Tag Archives: reproductive rights

Vintage Fashion Inspiration & Feminist Icon- Gloria Steinem

10 Apr

If you know who Gloria Steinem is you probably associate her with the feminist movement and not with fashion.  However, she has always been one well dressed lady.  I like her style because it is simple yet flattering.  She dresses in form-fitting shirts  paired with a skirt or jeans.  Her signature look is a straight center part with her hair hanging around her face her eyes framed with large glasses.  As flattering as this look is on her, the reason it was created by her is because she felt she had fat cheeks and this was her way of hiding them.  We can all identify with insecurities, even if we are strong women.

*all images found via a google image search

My interest in Gloria was renewed recently after watching the HBO documentary Gloria: In Her Own Words.

I cannot stress how important I think it is to watch this film.  History repeats itself if the current generation does not educate itself.  I fear this may happen with women’s rights.  The reproductive and abortion rights that were fought for so hard in the 1960s and into the 1970s, are in present day in jeopardy and under constant attack.  How can we be moving backwards as a society on equal rights issues?

What surprised me most were the vintage clips of men very vehemently not wanting women in their work place.  These men were angry and they didn’t think women were smart enough to do the jobs they were doing.  Does this seem like a recurrent theme?  Why are women still having to fight to get equal pay for the same job?

The hardest thing to watch was a Larry King clip from 1990.  Gloria was being interviewed by Larry and a woman called into the show.  What initially seemed like a woman calling in to thank Gloria turned into a slap in the face.  The caller “thanked” Gloria for causing the collapse of the traditional family structure of America and ended by telling her to rot in hell.  Devastating, but I think it should be pointed out that for every woman who felt liberated by the women’s movement there were and are women who think it was the worst thing to ever happen.  There were and are women who are happy to be homemakers, and did and do not want to be told that they should want more or that they need to work outside of the home.  Change makes life more challenging, more unpredictable and people like to feel secure.  Women should not be judging and fighting with one another about this.  Women should be supporting one another’s freedom to choose to stay at home or to have a career.

Watching this film for me was such an inspiration.  After I felt like I wasn’t doing enough in my life.  Oh motivation, the things you do to me.  I’ve been motivated into being an organizer for Chicago’s Slut Walk because it is important to me that women have autonomy over their bodies and be allowed to embrace their femininity instead of being accused of being sluts.

As great as a quote that is, it was not used in its entirety.  The last lines are “That’s their natural and first weapon.  She will need her sisterhood.”  I dream of a sisterhood consisting of women and men-the one’s that get it- supporting and nurturing each other, working towards an equal, kind world.

“Without leaps of imagination or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all is a form of planning.” ~Gloria Steinem

Why I’m Pro-Choice, and Why Other Men Should Be Too

5 Apr

We think it’s important that everyone be included in the conversation about reproductive health and abortion.  Even men.  Men should not be left out of the discussion and it’s important that they be allies, not enemies.  That’s why you should check out Pro-Feminist Bro.  He gets why it’s important for women to be able to decide what to do with their bodies.  Here is what he has to say:

Like many issues within feminism, people tend to view reproductive justice as a “women’s issue.” And while it certainly is, as every woman deserves to choose when to start a family (if at all) it is also imperative that pro-feminist men understand that restricting a woman’s access to reproductive choice – thereby limiting her own personal autonomy – is a form of violence. Presidential candidates (and white men) Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum have regularly stated their desire to close Planned Parenthood, an organization which primarily provides cervical and breast cancer screenings as well as access to safer sex materials such as condoms and birth control. Though I have issues with Planned Parenthood and its founder Margaret Sanger (most notably her support of eugenics), the services that PP – and other legitimate women’s health clinics – provides are essential not only to a woman’s physical health, but her sexual and reproductive freedom. Legislation that states an embryo is more important than a living woman, who would have to carry that embryo to term, is absurd regardless of where you think conception begins. In fact, the whole “life begins at conception” argument is a distraction from the real issue – that a living, breathing woman has to carry that child to term and afterwards take care of it, while the government wants to limit social services and not give what they believe to be “handouts.” As much as it claims to love children, patriarchy does not do a very good job of taking care of them. And, as evidenced by the recent Planned Parenthood bombing in Wisconsin, as well as the murder of Dr. George Tiller, those who are “pro-life” do not care much for the lives of women and girls.
So, why should men care about women’s reproductive freedom? Essentially, it is sexist to tell a woman what she should do with her body. Organizations like theChicago Abortion Fund need to exist so that in the face of sexist, classist, and racist legislation all women can exercise their right to bodily autonomy. CAF states:

The Chicago Abortion Fund (CAF) fights to overturn economic barriers to reproductive choice. Through direct service and education/advocacy, CAF assists low-income women in obtaining safe abortion services by providing clinic referrals, negotiated discounts and financial assistance. While we are unable to directly assist all the women in need, we work to extend choice to all low-income women by making the issue of economic access a priority on the agenda of policy makers.

These reasons are why I am participating in the National Network of Abortion Fund’s annual Bowl-A-Thon. Every bit donated helps underserved women in Chicago exercise their reproductive freedom. In times where a Presidential candidate says he wants to get rid of organizations like Planned Parenthood, we need to take a stand for choice. We need to take a stand for women. If you can donate, I would greatly appreciate it. More importantly, the women in need of reproductive healthcare services who cannot afford it need it.

To donate to my team and support CAF, please click here.

Please reblog or repost if you can. Thank you for reading.

Steve Adler

4-5-2012

To All The Geniuses Who Think Emergency Contraception Is The Abortion Pill You Are About To Be Schooled

28 Mar

Today is the annual day of action for the BACK UP YOUR BIRTH CONTROL  campaign.  This year’s theme is EC=BC.  I guess there are people out there who honestly believe that emergency contraception is the abortion pill.  I have very little tolerance for stupidity and anyone who believes that is stupid.  Why sugarcoat it?

First off, the price of emergency contraception should tip one off to the fact that it is not the abortion pill.  There is a HUGE difference between what emergency contraception costs and what the abortion pill costs.  I’m talking hundreds of dollars worth of difference.

Second, you can get emergency contraception over the counter if you are 18+.  You can’t just walk into a pharmacy or Planned Parenthood for that matter and ask for the abortion pill and be given it.  Go ahead and try and let me know how that goes for you.

Thirdly and most importantly, emergency contraception only works if you aren’t already pregnant.  It acts like a goalie trying to block the other team from scoring.

Since I worked at Planned Parenthood I was trained in all the facts of emergency contraception, but remember I am not a doctor.  I want to stress that emergency contraception is not to be used on a daily basis or even that frequently.  It really should be a back up to condoms or other methods of birth control.  It is not a magic pill.  It is not 100% effective.  Women still end up pregnant after taking it.  The horror!

There are 3 types of emergency contraception that I am knowledgeable in:

  1. Next Choice = this is a generic and therefore the most affordable.  It is most effective up to 72 hours after, but it’s best to take it ASAP.  The effectiveness goes down everyday.  It is also comes in 2 pills.  I was taught to advise women to not follow the included directions.  It’s best to take both pills at the same time so you don’t forget that second pill.
  2. Plan B One-Step = one pill, easy to take, and effective up to 72 hours after.  The effectiveness does decrease daily.
  3. Ella = everyone needs a prescription for this one!  It’s the newest one and therefore the most expensive.   However, it’s effective for up to 5 days and it’s effectiveness does not decrease.

My emergency contraception spiel when dispensing it went a little something like this: “Make sure to take it on a full stomach because it could make you nauseous.  Your period could come sooner than usual or it may be lighter or heavier than usual.  You may have some spotting or bleeding after taking it.  If you don’t get a period, take a pregnancy test”.

Remember, it’s always a good idea to have a back up plan.  Here is an EC cheat sheet  and if you love couponing here is an Ella coupon and a Plan B One-Step coupon.  Or head on over to your nearest Planned Parenthood where it’s usually cheaper than any pharmacy!

George Carlin Was A Feminist

13 Mar

I adore and admire George Carlin.  I think he was a very wise man and will one day share with you his life philosophies, but today is about George Carlin The Feminist.  Some people may find this an outrageous claim, but I’ll prove my point.  Let’s first discuss the above video which is actually just audio.  George talks about rape and claims that rape can be funny depending on the exaggeration.  What he is doing is giving an intro into a discussion about rape, but he does it with a touch humor.  I feel humor is an effective tool for getting people to let their guards down and not put up defenses immediately.  Through his comedy he was able to reach a wide diversified audience.  And when he is joking about rape he is basically saying what the fuck is wrong with this guy?  He is putting the blame on the rapist and not the “victim”.  Oh, and he was completely right about there being a higher incident of rape at the North Pole.

He also jokes about feminists and language and I agree with him on this.  My big issue is with the word girl being used for adult women and how we shouldn’t do it because it infantilizes women.  Many of my female friends use the term such as hey girl or you’re my girl.  And I don’t think there is anything wrong with that.  We aren’t trying to put each other down or be demeaning.   For us it’s a term of affection, a closeness, a bond.  I think women using the term amongst ourselves is ok.  A guy however should never say hey girl to me (or any other woman).  I have a name, use it and if you don’t know it hey hey is not the way to go about it.

This is one of my fave clips of George’s comedy.  He tackles all the issues of abortion with humor!  What’s more entertaining than that?  Everyone should watch this video regardless of their view on abortion.  My favorite moments are when he asks the audience to name 6 ways humans are better than chickens, homosexuals, the Catholics, and how periods make women serial killers.

“We declare war on the things we don’t like about ourselves”.  His observations on our society were so astute.  He was for the people.  He has the perfect solution for homelessness.  He thought golf courses should be turned into housing for the homeless and that it should be referred to as houselessness.  Does that not sound like a feminist to you, a radical feminist at that.  I completely agree that way too much land is used for golf courses and that it is an elitist, sexist, and racist “game”.  Golf is NOT A SPORT.  CHEERLEADING IS A SPORT.  Golf is the fat, white guy’s so called sport.

Even though George passed in 2008 he was always a good judge of character.  He totally got Rush Limbaugh.  I mean, Rush has been married 4 times and doesn’t have any children yet is completely clueless about birth control.

Thank You Susan G. Komen Foundation

16 Feb

 I would like to give thanks to the Susan G. Komen Foundation.  I’m sure you’re thinking it’s for deciding to continue to grant money to Planned Parenthood for breast exams.  Nope.  Their “little stunt” actually benefited Planned Parenthood because the donations poured in.  Sorry your plan backfired.  Actually it kind of exploded in your face.  Seems there are people who think Planned Parenthood is pretty awesome.  Maybe other organizations and pro-lifers will remember that the next time they want to take on the “pro-abortion” Planned Parenthood.

“The A word”

17 Jan

The Chicago Abortion Fund is hosting their annual Roe vs. Wade rally at the Thompson Center this Friday January 20th from 12-1pm!

Dress warm and come get your shouts on!

About Chicago Abortion Fund

Chicago Abortion Fund (CAF) fights to overturn economic barriers to reproductive choice. Through direct service and education/advocacy, CAF assists low-income women in obtaining safe abortion services by providing clinic referrals, negotiated discounts and financial assistance. While we are unable to directly assist all the women in need, we work to extend choice to all low-income women by making the issue of economic access a priority on the agenda of policy makers.

If you are in Chicago and would like to watch our show “The A Word” live, tune in at 8pm on the last Wednesday of every month, public access CAN-TV 21.

Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/chicagoabortionfund

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Chicago-Abortion-Fund/133928452953

Blog: http://www.chicagoabortionfund.blogspot.com/

Baby Killer

8 Nov

Baby killer.  That’s what my sister calls me whenever she gets mad at me.  I guess it’s intended to hurt my feelings?  It doesn’t.  In a recent text message conversation she turned on me and called me a baby killer, the devil, and said I needed to go to church.  Excuse me, but when was the last time you set foot in a church my dear?  I told her to watch some George Carlin; it would make her feel a lot better about life.

She calls me a baby killer because I worked at Planned Parenthood.  Why would she think that term would offend me then?  I thought being a pro-baby killer was a prerequisite for the job.  Apparently it’s not because Planned Parenthood (in Chicago) hires employees that think abortion is wrong unless it’s because of rape.  *Gasp*, tis true.  How fucked up is that?

Actually, I didn’t even work in the abortion clinic at Planned Parenthood.  I worked in the family planning clinic which meant the main part of my job was counseling women on birth control to prevent pregnancy.  The other part of my job did include what is called options counseling.  This is provided to women who come in and test positive for pregnancy.

On their intake sheet there is a handy dandy section where they can mark what they want to do about the pregnancy.  1- Continue the pregnancy, 2-Terminate the pregnancy, 3-Adoption, 4-Undecided, or 5-Discuss all options.  Most women know what they want to do before they even come in for the test.   So, if they want to continue the pregnancy I would talk to them about proper prenatal care and applying for Medicaid to cover it.  For adoption I would give them a referral to the Cradle, an adoption agency.

For those that want to terminate, are undecided, or want to discuss all options what I’ve found is those women just really want to know what is involved with the abortion procedure and the difference between the 2 types of abortion procedures.  Any woman considering an abortion I ALWAYS RECOMMEND the surgical procedure with sedation.  Trust me it’ll be the best decision you ever made.

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