comes after that question though. The asker is at a loss for words, eyes widening, as I reveal to them the truth.  I am, in fact, a virgin. Being 24, a lot of people find it surprising when I tell them I haven’t had sex.  I’ve long since gotten over being surprised at… Read more »

Where are Immigrant Women’s Rights in the RJ fight?

by Katherine Sheldon, Choice USA summer intern As someone involved in the feminist movement, I read about the fight for reproductive justice  in the news daily.  One thing missing from the national media, however, is immigrant and undocumented women’s rights.  Thankfully advocacy groups such as the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) and the National Coalition for Immigrant Women’s Rights (NCIWR) have been working to bring this topic to the public eye.  But with immigrants making up 13% of our population, that’s roughly 40 million people, I have been left wondering; why aren’t more people talking about immigrant women’s voices in mainstream conversations of reproductive justice issues? While Emergency Contraception being available over the counter is fantastic, I found it disheartening that the impact of it not being available… Read more »

Huffington Post: Proudly Advocating for Love and Freedom

“Marriage and so many issues come down to the most basic freedoms: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Both of our movements seek to define, build, and celebrate a diversity of families. This includes the right to control what you do with your body, the agency to choose whom to love and be intimate with, the ability to decide how and when to build a family, and the power to build a community that reflects and protects these values. These are the building blocks of the LGBTQ movement, but also of the reproductive justice movement. Both of our movements hold true that those most personal decisions of love and sex and family should not be intruded upon by politics.” -Rea Carey, Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian… Read more »

Queer Rights Are Reproductive Right Because Queer Folks Have Reproductive Systems

While interviewing for an internship at an LGBT non-profit last summer, I was asked, “I can tell that you’re very active in your community but you’ve mostly been working on abortion and women’s issues. So why do you want to work here?” I gave my interviewer the benefit of the doubt, but underwritten in his question was the idea that LGBT issues and reproductive justice issues are mutually exclusive, and that working on one set of issues would not qualify me to work on the other. I am fortunate in that I now work for an LGBT organization that understands the value of reproductive justice and my activism within that community. That interview was not the first or the last time I would be asked why LGBT folks should care… Read more »

On Being Queer and Pregnant: How the LGBT Community Failed Me

Earlier this year, I shared my abortion story for the first time. Opening up about it felt hard because I had waited ten years — and also, because I’m queer. When I came out to my mom 12 years ago, queer wasn’t a word that we used. The language we use to describe sexual orientation has shifted so much since then, but at the time I identified as bisexual. Similar to now, bisexuality wasn’t perceived to be something that really existed. From a heterosexist perspective, bisexuality meant you were confused or going through a phase that would have a finite end. From a monosexist perspective, being bisexual ostracized you from the gay and lesbian community unless you could somehow prove that you were equally attracted to both sexes, an impossible… Read more »

How Being Queer Impacts my Reproductive Justice Work

People have always told me that I’m a bit weird, silly, or odd. When I was young and before I was out (even to myself), I remember feeling isolated and disconnected from other people. At the time, I couldn’t figure out how or why I was so different. Now, as an out, queer woman, I wear these words as a badge, because, I AM odd. And I know that this self acceptance has a lot to do with me being queer, and vice versa — I’m queird! (thank you Hartbeat for introducing me to that word). To me, being queer is so much more than a sexual identity. I personally identify most with the term queer because it best represents who I am attracted to–men, women, femmes, dykes, genderqueer folks,… Read more »