…but I just can’t wrap my mind around anti-choice rhetoric. I am fairly skilled at seeing both sides of most complex social issues and I even try to give credit to those that oppose my view if their reasoning is sound, but anti-choice stuff…it is just totally illogical to me. I completely understand why a person could be morally opposed to abortion and why someone might choose to call themselves “pro-life,” but how anyone can be politically opposed to safe, legal abortion and reproductive health services? And let’s not forget: almost all of the anti-choice organizations are also anti-birth control and oppose comprehensive sex education despite that fact that their “pro-life” constituents often hold more mainstream beliefs. 98% of American women use birth control at some point in their lives and 82% of Americans believe that abstinence-only sex ed isn’t enough. Clearly the anti-choice organizations are out of touch with reality. But I’m preaching to the choir…
As most of you know, I work in public affairs at a Planned Parenthood affiliate. In my job, I try not to focus on the anti-choice groups because…well, it’s counter-productive, reactive, and mostly just makes me frustrated and angry. Better to stay on the offense. It’s kind of like getting in a fight with the class bully–in the end you give the bully the satisfaction of getting a reaction out of you and still end up getting your lunch money stolen. What’s the point?
But tonight, I am feeling kind of silly and I would love to share with you a sampling of my favorite (crazy-pants) anti-choice groups and why they drive me nuts with their scientifically inaccurate misinformation. I know this just feeds the beast (and drives traffic to their websites), but indulge me. Just once. And then vote for the anti-choice group that is the most outrageous to you! Rabble. Rabble. Rabble. Or, if you find this post to be petty and frivolous, which it may be…just skip to the very bottom after the jump for an awesome video of Sonya Renee performing “What We Deserve.”
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National Right to Life
The mothership of anti-choice nutties. All the anti-choice messaging and misinformation is here. Abortion causes breast cancer. Margaret Sanger was a racist. Planned Parenthood uses tax money to kill children. Add your own crazy factually inaccurate statement here.
Feminists for Life
Would you believe there was a local chapter of this group at my college? Out of the Women’s Center I co-directed from 2003-2005?! When I came into office, feminists around the nation were mobilizing for the March for Women’s Lives. While still respecting the opinions of “pro-life feminists” at the Women’s Center, I managed to get our membership to vote to adopt a pro-choice position. This group annoys me the most because I think they really convince people that Susan B. Anthony was anti-choice. And because they have super-smart messaging that appeals to otherwise well-meaning feminists that don’t know all the facts about abortion access. “Women deserve better” is their motto. Check out the video at the bottom of this post for a great political performance piece based on the “women deserve better” messaging by pro-choice slam poet Sonya Renee.
American Life League
This group annoys me even more than the National Right to Life because they are SO explicit about their opinion that hormonal birth control and emergency contraception are abortifacents…which is clearly medically inaccurate. This is a Catholic group that follows all the anti-choice Catholic stereotypes. So…um…”be fruitful and multiply,” my friends. Oh, and this is the group that sponsors Rock for Life, the sexy teen-targeted event with pro-life bands and lots of ill-informed youth. The only good thing about Rock for Life is that they have a list of “pro-abort” bands to boycott. I suggest you support as many as possible. Bare Naked Ladies and Everclear…who knew?
Christian Coalition of America
This group gives Christians a bad name. Anti-same-sex marriage. Anti-sex ed. Anti-birth control. Anti-abortion. I could go on…
So now for Sonya! A great performance by Sonya Renee of “What We Deserve” in response to the anti-choice message “Women deserve better than abortion.” (You may have seen this before. It was dedicated to Choice USA and has been spread around the web in feminist circles…probably even here at some point.)
And, to prove that all religious groups and faith traditions are NOT anti-choice, tomorrow I will blog about groups like Catholics for a Free Choice and the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice and looking at sexual justice and religion from a reproductive justice framework.
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- An email by Miranda July 8, 2009
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- Palin’s anti-choice legacy by Miranda July 6, 2009
- Do Black Women’s Reproductive Rights Matter? by Jill February 8, 2010