Thursday, May 5, 2022

Thursday Thoughts - I concede that you were right about this place

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I have a lot of thoughts this Thursday, and I'll give you one guess what they are swirling around this week. If you don't want to talk about or read about abortion and if you don't think abortion should be legal, this post is not for you. I am almost certainly not for you. The comment section is 100% not for you.

In the past, I would have show up here today with a well prepared/written in advance piece on abortion and why it should be protected. I'm not doing that today for many reasons, number one being you know damn well why it should be protected. I'm showing up at lunch, unprepared and pissed off. 

Links to things to read and action items at the bottom if you want to skip down to there. This is still a draft decision, the actual one should come down in late June. Be armed with knowledge and connected to resources in advance. What are you prepared to do to ensure the future of the little girls you know - and more crucially, the ones you don't, who might look different or have no resources - is different than today? What did we not do over the last 49 years that allowed federal abortion protection to come this close to a roll back, which is almost certain to be complete in June?

The evangelical wing of the Republican party - which encompasses basically the entire party at this point - has been working for many, many years with the goal to overturn Roe vs. Wade. They have recruited the best legal minds out of school, put a ton of money into getting judges placed in the lower courts, chipped away at Roe from all angles until it was basically a tattered flag yet one that is still clinging to the pole, and gaslit everyone and became the biggest hypocrites to sell their fucking souls to get three seats on the highest court in the land. All with the goal to overturn Roe on the federal level and assuage you all with the promise that this does not mean abortion is illegal, it means it's up to the states

Also, sorry to say it out loud for those trying to ignore it. After they do abortion, they'll go back to segregation, which is partially what the defunding of public ed that has been happening for over 20 years is about. The other part is to keep the population dull and ignorant, without the critical thinking skills that can piece shit together. 

Like many of you, I fucking said this would happen over and over, to people's face and on every form of social media. For years. And like many of you, I heard that will never happen. You are being dramatic/ridiculous. This is a stretch. You don't know how the law works. You sound crazy/hysterical/angry, are you okay

No, motherfuckers. We're not okay. 

Even though I knew this was coming, it has still provoked a visceral reaction and been deeply unsettling. 

I'm never going to be okay again knowing so many people were told this over and over and over and pooh poohed it, saying they supported women all while allowing a war on them to escalate to this level. I'm furious and am not acting like I'm not. I am not entertaining any focus on the leak as the problem vs what was contained in the leak.  And I am not hearing one thing when you try to tell us more bad shit is not going to happen. Republicans said Roe was "settled law" and look at it now. They are lying liars who lie, they've now entered a slippery slope with precedent, and we're all fucked. Shut all the way up. This draft decision is as bad as we think it is, and actually, it's worse. 
Now, if this decision drops as it was leaked, we are ALL about to be in a serious fucking shit position we cannot vote ourselves out of. The decision draft references right to privacy, which impacts so many other SCOTUS decisions over the years, including but not limited to the right for married couples to obtain birth control without government interference, same sex marriage (Alito already wrote he would vote to overturn as soon as the opportunity came along and Alliance Defending Freedom which is decidedly not defending the freedom of anyone outside of mainstream white straight people has been working on this since the Obergefell decision came down), interracial marriage, anti-sodomy laws. Lots of things aren't specifically named in the Constitution that 99% of us appreciate and rely on.

The list will continue, and in regards to Roe alone there will be repercussions for people you didn't think there would be, or people you don't care about? People trying to have a child via IVF, people at danger of dying from ectopic pregnancy or complications from pregnancy, victims of incest, victims of rape. Did you not think of these people or do you not care about them, or both?

I'm not getting into why it is a fucking farce to end federal protection for abortions in a country with the highest maternal mortality rate, no paid maternity leave, no universal subsidized childcare, no continued birth parent care, and frequently inaccessible mental health care (wording from tweet by TocarraElise). Or why it is absolutely absurd for who sits on this court in particular, how they got there, and why one is allowed to remain there to be the ones ending this federal protection of human rights. 

Some one off thoughts I want to put somewhere and today that is here.
-Abortion is healthcare, period. It is a private issue. Your religion does not have a say over someone else's healthcare. Period. PERIOD.

-Removing someone's bodily autonomy is not a Christian value and if you think it is you actually follow American evangelical false gods and oppressors and certainly do not follow the teachings or life of Jesus Christ as he is written. 

-This is a ruling against the working class, the poor, and the marginalized. This is racist, classist, and  misogynistic. 

-I'll be angry about this forever, and if that's where you are too, don't let anyone tell you that is not valid or possible.

-The criminalization of abortion is class warfare, and it is a strategy. It keeps poor women down, especially Black women and women of color. If any woman is arrested for abortion, she becomes part of the prison industrial complex. Her labor is free and she loses her right to vote in future elections. 

-I used to couch my opinion on abortion by attempting to appeal to people and win them over. With age I have stopped making my opinions smaller to give others room to curl around them. Fuck that. Abortion on demand and without apology. It is not my business what another woman does with her body, and it is not yours, and it is not the fucking government's. There are zero laws on American books about what a man might do with his ejaculate, without which THERE ARE ZERO PREGNANCIES. Let's be crystal clear here about what all abortion laws are about: Control of women and population. Remove all abortion laws from everywhere. 

-We spent 20 years and zillions of dollars, fucked with thousands of US military minds and bodies and families, destroyed thousands of civilian lives, and more in Afghanistan to fight violent religious extremists when they were in our own fucking country infiltrating every level of government all along and many of you were and are still voting for them. The American religious right zealots are the same as the Taliban. If that hurts your feelings, reflect. 

-Abortion does not cease to exist because it is deemed illegal or unprotected. Abortion predates America and its evangelicals and it probably predates Jesus too. If that hurts your feelings, reflect.

-This iteration of the Supreme Court has said mandating masks against a global pandemic that has killed 995,000 Americans (almost a million fucking people) in under four years is unconstitutional but is about to make pregnancy mandatory. Are you all fucking serious not seeing how exactly pro-life that is NOT? Stop lying to yourself and each other.

-Fuck everyone who is all "I'm sick of people's opinions on the internet," "we don't need political opinions." No one says a fucking thing when you only share opinions on shoes and food and makeup. Take several seats, you are a major part of the problem 

-Adjacent to that - human rights and civil liberties are not political nor are they opinions. They exist and you either recognize them or you violate them. Bodily autonomy is a human right. You recognize it or you violate it. 

-As stated above I believe we are past voting ourselves out of this. This capitalist dictatorship catering to oligarchs has us all well fucked. Yes, even those of us defending billionaires as if we would ever be one. Yes, even those of us who always voted for pro choice candidates. This is all authoritarian fascist shit and we're too far along in it. Until there is a plan for collective action - which is different than rallies and marches and involves changes to lifestyle etc - I will continue voting but only for people who support abortion (which is how I have always voted) with a preference for progressives (many which would be considered run of the mill democrats before everything on the political spectrum shifted). At the end of the day though, we are all choosing to play by these rules and we don't have to if enough of us decide not to, by using collective power to enact change. Which is how we have always forced change even though some people would like to say that is not the case. We reach a point in which the broken system cannot be changed from the inside and all operations within the bounds of a broken system are futile. We have not secured rights previously through civil discourse and we will not grab them back now without massive change, sacrifice, and some spilled blood. Please think on that and digest it. 

-White women who own any RBG shit, actually do something aside from just owning merch.

-Democrat politicians who stood by and played nice and safe and tried to meet in the middle or cater to extremists for years while doing nothing of action except wringing their hands have blood on those hands. Roe could have been codified into law AT ANY TIME since it was passed.

ABORTION IS STILL FEDERALLY PROTECTED. If you need an appointment, make one. If you have an appointment, keep it.

For your consideration
-Leaked draft opinion - this is not the time to skim shit. Read it
-Twitter thread from historian starting with abortion was legal when constitution was written
-Twitter thread from Mikki Kendall, author of Hood Feminism, about white women as a power bloc. Fellow white ladies, if we're not the fucking wall for all people, choosing liberation over proximity to power/upholding the patriarchy and economic cover from men, we have fucked ourselves and everyone else on purpose
-Twitter thread from A.H. Reaume on what other rights were viewed by SCOTUS under the right to privacy lens
-IG slides about forced labor and not in the having baby sense
-Abortion by Design Mom, a lovely human and great follow, Mormon and mother of six. This is a link to her site, on which she has permanently shared her famous twitter abortion thread. 

Resources. Accounts to follow on instagram, will give you action items or action items are listed, follow clickable links in their bios for further action or how to help or donate. Some action items will probably be outside of your norm. Try not to reject them outright, but sit with them and think about it. 
-SisterSong: the National Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective
-Shout Your Abortion - aid and abet abortion
-Apiary for Practical Support - providing technical assistance to those traveling for abortions, the silent backbone for when clinics close 
-Abortion Funds - National Network of Abortion Funds. Donate and/or become an individual member for $30, which will allow you to select your local independent abortion provider. Click through link in their profile
-Keep Our Clinics - support independent community providers. Planned Parenthood is excellent but does not need our $25 contributions right now
-M+A hotline is a confidential, private and secure phone & text hotline for people in need of support for self-managed miscarriage or abortion. 1-833-246-2632
-Abortion on Our Own Terms - info on self-managed abortions i.e. abortion pills - how to find vetted, personalized info on how to get an abortion, no search or user data saved
-Sarasophief - always shares info and actions, most of the above accounts have been shared by her
-As stated above, I don't think we are able to vote our way off of this path. You may disagree with me and that is cool. Regardless until there is another avenue to operate within, make sure you are registered to vote. Vote in your local elections, it is always important as they impact you the most, but right now it is crucial. 
-Be open to collective and community organizing that leads to sustained action. This could look different than what most of us are used to doing in response to things we do not like at a government level.
-Contact your elected officials now. Tell them plainly what you want. Don’t worry about sounding good or feeling awkward. They are normal people who work for us, their constituents. You will get a staffer or voicemail. Pretend you are placing an order at a drive thru. Be courteous, state your opinion plainly, say thank you and have a good day. Hang up and call the next one. 
-If you can afford to acquire abortion pills, do so for future needs of yourself or others.
-If you use a period tracker on your phone, download your info elsewhere and delete it and your data. 
-Always keep passport up to date for you and all of your family members, this is something we should always do regardless of what sort of political or social climate we are in.

I think of Margaret Atwood's books many people thought of as just a boogey man for so many years, and about how what humans actually do to each other is wilder than anything she could have conceived in The Handmaid's Tale or its follow up The Testaments

We are not relying on elected officials of any party or unjust laws. We protect each other. I will fight tooth and nail for bodily autonomy for women. You should too. For a million reasons but at the end of the day, because every human deserves it. Bodily autonomy is the human right all others stem from.

What appears beyond the hyphen in Thursday Thoughts titles is what I'm listening to when I'm starting this - this week is Wrap Your Arms Around Me by Barenaked Ladies

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