Monday, March 4, 2013
Planned Parenthood, Reproductive Rights, and Fighting the Same Battles Over Again
No seriously--there are distinct actions that the state Republicans in general and Rick Perry in specific have brought forward to attack Planned Parenthood. And beyond Planned Parenthood, they have also launched an all out assault on women's health programs and family planning. Take the last legislative session (2011)--not only was family planning funding cut by 60%, but they also introduce the sonogram law. And last year, Texas opted out of millions of federal dollars for the Women's Health Program, just because they wanted to exclude Planned Parenthood from the program. It goes far beyond an opposition to abortion and into ridiculous encroachments on who women can use as their healthcare provider.
Planned Parenthood, a tireless advocate for reproductive rights, is no rookie in this fight. So they're holding their 2013 lobby day on Thursday. I decided that I'd finally take advantage of the community service day my employer allows, and signed up to participate.
I went to the training for lobby day yesterday and in addition to being highly motivated by the stats, laws, and financial impacts the trainers shared, I was also motivated by the frustration shared by my fellow volunteers. Especially the older men and women who were so angry that they were having to do this again. It's a common sentiment; people who were active during the second wave fought really hard for these issues to be settled, but here we are, having to actively fight for it all again.
Each time I've rallied in support of reproductive rights here in Texas, I've interacted with older people sharing this sentiment. I can't blame them--how frustrating it must be to be back at something you thought was tackled 40 years ago?
I want them to know that the younger people in the room like me heard them. We're there with them and we don't take for granted what they did.
And I want everyone to know that active participation as a citizen doesn't stop at voting--it's so important to take other actions in support of the policy you believe in. That's why I'm putting my beliefs into action and will be there on Thursday lobbying my representatives. If you are a Texan and you can make it out to the capital on Thursday, please sign up for lobby day. If you can't make it for the whole day, there will also be a rally at 10:45am. And if you are unable to make it at all, write a letter or email or place a call to your representative. Show your support! This stuff matters, y'all.
Everything is Bigger in Texas, Including my Disappointments
Being Viewed as Pre Pregnant
Texas is Reminding Me I'm Just a Baby Vessel Again
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