And how was your holiday season? I hope it was as enjoyable as mine. May your new year be filled with much joy and not much sorrow. In the meantime:
Perhaps it is time for women to examine whether the largest organizations that claim to represent them are really delivering on their promises.
They’ve failed to organize the millions of supporters they have into a coherent and powerful movement. ‘Cause when your movement looks like an amateur mess compared with the “keep your government hands off my Medicare” teabaggers, you’re doing something wrong.
They’ve failed to frame the debate and influence how we talk about issues that affect women’s lives. While they’re still arguing about “choice” — a word that persuades no one and narrowly focuses the conversation on abortion instead of the full spectrum of reproductive health — opponents are thinking up clever new phrases to use incessantly and force into the public consciousness until they become law. “Partial birth abortion.” “Rights of the preborn.” “Culture of life.”
They’ve failed to make women’s rights a legislative priority for the very representatives they help send to Congress. And if their supposed allies don’t worry about losing support of the feminist organizations, certainly their opponents don’t lose a lot of sleep over invoking the almighty wrath of the feminists. What’s the worst they can do? Organize another march? Hey, that might actually be great news for Republicans!
They’ve failed to adapt their movement and their message to a new era and a new generation of would-be feminists. Where are the bumper sticker slogans, the tactics, the refreshed, revised 21st century approach to a problem as old as time? Are they using the internet for anything more than urgent emails and processing donations? Where are the clever YouTube videos by a new generation of feminists talking about how this or that bill affects them? Where is the television presence? Where are the bloggers? (Oh, there are plenty of feminist bloggers out there, but they’re not being supported or promoted or elevated by the feminist organizations, who still think the internet is primarily for sending email. For example, guess who the “featured blogger” on Emily’s List is? Why, it’s Ellen Malcolm, the president.) MORE
And, so the health care questions for women of color are: Who should I choose? Should I support a “lackluster” healthcare bill that will insure additional Americans? Or, should I choose women and their ability to have access to affordable abortions? And of course for women of color this is not an easy choice because on one level we know that more people of color lack access to healthcare. However, we also know the historical and current struggles (i.e. forced sterilizations, unaffordable abortions, state unethical use of Norplant) for reproductive health for women of color meaning that we know any encroachment on the ability of a woman to choose what is right for her body be it by law or by affordability is quite damaging for our struggles to ensure reproductive freedom for women of color (i.e. the ability to have a child and to terminate a pregnancy).MORE
TRIGGER WARNING. TRIGGER WARNING. TRIGGER WARNING. Really really nasty case of what a family’s transphobia can lead to: is a dream a lie if it don’t come true / or is it something worse