South Africa – Anti-Choice Culture Is Allowed To Flourish At UCT. Why?

Anti-Choice Culture Is Allowed To Flourish At UCT. Why?

Aug 22, 2018
Temwa-Dango Mwambene

I am not one to write open letters, but I am enraged. I am very tired but unfortunately for “racist cishetero patriarchal Christian torture” not tired enough (yet) to take action. I am tired of the University of Cape Town (UCT), particularly the Faculty of Health Sciences, taking ethically weak stances on issues that they are meant to be at the forefront of advocating for, writes TEMWA-DANGO MWAMBENE.

I have been at UCT for four years and I remember the then vice-chancellor Dr Max Price welcoming us on the first year MBChB registration day and speaking about how UCT is a place for rigorous academic debate and contrasting views and as an example invited us to participate in the upcoming ‘Israeli-Apartheid’ week. A week, if UCT had any ethical integrity, that should rather be dedicated to collective initiatives around awareness and actions in support of the Palestinian liberation struggle. But this open letter is not about UCT’s inability to take a pro-Palestine position but about abortions.

Continued: http://www.thedailyvox.co.za/anti-choice-culture-is-allowed-to-flourish-at-uct-why-temwa-dango-mwambene/

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The News in Motherhood: the Good, the Bad, the WTF

The News in Motherhood: the Good, the Bad, the WTF
All around the world, mothers and pregnant women are undervalued, discriminated against, and punished.

By Katha Pollitt
August 20, 2018

If women stopped conceiving, birthing, and raising children, the human race would die out. And just in case you think that’s a good idea, consider that long before the end, countries would age and wither and old people would have no one to talk to but cats and robots, as in Japan. You would think sensible societies would make everything connected with reproduction rewarding and safe for women. But no, when it comes to childbearing around the world, there’s way more stick than carrot. Consider:

In Argentina, as in the United States, most women who have abortions are low-income mothers trying to do right by the kids they already have. Despite a huge grassroots feminist movement, a vigorous campaign, and victory in the Chamber of Deputies, the Argentine Senate (42 men and 30 women) voted 37-31 in July against legalizing abortion, currently a crime except for rape and to save the woman’s life.

Continued: https://www.thenation.com/article/the-news-in-motherhood-the-good-the-bad-the-wtf/

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USA – Brett Kavanaugh’s disturbing abortion history: He ruled against women who were forced to abort

Brett Kavanaugh’s disturbing abortion history: He ruled against women who were forced to abort
In 2007, two disabled women complained about being forced to have abortions. Kavanaugh ruled against them

Amanda Marcotte
August 20, 2018

Much of the discourse around Brett Kavanaugh, Donald Trump's second nominee for the Supreme Court, has been focused around his attitudes on abortion. Anti-choice groups have been crowing that Kavanaugh has a "strong record of protecting life" and will uphold laws written "to protect unborn children." Trump himself promised, during the 2016 campaign, to appoint "pro-life judges." And while some conservatives, in a likely effort to bamboozle both the Senate and the public, have been pretending that Kavanaugh is a moderate when it comes to the abortion issue, both pro- and anti-choice activists seem to agree that Kavanaugh is a threat to a woman's right to choose to terminate her pregnancy.

"Choose" being the operative word here. In 2007, as an appellate judge in Washington, D.C., Kavanaugh was presented with an unusual case involving two women who had wanted to continue their pregnancies but had been forced to have abortions instead. They sued and Kavanaugh ruled against them, denying their claims that they had a right to be consulted about the decision to terminate their pregnancies.

Continued: https://www.salon.com/2018/08/20/brett-kavanaughs-disturbing-abortion-history-he-ruled-against-women-who-endured-forced-abortions/

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USA – When It Comes to Abortion Rights, Civil Disobedience Could Be the Only Option

When It Comes to Abortion Rights, Civil Disobedience Could Be the Only Option
Non-violent protest should be on the table ahead of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation hearing.

Erin Matson
Aug 16, 2018

In this op-ed, Erin Matson, co-founder and co-director of Reproaction, explains why civil disobedience should be on the table when it comes to preserving abortion rights.

For abortion opponents, Brett Kavanaugh is — to borrow the parlance of baseball — somewhat of a closing pitcher. While there have been other justices who would vote to overturn Roe v. Wade and end the federal constitutional right to abortion, Kavanaugh’s decisions on reproductive rights have anti-abortion groups strongly supporting his nomination. For that reason, many have noted that he could be the one to shut it all down. Nominated to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy, who had been a swing vote in favor of protecting abortion, Kavanaugh would turn the court into an enduring five-vote majority — an all-male majority — opposed to abortion rights. Since the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973 that made outright abortion bans unconstitutional, the threat to maintaining that decision in the United States has never been this pronounced. Congress can’t be counted on to save us, as we’ve seen legislators fail us before, letting laws critical to our health lapse. As the nomination hearings begin, we need to keep that in mind. That’s why strategic, non-violent civil disobedience needs to be on the table.

Continued: https://www.teenvogue.com/story/when-it-comes-to-abortion-rights-civil-disobedience-could-be-the-only-option

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The arc of moral progress may be long, but Argentina’s women will prevail

The arc of moral progress may be long, but Argentina’s women will prevail

By Jon O'Brien, opinion contributor
08/16/18

Last week’s vote in Argentina’s Senate — which struck down the chance to legalize abortion — was a disappointment for millions of Argentinians and reproductive rights advocates around the world.

But it was also an outcome that is not easily explained away. As we saw in Chile, my native Ireland and Argentina, many Catholic majority countries are opening up about their faith, the ethics of choice and what it means to trust women like never before. Argentina’s unprecedented debate has emboldened a movement for women’s equality and dignity in the country, and the hemisphere, that is unstoppable.

Continued: http://thehill.com/opinion/healthcare/402176-the-arc-of-moral-progress-may-be-long-but-argentinas-women-will-prevail

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Abortion Is a Problem to Be Solved, Not a Moral Issue

Abortion Is a Problem to Be Solved, Not a Moral Issue
Education and birth control are slowly making the politics less relevant

By Michael Shermer | Scientific American, September 2018 Issue (online August 14)

In May of this year the pro-life/pro-choice controversy leapt back into headlines when Ireland overwhelmingly approved a referendum to end its constitutional ban on abortion. Around the same time, the Trump administration proposed that Title X federal funding be withheld from abortion clinics as a tactic to reduce the practice, a strategy similar to that of Texas and other states to shut down clinics by burying them in an avalanche of regulations, which the U.S. Supreme Court struck down in 2016 as an undue burden on women for a constitutionally guaranteed right. If the goal is to attenuate abortions, a better strategy is to reduce unwanted pregnancies. Two methods have been proposed: abstinence and birth control.

Abstinence would obviate abortions just as starvation would forestall obesity. There is a reason no one has proposed chastity as a solution to overpopulation. Sexual asceticism doesn't work, because physical desire is nearly as fundamental as food to our survival and flourishing.

Continued: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/abortion-is-a-problem-to-be-solved-not-a-moral-issue/

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Opinion: Many Cubans using abortion as birth control

Opinion: Many Cubans using abortion as birth control
Abortion can sometimes carry major health risks. The lack of availability of either condoms or contraceptive pills means that many Cuban women undergo several abortions in their lives, the blogger Yoani Sánchez writes.

13.08.2018
Author Yoani Sánchez

She is only 20 years old but has already had four abortions. The young Cuban woman, who prefers to remain anonymous, is not an isolated case.

In some countries in Latin America, women can spend many years behind bars because they have had an abortion or even because they are suspected of having undergone the procedure. In countries such as Chile and Argentina, a debate about abortion is taking place on the streets and in public discourse. However, in Cuba discussion on the subject is taking place — if at all — on social networks and the websites of the independent press.

Continued: https://www.dw.com/en/opinion-many-cubans-using-abortion-as-birth-control/a-45070097

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This is why Argentina did not legalize abortion this week

This is why Argentina did not legalize abortion this week

by Julia María Rubio
August 11, 2018

After months of debates and a close favorable vote by the Argentine House in June, the Argentine Senate has voted down a bill that would have legalized abortion. Despite House support and a large feminist mobilization on behalf of the bill, the Senate — which over-represents the votes of rural and conservative constituencies — rejected the bill, 38 to 31.

Here are five things to know about the politics of legalizing abortion in Argentina.

Continued: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2018/08/11/this-is-why-argentina-did-not-legalize-abortion-this-week/?utm_term=.6f4229f49515

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Argentina’s Abortion Vote Was a Stepping Stone Not a Setback

Argentina’s Abortion Vote Was a Stepping Stone Not a Setback

By Mariela Belski/Buenos Aires
August 10, 2018

Late Wednesday night, Argentina’s Senate voted against legalizing abortion during the first 14 weeks of pregnancy. After a marathon 16-hour debate, senators decided to reject a law that would have saved countless lives. For now, people who need to terminate pregnancies in Argentina will have to continue to risk death or incarceration.

But something has irrevocably changed.

That night, hundreds of thousands of people, mostly women, stood together in the streets outside the Senate in Buenos Aires. We stood there for hours in the rain, wearing the emerald green handkerchiefs that have become the symbol of the pro-choice movements that are sweeping Latin America.

Continued: http://time.com/5363764/argentina-abortion-vote-progress/

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Argentina’s women have not been beaten on abortion – change will come

Argentina’s women have not been beaten on abortion – change will come
The ‘senadores percha’ who voted against legalisation have won a hollow victory but cannot stand in the way of progress

Claudia Piñeiro
Fri 10 Aug 2018

Argentina’s senators could not understand what was being debated: legal abortion or clandestine abortion? Or they did not want to understand? Thirty-eight senators voted for the absolute rejection of a bill to allow legal termination, without showing any willingness to introduce changes or improve the proposals. They simply said “no” – as if they were judges instead of legislators. They showed an arrogant attitude, absolutely detached from a reality in Argentina where there are women who die every year from complications arising after clandestine abortions.

To reject the bill, they pronounced all kind of barbarities from their seats: proclaiming that they were saving embryos, without explaining how, and even suggesting that intrafamily rape does not imply violence.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/aug/10/argentina-women-abortion-hollow-senate-victory

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