Saturday, November 16, 2013
New York Magazine: 26 Women Share Their Abortion Stories, by Meaghan Winter:
Of all the battles in our half-century culture war, perhaps none seems further from being resolved, in our laws and in our consciences, than abortion. It’s a fight now in its fifth decade, yet in the past two years, 26 states have passed over 111 provisions restricting abortion. In Texas, the state where the single, pregnant woman who became Jane Roe sued for access to an abortion 41 years ago, Wendy Davis became a national hero for filibustering abortion legislation, as did her governor for signing it into law. . . .
Monday, November 11, 2013
The New York Times: Using Humor to Talk About Birth Control, by Tanzina Vega:
FEW things may be less comfortable to talk about with one’s parents than sex and birth control, and with that in mind, a new public service campaign hopes to offer guidance through a series of ads and online videos. . . .
Monday, September 2, 2013
Jezebel: Progress! NY Times Wedding Announcement Openly Discusses Abortion, by Doug Barry:
Signs of real social progress are often very subtle. They ought to be, by nature, since real progress is really a process of normalization. When same-sex marriage doesn’t merit the “same-sex” modifier, for instance, in most mainstream news publications, it’s a signal that most members of our society think beyond the man + woman = monogamous married couple for ever and ever paradigm. Or, when a wedding announcement in the New York Times openly discusses abortion as a difficult yet pragmatic decision a young couple made before they were financially and emotionally ready to have a kid, it’s a signal that a vast majority of Times readers (at the very least) recognize that having an abortion is a completely legitimate option.
On Friday, the Times announced the wedding of Faith Rein and Udonis Haslem, a power forward on the Miami Heat’s championship-nabbing team. . . .
Monday, August 19, 2013
Bustle: Mark Ruffalo Gives Pro-Choice Speech, Talks About Mother's Illegal Abortion, by Rachel Krantz:
You can add this to your weird The Kids Are All Right sperm-donor-dad fantasy: Mark Ruffalo is also apparently a pro-choice activist. The 45-year-old actor gave a moving speech at a rally for abortion rights in Jackson, Mississippi this weekend, opening up about his mother's own illegal abortion.
"My mother’s illegal abortion marked a time in America that we have worked long and hard to leave behind. It was a time when women were seen as second rate citizens who were not smart enough, nor responsible enough, nor capable enough to make decisions about their lives," Ruffalo said. . . .
Monday, August 5, 2013
Guttmacher Institute Press Release: One Week Later, Women Denied an Abortion Feel More Regret and Less Relief Than Those Who Have One:
Women who are denied an abortion feel more regret and less relief one week later than women who undergo the procedure, according to “Women’s Emotions One Week After Receiving or Being Denied an Abortion in the United States,” by Corinne H. Rocca of the University of California, San Francisco, et al. Specifically, while 41% of women who had an abortion near the provider’s gestational age limit reported feeling regret about it, 50% of women turned away because they requested an abortion beyond that limit did so. And while 90% of women who obtained a near-limit abortion reported feeling relief, 49% of those turned away expressed this emotion.
Researchers used data on 843 women seeking abortions at 30 U.S. facilities between 2008 and 2010, who were interviewed as part of a larger, five-year study on the health and socioeconomic consequences of receiving or being denied an abortion in the United States. The women were asked about six emotions: relief, happiness, regret, guilt, sadness and anger. They were questioned separately about their pregnancies and their experiences seeking an abortion, so as not to confuse their emotions about the two.
Tuesday, July 23, 2013
The New York Times: Report Finds Gradual Fall in Female Genital Cutting in Africa, by Celia W. Dugger:
A comprehensive new assessment of the ancient practice of female genital cutting has found a gradual but significant decline in many countries, even in some where it remains deeply entrenched.
Teenage girls are now less likely to have been cut than older women in more than half of the 29 countries in Africa and the Middle East where the practice is concentrated, according to the assessment by the United Nations Children’s Fund. . . .
Monday, July 15, 2013
Rolling Stone: The 10 Dumbest Things Ever Said About Abortion and Women's Rights, by Sarah Seltzer:
The worst sexist statements, logical fails and outright idiocy from the anti-choice movement
As long as abortion restrictions and bans continue to be rammed through state legislatures and introduced on Capitol Hill, it seems that anti-choice zealots will continue making headlines with their bizarre, scientifically incorrect and downright cruel remarks. Whether they're confusing the basics of female anatomy, making offensive comparisons to historical tragedies, trivializing rape or labeling pro-choice politicians "terrorists," these anti-abortion crusaders – led by a hee-hawing band of actual elected officials – could populate a thousand lists of epically dumb comments. Here's a sampling of the most ill-informed, borderline delusional and flat-out misogynist statements from the so-called "pro-life" movement: . . .
Saturday, July 6, 2013
The Guardian UK: Why I Support Women's Access to Safe, Legal Abortion, by Rob Delaney:
I so love my kids, I can be envious of my wife for carrying them when pregnant. But I care about her right to choose just as much
I support a woman's right to safe, legal abortion because centuries of history shows us that women are going to get abortion whether they are safe and legal or not. And when they're not safe and legal, these women will often die terrible or be damaged irreparably. . . .
Sunday, June 30, 2013
The New York Times: Coming Out on Abortion:
For years, conservatives rallied support around opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage. Support for same-sex marriage has grown, in part, because opponents have realized that friends and relatives are gay. But Republicans have continued to press for tougher laws against abortion.
The Guttmacher Institute says 30 percent of American women have had an abortion by age 40. Would support for abortion rights grow if more women discussed their abortions?
Read the discussion.
Thursday, May 23, 2013
The New York Times: Unexcited? There May Be a Pill for That, by Daniel Bergner:
Linneah sat at a desk at the Center for Sexual Medicine at Sheppard Pratt in the suburbs of Baltimore and filled out a questionnaire. She read briskly, making swift checks beside her selected answers, and when she was finished, she handed the pages across the desk to Martina Miller, who gave her a round of pills.
The pills were either a placebo or a new drug called Lybrido, created to stoke sexual desire in women. . . .
. . .“Female Viagra” is the way drugs like Lybrido and Lybridos tend to be discussed. But this is a misconception. Viagra meddles with the arteries; it causes physical shifts that allow the penis to rise. A female-desire drug would be something else. It would adjust the primal and executive regions of the brain. It would reach into the psyche. . . .
See also Jezebel: How a Women's Libido Pill Could Actually Save Monogamy, by Lindy West.
Monday, May 20, 2013
The Los Angeles Times - op-ed: A birth control double standard, by Meg Waite Clayton:
Condoms are readily available without identification. Why not Plan B?
In the uproar about making the morning-after contraceptive known as Plan B available to our daughters, there has been no similar outcry about condoms and our sons. Anyone of any age can walk into a drugstore — as well as most grocery and big-box stores — and buy condoms. . . .
Sunday, February 10, 2013
The New York Times - Opinionator: Malawi's Leader Makes Safe Childbirth Her Mission, by Courtney E. Martin:
Malawi is a country of rolling hills and marshy flatlands, where 85 percent of the population live in the countryside, most subsisting on less than $2 per person per day, typically from corn and tobacco farming. It is also a country with extremely high maternal mortality. In the U.S., 1 in 2,400 women are at risk of dying while giving birth over the course of their lives; in Malawi, it is 1 out of 36. If the country’s new president, Joyce Banda, has her way, that will soon change. . . .
Thursday, November 29, 2012
Reuters: China considers easing family planning rules, by Michael Martina:
China is considering changes to its one-child policy, a former family planning official said, with government advisory bodies drafting proposals in the face of a rapidly ageing society in the world's most populous nation. . . .
Saturday, October 13, 2012
The Hill - Healthwatch blog: Celebs lambaste GOP over abortion, by Elise Viebeck:
A slew of film and television stars are pushing back against GOP efforts to ban abortion and stop President Obama's birth-control mandate.
Meryl Streep, Kevin Bacon, Kyra Sedgwick, Amy Poehler and others mounted an online push for a "Bill of Reproductive Rights" on Tuesday in collaboration with an international abortion-rights group. . . .
Sunday, September 16, 2012
The New York Times: Upstairs, Downstairs (book review of ‘Vagina: A New Biography,’ by Naomi Wolf), by Toni Bentley:
Sit back and relax, will you? Naomi Wolf has got her orgasm back. Yep. I know you were worried. We were all worried. I mean, to lose one’s orgasm at a time like this, what with Syria undergoing mass civilian murder and Romney closing in on Obama, it is really enough to put a liberated gal’s thong in a knot.
But Wolf didn’t just get back one of those little clitoral thingamajigs that Masters and Johnson so laboriously put back on the map after Freud had brushed them aside. Or rather inside, where he felt they belonged. She has reclaimed the Great Big Cosmic I-Am-a-Gorgeous-Goddess (Feminist-Goddess, that is) kind. Phew!
“Vagina: A New Biography” should have been an important book. A very important book. . . .
Sunday, August 12, 2012
The Huffington Post: 3-D Fetus Statues Get Thumbs Down From Pregnant Moms, by David Moye:
Three dimensional ultrasound photos are becoming increasingly common, but a Japanese engineering company is using the technology to create statues from sonograms that some might consider embryo art. . . .
But while the company flack said the customers have been satisfied, pregnant women who viewed the video thought the concept was fetally flawed. . . .
This is interesting in light of the anti-choice movement's fervent efforts to portray embryos and fetuses as morally equivalent to fully developed children and as completely separate from the women who carry them within their bodies. The fact that many women seem to find the 3-D models "creepy" suggests that, notwithstanding the prevalence of ultrasound imaging, pregnant women find it unnatural and unsettling to regard the fetus as an entity severed from their own bodies.
The Huffington Post (Blog): Why Religion Opposes Female Rights, by Nigel Barber:
Recently, the Catholic hierarchy moved to bring the Leadership Conference of Women Religious into line with orthodox Church teachings . This organization of American nuns had been in conflict with the Vatican over issues related to women's rights, including reproductive rights. The spectacle of an all-male task force being brought in to tell women what they must think may seem badly dated. Yet, male priests still tell most of the world's women what to think and their message is often anti-feminist. . . .
Tuesday, May 29, 2012
The New York Times: For Canada, U.S. Debates Are Old News, by Luisita Lopez Torregrosa:
Those Americans embroiled in combustible debates over abortion, birth control, same-sex marriage and other social issues this electoral season might look north of the border to find North Americans who are not riven by such heated disputes. . . .
To many Americans, and particularly American women, who are wondering why some of the issues listed above still stir controversy decades after apparent resolution, Canada appears to have it all over the United States. . . .
Los Angeles Times: Analysis: Are the new Gallup numbers on abortion meaningful?, by David Lauter:
Gallup received considerable attention Wednesday for new poll numbers showing that the share of Americans who call themselves “pro-choice” on the abortion issue has hit a record low of 41% while 50% now call themselves “pro-life.”
Attention-getting for sure, but what, if anything, does it mean? . . .
Slate Magazine: The Problem With Polling About Moral Beliefs, by Amanda Marcotte:
Another year, another Gallup poll on abortion for anti-choicers to misleadingly represent in a bid to deceive the country into believing they're winning in the court of public opinion. Of course, Gallup shares the blame for this travesty, since it publishes its polling results with a lead about the poll that asks if people identify as pro-choice or pro-life. Inevitably, "pro-life" polls well, much better than it would if it were more accurately phrased as "anti-choice" or "anti-abortion," because it's a fuzzy-wuzzy term that deliberately distracts from the legal and sexual freedom issues at the heart of the abortion debate. This year, the poll found that 50 percent of Americans relate to the empty term "pro-life," and only 41 percent to the term "pro-choice.". . .
The Washington Post (op-ed contributor): Why Americans are becoming more pro-life, by Ashley McGuire:
For decades, abortion was thought of as an issue that riled up religious zealots in the Bible Belt. “Enlightened” Americans, however, saw abortion as the key to women’s liberation and a more egalitarian society.
Their notions about history and progress assured them that abortion was an essential part of the path forward, for women and for society more broadly.
Wednesday’s news that Gallup is now recording the lowest level of self-described pro-choicers in its history of tracking the abortion issue is no doubt an unwelcome hiccup in their vision for America. . . .
Monday, May 7, 2012
Huffington Post: '4000 Years Of Choice' Comes To San Francisco: Artist Heather Ault's Unique Approach To Reproductive Rights, by Robin Wilkey:
"Since the days of Roe v. Wade, the pro-choice movement has presented images of feminists, coat hangers and dead women to represent reproductive rights," said local artist Heather Ault. "Now is the time for a broader and more dynamic visual campaign."
Ault, a graphic artist, caught the attention of activists and artists alike in 2010 with her poster exhibition "4000 Years Of Choice." And now, for the first time it's coming to San Francisco.
In "4000 Years Of Choice," a collection of bright, colorful posters that look more like vintage Tropicana ads than a reproductive rights campaign, Ault shatters the concept that birth control and abortion need be something shameful, pointing to its fascinating history instead. . . .