Recent anti-abortion laws: ignorance is no obstacle

“The sin to me is bringing a child into this world and not taking care of them.”

women.abortionI checked. The last time I mentioned abortion in this blog was in 2009. And THAT was about its representation on television.

I wouldn’t have taken it on now except for the fact that the perpetrators of recent laws weren’t just confused about what exactly their bills do — “they were proud of their cluelessness.” As a New York Times opinion piece noted, America’s Leaders Need Sex Ed. “For those who want to regulate women’s bodies, ignorance has been no obstacle.”

Oh, and there’s right to privacy angle too.

In Georgia, the six-week law is scheduled to go into effect in January 2020. women who terminate their pregnancies would receive life in prison. This law would also criminalize healthcare providers, like doctors and nurses, providing the procedure.

Moreover, Georgians who seek abortions outside of the state may be charged with conspiracy to commit murder. Anyone who helps the pregnant person complete the journey, such as by driving them to a clinic, may also be charged with conspiracy.

“And a woman who miscarries because of her own conduct—say, using drugs while pregnant—would be liable for second-degree murder” Exactly how is this latter provision supposed to work?

Roughly 15 to 20 percent of all pregnancies in the United States end in miscarriage, “defined as the loss of a fetus before the 20th week. The majority of miscarriages occur within the first seven weeks of pregnancy.” A woman having a miscarriage is supposed to suffer the additional stress of proving – to whom, and how? – that she didn’t have a drink after dinner?

The US Supreme Court held in Roe v. Wade, and elsewhere, that the Due Process clause of the US Constitution includes a certain amount to privacy. And this right should mean that the government should not intrude in such delicate affairs.

The Georgia law also bestows personhood to a fetus, “entitled to all the protection of all the laws of Georgia.” That means they’re counted in the Census? If they’re American citizens, they can’t be deported if mom is there illegally, I presume. All sorts of legal landmines there.

Alabama did Georgia one better. Their law, going into effect in six months, would effectively ban abortion in the state. It criminalizes the procedure for doctors who provide them, and they could face up to 99 years in prison. The legislation doesn’t include an exception for cases of rape or incest.

The hypocrisy is strong. As reported in Newsweek, AL “State Senator Linda Coleman-Madison proposed an amendment to the bill that would require the state to provide free prenatal and medical care for mothers who had been denied an abortion by the new law. Her amendment was struck down by a vote of 23-6.

“‘The sin to me is bringing a child into this world and not taking care of them,” Coleman-Madison said. “The sin for me is that this state does not provide adequate care. We don’t provide education. And then when the child is born and we know that mother is indigent and she cannot take care of that child, we don’t provide any support systems for that mother.”

Here’s NOT a surprise: States with the worst anti-abortion laws also have the worst infant mortality rates.

A friend asked an interesting question: Women have used the seeds from Daucus carota, commonly known as wild carrot or Queen Anne’s lace, for centuries as a contraceptive. “The earliest written reference dates back to the late 5th or 4th century B.C. appearing in a work written by Hippocrates.”

If Queen Anne’s lace is used after intercourse – as a morning-after pill, essentially – how would the laws deal with that, since pregnancy would not yet be confirmable? This is also relevant to other birth control methods, notably the IUD.

It’s not just the South doing stupid stuff. In April, Ohio also passed a bill that would ban abortion at as early as six weeks. Now, the Ohio state House is considering a bill that would limit health insurance coverage for abortion services and also bar coverage for many forms of birth control.

It has a doozy of a provision that allows an ectopic pregnancy fetus to be removed from the Fallopian tubes and inserted into the uterus, a procedure that DOES NOT EXIST.

GOPUSA notes that such “bills have almost no chance of surviving the inevitable lower-court challenges, but that’s the point. Republican lawmakers are spoiling for a legal fight, hoping that their state’s pro-life bill will become the vehicle for the high court’s 5-4 conservative majority to put the brakes on Roe.

With restrictions on abortion, and, foolishly, contraception, being passed or considered across US, the goal isn’t to end up with the heartbeat bills, but to continue to chip away at women’s rights.

Yet, only 18 percent of Americans believe abortion should be illegal in all instances, according to a Gallup poll. Nearly six in 10 Americans believe that abortion should be legal in all or most cases, according to Pew.

In response: #YouKnowMe: an online movement in which thousands of woman have come forward to put a human face to the figure that one in four women get an abortion in their lifetimes.

Sisters are doin’ it for themselves?

This policy consists of three laudable R’s: rights, meaning the promotion of women’s issues, including by countering gender-based violence and discrimination; representation, including support for women’s participation at all levels of decision-making, from parliament to private sector boards to the legal system; and resources, to ensure equitable allocation among people of all genders, whether in government budgets or development projects.

Sisters are Doin It for Themselves*One of the first songs I thought about after QoS died last year was Sisters are doin’ it for themselves by Eurhythmics and Aretha Franklin. It only went to #18 in 1985, but I thought it was anthemic, with Annie Lennox and Aretha trading vocal licks.

*I watched by this January 29, 2019 interview of Ellevest CEO Sallie Krawcheck on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. She “noted that the lack of diversity in top management positions runs counter to research showing that diverse companies perform better.”

What was most striking, though, is this exchange:

TN: There’s also a fascinating trend I’ve read about where sometimes women who are in positions of power seem to be the ones who block other women from progressing.

SK: … Absolutely. She’s got a name. She’s a queen bee. And I’ll tell you exactly why she does it. Because the business world she’s grown up in, she looks up and she says, “Oh, I see the leadership table. And there’s one woman there. Or there are two women there. There’s one person of color there. I got it. So in order to get to that seat, I’m not competing with all of you guys. I’m competing with her.”

*From the hardly liberal Foreign Policy: Sweden’s Feminist Foreign Policy, Long May It Reign. Stockholm should continue actively pursuing a foreign-policy agenda focused on gender equality. And the world should follow. BY RACHEL VOGELSTEIN, ALEXANDRA BRO

“In 2014, Sweden became the first country in the world to publicly adopt what it explicitly called ‘a feminist foreign policy,’ putting the promotion of gender equality and women’s rights at the center of its diplomatic agenda. This policy consists of three laudable R’s: rights, meaning the promotion of women’s issues, including by countering gender-based violence and discrimination; representation, including support for women’s participation at all levels of decision-making, from parliament to private sector boards to the legal system; and resources, to ensure equitable allocation among people of all genders, whether in government budgets or development projects…

“[Foreign Minister Margot] Wallstrom’s announcement of a feminist foreign policy was not simply rhetorical — it was also strategic. The government recognized that gender equality is critical to Sweden’s broader foreign-policy objectives, including economic development, prosperity, and security. There is a growing body of research at the Council on Foreign Relations, the United Nations, academic journals, and military publications demonstrating a relationship between women’s inclusion and stability. A 2015 study by the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies found when women participate in peace processes, agreements are more likely to last — and to be forged in the first place.

Improving women’s status is also imperative to economic growth. In a separate 2015 study, the McKinsey Global Institute… calculated the potential benefit of closing gender gaps in the workforce at a staggering $28 trillion to global GDP by 2025 — as well as an estimated 19 percent growth rate in Sweden alone — if women simply participated at the same rate as men.”

*Josephine Cochrane

Submission, women, the Bible: 1 Timothy 2

“There are those who believe this text is making a blanket statement about the role of women in the church. “

religious-inclusion01There was this picture on Facebook of a guy holding a sign that women “should be quiet, submissive to husband, cooking, ironing, silent in church”. It specifically cites 1 Timothy 2.

I came across this article by Jenna Daniels, who was, at least as of the publication date was associate pastor at Awaken Community Covenant Church, St. Paul, MN. The piece was undated but was posted at least two years ago.

Rev. Daniels pulls our verses 11-15:

“A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love, and holiness with propriety.”

She notes, correctly, that “There are those who believe this text is making a blanket statement about the role of women in the church. There are other passages that seem to say this same thing, where women are to remain silent, or that they are the glory of man, they are to submit, they can’t lead.”

So what is she doing preaching? She sees Paul’s writing in this and other cases as a contextual prohibition. Specifically, the apostle may have been referring to the culture in Ephesus and the worship of Artemis, the goddess of fertility, for example.

Paul “is addressing a group of women who were false teachers influenced by the Artemis cult in which female supremacy was the norm. When [he] talks about the authority these women are exercising, he uses a word that is used nowhere in the entire New Testament: authentein, translated as ‘exercise authority.’ Other times when Paul is referring to authority, he uses [the generic] exousia

“But authentein carries a sense of abusing power and acting on your own authority. These women are teaching things that aren’t true, and doing it in an abusive way, so Paul tells them to be silent. Interestingly, he still tells them to learn.”

In this vein, here are Six Things Submission Is Not by John Piper, coincidentally also a Minnesota pastor. My broader point is that it is easy to cherry-pick scripture to support oppression; American slavery was justified in that manner.

As Rev. Daniels notes, “I believe the Enemy’s greatest and strongest work is to cause us to misunderstand God’s Word in a way that binds up and constricts and prevents where God’s intent is freedom and life in Christ for all people.”

K is for Senator Kirsten Gillibrand

“We are here to put others first, to live a day in their shoes, to understand what their life is like and try to make it better.”

When Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY) was appointed Secretary of State by President Barack Obama in 2009, New York governor David Paterson selected Kirsten Gillibrand to fill the Senate vacancy.

Liberal Democrats, primarily from downstate (New York City) were not happy with the pick of the upstate Congresswoman with moderately conservative credentials. But, as Paterson knew, Gillibrand had won her House seat in 2006 and 2008 in a district gerrymandered to be in the Republican column.

As a Senator, she moved her political positions towards a far more liberal/progressive agenda. Her first early issue that I was aware of, though, didn’t seem to skew left or right, as she worked hard for passage of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act.

She has become a champion for victims of sexual assault, first in the military and then nationwide. She said, “This is a moment in time, unlike any other, with the ‘Me Too’ movement. Women are feeling the ability to tell what happened to them, some of the worst moments they’ve lived, and tell it publicly, and that is powerful and it is affecting everything.”

She’s also championed female candidates for office with the group Off The Sidelines, which professes not taking any corporate PAC money.

In 2017, no senator voted more often against the regime’s Cabinet nominees than Kirsten Gillibrand. She said recently: “We have a president who silences and demeans women, rigs the economy so corporations and the wealthiest few get richer while American families get by on less, allows the NRA to dictate his gun policy and threatens Dreamers with deportation from the country they call home. And what’s worse, the Republican Party has fallen in line behind him.”

A vulgar and suggestive message from the Tweeter-in-chief may have done her more political good than harm. The Washington Post reported that he raised her profile and fired up her supporters. She denies that she’s a contender for the 2020 presidential election.

She has been quite visible on television of late, including a 60 Minutes profile. “We are here to help people. We are here to put others first, to live a day in their shoes, to understand what their life is like and try to make it better.”

Kirsten Gillibrand is running for re-election to the Senate in 2018, and it appears extremely unlikely that she could lose.

For ABC Wednesday

March rambling: complicated meanings

Luna Lee on the gayageum

At Current Rates Of Use World Could Run Out Of Thoughts And Prayers By As Early As 2019

We Are all Nixonians Now

There Are No Good Guys With Guns

What To Do When Racists Try To Hijack Your Religion

‘National Geographic’ Reckons With Its Past: ‘For Decades, Our Coverage Was Racist’

‘Stay Strong,’ And Other Useless Drivel We Tell The Grieving

The Encyclopedia of the Missing

When the only way to go free is to plead guilty

3 Far-Flung Cities Offer Clues to Unsnarling Manhattan’s Streets

OVERLOOKED: 15 obits of notable women

Alaska as a Red-to-Blue(ish) Model

‘The story of a weird world I was warned never to tell’

Union College says it found strand of George Washington’s hair

Stop Using the Label ‘Struggling Reader,’ Author Jacqueline Woodson Advises

Why Do We Need to Sleep?

The Unexpected Benefit of Train Travel

Rare Photo of Harriet Tubman Preserved

Digging into my family’s claims of Cherokee ancestry

in praise of soft targets

Stephen Hawking dies at 76 on Einstein’s birthday and Pi day; despite ALS, his mind roamed the cosmos

RIP, David Ogden Stiers

Dalai Lama, Chicago in May 2008:
“The universe is in a constant state of becoming—an ongoing miraculous creation. Every day we awaken to that miracle with gratitude, respect, and compassion for all who share the gift of being.”

Memories of ‘M*A*S*H’: Inside Stories of the Most Famous Episodes (and Castings)

The Loophole

Smartphones Are Getting Dumber…on Purpose

A Finnish comedian explains the complicated meanings of an English word

Legendary toy demonstrated to have squirrel-repelling properties

Faking It: The Obviously Dubbed Telephone Ring

Aldi’s supermarkets history

A PhD In Batman

A niece at Carnegie Hall

Now I Know: The Florida City Fueled by Soda and Baseball’s Unluckiest Fan and How Bazooka Joe Lost a Baseball Glove

Not me: Couple begins rekindling an eighth-grade romance

MUSIC

Camille Saint-Saens’s Septet for piano, trumpet, and strings, Opus 65!

Hamilton Polka

The Music of Paolo Tosti – Carla Fisk and Michael Clement

Will Jesus Wash The Bloodstains From Your Hands – Hazel Dickens

Everlasting Arms – Luke Winslow-King, Vasti Jackson, Dr. John, and Roots Gospel Voices of Mississippi

Norma Tanega (and Dusty Springfield)

There Is A Time – The Darlings (Andy Griffith Show)

Tush – Luna Lee on the gayageum

Cover of Take on Me (a-ha)

Sound of Silence – Todd Hoffman

Taxman – Joe Bonamassa, Live at The Cavern Club

Inside the Life of Brenda Lee, the Pop Heroine Next Door