Stand with those who refuse to sit on the sidelines as women’s lives are foreclosed. It is up to us! We pledge resistance!
"Not the Time to be Ladylike and Follow Rules Doled Out by the Establishment"
by Mary Lou Singleton, licensed Midwife and Family Nurse Practitioner, as well as Founder of Personhood for Women.
Like most women who believe they deserve full human rights and dignity, I am furious. Actually, I alternate between feelings of total despair and full-bodied rage as I watch the rights of women in the United States, like those of women all over the world, erode to the point where we are considered nothing more than public breeding stock. I live in a country that has failed for close to 100 years to give women full constitutional rights in the form of the Equal Rights Amendment, but now recognizes constitutional and human rights for capitalist corporations. Worse yet, constitutional rights and protections are being legally conferred to fertilized eggs, embryos, and fetuses. The lack of a ratified ERA combined with codification of fetal personhood together relegate women in the US to the legal status of state-regulated incubators.
I am a life-long women’s rights activist and have been a practicing midwife for over 20 years. Midwives carry the privelege and burden of knowing and witnessing the most private details of women’s lives. From this knowledge, I am fully aware that the majority of the women I have served have made the decision to abort a pregnancy at some point in their reproductive lives. From conversations with other midwives, I believe the often quoted statistic that one in three women will have an abortion is an understatement. Very rarely do I encounter a woman who regrets her decision to have an abortion. More frequently I hear the tearful confession of a woman who is having post-partum depression or difficulty bonding or alienation from older children telling me that she never wanted to have children in the first place but felt she had no choice. Sadly, as I watch the erosion of abortion rights in our country, I expect to hear more and more of these confessions.
I support the Abortion Rights Freedom Ride because no other organization in the country is speaking the full truth about abortion rights. Forced motherhood absolutely is female enslavement. Without the right to abortion on demand, women are not free. There is no greater human rights abuse than forcing a woman to endure the threats to her emotional and physical health that are inherent in pregnancy and childbirth against her will. There is no more misogynist statement than the odious, “Adoption, not abortion.” Forcing women to gestate and give birth is barbaric and criminal.
I support the Abortion Rights Freedom Ride because under the guidance of the Democratic Party and mainstream pro-choice organizations, the right to abortion has basically disappeared in large swaths of our country. I no longer believe that following the instructions of the non-profit industrial complex and the Democratic Party will do anything to stop the erosion of women’s rights, let alone lead to an expansion of abortion rights in the US.
This is not the time to be nice and ladylike and follow the rules doled out by the same establishment that has failed to protect us from having our rights ripped away. This is an emergency.