Keeping Women Barefoot And Pregnant

The Georgia legislature passed a law making abortion after six weeks of pregnancy illegal. I won’t go into all the details of the law. The theory is that a fetal heartbeat can be detected at that time. This is nonsense, because the embryo (it isn’t a fetus until nine weeks after conception) doesn’t have a heart at that point, although it does have a group of cells that, with luck, will become a heart and pulse together.

Pregnancies are defined from the last period, so six weeks is about when a period is late enough (for most women) that the woman starts thinking that maybe she’s pregnant. So the law bans all abortions. It also, and I haven’t dug into these details, makes it likely that women who have miscarriages can be convicted and imprisoned. Some asshole also said that it applies to ectopic pregnancies too, because the embryo/fetus should be removed from its unfortunate implantation outside the uterus and gently placed into that uterus. This is also nonsense – no such procedure has been developed.

Ohio wants to ban insurance coverage for abortion and most types of contraception. (Thanks, debbie!)

Alabama has also indulged in some sort of fuckery around a forced pregnancy law, but they haven’t gotten to voting on it yet.

The ACLU and others are challenging the Georgia law. At least two movie production companies are withdrawing from making movies in Georgia.

The responses on Twitter have been great. Here are some.

Great thread here – women will identify, and men should think about this.

At six weeks, the embryo is microscopic. A late and difficult period may well be an early miscarriage. Will the legislators want to examine menstrual fluid for those microscopic people?

You can donate to Planned Parenthood here. (thanks joel haines)

I think it’s cool that so many women are talking so candidly about menstruation and related matters.

Over to you all.

 

 








Trump Grift Open Thread: Everyone’s ‘Undercover’ At Mar-A-Largo

(Drew Sheneman via GoComics.com)
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Manafort in for 7.5 years

Open thread








But Seriously… (International Women’s Day)

In 2018, the #MeToo hashtag on sexual harassment was one of the top 10 censored topics on China’s popular messaging app, WeChat, according to the University of Hong Kong’s WeChatscope.

Weibo and WeChat also banned China’s most influential feminist social media account, Feminist Voices. Authorities have closed down prominent women’s rights centres. They have also detained students and recent graduates advocating for #MeToo and workers’ rights.

Just as China’s crackdown on women’s rights activism is growing, the global backlash against feminism is likely to intensify, as misogynistic autocrats have been emboldened everywhere, in part by a US president who openly expresses admiration for “strongman” rulers…

Why are authoritarian rulers so threatened by feminism? The subjugation of women is a common feature in virtually all authoritarian regimes.

Putin signed a law in 2017 that partially decriminalised domestic violence in Russia, making it much more difficult for women to report abuse.

In Hungary, the autocratic Prime Minister Viktor Orban has banned gender studies programmes at universities. Putin, Orban and Xi, among others, are fixated on pushing women into more traditional roles in the home and having more babies for the state…

Far too often, women in resistance movements are overlooked by journalists and the narrative revolves around male opposition figures.

Yet more young women in authoritarian states have become fed up with the misogyny in their daily lives, demanding equality, dignity and an end to pervasive gender-based violence.

Young women standing up for their rights pose a growing challenge to male autocrats everywhere – not just in China – which is why authoritarian rulers are so threatened by the prospect of any large-scale women’s movement developing.

Male autocrats see patriarchal authoritarianism as crucial for their political survival, but one of the core demands of feminism – that women should be free to control our own bodies and reproductive lives – is in direct conflict with the coercive, often pronatalist policies of authoritarian states, which see declining birth rates as an existential crisis. And that is exactly what is happening in China…








Impeach DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen

Well, first things first. Via NBC News:

The Trump administration said in a court filing that reuniting thousands of migrant children separated from their parents or guardians at the U.S.-Mexico border may not be “within the realm of the possible.”

The filing late Friday from Jallyn Sualog, deputy director of the department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement, was an ordered response in an ACLU lawsuit challenging the government’s separation of at least 2,737 children of migrants detained at the border since summer 2017.

Sualog said her office doesn’t have the resources to track down the children, whose numbers could be thousands more than the official estimate.

“Even if performing the analysis Plaintiffs seek were within the realm of the possible, it would substantially imperil ORR’s ability to perform its core functions without significant increases in appropriations from Congress, and a rapid, dramatic expansion of the ORR data team,” she said.

Perhaps the Democrats could appropriate $5.7B to expand the data team and fund the analysis. Then, every time Trump or his minions bleat about WALL money, they could reply, “Oops, sorry — the very sum you requested had to be diverted to fund family reunification activities because your administration’s inhumane family separation policy was enacted by incompetents who took less care tracking human beings than an Ace Hardware store uses to track $.01 nails.

Then, file articles of impeachment on Nielsen and hold hearings to dig into the details of this horror, including the depraved indifference, the incompetence and the profiteering. I’m not a Constitutional scholar, but I’m pretty sure lying to Congress in sworn testimony (perjury) is an impeachable offense and that cabinet members are subject to removal via that mechanism.

Although nothing can atone for the trauma wrought in our name by the racist policies of these heartless liars, impeaching Nielsen would focus attention on the thousands of families who’ve been destroyed. It would force Republicans to go on record in support of the whole putrid Trump administration approach to immigration at the southern border — the cruel, ineffective policies, the rank carelessness, the repeated lies, etc. It would also serve as dress rehearsal for impeaching Nielsen’s boss.