Blog for Choice Day 2009

This year's topic:

What is your top pro-choice hope for President Obama and/or the new Congress?

I hope that President Obama and the new Congress remember that reproductive justice is imperative to women's economic well-being.

I don't just mean the mom who decides that she can't afford to feed and clothe another child. I want the President, Congress, all of us to remember:

  • The college students who despite their cell phones (which are often their only phone) face rising tuition, housing & fees and outrageous book prices who can't afford $50 a month for a pack of pills;
  • The teenage girl who would drop out of school if she had to give birth because her parents have decided she must move out;
  • The girls and young women who trade sex for survival items and want birth control.
It doesn't take a Ph.D. to see the parallel between the legalization of birth control, abortion and the mass influx of women into the education system to see that they go hand in hand. Women and girls must have the ability to choose when to have sex, when to get pregnant, when to become mothers, and when not to do all of those things.

I believed this before and after becoming a mom, I am fanatical about this - No one should ever, ever be forced to have to carry any pregnancy to term. Pregnancy should be a time of love not regret. You must love and want to bring a new life into the world in order to take care of yourself. It is often the only time a woman truly cares for herself, because well, she's actually caring for her future child. I'm guilty of that.

Your birth plan should be your birth plan. If you want to have your child in a water tub with your entire famly watching, more power to ya. This goes for every single woman not just women who can afford this either due to their economic situation or not being incarerated. Yes, Virginia, we still SHACKLE women during labor if she has broken the law. DOWN THE FUCKING STREET FROM WHERE I WORK!! IN CHICAGO, ILLINOIS. IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. IN OBAMALAND. Has he broken a law? Sure. Does that mean she loses her right to a humane birth? NO. Ms. has a great feature on how some prisons are not just treating pregnant women as human beings, but also allowing their children to stay with them for some time afterwards.

The recent abortion donut story finally proves once and for all to everyone (except stupid fundies) that the term CHOICE has been co-opted by the advertising industry. We have the freedom to chose our phone company, tampons, cars, breakfast cereal and yes our donuts. CHOICE for the pro-choice movement has matured - for most of us - to include birth control, our right to sterilization, our freedom from sterilization, our right to parent, right to adopt out but still stay in touch, our right to abort, and our right to pop our birth control without stopping for a medical period. Midwives, doulas, and henna tattoos on our bulging bellies. This is what choice means to me.

Every single choice women make about our reproductive lives involves a financial decision. And obviously, those with the most money, will get the most choices.