ChoiceWords Blog

Posts Tagged: reproductive justice

Purvi Patel’s Imprisonment and the Implications of Anti-Choice Laws

Yesterday, thirty-three year old Purvi Patel of Indiana was sentenced to twenty years of imprisonment on the charges of feticide and neglect. Patel was sentenced with thirty years of jail time on charges of neglect, six years for infanticide (to be served at the same time as the neglect charges), and is likely to spend five years time on probation post-prison. RH Reality Check coverage of the news described Patel as an Indian American who, “lived in a conservative Hindu household in which it was expected that she would not engage in premarital sex, and wanted to keep the pregnancy a secret from her parents.” Purvi Patel sought medical care at St. Joseph Hospital, a Catholic organization, after she was experiencing bleeding. According to the Vatican’s Catechism 2270, the Catholic Church… Read more »

Self Care Isn’t Only Bubble Baths and Hot Tea, Sometimes It’s Simpler

Self-care is a necessary part of life in order for people to stay healthy, rested, and well. Sometimes life can just get too hectic and it’s important to remember to take a step back and take care of ourselves. Especially in activist spaces we tend to be so focused on others that our own well being can easily get pushed aside. Luckily however there exists the concept of self-care. Before I was even introduced to the terminology a year or so ago that notion has always existed. And it can look a variety of different ways for different people. Self-care can look like taking quiet time to read a favorite book, taking a long warm shower,  or splurging on desert or a new piece of clothing. As the concept of… Read more »

Your Pro-Choice Cheat Sheet: How to Respond to Anti-Abortion Arguments

Last week, my school was “lucky” enough to play host to an anti-abortion group called Creating Equal. The group stopped by for two days as part of their annual “justice ride,” in order to spread propaganda and put down the pro-choice movement. Their argument was based on the fact that abortion is “ageism” and the group showed pictures of “abortions,” as well as a video of what an abortion looks like (on a large screen in the middle of campus, no less). When students realized what was happening, they formed a counter-protest, complete with safe spaces to help those who were triggered by the images. Arguments over ethics and the pro-choice movement littered Facebook and one counter-protest participant admitted that an anti-abortionist had her talking in circles. I get it…. Read more »

5 Things I Learned From Lobbying at the Capitol

Yesterday I did something I wouldn’t have expected myself to do in a million years. I went to my Texas State Capitol and lobbied for a package of reproductive healthcare bills under the ‘Trust. Respect. Access.’ campaign. We had bills that addressed the need for comprehensive sex education in schools, to bills that addressed  the state-mandated 24-hour waiting period for abortions. But all the bills really simply fit into the platform of ‘Trust. Respect. Access.’ which means that we: Trust Texans to make their own reproductive healthcare decisions Respect the knowledge of healthcare professionals and their medical and ethical judgement about the care each patient needs. guarantee that everyone in Texas, if so chooses, gets Access to a safe, compassionate, and timely abortion. I learned so much from the training before… Read more »

Sending Love to our Abortion Providers

This week we commemorate the ruling of Roe v. Wade that made abortion legal in our country. In doing so, the doctors who provide abortion services need to be appreciated for their tremendously important work to keep equal healthcare rights alive in the United States. Since Roe was enacted, there have been many attempts to undermine accessibility to abortion and overturn the ruling to keep it legal. Over the past forty-two years, there have been many federal attacks to dismantle equal rights for women. From the Hyde Amendment to Planned Parenthood v. Casey to the rise of state restrictions on reproductive health providers, the doctors who choose to continue to provide abortion services are extremely valuable to anyone who supports equal rights. With all of this documented federal pushback it… Read more »

Change Starts Small: LGBTQ Progress in Texas

I am so proud to go to Texas State University with its over 35,000 students and to live in San Marcos Texas, one of the fastest growing cities in the country. Often times I get asked if living in Texas and being queer is difficult since Texas is, unfortunately, a state where marriage equality has not yet been achieved (but we’re getting there) and you can be fired in Texas just based on your sexuality or gender expression. It’s definitely difficult to live in Texas as a queer person, but I am so thankful to be in an environment at Texas State where progress is being made. Earlier this semester the city of San Marcos hosted their first pride parade, which was incredible to be a part of. Over 300… Read more »

Police Violence Against Women, Girls, Queer People of Color

During this outpouring of demonstration and activism against the racist American system that does not indict killer cops, and media release of accounts of police brutality, let’s not forget that black girls and women are also murdered by the police. In the recent weeks we have seen many stories that highlight injustices of police brutality, and many of these have prominently featured the killing of black men. It is important to think about how the deaths of unarmed, innocent people at the hands of the police are not isolated incidents. Black men are uniquely impacted by this violence, but the brutality is also not just against men. Children, women, and queer folk of color are also facing death and abuse by the system. Perhaps, it is simpler for the media to… Read more »

Black Lives Matter

Last February I attended Take Root, a reproductive conference that serves activists and allies from red states, over the course of three days on the campus of the University of Oklahoma. It was a brilliant and affirming experience. One panel stood out the most. On this panel, a pair of black midwives recounted experiences providing prenatal and delivery care to black women. One of the midwives talked about how cultural sensitivity is extremely important in her work. Apparently in the eighteen-odd months between Trayvon Martin’s murder and Zimmerman’s acquittal, she saw that the number of stress-induced complications drastically rose in black women’s pregnancies. Not only that, but several of the black women in her care had nervous breakdowns, panic attacks, and insomnia. The midwives discussed the absolute necessity of holistic… Read more »