Today’s Lady News: Federal Abortion-Funding Ban To Be Introduced In Congress

  • Two House representatives plan to introduce a bill to permanently ban federal funding of abortion. For the past 24 years, a law called the Hyde Amendment has ensured that federal money does not pay for abortions. However, it is a temporary law and has to be passed by Congress each year. The bill introduced by Reps. Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Daniel Lipinski (D-IL) would make the ban permanent. [The Hill]
  • Shirley Sherrod, a former Agriculture Department employee who is African-American, said she plans to sue Andrew Breitbart, a conservative blogger who posted an edited video online which led to her resignation. The video was of a speech in which Sherrod appeared to be saying that she discriminated against a white farmer who needed her help. Breitbart posted the video and Sherrod was asked to resign from her job. However, the full tape indicates that the discrimination was only a thought Sherrod had in her head and she actually helped him. [CNN]
  • YouTube asked the Second City Network, a comedy troupe, to censor a video skit which shows lesbians kissing. Second City uploaded a new “clean” video with a note, “If you think YouTube is homophobic, leave a comment below!” [YouTube]

  • American Apparel has apologized to nursing mom Bonnie Morris after she was told by employees in its Columbus, Ohio, store to go breastfeed in a dressing room. Mothers have been allowed to breastfeed in public since 2005. [Fox8.com]
  • The CBS network has voted to include more lesbian and gay characters on its shows since the LGBT visibility watchdog group GLAAD gave it a poor rating. [SheWired]
  • Tara Fitzgerald, of Sacramento, California, claims a Dell tech support rep at a call center in India took nude photos off her PC during a call for help and then posted them on a website. [San Francisco Gate]
  • Oklahoma’s gubernatorial race will be two women facing off against each other: Republican Rep. Mary Fallin and Democratic Lt. Gov Jari Askins. [Politico]
  • Donald Herz, 70, of Spokane, Washington, has plead guilty in federal court to threatening employees of the Boulder Abortion Clinic in Colorado that he would kill members of the doctor’s family. He faces six years in prison. [Seattle Post-Intelligencer]
  • Texas State Senator Robert Deuell, who is also a doctor, is seeking the state attorney general’s help to prevent tax dollars from going to Planned Parenthood clinics. [Dallas Morning News]
  • NPR addresses the use of sexy photos and revealing album covers, like Lara St. John’s “nude” cover for a CD of Bach violin solos. [NPR]
  • Jezebel takes a look at the 10 lowest moments for women in politics so far this year. [Jezebel]

INTERNATIONAL

  • Japan has excellent plans to get more fathers to take paternity leave and share more equally in childcare: time taken off during the baby’s first eight weeks is rewarded later with a holiday. [France24]
  • A British watchdog group says the term “jam rags” — crude slang for sanitary napkins — is inappropriate for television. [Guardian UK]
  • “The Golden Girls” is being spun off … in Spain! [AfterEllen.com]
  • Hamas in the Gaza Strip has banned storefronts from displaying women’s underwear in an attempt to “restore public morals.” [Jerusalem Post]

UPDATE, 7/30/10: The Smith/Lipinski bill to make the ban on federal funding of abortion permanent has not yet been introduced, as previously reported.

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