By: Marian Geiger

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Why Center Disability?

My passion for the intersections of disability and reproductive justice comes from my academic background in feminist, queer and critical race disability studies. After learning about the history of compulsory sterilization against disabled folks and women of color, I was drawn to learn how this has left a lasting impact on reproductive rights activism. Disability standpoint is often overlooked in activist circles. Centering disability in reproductive justice activism allows us to engage in nuanced conversations around bodily autonomy, the right to have children, the right not to have children and the right to parent those children in safe and healthy environments. …


by Annie Bennett

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The arguments used by those who proclaim themselves “pro-life” are misguided attempts at disrupting the separation between church and state. Whether you like it or not, the United States makes a clear divide in this regard, via the Establishment Clause in the Bill of Rights. If your only argument for regulating others’ bodies is scripture, you’re out of luck, because that cannot be defended in a court of law and directly violates the Constitution, which conservatives claim to love so much.

Regardless, let’s clarify that the word “abortion” occurs in the Bible zero times. In fact, in Exodus 21: 22–25, there is a clear distinction between the murder of a human woman and hurting a fetus so that “her fruit depart from her.” This is not even to mention the various deaths that are done “in the name of God” throughout the Bible, including in 2 Kings 2:23–24 where forty-two boys are killed. The contradictions are incontrovertible. For example, if a fetus absorbs their twin in utero, are we going to charge them with murder? Bodily autonomy is a right guaranteed in the Bible and many Christians (including myself) agree that it is against God’s word to take away free will. …


Olga Zasztowt

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Six months ago, if you had asked me what I thought a Doula was I would have painted you a caricature of a hippie woman who is hired to help upper-class white women through their pregnancies by giving them crystals to set intentions with and “sage-ing” rooms before the birth. I’ll happily admit that I was uninformed — and straight-up wrong. Since then, I have had the privilege to learn from and be educated by doulas on this incredible profession (and it didn’t take much to help reframe my idea of doulas once I came to know more about them). …


By Olga Zasztowt

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A group of women at a rally holding posters that say “ACA Is Here to Stay” and “Don’t Take My Care”

The Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, is under fire once again as the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in California v. Texas on November 10, 2020. This case was brought by a group of 20 Republican state officials led by Texas, backed by the Trump administration, who are once again questioning the constitutionality of the law.i Defending the ACA is a group of 17 Democratic states led by California.

The ACA is responsible for giving millions of Americans insurance coverage by making insurance more affordable, expanding Medicaid programs to cover more individuals, and supporting innovative medical care delivery in order to lower costs of health care for consumers.ii This law was previously upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2012, in NFIB v. Sebelius, when among other arguments, it was decided that the ACA’s minimum essential coverage provision was constitutional if imposed as a tax and not as a part of Congress’s commerce power.iii,iv This provision, also known as the “individual mandate”, states that most people (not including low-income or Native American citizens) must maintain a minimum level of health insurance coverage, and failure to do so results in a financial penalty payable to the IRS. …


By: Priya Hay-Chatterjee

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Priya, author of this piece, submitting her ballot at her local drop box

If you live in a politically active household, neighborhood, social circle, or city, someone has probably reminded you to vote recently. Maybe they were a family member or friend, or perhaps that reminder came in the form of a postcard in your mailbox or an ad on social media. For those of us who choose to absorb political messaging, the world is ablaze with reminders to vote.

For younger Millennials, older Gen Z’ers, and those who fall somewhere in between generations, social media offers an avenue to share the ways we connect with the world around us. One of these connections we share with the world — especially among politically active social media users — is politics. …


By Lily Cork

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I’ve come a long way from the time when I thought Barack Obama could do no wrong, the Democratic party would always do right by me, and voting would solve every problem we face as a society. Don’t get me wrong — Obama did some great things for the United States, and I recognize there is a difference between the Democratic and Republican platforms, especially regarding issues such as reproductive justice. But just like many of my fellow Gen Zers, I no longer believe that voting blue all the way down my ballot will change the deeply entrenched issues in our country. My generation was handed a dying planet, despicable wealth inequality, a racist justice system, and now a global pandemic. Now we are told that we have to be the saviors of the human race. As much as our crippling anxiety and depression deter us, we do have to step up and ensure democracy and our planet survive. …


by Olga Zasztowt

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The U.S. Senate has taken up the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett for final confirmation vote on Monday October 25, 2020. Barrett is Trump’s nominee to replace the seat vacated by the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg on the U.S. Supreme Court. Confirming this nominee would ensure a 6–3 conservative majority in the highest court of the United States, which has forced many again to grow concern with the possibility of the reversal of Roe v. Wade. While Barrett has refused to comment on the landmark case[i] and how she would rule in the future, historically Barrett has spoken out against abortion rights. For example, Barrett voted in favor of a law that would have doctors inform the parents of minors seeking abortion without exception, and she called to rehear a failed state law that attempted to ban abortions relating to sex, race, disability, and life-threatening conditions. …


by Annie Bennett

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Younger millennials and older gen-z individuals do not know a world without Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg or “the Notorious RBG” or Roe v. Wade. This is unprecedented for us and we are terrified. I’ve traveled to countries where abortion is illegal nationwide and that is not what I want for myself or my children. Those my age have had the luxury of being only exposed to backdoor abortions from a distance, unlike my elders who witnessed it firsthand. The prospect of a world where the government gets to control my body is not only terrifying, but anti-American. …


By Amita Chatterjee

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A scene from the Showtime series ‘Shameless,’ where Fiona (Emmy Rossum) goes to a clinic to get an abortion.

On Wednesday, August 12th, I visited an abortion and family planning clinic as part of my internship experience with NARAL Pro-Choice Maryland.

Prior to my visit, I knew there are some misconceptions over how abortion clinics actually look. Many people are under the impression that clinics will be rundown, dirty, or even scary because of how the conversation around abortion is stigmatized as a highly controversial issue. Abortion clinics are not shown accurately in TV shows or other media, nor are they portrayed like hospitals and doctors’ offices.

In Showtime’s hit series Shameless, Fiona Gallagher (Emmy Rossum) gets an abortion and is satisfied with her decision. The way the abortion was portrayed in Shameless was medically accurate, but the clinic itself looked dark and ominous. …


by Emma Ruberg

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Bill Clark — CQ Roll Call/Getty Images

Abortion has always been an important issue in campaigns and elections — it certainly is now. Particularly in the Republican party, a candidate’s positions on abortion and reproductive rights largely dictate the plausibility of their campaign. When it comes to the general election, many conservative voters will cast their ballots based solely on the candidates’ stances on abortion.

According to a Gallup poll from May of this year, 47% of polled U.S. adults say abortion is one of many important factors when deciding whom to support and 24% say a candidate must share their views on abortion. …

About

NARAL Pro-Choice MD

The political leader of the pro-choice movement in Maryland.

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