Rape is in the news again this week with another widely-publicized gang rape in India and a 31-day sentence for an American teacher who raped a 14-year-old student (she later committed suicide). In the Guardian I’m writing about how certain cultures abet rape and keep reporting rates low:...read more
My friends at the Ada Initiative are fundraising for their work supporting women in open technology and culture and there’s only a few days left for them to reach their target – if what they do is relevant to your interests, please consider donating to them ASAP.
Since I don’t want to only boost my friends in this space, please use this thread to tell the Feministe readership about other projects you support for which fundraising is happening at the moment....read more
This week at the Guardian I’m writing about the gay conversion therapy ban passed in New Jersey, and how religious freedom is too often used as an argument for abusing kids — at the expense of children’s own equal protection under the law....read more
Saturday 8/24/2013 8:00AM Rally at the Lincoln Memorial begins at 8:00 AM followed by the march to the King Memorial. The NAACP is organising the 50th Anniversary Rally and invites those who cannot make it to the Mall in Washington DC to join a virtual march to show their support....read more
Abortion restrictions are being introduced, debated and mostly passed across several states in the U.S. Texas has been the most notable, but many others — Ohio, North Carolina, Alabama, Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi and North Dakota — are ramping up their anti-abortion legislation. But while the GOP claims to focus on “life,” many of the states dedicating enormous amounts of time, money and energy to limiting abortion also see incredibly poor health outcomes for mothers and children. I outline some of them over at Al Jazeera; here’s a bit:...read more
Holy cow is a lot, according to this New York Times feature. In fact, it’s more than any other nation in the world, but our health outcomes aren’t substantially better....read more
Not even 50 years since Goodman, Schwerner and Chaney were lynched–really lynched, not what conservative assholes call “lynching.” And how many of those states moved to restrict voting how many hours after the ruling? I feel like so much of what was fought for and won with good men and women bleeding and dying was just rolled back and thrown out.
This thread will be pre-moderated....read more
I’m overjoyed about the DOMA ruling earlier this week. But coming on the tails of the gutting of the Voting Rights Amendment and the meh ruling on affirmative action, it tasted less sweet. And it reflected a very simplistic American idea of “fairness.” That’s what I’m writing about in the Guardian this week:...read more
Hurrah for the next step forward for marriage equality....read more
In what’s actually a pretty reasonable and thoughtful piece, one woman says yes: That abortion rights given women an out from being parents, and we shouldn’t tell men that having sex means taking on the responsibility to have a child:...read more
I’m sure many Feministe readers have been closely following the story of Beatriz, a young Salvadoran mother with lupus who was pregnant with an anencephalic fetus. The pregnancy, which was doomed because the fetus had only a brainstem but no brain, was killing her. Her kidneys were shutting down, and the longer they were under stress, the higher the likelihood that if she didn’t die, she would need to be on dialysis for the rest of her life — a major hardship and almost definitely a life-shortener for a woman living in rural El Salvador with very limited access to health care. Doctors said Beatriz needed an abortion, but El Salvador has some of the strictest pro-life laws in the world, and their courts refused her the procedure under the logic that her life wasn’t imminently threatened (apparently since she would die in a few days or weeks, not minutes) and that it’s never ok to prioritize a woman’s life over a fetus’s life. Doctors in El Salvador got around the law by waiting until the 26th week of pregnancy and then performing a Cesarean section — a procedure everyone knew would result in the death of the fetus (which it did) but which can be construed as a “birth” instead of an abortion, even though the end result is the same. Of course, a C-section is significantly more dangerous than an abortion (and especially more dangerous than an earlier abortion, which Beatriz could have had two months ago if she didn’t live in a “pro-life” nation). C-sections are invasive surgical procedures, which are significantly more complicated than early abortions, and pose much higher risks of infection or complication, especially when performed on someone whose health is already compromised by lupus and potential organ failure. They take longer to recover from, and they’re more expensive. Beatriz, thankfully, seems to be doing fine. But she was still legally compelled to undergo a more dangerous, invasive and complicated procedure — and forced to have her body suffer through declining health — so that ideologues could feel better about the intent of a more dangerous procedure that everyone knew would have the exact same outcome as an earlier, safer one....read more
Our guest blogger is a retired Navy captain Dwayne Oslund, USN (Ret.), partnering with the ACLU to advocate for women openly serving in combat roles.
During my 25-year career as a Navy officer and helicopter pilot, I was fortunate to witness firsthand the genuine skills and capabilities of U.S. servicewomen. But at the same time, these brave women were limited in their opportunities by arbitrary rules that had nothing to do with their abilities and, if anything, hurt the readiness of our military. I also saw women rise to the occasion when the policies that excluded them from certain positions yielded to the realities of modern warfare and the challenges of maintaining an effective fighting force....read more