23.2.11

A PLAN


It's been quiet around here, and I'll tell you why: the last few days, each time I go to try and post about London Fashion Week, about Valentines and new clothes and pink and white tulips, I can't bring myself to press Publish. Something needs to be said first.

I don't like to delve too deeply into politics here, mostly because I don't think it's the proper forum, and also because I never feel that I am articulate enough to speak the way I would like to about the issues I care most deeply about, a condition that brings me a great deal of grief and frustration. Still, I honestly feel that I can't go on posting here without getting this off my chest.

On February 18th, the House voted to pass a bill that, among other things, would strip Planned Parenthood of all Federal funding. It is a disgrace to this country to think that, in a time when so many women, children and families need the sort of services that this organization provides more than ever, that someone, anyone, would seek to cripple and destroy their efforts. Planned Parenthood has always been somewhere that I've known even I (uninsured, unemployed, or both) could go for free health screenings and family planning options--or, should the worst occur, find support and confidentiality in a time of greatest need.

This is a subject I tend to get really emotional about (seriously, I'm tearing up a bit here just trying to get this all to come out straight!) and there really is so much more I would like to say. Instead however, I will simply urge you to add your name to this open letter to Congress and pass it along to anyone you feel might share this conviction. And, if you live in the NYC area, come join me and a few thousand other pissed off individuals at the Rally for Women's Health this Saturday. Obviously, both men and women should be encouraged to attend, but I will say this: as a female of the species, you and I owe it to ourselves, our bodies, and every other woman on this planet to let the government know we refuse to take this attack on our rights to govern and care for our own selves lying down.

35 comments:

hannah and landon said...

This is a beautiful post and wonderfully articulated. I am in full agreement with everything you've said here.

xo

julia aka garconniere said...

yeah, what hannah said. this is amazing.

leilani.e said...

YES. This needs to be said, it's absolutely absurd - "saving money" by cutting a program that saves 4$ for every 1$ spent on Planned Parenthood? SO stupid, like saving money by not paying rent and getting stuck with high hotel fees later, to paraphrase an article on rabble.ca.

Plus on a personal level it feels like a direct attack on women, or anyone with half a mind to have family-oriented preventative health care who is not a billionaire. OK so I'm Canadian and it doesn't apply to me, but this is a tad bit scary to see that Republicans think that they can get away with this nonsense, like the "forcible rape" thing last week or other constant attacks on womens' health. Dumb. Good for you for speaking out, my heart's going to be at that rally. Good luck! (rant over, sorry!)

anabela / fieldguided said...

Good for you! I think it's important for you to speak out about something that is meaningful to you, and I am in full agreement with you and the comments above me!

corrie said...

This post is so commendable, Siri. I really hope it inspires a few more people to at a minimum, sign the letter. As someone who has spent the majority of her 20's uninsured (as well as unemployed at times) and has relied on PP as her one and only option for annual cancer screenings, contraception, and sound advice, this bill feels personal. These people were elected to serve the best interests of US citizens and their voting in favor of the bill is absolutely deplorable.

anja louise said...

I signed the letter, when I heard about this I just couldn't even believe it. I went to the regular lady doc last month for my annual exam, accidentally gave them invalid insurance info, and ended up with a bill for $700. $700!!!! Just to hear the words, "You're fine this year" (thankfully!). I can't believe it costs so much and now, as a totally uninsured person, I'll be going back to Planned Parenthood when I need to... the thought of them not being able to help people is just absolutely sickening. I just can't understand how they could think this is ok. To ignore all of the amazing things they do, all the help they provide, just because of one thing some politicians can't accept. Thanks for posting this. It's so important.

thousandflower said...

I'm with you all the way. Can't be at the rally but I've signed everything I can get my cursor on. This is an attack on women and children and we can't let it happen.

Snows said...

I'm with you with this! In Europe, well for sure in Barcelona is a very important program too, for all the women, specially for the ones with less studies, or money. Good luck!

Sleepy Darlings said...

Thank you for addressing this! I had no clue this was happening, as i don't much keep up with news. I recently had a similar experience as Anja, having to spend hundreds of dollars on my lady visit, and i can't imagine being so much less fortunate and having to skip it for lack of funding...

Props for letting those of us with our heads in the ground in on the news!

Tailoverteakettle said...

Great post. Had no idea there was a rally; going to try my damnedest to get my behind over there on Saturday. Still in shock that PP losing their funding is still a possibility. So stunned that this direct attack against women could even be considered.

Jenifer said...

so great that you worry about this, cause as womans our body is one of the most important things we had. hope i could join you but I live very far away ):

jenny gordy said...

word, siri. thanks for the post.

lily k. said...

so glad you've posted this! my aunt, who works at planned parenthood, sent this link out as well:
http://act.credoaction.com/campaign/stand_up_for_women/?r_by=16836-1707412-CSoghRx&rc=paste2

Ringo, have a banana! said...

Thank you so much, everyone! I was really proud to see so many friends and acquaintances making noise about the situation on facebook in the days after the Bill passed--but it's important that we keep the momentum going and don't let apathy get the better of us (wouldn't be the first time for me, I'll readily and shamefully admit.)

What is scariest to me is that this really feels like just another symptom of a much more widespread, large scale effort on the part of conservatives to take away our health and reproductive freedoms, especially from those who are uninsured, underprivileged, and under paid. Sometimes I feel like we're on the brink of slipping back into the Dark Ages in this country.

Laura Schlifer said...

As a long time lurker, I'm coming out of the shadows to commend you for this post.

I don't have much to say since you've already articulated everything so well, so this is more of a big THANK YOU for this post.

Liz said...

I could not have said this any more perfectly. Thank you so much for posting this.

I totally agree with the dark ages - first they try to redefine rape, now this. What's next? Revoke women's right to vote? Lets just reverse decades of progress, shall we??

Lexie, Little Boat said...

AMEN AMEN AMEN

thank you for posting this.

685 said...

yes thank you perfect exactly. this needed to be expressed. this goes beyond being a political issue and starts becoming just about basic decency and fairness. your dedication is such a powerful and valuable thing.

Bethany Kellen said...

thank you.

Chuck said...

The US is crazy. This makes me want to weep with frustration. It is so cripplingly sexist, how can we be going backwards??

Caitlin said...

thank you for posting this - i put it on my facebook and hopefully more people will get the word out there

taxi Toronto said...

actually, everything have to be planned... or not?

Ana said...

thank you for your post. It is important that we all help each other stay informed of such malicious attacks on important services such as those that planned parenthood offer.

Anonymous said...

PLEASE ALL COMMENTERS READ!...There have been many bills/amendments that have been coming up lately that have been attacking not only planned parenthood but other organizations/institutions! Such as...they wanted to cut ALL public funding toward public libraries and museums!!

read here... http://capwiz.com/ala/issues/alert/?alertid=28204516&PROCESS=Take+Action...

This bill also wanted to cut other organizations such as Americorp and NEA.
There is some scary stuff going on in the House lately, please be vigilant and express your feelings toward your congressperson! I think that the House is testing the waters to see what they can get away with but this is a great opportunity to stand up and say something! Let's hope that the Senate will vote it down!

Thank you for your posting on Planned Parenthood! We have to watch out, or certain members of the government will take away all of our services!

Please spread the word, everyone!

-B

Samantha said...

lots of respect for this x

erica-knits said...

Respect from a long-time reader, first time commenter. I wish I could add my name to the petition (I'm Canadian). So glad you spoke out.

sarah said...

yes!

BARGAIN BEX said...

i signed the letter. oh yes i did.

Camille said...

Great post, and well-said. It's a really important issue and I'm glad you spoke out!

tamsin said...

I don't like to delve too deeply into politics here, mostly because I don't think it's the proper forum, and also because I never feel that I am articulate enough to speak the way I would like to about the issues I care most deeply about, a condition that brings me a great deal of grief and frustration

This is how I feel, all the time. i rely on my boyfriend's political blog to express how I feel! I wish I could sign this, but I'm English. I'm so grateful for our NHS and free health care - though the way our government is going I'm not sure how much longer it will be around...Well done for speaking out. This issue is so important, and it sickens me to think of it. x

nicole james said...

This just crushes my heart. Do you have any idea how many support shelters, organizations, and health programs are out there for women? And ones that don't ultimately influence women to go through the act of killing their babies within them, and doing harm to themselves? Do you know how many women die yearly from abortions? Do you even know the different inhumane abortion techniques that are used?
I'll play the devil's advocate and say that we're ultimately not sure when a baby becomes a life...but even then, are you gonna take that risk on an if? Just as you can't tell for sure if it is a life, you can't tell for sure if it isn't. That's murder on your head. It's sadly ironic that the womb is to be the safest, most secluded, intimate place for a baby's first period of life, and we are sticking tubes up there and sucking them out, or injecting saline mixtures and waiting as they writhe and wriggle to death inside us. What's wrong with mother's?!
Finally the government is doing SOMETHING right by stopping the funding of baby slaughter with our (my money)! If you want to pay for it, do it with your OWN money. There's just enough of us who want to keep our money going to real health programs. Blessed be the day when it's completely outlawed, and that day is coming. There's already several states where PP and other abortion clinics are completely shut down! Enough with this freedom of women crap, let's free the voiceless...let's end the slaughtering of the innocent by their selfish mothers.

nicole james said...

One more thing...tamsin said it "sickens her to think of it" well it sickens me to the point of incredible nausea to think of the friends I know that were almost torn up on little trays. In fact it brings me to tears. What courageous mothers to choose to give them life, when all the odds were against them! Some were adopted to beautiful families who desperately wanted them, others were kept...but all are linked in their immeasurable gratitude to their mothers for keeping them safe and giving them a chance at life! Those are the stories and women we should fight for! Let's support them! Let's support the beauty of sacrifice, love, and life! The women who underwent the whole nine months of selfless shame, to give their child a life, should be celebrated! I just volunteered at the Precious Life Shelter, where we equip women with work, provide them with health care, teach them how to be good mothers, or help them with adoption options. So please don't criticize us "Republicans" like we have no love or respect for women, or we somehow disregard their needs. My aunt and uncle have actually housed a homeless pregnant girl until she delivered her baby. So until you've done that, and extended yourself in that manner of love toward women and their needs, your petty marches don't mean much.

Sandra said...

And then what, Nicole James, did your relatives kick her out because she finished doing her reproductive role? And off she went to be a good worker in society, get a job, and maintain a baby that wouldn't've been wanted?

As far as I can tell, this bill is just going to create a huge social problem for you Americans, where population increases, but the correct support systems (available healthcare, education, social support) are ever diminishing. Why put more of a strain in your society, and deny women self-determination? Last time I checked, that was a human right.


I'm still a student, but when I earn money, I'll donate some to Planned Parenthood, though it makes me sick how it now relies on the charity of the populace, when it should receive government funding. I'm sure those mothers pay taxes, just like you. I'm also sure they don't want THEIR money being used to benefit bible-bashing Republicans who have no clue about the real world.


Wish I could sign that petition, but I'm Australian. Freakishly, we heard you guys were making cuts, but nothing about Planned Parenthood suffering because of it.

All the best, Americans.

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