Alabama Abortion Law Highlights Poor Maternity, Childcare Stats

Reproductive Health is Abortion Rights

From the article:

In Alabama, a state that just passed a total ban on abortion, more than a quarter of children live in poverty; 30 percent of those children are under the age of five.

Only half of Alabama’s 67 counties have an obstetrician.

Infant care for a single child in Alabama takes up an average of 11 percentof a family’s income. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, child care costs are unaffordable when they exceed 7 percent of a family’s income.

Single mothers in Alabama spend 29 percent of their income on childcare costs.

Child care costs for families with two children—an infant and a four year old—cost 28 percent more than the average rent in the state.

About 88 percent of Alabama’s rural hospitals are operating “in the red.”

Alabama has the second highest infant mortality rate in the country.

Source: Alabama Abortion Law Highlights Poor Maternity, Childcare Stats

Yeah, abortion was really the biggest issue in Alabama. . . I say sarcastically.

It’s almost like these politicians don’t actually care about the people that make up their constituents.

U.S. Denying Citizenship to Kids of Same-Sex Couples Born Elsewhere | The Mary Sue

From the article:

Last summer, without fanfare, the State Department changed the rules of the Immigration and Nationality Act so that a child born outside the country to American parents has to be biologically related to one of the parents to receive birthright U.S. citizenship. The State Department website itself reads: “Even if local law recognizes a surrogacy agreement and finds that U.S. parents are the legal parents of a child conceived and born abroad through ART, if the child does not have a biological connection to a U.S. citizen parent, the child will not be a U.S. citizen at birth.”

Worse, even if there is a biological connection, same-sex couples are still being denied U.S. citizenship for their children born out of the country because the State Department has decided their children were born “out of wedlock,” which means they have to go through even more legal and logistical problems to ensure citizenship for their children. The Daily Beast, who broke this story, writes that when the INA was first conceived, there was no reference to biological connection to the children. It was only last year that suddenly the idea of “out of wedlock” children became centered on same-sex parents, even if they are married.

Source: U.S. Denying Citizenship to Kids of Same-Sex Couples Born Elsewhere | The Mary Sue

The news on what is happening to LGBTQ people in the US is just exhausting in how horrible it is.

Intuit CEO in Internal Video: Hiding Free TurboTax Was In “Best Interest of Taxpayers” — ProPublica

From the article:

Sasan Goodarzi, the CEO of Intuit, says the company’s efforts to make its free tax-filing software harder to find on Google were part of the software giant’s commitment to educating taxpayers.

In an 11-minute video sent to Intuit employees, Goodarzi said the company was trying to help consumers by steering them to “educational content” instead of TurboTax’s free filing website.

The company promised the IRS it would offer a free option to tens of millions of taxpayers earning less than $34,000.

Responding to our reporting, which shows that Intuit, H&R Block and other for-profit tax software companies were steering low-income customers to their paid products, Goodarzi said the company’s marketing practices “had been misinterpreted to signal that we were trying to hide the product we offer in the IRS program. That is inaccurate.”

Source: Intuit CEO in Internal Video: Hiding Free TurboTax Was In “Best Interest of Taxpayers” — ProPublica

I hate the tax lobby with a particular passion. The reason the IRS and the US government doesn’t just automatically give you a bill, or a tax return is that the tax lobby has put an enormous effort into keeping themselves relevant. Our government officials are easily bought by lobby dollars.

You can file for free, but these companies hid this option and made poor Americans pay anyways. They re the worse.

Why Alabama’s Abortion Ban Goes Beyond Alabama | The Mary Sue

Reproductive Health is Abortion Rights

From the article:

The ban on abortion in Alabama has been signed into law but is unlikely to go into effect for a long time, if ever, being purposefully designed to attract court challenges in order to take the case to the Supreme Court. Still, the law includes no exceptions for rape and incest and would be devastating and life-endangering for Alabama women—but at the same time, it’s about more, even, than Alabama. It’s about Roe v. Wade, and the health, human rights, and futures of all women and pregnant people in this country.

That said, it didn’t take Trump becoming president to render abortion virtually inaccessible for many women, and especially lower-income women of color, in several states, with myriad socioeconomic and geographic barriers already in place on the state and federal level. Since 1973, when Roe v. Wade was first decided, close to 1,200 state and federal laws restricting abortion access have passed, and as of 2014, around 90 percent of all U.S. counties lack an abortion provider.

Barriers to reproductive rights in this country have been taking us in this dreaded direction for years, but Donald Trump and his power to craft a judicial system and Supreme Court in the spitting image of his misogyny, has finally made the anti-abortion movement’s endgame a real possibility in America. After all, just this week, the U.S. Senate confirmed Wendy Vitter, Trump’s nominee for a federal judgeship in Louisiana, and a new, inexperienced, and radical opponent of abortion rights who has spread lies that abortion leads to cancer and suicide.

Source: Why Alabama’s Abortion Ban Goes Beyond Alabama | The Mary Sue

This is the culmination of decades of chipping away at abortion rights. The problem with the more progressive liberal side of things, is that it is by nature reactive. It takes a while to react, and when small slow changes accumulate, it’s hard to see what’s been going on.

Then, we have a sudden surge of bullshit, and the Supreme Court is already stacked with anti-abortion judges.

This article is a good read, if you are just becoming aware that this is a problem.

41% of trans people in US south face police violence, report says · PinkNews

From the article:

Almost half of transgender, gender non-binary and gender non-conforming people in America’s southern states experience “high levels of violence by law enforcement,” a report has found.

This number jumps to 52 percent when looking only at respondents of colour.

The Grapevine: A Southern Trans Report was carried out by the Transgender Law Center at Southerners on New Ground (TLC@SONG), a collaboration between two LGBT+ advocacy groups based in Atlanta, Georgia.

Source: 41% of trans people in US south face police violence, report says · PinkNews

There are large parts of my own country I feel like I can’t go to. The South, for transgender people, and LGB in general, is not safe. Not when 41% of all transgender people face police violence, and 52% for transgender people of color.

The horror stories I have seen play out over the years is enough that I will never ever go there. I have to protect myself and my wife. The chances of a bad outcome for us if we go to the South for any reason, is just too high.

Too Fast, Too Black, Too African: On Caster Semenya | Autostraddle

From the article:

When, and more importantly, how, does it become permissible to forcibly strip an 18 year old girl in front of “experts” who will determine, for her, her own gender? Though Semenya has never confirmed nor denied this, it is widely rumoured that the gender testing she underwent in the months and years following the initial questioning of her gender revealed an unknown fact to her: that she is intersex. Many intersex people are not aware they are intersex until a medical or reproductive issue arises; however it is estimated that roughly 1.7% of the world population is intersex. Pause to think about the weight of making this discovery in the most public, unnecessary and invasive of ways. To better understand the number of intersex persons globally, 1.7% is also the approximate occurrence of red hair in the human population. Which is to say, it is not a small number. Is discrimination against this robust a population of people justifiable? If so, why? Whose advancement does it serve? What agenda does it push forward?

The science of testosterone and its influence on performance or as indicator of masculinity has likewise been successfully questioned and discredited within academic and scientific circles. I don’t purport to know nor want to debate Semenya’s biological composition; she is deserving of more privacy than we have ever afforded her. However, it is notable that the World Medical Association has not only questioned the study upon which the IAAF’s regulations are based but also the ethics of imposing medical treatment on athletes like Semenya. The IAAF’s regulations show a complete disregard for the wellbeing of Semenya when put up against the standards of a white, European, athletic body vested in the advancement of a heritage of white European athletic excellence.

Source: Too Fast, Too Black, Too African: On Caster Semenya | Autostraddle

I just can’t stop being thoroughly outraged by the treatment of Caster Semenya. Can you imagine an 18 year old being literally stripped naked while “experts” with no definable background in the expertise they tout, poke and inspect you to look for any reason to deny your womanhood?

There is a layer of racism to this that is jaw dropping, as Semenya was compared to the physiques of white women.

Then, to add insult to injury they pull up a discredited study about testosterone levels that is so far form reality that it was completely debunked. Every athlete has increased testosterone. There are no hard lines for what testosterone levels should be. We have a generalized masculine and feminine level.

I know this because I depend on testosterone for my masculine presentation, and my wife is repressing hers for her feminine presentation. I guess with both of us being transgender, we have a better understanding of the situation than the IAAF.

I will never stop being outraged that this woman’s success was not celebrated but undermined.

I can never support these sports knowing that this has happened.

Missouri State Senate Passes a Near-Total Abortion Ban

Reproductive Health is Abortion Rights

From the article:

Now that Alabama Governor Kay Ivey has signed a near-total ban on abortion into law, Missouri is the latest state to follow suit.

Source: Missouri State Senate Passes a Near-Total Abortion Ban

This is a no-exception ban on abortion after 8 weeks.

Growing up in the 70s and 80s with the knowledge I could access abortion, was a comfort to a guy that was born into a woman’s body. While I was fairly comfortable with how I looked, the idea of pregnancy haunted me so much I got a tubal ligation at the age of 20. The mere idea of being pregnant was a total no go.

Planned Parenthood saved my life because I had a pregnancy scare at 16, and I had no way to express the horror I felt at the idea of being pregnant. They tested me, got me on birth control, and I felt safe again. I’m not sure I’d still be here if I had been forced to be pregnant. I had already planned that at the age of 16.

My fear of pregnancy was enough that I took birth control pills in secret, and made the men I slept with use condoms as if that was the only birth control to avoid the inevitable straight boy arguments.

When I was older I took some of my friends, and eventually my sister for an abortion. Each instance was a case of extremes. Homelessness, drug abuse, or in my sisters case, spousal violence. None of those women could have carried a baby to term.

This concerted effort to outlaw one of the safest procedures you can medically get, is a violence against anyone that can get pregnant.

A former college admissions dean explains the mundane reverse affirmative action that lets the rich send their kids to the front of the line.

From the article:

For example, the majority of applicants are women, but admissions committees seek to establish a gender balance, which means that men face much lower standards than women. On top of that, the low academic standards for admitting students with exceptional athletic ability favor men, as men’s teams are more valued than women’s teams.

But not all men are created equal. According to England, admissions committees routinely refuse to consider admitting Black athletes under the athletic programs; instead, these candidates are deferred to the colleges’ “diversity programs,” ensuring that mediocre white men can be admitted even if they’re less academically qualified than their female counterparts, and even if they’re less athletically qualified than Black athletes applying at the same time.

It’s quite an affirmative action program for mediocre white dudes!

Source: A former college admissions dean explains the mundane reverse affirmative action that lets the rich send their kids to the front of the line / Boing Boing

This is by Buck McRichypants, who is a complete moron, suddenly has a degree from a prestigious college, and is in a position of leadership at work that he is obviously too stupid to actually do right out of college.

If you have the money to play the game, you get all the benefits.

Friends of Mississippi Waffle House shooting victim say the incident was a hate crime

From the article:

Friends of the 22-year-old victim say she walked into the Southaven Waffle House and was verbally abused by a stranger, simply because she’s a transgender woman.

Southaven Police confirm an argument followed and that when the victim tried to walk away, the suspect shot her.

“She was shot in her leg, both of her legs. And the bullets went through her leg and broke her femur,” said the victim’s friend. “She’s gonna be okay. She’s got to have surgery. She’s gonna get a rod and a plate put in her leg.”

Source: Friends of Southaven Waffle House shooting victim say the incident was a hate crime

I’m not holding my breath for a hate crime designation because Mississippi is a hellhole for LGBTQ rights, and their hate crime statute does not cover sexuality or gender identity.

Women Die Because Lawmakers Don’t Understand Sex Ed | The Mary Sue

Reproductive Health is Abortion Rights

From the article:

Despite the danger their laws pose, the anti-abortion Republican lawmakers behind these bills hardly seem interested in learning fact from fiction, even when it means the death or punishment of women as collateral damage for their ignorance. Just on Wednesday, anti-choice lawmakers in Ohio introduced a wide-ranging bill that would all at once ban insurance coverage of abortion, prohibit access to pretty much all birth control, and institute a misguided measure regarding ectopic or tubal pregnancies involving conception outside the womb.

Per the bill’s male writer, abortions for these ectopic pregnancies would be prohibited because the embryo could be “removed from the fallopian tube and [reinserted] it in the uterus,” wholly ignoring women as human beings beyond their reproductive systems. For one thing, as experts have pointed out, this imagined health procedure just … doesn’t exist, and for another, following the same anti-science reasoning, the bill would also prohibit birth control methods like pills, IUDs, and other hormonal contraception by equating any birth control that could act to stop a fertilized egg from implanting to the uterus with abortion.

Source: Women Die Because Lawmakers Don’t Understand Sex Ed | The Mary Sue

Emphasis is mine. That isn’t even fucking possible. It’s just like that stupid “abortion reversal” that is all fucking made up lies. It’s not fucking medically possible.

The most stark part of this is that the bill prohibits actual birth control. It was never about reproductive options. It was always about punishing women for having sex.

Fuck them.