If you've been wondering about fetus fetishists crowing about winning and pro-choice losing lately, this TIME magazine cover story is what it's about.
Amanda Marcotte responds.
There's much to like about Kate Pickert's Time cover story (hidden behind a paywall) on abortion rights 40 years after Roe v. Wade. Unlike the majority of big media stories on this issue, this one actually portrays abortion patients accurately, particularly pointing out how most of them are grown adults with children at home and notes the wide range of feminist activism—from fighting for women's economic rights to promoting contraception access—that actually results in lower abortion rates. Pickert even mentions the phrase "reproductive justice," a framework that takes a more holistic approach to improving people's reproductive lives and one that appeals strongly to younger activists, especially activists of color.She tries to pass the whole deal off as 'business as usual'.
Too bad, then, that Pickert portrays the increasing restrictions on abortion access as the result of the failings of the pro-choice movement, a narrative which inevitably leads to blaming pro-choicers for being "hard line," "tone deaf," and lacking "nuance."
Two-steps-forward-one-step-back is the ugly reality of progressive politics.That's often true, but not necessarily.
In Canada, we did it differently.
Merkin feminists won the right to abortion on January 22, 1973 with the Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade.
Immediately legislatures around the country started enacted restrictions.
In response to Roe v. Wade, most states enacted or attempted to enact laws limiting or regulating abortion. . . Congress in 1976 passed the Hyde Amendment, barring federal funding of abortions (except in the case of rape, incest, or life of the woman) for poor women through the Medicaid program. The Supreme Court struck down several state restrictions on abortions in a long series of cases stretching from the mid-1970s to the late 1980s, but upheld restrictions on funding, including the Hyde Amendment, in the case of Harris v. McRae (1980).Merkin feminists have been fighting -- and largely losing -- rearguard skirmishes ever since.
Canadians watched in horror as the huge victory got nibbled to death by ducks.
We were like the younger sister. We got to watch Big Sis make terrible mistakes. And like the smart younger sister, we learned. We vowed to ourselves the political equivalent of 'blue eyeshadow is NEVER a good idea'.
It took 15 more years in Canada, until January 28, 1988, to achieve our victory, R. v. Morgentaler.
But because we watched and learned, we were ready for the ducks. Every time -- every fucking time -- the fetus fetishists show signs of screwing around with our rights, we act.
Recently, with Ken Epp's Kicking Abortion's Ass Bill, we were a little slow off the mark.
So when Woodworth's Wank, aka Motion 312 surfaced, we were ready.
And we are ready for its sequel, Warawa's Wank, aka Motion 408.
As a matter of fact, the more the so-called debate heats up here in Canada, the more support we gain.
So, bring it, fetus fetishists.
We watched Big Sis fuck up.
ADDED: Joyce Arthur's excellent Rabble piece on The Benefits of Decriminalizing Abortion.