Tennessee’s Pregnancy Criminalization Law Will Hit Black Women the HardestAnti-Choice Advocates Seize on West Virginia Democrats’ Support of 20-Week Abortion BanTRAP Laws and the Emptying of ‘Roe’Portrait of an Anti-Abortion ‘Abolitionist’

Tennessee’s Pregnancy Criminalization Law Will Hit Black Women the Hardest

by Imani Gandy

Video

Abortion Options, Explained

One in three women will have an abortion during her lifetime. It’s a safe, legal medical procedure that’s an important choice for a woman to have when she becomes pregnant before she is ready. Here’s what to expect if you decide this procedure is right for you. [via Planned Parenthood's A Naked Notion project.]

Fattitude: A Body Positive Documentary

Fattitude is a feature-length documentary by Lindsey Averill and Viridiana Lieberman that exposes how popular culture fosters fat prejudice and then offers an alternative way of thinking.

Words of Wisdom About Sex That Everyone Should Hear

Laci Green explains sexual consent: what it looks and sounds like, what it isn’t, and how important it is. In a culture that does not stress consent enough when it comes to intimate situations, these are words of wisdom with which we all should familiarize ourselves. (TRIGGER WARNING: This video contains content about sexual assault.) [via UpWorthy]

Audio

Tennessee Advocates Speak Out Against Pregnancy Criminalization

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On April 15, RH Reality Check hosted an audio press call on the Tennessee Pregnancy Criminalization Law, SB 1391, and was joined by representatives from SisterReach, Healthy & Free Tennessee, and the National Advocates for Pregnant Women.

Is Secular Anti-Choice a Thing? And How Big a Hypocrite Is Rep. Vance McAllister?

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On this episode of Reality Cast, I talk to two activists trying to raise the word that secular anti-choicers aren’t as rational and evidence-based as they pretend to be. Also, I discuss the sexism and hypocrisy in Louisiana Republican Vance McAllister’s kissing scandal and offer more on the impending doom in Texas.

Texas Wins Round Against Legal Abortion, and Hobby Lobby’s Anti-Contraception Argument

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On this episode, I talk to Lenzi Sheible of Fund Texas Women, which helps women who need to travel for abortion to get to where they’re going. Also, I discuss clinic closures in Texas and review some of the post-argument coverage of the Hobby Lobby case before the Supreme Court.

News
The Alaska Capitol building in Juneau

SB 49 requires doctors to select a reason for an abortion being “medically unnecessary” from an approved list—a term that is used to determine which procedures can be funded by Medicaid in the state.

The suit, filed on behalf of a child born with an intersex condition, claims social workers and doctors violated his constitutional rights by assigning him a biological sex shortly after birth.

The suit, filed on behalf of a child born with an intersex condition, claims social workers and doctors violated his constitutional rights by assigning him a biological sex shortly after birth.

Two Texas doctors say a hospital caved to anti-choice activist "demands" when it revoked their privileges because they provide legal abortion care.

Two Texas doctors say a hospital caved to anti-choice activist “demands” when it revoked their privileges because they provide legal abortion care.

Arizona Gov Jan Brewer signed HB 2284 into law Tuesday.

Under the new law, officials will be allowed to inspect any clinic during business hours, even if there is no reasonable cause to believe the clinic is violating regulations.

A clinic in El Paso was forced to stop providing legal abortion care, and found no relief in a federal court on Wednesday when it asked for a restraining order against Texas' omnibus anti-abortion law.

A clinic in El Paso was forced to stop providing legal abortion care, and found no relief in a federal court on Wednesday when it asked for a restraining order against Texas’ omnibus anti-abortion law.

While Republicans in state legislatures across the country are passing severe restrictions on reproductive rights, Republicans in Nevada have voted to drop opposition to abortion from the state party’s official platform.

While Republicans in state legislatures across the country are passing severe restrictions on reproductive rights, Republicans in Nevada have voted to drop opposition to abortion from the state party’s official platform.

Issued by a federal district court, Wednesday's order permanently blocks the law, which would have banned abortions as early as six weeks of pregnancy.

Issued by a federal district court, Wednesday’s order permanently blocks the law, which would have banned abortions as early as six weeks of pregnancy.

Advocates say the bill is unnecessary because current law already allows any person, including pregnant women, to use lethal force to protect themselves.

Advocates say the bill is unnecessary because current law already allows any person, including pregnant women, to use lethal force to protect themselves.

Florida state capitol in Tallahassee.

The bills passed on Friday include one that would restrict access to later abortion in the state, and another bill that would make it a separate crime to kill or injure a fetus during an attack on a pregnant woman.

A Texas appeals court ruled a state court action, which challenges a 2012 rule blocking Planned Parenthood from participating in the state-run Texas Women's Health Program, can proceed.

A Texas appeals court ruled a state court action, which challenges a 2012 rule blocking Planned Parenthood from participating in the state-run Texas Women’s Health Program, can proceed.

The bishops urge repealing a section in the Code of Virginia that provides state funding for abortions in the Medicaid program in the event of a gross and totally incapacitating physical deformity or mental deficiency in a fetus.

The bishops urge repealing a section in the Code of Virginia that provides state funding for abortions in the Medicaid program in the event of a gross and totally incapacitating physical deformity or mental deficiency in a fetus.

HB 305 would prohibit abortion providers and their affiliates from providing sex education materials, or speaking about sexual health, to public school students in the state.

HB 305 would prohibit abortion providers and their affiliates from providing sex education materials, or speaking about sexual health, to public school students in the state.

U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who oversaw both a troubled initial rollout of the Affordable Care Act's website and a surge of higher-than-expected enrollment numbers after those troubles were resolved, is resigning on Friday.

U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who oversaw both a troubled initial rollout of the Affordable Care Act’s website and a surge of higher-than-expected enrollment numbers after those troubles were resolved, is resigning on Friday.

A new lawsuit filed in state court argues that when lawmakers implemented new restrictions on medication abortion in the state they unlawfully delegated power to the FDA to regulate Arizona doctors.

A new lawsuit filed in state court argues that when lawmakers implemented new restrictions on medication abortion in the state they unlawfully delegated power to the FDA to regulate Arizona doctors.

State Sen. Irene Aguilar, chair of Colorado Senate Health and Human Services Committee, listens to testimony on the Reproductive Health Freedom Act Thursday.

In what could be a national model for states aiming to curb local restrictions on abortion, legislation is moving through the Colorado legislature that would establish fundamental rights of privacy and freedom to make decisions about reproductive health.

Roundups
Scientists discover how sperm and egg latch on to each other.

This week, we look at several pieces of new research: scientists discovered how sperm and egg latch on to each other, a study suggests that Viagra may cause melanoma, and researchers question whether Facebook makes women feel fat.

Tennessee lawmakers proposed a dangerous new law that allows for prosecuting pregnant people while a South Carolina woman will serve time after prosecutors claim she killed her infant via breastfeeding.

Tennessee lawmakers proposed a dangerous new law that allows for prosecuting pregnant people, as a South Carolina woman was sentenced to 20 years in prison for allegedly killing her infant while breastfeeding.

Reproductive rights advocates in Texas have filed another challenge to abortion restrictions in the state, while federal courts in Arizona and Alabama consider similar challenges.

Reproductive rights advocates in Texas have filed another challenge to abortion restrictions in the state, while federal courts in Arizona and Alabama consider similar challenges.

A credit card processing company refuses to work with online condom retailer.

This week, a travel company launches a racy and playful ad asking Danes to get pregnant for their country, a credit card processing company refuses to work with an online condom retailer, and the STD app Hula comes under fire.

This week, one app is blamed for a syphilis outbreak, while another wants you to practice cunnilingus by licking your phone.

This week, one app is blamed for a syphilis outbreak, while another wants you to practice cunnilingus by licking your phone.

A decision from Arkansas reinforces fetal viability as a constitutional bright line for abortion restrictions, even as more early abortion bans pass in the states.

A decision from Arkansas reinforces fetal viability as a constitutional bright line for abortion restrictions, even as more early abortion bans pass in the states.

Commentary
Straight white men know someone else will always have to pay the price for anti-sex legislation.

Straight white men benefit from sexual freedom and reproductive rights. So why do the majority of them continue to support politicians who want to take those things away? Because they know someone else will always have to pay the price.

Marissa Alexander

The over-policing and over-criminalization of pregnant women and mothers is becoming a major issue in this country, and the safety of mothers is at stake.

Phyllis Schlafly, speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in 2011.

A recent column by Phyllis Schlafly—arguably nation’s, if not the world’s, most famous hater of the feminist movement—shows just how woefully out of touch she and the conservative spokeswomen who have followed her are today.

The controversy and media attention around the Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties cases before the Supreme Court undoubtedly, and understandably, focus on contraception. However, there are several important implications for sexually transmitted disease (STD) prevention as well.

The controversy and media attention around the Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties cases before the Supreme Court undoubtedly, and understandably, focus on contraception. However, there are several important implications for sexually transmitted disease (STD) prevention as well.

The war on women is not only about access to reproductive health care, it’s a multifaceted and structural perpetuation of second class status for women in all aspects of American life.  Reproductive justice is intertwined with economic justice.

To listen to conservatives tell the story about the “war on women” is to pretend it doesn’t exist at all. To listen to Democrats, though, is to limit the fight for gender equity to the issue of abortion, which, while important, is part of a larger fight for justice on all fronts.

It’s time to collectively demand we hold all exploiters of children accountable, both traffickers and buyers of child sex.

With as much emphasis as there has been on the crisis of human trafficking recently, there is almost complete disregard for the unfettered demand that is fueling this multibillion dollar industry. It’s time to collectively demand we hold all exploiters of children accountable, both traffickers and buyers of child sex.

We don't wait to teach driver's ed until after young people start driving, so why on earth do most sex education classes occur after a significant chunk of teens are already sexually active? It's time to let go of the sentimental attachment to the idea of "innocence" in adolescents.

We don’t wait to teach driver’s ed until after young people start driving, so why on earth do most sex education classes occur after a significant chunk of teens are already sexually active? It’s time to let go of the sentimental attachment to the idea of “innocence” in adolescents.

Criminalizing freely chosen reproductive actions is not part of the feminist project.

The Kansas legislature is considering a bill that would make surrogate parents, gestational carriers, and anyone who assists them liable to up to a $10,000 fine or imprisonment of one year. But despite what some supporters of the legislation may say, criminalizing freely chosen reproductive actions is not part of the feminist project.

Sprawl of Kabul, Afghanistan as seen from the top of TV Hill in the middle of the city.

In the month before Afghanistan’s presidential elections on April 5, three deadly attacks occurred against journalists who became targets of terror. I was once a war reporter. Now I write about war from a distance.

For many Black women, being called "bossy" and being bossy have the potential to save and change our lives, as we saw in the recent events surrounding CeCe McDonald (above) and Marissa Alexander.

Sheryl Sandberg and others want to see us ban the word “bossy” when talking about girls. But for many Black women, being called “bossy” and being bossy have the potential to save and change our lives.

Marlise Munoz

The recent Marlise Munoz case should be a call to action for anyone who believes that pregnant women and their families deserve respect. More than 30 states have laws that require a pregnant woman to be kept on mechanical support no matter what her living will says, and it is time for that to change.

President Obama signed two executive orders extending critical provisions of the Paycheck Fairness Act to federal contractors on Tuesday.

President Obama wasted an opportunity this week, and I’m willing to be the feminist advocate to say it. When he signed two executive orders extending critical provisions of the Paycheck Fairness Act, he addressed only some employment discrimination, and equality for some is not equality for women.

Analysis
Federal courts are increasingly recognizing Title VII protects against employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, which is why a broad ruling in the Hobby Lobby case could be especially devastating.

Federal courts are increasingly recognizing Title VII protects against employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, which is why a broad ruling in the Hobby Lobby case could be especially devastating.

Even though prostitution is legal in Switzerland, sex workers cannot rely on the courts to uphold their legitimate employment complaints.

Even though prostitution is legal in Switzerland, sex workers cannot rely on the courts to uphold their legitimate employment complaints.

Umatilla County, Oregon

As of February 20, three federally recognized tribes have the power to arrest and prosecute non-Natives who assault Native intimate partners, under a pilot project to test a historic expansion of special domestic violence criminal jurisdiction.

Teachers of Kansas stand poised to take back their state and undue the destruction caused under the leadership of Gov. Sam Brownback, with the help of his friends and funders the Kochs.

Teachers of Kansas stand poised to take back their state and undo the destruction caused under the leadership of Gov. Sam Brownback, with the help of his friends and funders the Kochs.

Greg Abbott wants to defend a state statute that Texas hospital patients say prevents them from being able to hold hospitals, and the doctors they grant privileges to, accountable when they practice bad medicine.

Greg Abbott wants to defend a state statute that Texas hospital patients say prevents them from being able to hold hospitals, and the doctors they grant privileges to, accountable when they practice bad medicine.

Some 64 provisions have been introduced so far this year to expand or protect access to abortion, more than had been introduced in any year in the last quarter-century.

Some 64 provisions have been introduced so far this year to expand or protect access to abortion, more than had been introduced in any year in the last quarter-century.

Even as the Supreme Court weighs a ruling in the Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties cases, conservatives are pushing more legal challenges to the Affordable Care Act writ large.

Even as the Supreme Court weighs a ruling in the Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties cases, conservatives are pushing more legal challenges to the Affordable Care Act writ large.

Genetic counselors in Virginia who object to abortion may now prevent women from learning the results of their genetic tests before their pregnancies progress to a point when legal abortion is impossible to obtain.

Genetic counselors in Virginia who object to abortion may now prevent women from learning the results of their genetic tests before their pregnancies progress to a point when legal abortion is impossible to obtain—and the practice could become legal in other states as well.

The international human rights and global health communities gathered with policy-makers and government leaders last month in Washington D.C. to make the case for universal abortion access.

The international human rights and global health communities gathered with policy-makers and government leaders last month in Washington D.C. to make the case for universal abortion access. This unheralded collaboration arrives on the heels of another first: a report from the UN secretary-general calling for access to safe abortion.

Q & A
Just in time for STD Awareness Month, Dr. Tonia Poteat answers questions about queer sexual health.

Just in time for STD Awareness Month, Dr. Tonia Poteat answers questions about queer sexual health—from the most common sexually transmitted infections among queer cisgender women to describing how we can protect ourselves and reduce the risk of transmission.

The "good mother" myth is an amalgamation of all the supposed good or "right" things a mother should be.

RH Reality Check recently spoke with Avital Norman Nathman, editor of The Good Mother Myth: Redefining Motherhood to Fit Reality, about toxic ideas of perfection, parenting, and gender.

For this audience, viewing After Tiller provided something even more than philosophical and moral musings about a difficult and complex subject matter. It provided yet another step toward healing for this community so intimately aligned with the film’s namesake, their doctor, their hero, and their friend.

RH Reality Check recently spoke with Shane about the film and what it meant to show it in Wichita, where Dr. George Tiller practiced and was killed by anti-choice terrorist Scott Roeder.