Tag Archives: reproductive rights

Doctors Can’t Force Texas Women To View Ultrasound Before Abortions, Judge Rules

A federal judge has struck down parts of an extreme Texas law going that would require a doctor to show a woman — including a rape victim — an ultrasound, describe the development of the fetus, and give her headphones to listen to a fetal heartbeat before an abortion. Doctors who refused to do these things to their patients — cruel by any compassionate standard — would have been penalized. An injunction issued yesterday blocks the state from enforcing penalties on both doctors and patients.

The judge ruled aspects of the law, which goes into effect on Thursday, were “unconstitutionally vague” and violate the free speech of both the doctor and the patient by requiring “government-mandated speech.” In his decision, the judge wrote the law “compels physicians to advance an ideological agenda with which they may not agree, regardless of any medical necessity, and irrespective of whether the pregnant women wish to listen.” He continued, “The court is inclined to agree with (the) defendants’ characterization that (the) “plaintiffs have chosen to throw everything at the wall and hope something sticks.” That’s how much respect these anti-abortion extremists have for you, ladies. Keep reading »

Today’s Lady News: Rick Perry Signs Anti-Abortion Pledge

  • Republican presidential nominee wannabe Rick Perry signed an anti-abortion pledge with several scary provisions: were he to be elected he would nominate anti-abortion judges, appoint only anti-abortion appointees, push to defund Planned Parenthood, and sign something called the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” which is about a scientifically sound as an episode of “Dr. Who.” [Think Progress]
  • Young conservative women are not pleased they were categorized in an Elle article as “baby Palins.” [Daily Caller]
  • Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) spoke at a women’s health rally on behalf of Planned Parenthood and she has “never felt my right as a woman was more threatened than I do today,” before urging the crowd, “Tell the governor to stop playing politics with women’s health.” [Florida Independent]
  • Who’s on top of Forbes’ annual World’s Most Powerful Women list? [Forbes]

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Today’s Lady News: Planned Parenthood Ends Abortion At 3 Arizona Clinics

  • Planned Parenthood will no longer provide medical abortions (i.e. the abortion pill) at clinics in Prescott Valley, Flagstaff, and Yuma due to new state laws that restrict the practice. Anti-abortion advocates wanted clinics that do medical abortions, which involves swallowing a pill, to have the same clinic set-up and equipment as the clinics that perform abortion as surgery. Arizona women will now only be allowed to get medical abortions at the Phoenix and Tucson clinics, which are the only two clinics to do surgical abortions as well. [NPR]
  • Rape victims will not be charged for their rape kits (DNA evidence collected to help police) under legislation signed yesterday by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. [Change.org]
  • Would America be better off right now if Hillary Clinton had been elected president? Rebecca Traitster at The New York Times Magazine wonders. < [New York Times Magazine]/li>

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The Vatican Is Offering Forgiveness For Abortions Until Sunday

Abortion is a big no-no in the Catholic church — but not from Tuesday until this Sunday. The Vatican is offering forgiveness to women who’ve had abortions during a six day-long World Youth Day prayer event in Madrid, which will bring 1.5 million pilgrims from all over the world. Catholic women who have had an abortion (and in the U.S., that will be four in 10 of us in our lifetime —UPDATE: to clarify, four out of 10 unintended pregnancies end in abortion while two in ten of all pregnancies end in abortion. Thanks to commenter @MrsG for pointing this out. I apologize for the error.) can confess and supposedly be spared excommunication; women who’ve been excommunicated for the sin of abortion will be welcomed back into the church. Keep reading »

Today’s Lady News: New Anti-Abortion Billboard Targeting Blacks Accuses “Betrayal”

betrayed abortion billboard photo
  • Another day, another anti-abortion billboard targeted at black women, this time in Atlanta. The latest billboard shows images of pro-choice leaders, like Rev. Jesse Jackson and Ruth Bader Ginsberg, with the word “Betrayed” written in red as if it’s dripping in blood. It directs people to the website AbortionInTheHood.com, which lists statistics that try to portray abortion as a racist plot to eradicate the country of black people. Similar billboards have gone up in Oakland and New York City. [Florida Independent]

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San Francisco Smacks “Crisis Pregnancy Centers” For Misleading Women About Abortion

abortion photo

First Resort, a so-called “crisis pregnancy center” in San Francisco, has until the end of the month to change its advertisements misleading women about abortion-related services — or else. “Crisis pregnancy centers” often look like women’s health clinics and advertise about pregnancy counseling and services; they claim to help women pay for prenatal care and give them free diapers and other baby supplies. However, CPCs are frequently run by religious organizations and don’t have actual medical professionals on staff; instead, they “counsel” women to not have abortions. Thus, the SF city attorney sent First Resort a cease-and-desist letter warning them about its ads that “appear to be designed to confuse or mislead consumers.” The SF Supervisor Malia Cohen also introduced an ordinance on Tuesday that would punish CPCs for using misleading statements in their ads that make it seem like they provide abortion or counseling for abortions. Keep reading »

Today’s Lady News: North Carolina Passes 24-Hour Waiting Period For Abortion

  • North Carolina’s Senate has joined the House in overriding the governor’s veto on a bill to restrict abortion rights. Women seeking abortions will now have to have a sonogram, hear a description of the fetal development, receive counseling and wait 24 hours before having the procedure. Thanks a pantsful for making an already-difficult decision even harder on women, NC politicians. [Reuters]
  • The lawyer for Nafissatou Diallo, the hotel maid who was allegedly sexually assaulted by ex-IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, said it is a vicious rumor that she was tape recorded planning to extort him for money. Newspapers had reported that Diallo had told a friend over the phone that Strauss-Kahn had a lot of money and she “knew what [she] was doing.” Now her lawyer has said that conversation was mischaracterized and it was her friend who suggested she could get money from the assault, which Diallo herself dismissed. Diallo also met with supporters on Thursday at a Brooklyn church, telling them, “I’m here because I had people call me a lot of bad names.” [New York Times, New York Times]

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Today’s Lady News: Meet The Mom Who Chose An Abortion At 29 Weeks

  • Meet Dana Weinstein of Rockville, Maryland, the mother of a young son who had a late-term abortion when she learned the daughter she was pregnant with was missing part of her brain. At 29 weeks into her pregnancy, a sonogram revealed that “Baby W” would have physical and mental impairments for life, if she even survived birth. Because she had difficulty finding a doctor who could perform a late-term abortion in the D.C.-area, she had to fly to Boulder, Colorado, and stay there for one week; she racked up over $17K in medical bills, plus airfare and the hotel. Weinstein bravely spoke to Mother Jones about her late-term abortion because she is concerned about how increasing assaults on reproductive rights could affect women and families who befall the same tragedy that she has. [Mother Jones]

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Today’s Lady News: Orlando Protestors Stalking Abortion Providers

  • Anti-abortion protesters in Orlando aren’t content to simply picket outside of abortion clinics — they’re stalking, too! A week-long protest by Operation Rescue/Operation Save America also includes harassing doctors at their homes. Two doctors had their homes leafletted, while an associate of one of the doctors had her property trespassed and photographs of her family’s vehicles taken. Creepy. Meanwhile, the actual protests at the abortion clinics only drew about 40 people, which included children brought by their parents. [Ms. Magazine]
  • Watch Sen. Al Franken school a dude from Focus On The Family during this morning’s hearing about DOMA. The FOTF guy cites a study and says children do best with a mother and a father as a parent. Franken’s, like, “Oh, you mean the study that says kids do best in a stable two-parent household, regardless of parents’ gender? Yeah, thought so.” [Think Progress]
  • Oh, joy: there’s another anti-abortion group claiming that Planned Parenthood is behind a genocidal plot to rid the world of black people. The National Black Pro-Life Coalition is claiming abortion is “the number one killer” of black Americans. [Think Progress]

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Birth Control Should Be Covered By Health Care Plans, Says Report

Health care plans should cover birth control, STD screening, HPV testing, and other services for women without co-pays, according to an independent panel of doctors from the Institute of Medicine (IOM). President Obama’s new health care reform requires “preventative care” services be covered and the Obama administration asked that the IOM assess which services fell under this category.

According to the IOM report [PDF], their eight recommendations for coverage include: “the full range of Food and Drug Administration-approved contraceptive methods, sterilization procedures, and patient education and counseling for all women with reproductive capacity”; HPV testing as part of cervical cancer screening for women over 30; counseling on STDs; counseling and screening for HIV; lactation counseling and equipment to promote breast-feeding; screening for gestational diabetes; screening and counseling to detect and prevent domestic violence; and annual preventive care visits. Including these services are integral for women to “better avoid unwanted pregnancies and space their pregnancies to promote optimal birth outcomes” as a key method of preventative care, the IOM report said.

No co-pays for your Nuva Ring and HPV testing? Preventing pregnancy until you and your boo are ready to be parents? Sweet, right!? Alas, not everyone is so thrilled. Keep reading »

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