October 16th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

A Draft Call for a Truly Mass Outpouring for Abortion On Demand and Without Apology for Roe v. Wade 2015, initiated by StopPatriarchy.org

Contact StopPatriarchy@gmail.com to get involved in finalizing this and making it real.

Across the country, abortion rights are in a state of emergency.

In recent years: Dozens of abortion clinics have been forced to close from Texas to Virginia to Arizona and Ohio and beyond. Hundreds of anti-abortion restrictions have been passed. Anti-abortion terror has continued with harassment, threats, stalking, and the destruction of clinics. Women are once again risking their lives to self-abort. Women who miscarry or individuals who assist women in self-aborting are being sent to prison. And the Supreme Court has drastically expanded the scope of religious bigots in blocking women’s right even to birth control.

There is no reason to believe that this will let up. The anti-abortion movement has made clear that they will not stop until all abortions have been criminalized for all women in all circumstances.

There is no reason to believe that the courts or the politicians will reverse this direction. For decades we have watched as yesterday’s outrage has become today’s “compromise position” and tomorrow’s limit of what can be imagined.

It is on us. We must take responsibility to turn the tide. Forcing women to have children against their will is a form of enslavement. We must wage mass independent political resistance that speaks this truth and relies on ourselves. The millions who do not want to see women forced back to the role of breeders of children and property of men must raise our voices and put our bodies on the line. Not some time in the future, but now.

Each year the anniversary of Roe v. Wade (January 22) is marked by marches of tens of thousands against women’s right to abortion in San Francisco and Washington, DC. They must not go unopposed.

This year, there must be thousands standing up for: Abortion On Demand and Without Apology!

This must mark a major leap in changing the way millions think about abortion and reproductive rights and a major leap in mobilizing truly massive numbers to stand up and fight until we defeat this entire war on women.

Spread this Draft Call! Be part of mobilizing for this! To get involved with this effort, give feedback, endorse, and/or be part of finalizing and forging plans: Contact StopPatriarchy@gmail.com

October 2nd, 2014
stoppatriarchy

HB2 is upheld by 5th Circuit Court… UNACCEPTABLE!

BREAKING NEWS: The 5th Circuit Court in New Orleans has decided to immediately enforce Texas’ abortion law, House Bill 2. "The decision is widely expected to close all but seven abortion care centers in Texas and impact roughly 1 million women."

http://www.austinchronicle.com/daily/news/2014-10-02/5th-circuit-allows-texas-abortion-law-to-take-effect/

This is completely unacceptable! Nearly 1 million women will either be forced to bear children against their will or forced to take desperate measures and attempt to self-induce abortion. Women will die as a result of this. This should never have been up for debate! HB2 is entirely illegitimate and now more than EVER people need to stand up, and no longer just rely on the courts, but forge a movement of resistance against the attacks on women, and fight to change the entire trajectory of this!

Tomorrow, wherever you are, make a sign, gather people you know, and take to the streets, denouncing this decision and standing with the women in Texas who will be immediately impacted by this decision. It is on US to wake people up to this emergency situation. It is on US to change the course of this. We can and we must, for the lives and futures of ALL women. 

ABORTION ON DEMAND AND WITHOUT APOLOGY!

September 11th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Friday Sept. 12: Free Jennifer Whalen! Abortion is NOT a crime!

Fresh off the Abortion Rights Freedom Ride: Ground Zero Texas, Stop Patriarchy is mobilizing to rally support for a woman in Pennsylvania who is due to report to prison tomorrowSept. 12, to begin serving a 9-18 month sentence for assisting her then 16-yr-old daughter in terminating an unwanted pregnancy through a medication abortion.

Join us Friday, Sept. 12 - 9 a.m.  in front of

Montour County Prison
117 Church Street, Danville, PA 17821

to say: 

Abortion is not a crime!
Free Jennifer Whalen!
Abortion on Demand & Without Apology!

Whalen was convicted of violating a state law that requires abortions to be performed by a physician and for dispensing medication without a prescription. Aside from the prison sentence, she was also fined $1,000.

BUT who is responsible for creating a situation where:
  • The nearest abortion clinic was 75 miles away.
  • Whalen had no insurance coverage for abortion services.
  • Abortion services are more difficult to access and more stigmatized than ever.
  • More and more women are driven to desperate measures to exercise their basic right and moral choice to terminate an unwanted pregnancy.

The anti-abortion forces don’t give a damn about “child welfare” or the health and safety of women.

Whalen’s sentence is an outrage that must be opposed.

Abortion is not a crime. Free Jennifer Whalen. 

SEND YOUR MESSAGE OF SUPPORT for Whalen
and we will deliver them
READ
September 9th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Four Points About Jennifer Ann Whalen: Mother Sentenced to Prison for Helping her Daughter Abort Unwanted Pregnancy *

Several years ago, Jennifer Ann Whalen, of Pennsylvania, a 39 year old mother, helped her pregnant 16 year old daughter, who did not want to be pregnant, get abortion drugs from an internet site. They used these to induce an abortion, and they did this because of the lack of safe, legal, affordable abortion care in the area they lived. The nearest abortion clinic was 75 miles away, and her daughter didn’t have health insurance.

For this she was convicted of violating a state law that requires abortions to be performed by a physician, and sentenced to 18 months in prison.

Four points are extremely relevant to highlight and are related to where things are headed with the attacks on abortion and birth control rights:

ABORTION RIGHTS ARE IN A STATE OF EMERGENCY: Throughout the US there is an abortion rights emergency, headed quickly towards disaster for women. In 2014 Texas saw the biggest round of clinic closures ever to hit a single state since abortion was legalized in 1973, and it’s not over yet. Texas, a state of roughly 13 million women, went from having 44 abortion clinics to just 19 in one year, and depending on a 5th circuit court ruling, could be left with only 7.  Six states have only one abortion clinic. These restrictive laws, attacks on abortion doctors, harassment and stigma heaped on women that seek abortion, and mass closures of clinics, have driven women to take matters into their own hands, risking their lives in order to not be forced to bear children they do not want. 


ABORTION IS BEING CRIMINALIZED: The doctor at the hospital that Whalen took her daughter to (after her daughter began having severe cramping and bleeding 2 weeks after taking the abortion drugs) turned her into the police and set in motion a criminal investigation. This is outrageous, and sets dangerous precedent for other women; who may decide after they risk self-abortion, that they cannot risk seeking professional medical help if they need it. 5,000 women a year died before Roe made abortion legal, and emergency rooms were filled with women that had uterine infections. If we continue on the current course, abortion will become an outright crime, and then not only will graveyards and emergency rooms fill with women, the jails will also fill with women. Women whose only crime was to want a life other than becoming a mother. 


(Even women that want to become mothers, but who have miscarriages, health crises, or addiction issues are increasingly facing jail time. Indeed- some already are. From 1973 to 2005 the National Advocates for Pregnant Women study identifies 413 cases where pregnant women were arrested, incarcerated, detained in in hospitals or mental institutions, and forced to undergo medical treatments- including surgery. This number is currently on the rise due to “fetal homicide” and “child endangerment” laws. A fetus is NOT a child, abortion is NOT Homicide, and women are NOT state-mandated incubators.
)

ABORTION IS NOT A CRIME! WOMEN THAT DON’T WANT TO BECOME MOTHERS ARE NOT CRIMINALS! NO JAIL TIME for Jennifer Ann Whalen, and NO SHAME for her daughter, or any woman that seeks abortion. Whalen has been sentenced to more time than the likes of Rick Perry, Greg Abbott, and the other ruling class functionaries that are responsible for instituting vicious, woman-hating, anti-abortion laws. They are the real criminals, with the blood of women on their hands. Whalen has been fined $1,000 and sentenced to 12-18 months in prison, and ordered to perform 40 hours of community service. If she had been convicted on all counts, she could have been sentenced to 7 years, and up to $15,000 in fines. She was charged with medical consultation, unlawfully dispensing medicine, endangering the life of a child, and simple assault. Medical consultation is a 3rd degree felony. This is OUTRAGEOUS, and UNACCEPTABLE! All charges and fines should be dropped immediately!


THERE IS A MOVEMENT THAT YOU SHOULD JOIN: to fight against the attacks on women and abortion rights, and for the liberation of women! Everyone has an interest in fighting for women’s liberation. Women are half of humanity, and if women cannot even make the essential decision about when and whether to become mothers, if women are forced into motherhood against their will, then they are enslaved. If women are not free, then no one is free. This sentence against Jennifer Ann Whalen should be reversed! Also, the movement to reverse this overall war on women must grow! 

*  CORRECTION to original post: Whalen is married, not single.

September 6th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Rally Against Patriarchy in ABQ on 9/5/2014.

About twenty people gathered outside of the Embassy Suites where Archbishop Sheehan was honored guest at a fundraising dinner for the anti-abortion Project Gabriel. Troy Newman, fascist of the violent and misogynist organization “Operation Rescue” was keynote speaker.

As the dinner began, a handful of us entered and disrupted this patriarchy party, calling out these patriarchs for what they are (“Troy Newman is a fascist! Archbishop Sheehan hates women!”), and vowing to see them buried in the dusty pages of history.  They blocked the doors as fast as they could, surrounded us, bullied us, tried to take the bullhorn, and called us baby-killers.  We did not back down, and continued to chant: “Forced motherhood is female enslavement! and Without this basic rights, women can’t be free: abortion on demand and without apology!”

Local ABQ groups and national groups did the right thing this day, to have visible presence outside of this event, to openly oppose it and to refuse to compromise away women’s lives. This refusal for these types of events to go on without open opposition is EXACTLY what is needed now. Abortion rights are in a state of emergency, and the likes of Troy Newman should not be able to sit at a table in celebration and fundraising for the enslavement of women, in peace, while women’s body are legislated into incubating machines.

Glad to stand with you, Freedom From Religion, WORD, Personhood for Women, and members of ABQ NOW. Let’s keep it up, here and everywhere.

Abortion On Demand & Without Apology!

www.StopPatriarchy.org

September 5th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Aug 30, 2014 - Standing up for Abortion on Demand & Without Apology at Seattle Center, Seattle, WA. Next up: Protests in Seattle and across the country on September 12 to protest the appeal of the recent favorable ruling in Texas. All but 6 clinics in the entire state of Texas hang in the balance. It’s time to redouble our efforts for abortion rights and women everywhere!

August 30th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Week of Defiance for Abortion on Demand & Without Apology, from Seattle to Texas!

On Wednesday, August 27th, in front of a busy market during evening rush hour, we let hundreds of people in Seattle know that there is an abortion rights EMERGENCY across the U.S., but most concentrated right now in Texas. We held the portraits of women who died when abortion was illegal or inaccessible. We read their stories out loud. Almost no one we met had any idea that all but 6 clinics were set to close by Sept 1st if not for the favorable ruling on HB2 that just came down the day after this action. A minority of people took a flyer with the statement to Stop Forced Motherhood, but that minority was about 350 people - and that matters. The most outraged and concerned stopped and wrote a message on a bloody coat hanger to send to Texas Governor Rick Perry, told us their stories, signed up with StopPatriarchy.org, got stickers to wear, and donated. Next up, we’ll be going out to reach thousands of people on Monday Sept 1st outside of Bumbershoot (popular Seattle music festival).

Today, on Saturday Aug 30, our outdoor plans got rained out, so we got together at Revolution Books and filmed a video of pre and post Roe v Wade abortion stories - the personal stories of women who came to the event who ranged in age from their early 20s to their 80s. Some new volunteers are editing the video as a powerful contribution to the Week of Defiance. We’ll be sure to post it here when it’s done!

August 29th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Judge Rules Against Further Abortion Clinic Closures in Texas - A statement from StopPatriarchy.org and the Abortion Rights Freedom Ride - August 29, 2014

It is very important that Judge Yeakel has blocked – at least for now – the closure of abortion clinics that was scheduled to take place on September 1st, 2014 and laid the basis for the possible reopening of clinics in El Paso and the Rio Grande Valley.**

However, this is only a temporary reprieve. It is far from a complete or final victory.

Already this correct ruling is being appealed by the Attorney General to the Fifth Circuit Court in New Orleans. Further, even with this positive ruling, Texas has only about half the number of abortion clinics it had just three years ago and this is indicative of a nationwide pattern of clinic closures and mounting restrictions, stigma and obstacles placed on women.

As Merle Hoffman, Advisory Board member of the Abortion Rights Freedom Ride, put it, “While we celebrate this victory, it is critical to remember that this is one battle in an ongoing war and we must remain vigilant.”

Sunsara Taylor, initiator of StopPatriarchy.org and Abortion Rights Freedom Rider among those arrested this month protesting HB2, added, “The anti-abortion movement will not stop until they have criminalized all abortions for all women in all circumstances. The emergency facing women is not over. Now is the time to redouble our efforts.”

Abortion must be available on demand and without apology! Forced motherhood is female enslavement. Without the ability to decide for themselves when and whether to have a child, women cannot be free. If women are not free then no one is free.

**This means that abortion will not become any more inaccessible to women throughout the state of Texas in the very short term. It may even mean that abortion becomes more available in the Rio Grande Valley and in Western Texas than it has been in a year, depending on whether those clinics have the ability to reopen.

August 29th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

No One Has to Ask Permission to Fight For Women’s Liberation - A response to Katie Klabusich’s attack on Stop Patriarchy in Bitch Magazine

by Carol Downer 

The headline, “In Texas, Activist Group ‘Stop Patriarchy” Draws Criticism’ and the first two paragraphs might first appear like an objective report; however, your blog, reprinted in Bitch is not a report, but a trash job. Come clean, Katie Klabusich, Texans for Reproductive Justice is you and your buddies in an ad hoc group formed for the sole purpose of opposing Stop Patriarchy and their mission to come to Texas, protest the TRAP laws that are closing down Texas clinics and their goal of linking this to the nationwide emergency facing abortion rights.

I’m on the advisory board of Stop Patriarchy and I went on the Abortion Rights Freedom Ride for one week.

So, you have not given me or anyone else one good reason not to support Stop Patriarchy. Your criticisms are baseless; if anything, they are reasons to support Stop Patriarchy. 

Read More

August 26th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Add your pro-woman message to Rick Perry

Reproductive freedom is a basic human right, like freedom of speech. It affects everything in a woman’s life, whether she is healthy or not, in school or not, in the labor force or not, and how long she lives. In opposing reproductive freedom, Rick Perry has become a dictator endangering women’s lives. He should be impeached.
-Gloria Steinem

Check out the messages being sent in from across the country and read out loud at Rick Perry’s mansion during the Week of Defiance, and add your own!

You must feel very powerless and small if you are willing to take such a stand against women. It’s really stupid and cruel, and only makes you smaller.
-Alice from Oakland, CA

Pro choice is still Pro life.
Women need access to SAFE abortions.

-Hailey from Austin, TX

August 24th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Reflections on Las Colonias, Rio Grande Valley - from an Abortion Rights Freedom Rider

Brownsville, August 22, 2014   Before the Brownsville crew split and went our separate ways, we had time to reflect on our experiences and speak about the week as a whole. What kept coming up was how much a positive impact the crew has made and how this seems to be just the beginning of a conversation between the people in the Rio Grande Valley and Stop Patriarchy. To clarify by positive impact, in no way did we mean it to be a display of charity, to say “look at what we’ve done”, but really this overall feeling that people were grateful for speaking with them about the abortion rights emergency and linking it to the overall feeling of repression and oppression felt in the Rio Grande Valley.  

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August 20th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Report from Brownsville: “The more people I spoke to the more confident I became”

It was incredible to see that with a little bit of elbow grease, courage, like that young women we had met earlier that day, and some fucking truth people became emboldened and wanted to act.

Notes from an Abortion Rights Freedom Rider, Rio Grande

Monday, August 18, Rio Grande. Before heading to Brownsville I confided in a fellow freedom rider that I was nervous about going down with such a small crew and my lack of experience. I told her I was nervous about speaking to people about abortion and really taking initiative down in Brownsville. Her response is something that I think speaks volumes about the richness of today’s outreach; she said to me that one, everything was going to work out and not to worry, and two, and more importantly, that talking about abortion is easy or at least gets easier in time. Another freedom rider echoed this sentiment by emphasizing the strength in our varying degrees of experience and knowledge and that bolstered my confidence.

Under some awesome leadership, our crew set up camp in a stall at a weekly flea market in Brownsville. After setting up our table with flyers, pins, and stickers, and quite ironically hung up the “Abortion on Demand and Without Apology” sign with coat hangers, we got to talking with the folks passing by. At first I was shaky and watched as other freedom riders spoke to people, attentive to their confidence and the language they used to illustrate how serious this abortion rights emergency is. We would stop to chat and ask each other about how people were responding and what we could say to strengthen our responses.   

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August 18th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Brownsville, Day One

From an Abortion Rights Freedom Rider

First day in Brownsville we headed over to a local flea market. The response was very mixed, some people were really into what we were doing and others of course were not so pleased. Right off the bat, we had a group of 4 girls that loved what stop patriarchy was about.

image

They did not realize the state of emergency that abortion rights are in at this moment and how we are moving back in time. They decided to take this into their own hands and took a ton of flyers to hand out throughout the flea market. They were able to understand first hand what we are facing in this country surrounding abortion. The huge stigma and shame that follows it. There were plenty of pro-life religious folk there that could not grasp the fact that when abortion is illegal women die. What was the most interesting was that these pro-lifers were not really into talking about it at all. Versus other anti’s we have faced in the past. The only argument they really were giving was well it’s my opinion I have the right to my opinion. This is something that you can’t have an opinion on, women are already self inducing, around the world women are still dying from illegal abortions, and women are still shamed and forced into mother hood. So many people are blinded by their religions and what society has put out around abortion rights. We are changing that, we need to turn the tide, change the terms rise up thousands and soon millions.

August 16th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Urgently Needed: A Week of Defiance to Stop the Attacks on Abortion Rights

A call to action from the 11 Freedom Riders arrested outside Rick Perry’s mansion on August 13, 2014

The attacks on abortion rights have been relentless in recent years: dozens of forced clinic closures, hundreds of restrictions on abortion, flagrantly misogynist court rulings, acts of terrorism and intimidation against doctors, and all in the name of “life” and “religious freedom.”  This has meant thousands of women turned out and put down, dreams extinguished, futures foreclosed, and lives lost.  Millions have been lied to about abortion, and millions more trained and taught to apologize for abortion as a “necessary evil.”

It is time to put an end to the madness.  This is a question of whether women will be free, or whether they will be enslaved to a vicious patriarchal system that is hell bent on reproductive control, and sees women as nothing but sperm receptacles and baby-making machines.  This is a question of whether or not young girls will dare to dream of themselves as leaders, thinkers, fighters, and frankly, full human beings.  It is time to tell the truth about abortion, and to defy the powers that seek to enslave women: forced motherhood is female enslavement.

Read the whole letter here

Join in a Week of Defiance August 25 - September 1.  Join us in Austin (location TBA August 18), or claim your own space wherever you live:

  • Send a message or a story to Rick Perry and others like him - to be put on coat hangers and strung up in parks nationwide, and read aloud at protests
  • Bring your art, poems, and songs of resistance against the oppression of women
  • Lead or attend workshops on science, sex ed, history, abortion, and women’s liberation
  • Stage or attend speak-outs where abortion stories are told unapologetically
  • Invite everyone you know
  • Bring or send money, food and water, to Austin (location TBA 8/18), or anywhere that people are standing up in this way, to keep this going all week
  • Listen to the “People’s Hearings” with others who are determined to understand better what it means for real women when abortion is illegal, and why abortion rights are worth fighting for
  • March daily at 6pm wherever you are, with pictures of women’s faces, and strings of women’s stories on coat hangers, to the Governor’s mansion, or any institution that is spearheading the attacks on abortion
  • On September 1st, when all but 6 abortion clinics in Texas are set to close, join in civil disobedience wherever you are to send a clear message that you refuse to accept the future that patriarchy has in store for women

Contact StopPatriarchy.org today with your ideas and your intentions.  We will have your back no matter where you are.  If you have already reached out, expect a call from us this week.  We know this system has never gifted oppressed people with liberation, and you are urgently needed to be part of the kind of mass movement that is the only way that the course of history has ever changed.

Forced Motherhood is Female Enslavement.
Abortion on Demand & Without Apology!

August 7th, 2014
stoppatriarchy

Changing the Terms and De-Mystifying the Abortion Conversation

from Riley, an Abortion Rights Freedom Rider

I have some experience talking about abortion, and I have to say, it’s not that crazy. In fact, it gets a lot easier the more you do it, the more you run up against the same types of arguments, and the more you can recognize that these same ways of thinking, are exactly why we need to get out there with the uncompromising truth.

Yesterday, a group of volunteers went out to do outreach throughout different parts of Austin. I went over to North Congress, near the Governor’s mansion, where there is a mix of young professionals, students, and homeless people.

We went out to build for the People’s Hearing, and to sound the alarm on the abortion rights emergency, and challenge people to confront the reality that women are facing today, to understand the fact that this is about women’s liberation or women’s enslavement, and to get involved with a movement out to stop these attacks and defeat this war on women.

People have not heard anyone use the word abortion, in this light, in a really long time. And so we get all kinds of reactions when we go out like this.

One common thing I hear, and heard a lot yesterday, is people wanting to immediately talk about late term abortion; they ask us at what point we think there should be a cut off to abortion access. My response: At what point does a woman become an incubator? At what point does her life not matter? This whole focus on late term abortion is dishonest – not only do most abortions happen in the first trimester, but later abortions mainly happen because of lack of access or health problems that develop later. This whole framework eliminates the woman, the living, breathing, and conscious person with dreams, desires, and a social existence, from the equation entirely.

Another common response, ‘well there are consequences to everything, if a woman isn’t using protection, or if a woman has sex in general, she has to deal with the consequences’, she has to be ready to have a baby. My response: a baby should never be a consequence. Being ready to have sex is just not the same thing as being ready for a child. A woman should never be morally ‘obligated’ to carry a pregnancy to term. Forcing a woman to have a child against her will is a form of enslavement, it is forcible control over a women’s body, over her whole life, and there is nothing MORAL about that.

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End Pornography & Patriarchy: the Enslavement and Degradation of Women www.StopPatriarchy.org