Tomorrow, April 28th, Whole Woman’s Health will be joining many, many other women at the capitol of Texas, for many, many reasons. Each of us may have our own personal stories, or ways we’ve been affected, but the over-arching message will be clear: our reproductive rights are not toys for politicians to play with. They are our lives and our futures. Our sexuality and our freedom. Our families and our independence. The purpose of tomorrow’s protest is to show politicians that we are watching – we vote – and we are angry.
This post is going to be used as, hopefully, the catalyst to get you to come to the capitol and join us tomorrow. So here’s a recap of what they’ve tried to/succeeded in doing to our reproductive rights in the past few months:
1. They’ve told you that if you choose to have an abortion, you’re required to view your ultrasound. Because you don’t know what a fetus looks like, and they want to show you. Because they think you’re not taking this decision seriously enough. And since abortion is “such an easy decision to make,” they might as well make it a bit more difficult to really make sure you know what you’re doing.
2. They’ve turned a safe, legal, outpatient procedure into a mandatory 2 to 3 day procedure for no reason. They’ve told you that you need more time to think about your decision. Even if you already know and are 100% sure. They don’t trust that you’ve thought it through long enough to really know what you want, so why don’t you just wait 24 hours, take a mandatory 2-3 day vacation from work, and think about it for a little while longer?
3. We lost access to MAP for low-income women who could in no way afford the procedure otherwise. If it weren’t for some of our amazing staff, and abortion funds like the Lilith Fund and TEA, ‘choice’ would be non-existent for low-income women.
4. Required Reporting in Texas. They’re currently trying to pass measures to gather more information on you, if you choose to have an abortion.
5. In Oklahoma, they’ve tried to define a fertilized egg as a “person.” So next time you suffer through a miscarriage, or accidentally drink while you’re unknowingly pregnant, or take emergency contraception, you’ll essentially have a male politicians hand on your shoulder while it’s happening.
6. In Georgia, they’ve tried to ban abortion after 20 weeks. Even if the fetus will not make it to term. Republican Terry England compared this potential situation to watching his farm animals give birth to stillborns. “Life gives us many experiences…” he said. Nice comparison there, England, but women are a bit different than cattle.
7. In Virginia, they were poised to introduce a transvaginal ultrasound bill, not only requiring an ultrasound, but an invasive, medically unnecessary transvaginal ultrasound for every woman who chose abortion.
I could go on, but do you want me to? This is in no way an exhaustive list, I’m just exhausted of writing it and ready to be at the capitol already. When anti-choice politicians are allowed to play Doctor, the outcome is always bad. Their disguise of ‘informing women’ for their own ‘safety’ is false, and condescending at best.
We’re better and more intelligent than to have to put up with this anymore.
We don’t need protection, we need the freedom to make our own decisions.
We’ve been angry about it for too long.