by MARTHA BURK
What’s at Stake is a new bi-weekly series of abbreviated excepts from Ms. money editor Martha Burk’s book “Your Voice, Your Vote 2020-2021.”
Abortion was legal in the United States from the time the earliest settlers arrived, until states began to criminalize it in the 1800s. By 1910 it was illegal in all but one state, unless in a doctor’s judgment needed to save the woman’s life.
Since very few abortions could be certified as necessary to save a woman’s life, women were forced into the back alleys. In the years before the Supreme Court legalized the procedure in 1973 with the Roe v. Wade ruling, estimates of illegal abortions ranged as high as 1.2 million per year—some resulting in death.
July 29, 2020 (International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion)
An initiative to help women to have a safe, legal abortion: a network of women, proactive, advocating for the decriminalisation of abortion in Brazil. An initiative of mutual solidarity: horizontal and self-sustaining.
by Maíra Marques, Director of Communications, Milhas Pela Vida das Mulheres
During the morning of 21 October 2019, a 31-year-old woman (J.) was admitted to the Pérola Byington Hospital in downtown São Paulo (SP), where she had an appointment for psychiatric counselling. A victim of gang rape, she had been receiving treatment for 20 days. Once again, she passed by the tents of “40 Days for Life in SP”, a group of anti-abortion activists who had decided to settle there during the Covid-19 quarantine, trying they said, to convert health professionals and women who have come to the hospital for a legal termination of a pregnancy. According to a report by the Public Journalism Agency, J. attempted to talk to the group that morning, to tell them her story, but without success. Instead, she was beaten up by these militants, some of whom were women, who punched her and put her in a headlock. These violent acts were witnessed by a lawyer, who accompanied her to the nearest police station.
The Fight to Protect Abortion Access Amid the Pandemic
June 15 2020
It wasn’t much past 8 a.m. on a Saturday morning in late April, and anti-choice protesters outside the Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the only abortion clinic in Mississippi, were already cantankerous: There were three men with bullhorns, including one on top of a ladder; a 1,200-watt speaker pointing toward the clinic’s front door; and another protester blowing a shofar. “Welcome to the circus,” said Kim Gibson, a clinic escort who works to keep the mayhem away from patients.
Even as the coronavirus pandemic has gripped the nation (new cases are still on the rise in Mississippi), protesters disregarded Jackson’s stay-at-home order and have consistently failed to wear masks or keep appropriate social distance — not only from one another, but also from patients, whose cars they readily approach in an effort to “counsel” them and hand out anti-abortion propaganda.
The Anti-Abortion Movement Was Always Built on Lies
This week, it was revealed that Norma McCorvey, a.k.a. “Jane Roe,” admitted on her death bed that her late-career anti-abortion crusade was all a ruse funded by the Christian right. Laura Bassett takes a hard look at the house of cards the American anti-abortion movement was built upon.
By Laura Bassett
May 20, 2020
In 1973, the plaintiff “Jane Roe” brought a case to the Supreme Court that would legalize abortion throughout America. So it was quite a surprise when, in the mid-1990s, Roe, whose real name was Norma McCorvey, suddenly emerged as an anti-abortion activist. She wrote a book about her change of heart, spoke at multiple annual March for Life rallies, and even filed a motion in 2003 to get the Supreme Court to re-decide her case. “I deeply regret the damage my original case caused women,” she said at the time. “I want the Supreme Court to examine the evidence and have a spirit of justice for women and children.”
The Long History of the Anti-Abortion Movement’s Links to White Supremacists
Racism and xenophobia have been woven into the anti-abortion movement for decades, despite the careful curation of its public image.
By Alex DiBranco
Feb 3, 2020
The anti-abortion movement in the United States has long been complicit with white supremacy. In recent decades, the movement mainstream has been careful to protect its public image by distancing itself from overt white nationalists in its ranks. Last year, anti-abortion leader Kristen Hatten was ousted from her position as vice president of the anti-choice group New Wave Feminists after identifying as an “ethnonationalist” and sharing white supremacist alt-right content. In 2018, when neo-Nazis from the Traditionalist Worker Party (TWP) sought to join the local March for Life rally organized by Tennessee Right to Life, the anti-abortion organization rejected TWP’s involvement. (The organization’s statement, however, engaged in the same false equivalency between left and right that Trump used in the wake of fatal white supremacist violence at Charlottesville. “Our organization’s march has a single agenda to support the rights of mothers and the unborn, and we don’t agree with the violent agenda of white supremacists or Antifa,” the group wrote on its Facebook page.)
‘Our doors stay open’: Brookline’s abortion clinic shootings, 25 years later
By Abby Patkin
Posted Dec 30, 2019
In Brookline, a lot has changed since a gunman opened fire at two clinics 25 years ago. But there is still more to come.
He walked in and double-checked he was in the right place. Then John Salvi III pulled out his rifle and fired.
Violent rhetoric hinders access to abortion services
By Julie Burkhart, opinion contributor
Imagine your morning. You wake up, have a little coffee and get ready for a doctor’s appointment. You get dressed. In fact, you’re having a great day. Everything is going as you planned. You get in your car and make your way to the doctor’s office. Once you arrive, instead of a peaceful setting, aggressive protestors who are yelling at you greet you.
They are standing at the entrance of the parking lot of the doctor’s office, walking up and down the sidewalk, and before you can even pull into the parking lot, you are harassed, intimidated and shamed for needing health care. These protestors, unfortunately, are a fixture at this health care facility; standing outside, degrading you without any knowledge of who you are or your life circumstances.
She Wanted An Abortion. Feds Say Her Ex Threatened to Bomb the Clinic.
Court documents show a South Carolina man has been hit with federal charges for interfering with reproductive health care.
by Marie Solis
Oct 7 2019
A South Carolina man named Rodney Allen has been arrested and charged with calling in a fake bomb threat to a Jacksonville, Florida, health clinic in order to prevent a woman he was formerly in a relationship with from obtaining an abortion.
According to a sworn affidavit submitted in federal court last month by FBI Special Agent Robert W. Blythe, these events took place after Allen allegedly sexually assaulted the woman—identified in the affidavit only as A.S.—which resulted in her becoming pregnant. A.S. also alleged that Allen was physically abusive, and had threatened to kill multiple members of her family. The case, USA v Allen, is still in process in a Florida district court. (Blythe did not respond to VICE’s request for comment.)
Violence against abortion clinics hit a record high last year. Doctors say it's getting worse.
By Kate Smith
Updated on: September 17, 2019
For one of the last abortion doctors in Missouri, harassment, stalking and death threats are a part of regular life. But this year, it's been worse than ever.
Colleen McNicholas, the chief medical officer at Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri, is one of many providers who told CBS News they've seen an uptick in violence this year, both against themselves and their clinics. They say the increased harassment has coincided with newly enacted state laws restricting legal abortion and polarizing rhetoric surrounding the procedure.
A man threatened to “slaughter” abortion doctors. It’s part of a disturbing trend.
Advocates say Trump’s rhetoric is helping fuel a spike in threats against abortion clinics nationwide.
By Anna North Aug 21, 2019
One man was charged with threatening to “slaughter and murder” doctors and patients at an abortion clinic in Chicago. Another was arrested in connection with threats against Planned Parenthood and federal agents. A third vandalized a Planned Parenthood office in Pennsylvania, painting a Bible verse in red on a wall.
All this happened in the past month alone. It’s part of what doctors and reproductive rights groups say is a spike in harassment and threats against abortion providers. According to a report by the National Abortion Federation, for example, providers reported 21,252 incidents of online harassment in 2018, compared with 15,773 in 2017.