Conversation with Sarah Jones of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. This conversation was in regards to a Nashville appearance. We talk religious upbringings and branching out, contemporary issues including Marriage Equality and Women’s Rights, and the stigmas that AU often faces.
Tag Archives | Womens Rights
I refuse to dance unless I’ve consumed at least half of my weight in grain alcohol (though I have been known to attempt the Dougie, as long as I’m by myself and the curtains have been drawn). Generally speaking, a request to get down on the dance floor will almost certainly send me into a state of blind terror, accompanied by hives and the ice sweats.
You can imagine, then, my horror when hearing about “tarantism,” a disease which causes its victims to become irritable and restless, and was fatal unless treated immediately by engaging in aggressive dancing. It was relatively common during the 16th and 17th centuries in southern Italy, and is said to be the origin of the popular folk dance, “Tarantella,” which was performed by victims as the most important part of their therapy.
Hydrotherapy was also considered to be an important part of the healing process. Suffering would abate while listening to the soft sound of a gentle waterfall. Cloth would be soaked in wine and wrapped around the shoulders of a dancer. Many victims craved water and were even known to accidentally drown themselves, following deep contemplation of the ocean.… Read the rest
One of the absolute creepiest things about the corporate media monolith created in the wake of deregulation is the way they have completely and seemingly irreparably poisoned the word feminism in the minds of the hoi polloi. Same shit they did with socialism and don’t even get me started on “entitlements”. Crap’s beyond infuriating, but what they’ve done to feminism is even more wretch inducing when you get down to it. I honestly had no idea how horrible this was until last week when I decided to peruse some comments sections on the topic. Bad idea.
Okay, so I suppose I probably knew it had gotten this sordid and simply avoided it like I do most things about depressing stuff. I can only handle so much of other people’s bitter realities, but the most mind-blowing and heinous aspect to the whole psychic bamboozle behind the anti-feminism crusade involves how they’ve turned so many young women off of the concept entirely.… Read the rest
Many of us have become aware of the illusion of progress that we seem to be mired in. It has seemed of late that even our most politically stable personal rights have become targets for those who want to take us a couple years back in time when moral authority was dictated by a monolithic religious hierarchy and people lived in fear of being burned at the stake for thinking or behaving differently. It would be nice to think that something as sensible and useful for public health like contraception would be off limits to these throwback inquisitors, but no.
It’s not just about not getting pregnant, it’s about telling you that your have no right to put your tab A into another person’s slot B unless the two of your are held within the holy confines of marriage.
Let me get personal here, I was a student at a Pentecostal College where a no-intercourse rule was strictly enforced.… Read the rest
In Saudi Arabia, Siri tells you everything your wife is doing. Males will automatically receive text message notifications whenever their spouses, relatives, or daughters pass through travel checkpoints, the International Business Times reports:
Saudi Arabia has introduced an electronic tracking system to monitor its female citizens and alert Saudi females’ male guardians to their movement.
Since last week, some Saudi women’s male guardians have been receiving text messages from immigration authorities, alerting them when women under their [control], which include wives and daughters, leave the country. To leave the kingdom, Saudi women are required to seek permission from their male guardians, who give consent by signing what is known as the “yellow sheet” at the airport or border.
The recent controversy caused by the escape of a Saudi woman to Sweden was believed to have prompted the authorities to implement the system, Al Arabiya reported, citing local media.
Lynn Beisner writes at Role / Reboot:
… Read the rest
If there is one thing that anti-choice activists do that makes me see red, it is when they parade out their poster children: men, women, and children who were “targeted for abortion.” They tell us “these people would not be alive today if abortion had been legal or if their mothers had made a different choice.”
In the past couple of months, I have read two of these abortion deliverance stories that have been particularly offensive. The first story is one propagated by Rebecca Kiessling, the poster child for the no exceptions in cases of rape or incest. On her website Kiessling says that every time we say that abortion should be allowed at least in the case of rape or incest we are saying to her: “If I had my way, you’d be dead right now.” She goes onto say, “I absolutely would have been aborted if it had been legal in Michigan when I was an unborn child, and I can tell you that it hurts [when people say that abortion should be legal.]”
The second story was on the Good Men Project this week.
Witchcraft is taken seriously in some areas of Nepal, and women accused of its practice have been beaten, tortured and in one high profile incident, burned alive. The Nepalese government is hoping to end such activities with strict laws aimed at punishing those who accuse others of witchcraft:
“Taking seriously the incident in Kathmandu, the government has decided in principle to enact a comprehensive anti-witchcraft law,” Trilochan Upreti, law secretary at the prime minister’s office, told Khabar. The proposed law treats witchcraft allegations seriously, with a convicted punishment of up to 10 years imprisonment and an Rs 61,957.40 ($700) fine for those found to have levied false accusations.
Read More at Skeptic.
The Texas Republican Party is engaged in a far-reaching and sustained “war on birth control”. No, that’s not the teaser from a Planned Parenthood press release — it’s the pronouncement of (aptly named) state legislator Wayne Christian. Creepiest war ever. Via Think Progress:
When The Texas Tribune asked state Rep. Wayne Christian (R-Nacogdoches), a supporter of the family planning cuts, if this was a war on birth control, he said “yes.”
“Well of course this is a war on birth control and abortions and everything, that’s what family planning is supposed to be about,” Christian said.
While disturbing, Christian’s honesty is a refreshing change from Republicans’ more common defense that cuts to women’s health care will save money. As NPR notes, the state estimates that 300,000 women will lose access to family planning services because of these cuts, resulting in roughly 20,000 additional unplanned births. “Texas already spends $1.3 billion on teen pregnancies — more than any other state.”
The North Carolina Eugenics Board was created in 1933 and operated for decades with little public scrutiny. It used rudimentary IQ tests and gossip from neighbors to justify sterilization of young girls from poor families.
Many people don’t realize that portions of the U.S. South had eugenics programs that operated through the 1970s. NPR reports on some horrifying fairly-recent history:
… Read the rest
Barely 40 years ago, it wasn’t uncommon for a single mother on welfare, or a patient in a mental hospital in North Carolina, to be sterilized against her will.
But North Carolina wasn’t alone: More than half of states in the U.S. had eugenics laws, some of which persisted into the 1970s.
North Carolina is now considering compensating its sterilization victims. A state panel heard from some of them Wednesday. They were mostly poor and uneducated — both black and white — and often just girls when it happened.
Elaine Riddick says she was sterilized at the age of 14.
Kansas is apparently set to become conservative Christianity’s Mecca. Via Mother Jones:
… Read the rest
If new guidelines from the Kansas health department are enforced, the last three abortion clinics in the state could be forced to shut their doors this summer. A court fight over the rules is almost inevitable. But anti-abortion groups like Operation Rescue are already claiming success in making Kansas “the first abortion-free state.”
The state’s latest approach—with its remodeling requirements and so forth—is often referred to as “Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers.” TRAP laws are intended to make it difficult, if not impossible, for clinics to operate, and they have become increasingly common around the country.
The new requirements require facilities to add extra bathrooms, drastically expand waiting and recovery areas, and even add larger janitor’s closets, as one clinic employee told me—changes that clinics will have a heck of a time pulling off by the deadline. Under the new rule, clinics must also aquire state certification to admit patients, a process that takes 90 to 120 days, the staffer explained.