In shocking news to everyone, as a fetus you were your mother’s largest organ! Or at least that’s what Alabama State Representative Mary Sue McClurkin (R) is now claiming.
The bill she introduced this week requires a series of demanding requirements of abortion clinics who perform this “big surgery.” According to the Huffington Post, these regulations could potentially close the sparse five remaining abortion clinics in Alabama. The Montgomery Advertiser reports that the bill:
“Would require physicians at abortion clinics to have admitting privileges at local hospitals; require clinics to follow ambulatory clinic building codes and make it a felony — punishable by up to 10 years in prison — for a nurse, nurse practitioner or physician’s assistant to dispense abortion-inducing medications”
Rep. McClurkin’s reasoning for such harsh new regulations: the removal of an organ is a serious surgery, and by her estimation a child is an organ. Rep. McClurkin’s assertion is ridiculous for so many reasons.
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Kurt Cobain would have been 46 today. Do you remember where you were when you found out he’d killed himself? I was in high school art class, likely making some awful riot grrl-inspired art. I liked Nirvana, but at that point considered myself a little too cool to get super into them. They were soooo commercial, after all. And I fancied myself some kind of indie rock/riot grrl/zine-writing nightmare.
But fan or not, for those of us that exist in that murky era — not Generation X and not Generation Y — Cobain is and always will be a powerful arbiter of youthful dissent.
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Duke University has suffered some blows over the years as an academically prestigious school with a bad rep towards women. There was the infamous Duke lacrosse rape accusation of 2006 (which was later found to be false) and more recently, embarrassing fratboy shenanigans. Finally, some really positive news: Duke Women’s Center has created a program during the spring semester called Write(H)ers, which will train 23 students on how to be feminist bloggers. Keep reading »
Magazines seem to love writing about women’s choices, particularly if they can inspire readers to conclude that we’re making the wrong ones. Just before the new year, a much-talked about New Republic cover story focused on women and men becoming parents at an older age. The piece was written by an author who is herself an older mother and was concerned about a steady increase in birth defects and autism in recent years, although it’s been difficult so far to prove a direct correlation. Meanwhile, one of Boston Magazine’s cover stories that same month was about a growing breed of women who believed that it’s okay to have an “occasional” drink while pregnant. Yes, that was the language — “occasional” 00 yet the subject was so provocative that it warranted top billing. Let’s not forget the May Time cover of the woman breastfeeding her three-year-old son (she didn’t appear to be drinking wine at the time). Soon after came the story in The Atlantic by Anne-Marie Slaughter that blared: “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All.” (The Atlantic has published at least three stories since 1995 about women facing diminishing marriage and pregnancy prospects if they wait; one of the most famous such pieces, “Marry Him,” from 2008, urged women to settle for “Mr. Good Enough” rather than waiting to have babies.)
It isn’t these stories themselves that are frustrating as much as the fact that they appear to blame women for waiting to have children – as if it’s impossible to fathom that they didn’t find decent or willing men to date at the right time. Some of the stories blame the feminist movement, as if having more freedom is simply so confounding to women that they just can’t figure out what to do with themselves. There’s a wide swath of people in this country who appear to resent the idea of women having leeway in making life choices, and hope we’ll get our comeuppance if we don’t marry the first person who holds a door for us. Keep reading »