Monday, February 27, 2012

Weekly Reader

Here's what I've been reading about this week:

The majority of respondents to a Sudbury Star poll do not want to reopen the abortion debate

More on Woodworth; is he acting with Harper's approval?

Joyce Arthur on the Angus Reid "false dilemma" fallacy

More discussion of sex-selective abortion in Canada

Perhaps you heard about this whole Active-8 campaign sabotage by anti-choicers?

Resource alert! Some fact sheets on birth control

Two former escorts at the Fredericton clinic where I worked and how they fell in love. Awwwww!

Friday, February 24, 2012

The Youth!!

Sorry I can't really post today; I got called somewhat last minute to volunteer at the Canadian Women's Foundation Teen Healthy Relationship Programming National Skills Institute (I know, my glamorous life!) and I don't have my normal Writing Day. But I encourage you to spend the time you would normally spend reading my blog, supporting pro-choice youth activism in the Maritimes! Here's how:

- Did you pledge for Kandace yet? It don't cost nothin', mister. Here's why you should!

- Do you love love? I do! Check out this sweet pro-choice love story that is not only TOTALLY TRUE AND ROMANTIC, it happened to my friends!! Also I was there! Yay love! (Don't you think "confusingly age-inappropriate" should be in my byline?).

Okay catch you on the flip side, cool cats.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Human Rights > Your Opinion

 I think I kind of touched on this in my post about why poll results don't matter, but it's something I've been thinking about lately and I want to make my position on it a little clearer.

With the recent re-interest in sex-selective abortion in Canada, and with Woodworth scattering his really excellent ideas of new and creative ways to control women, there have been a lot of polls done lately, and a lot of public discussion about abortion and the laws (or lack thereof) that we have in Canada. A lot of people seem to feel that if we take polls and enough people express concern or a desire for more restrictions on certain rights, this will - and more importantly, should - result in changes in the law.

It feels as though we have lost the plot a little bit, because here's the thing: there's a reason we have defined "human rights" and taken them outside of the sphere of normal legislation and even national jurisdiction. As useless as you might think the United Nations is, there is a reason they produced a list of things that we all have a right to, and there's a reason that document is not called "Universal Declaration of things that are fairly important, but you can play around with if you want to".

I'm not saying we should all shut up and listen to the UN (and you will rarely, if ever, hear me say that). I'm saying that I feel there are rights that humans should reasonably expect, and in an ideal world, we would not have to worry about them being legislated against by our governments. And one of those rights - I would argue the foundational one - is the right to control our own bodies. That's why I believe that suicide should be legal in every form. And I also believe that we should all have an inalienable right to decide whether we will carry a pregnancy to term, and how/if we will prevent that pregnancy from happening.

This is why on some level, any national "debate" about abortion is unacceptable to me, and it's also why the current bullshit around birth control in the States absolutely terrifies me. These are our rights. Bigger than the Constitution, bigger than the UN, this is what is essential to being able to call oneself a free person: the right to control one's own body, and not to be able to take that away from anyone through national/state/provincial laws or by force.

That's why the rest of Canada's opinion on things like abortion and other reproductive health decisions means jack shit to me. I'm sorry, I like a lot of you, but I really don't give a flying fuck about what you think about these issues because I shouldn't have to: my right to make decisions about my own body should be an inaliable, absolutely protected right.

Canada is a country that sometimes tries to pride itself on peace-keeping and human rights (ha ha ha *sob*). So the fact that the government can't even figure this out is pretty sad.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Weekly Reader

Here's what I've been reading about this week:

PEI activists keep kicking ass and empowering women and girls

This Woodworth guy will not quit: he wants a study on when life begins, and some idiots agree, but most people are kind of like WTF?

Here is Woodworth's response to Joyce Arthur's op-ed.

Margaret Wente weighs in on sex-selective abortion.

More on sex-selective abortion.

The Liberal Party struggles to get their shit together re: abortion.

What have you been reading?

Friday, February 10, 2012

Two Things You Can Do to Support Young Activists!

Sorry for being MIA last week, readers! I have two action ideas for you today, that you can do from the comfort of your own home:

1. My friend and co-blogger at Abortion Gang, Serena (who also writes at Feminists for Choice), has been diagnosed with a brain tumor. She is a kick ass lady and a fighter, but you know how it is with healthcare in America. She could use some help paying for biopsy and treatment, so if you want to help out, here's what you can do:
- Shop her Etsy store! Don't worry if it's empty/nearly empty or there's nothing that appeals to you - the plan is to replenish it often, so check back again. There's some really nice stuff up for sale, and don't you want to support independent crafters, and help an amazing, fearless young activist get the healthcare she needs?
- Spread the word! Tell your friends, favourite her shop on Etsy, post a link. Even if you are not able to help out financially, you might know someone who can.

2. You might remember me talking about the great activism that's happening on PEI. Well, it's still going on - there is a whole collection of amazing people there, fighting tirelessly for better access to reproductive healthcare. If you want to help out but are held back by geography, or a lack of financial resources, might I suggest you head over to ACTIVE-8 campaign and make a pledge for the fearless Kandace Hagen? The pledges aren't financial - they are commitments to make change in your life that makes a positive impact in the world. This is a terrific campaign and it is always good to see young activists being encouraged. Go do it!

Consider this a free lesson in how to be an everyday reproductive justice hero.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Weekly Reader

Sorry for the delay in getting this up! Here's what I've been reading this week:

Joyce Arthur on why we don't need to reopen the debate

Canada's role in the sex-selective abortion debate; and a couple more pieces on sex selection

The Tories are still mad about funding IPPF

The NDP accuses Harper of allowing them to reopen the abortion debate

And my latest post at Abortion Gang regarding the menstrual cup

What have you been reading about?