6:13 pm • 22 March 2013 • 1,181 notes
March 22, 2013
North Dakota lawmakers voted on Friday afternoon to pass a “personhood” abortion ban, which would endow fertilized eggs with all the rights of U.S. citizens and effectively outlaw abortion. The measure, which passed the Senate last month, passed the House by a 57-35 vote and will now head to Republican Gov. Jack Dalrymple’s desk.
The personhood ban will have far-reaching consequences even beyond abortion care, since it will charge doctors who damage embryos with criminal negligence. Doctors in the state say it will also prevent them from performing in vitro fertilization, and some medical professionals have vowed to leave the state if it is signed into law.
The measure is so extreme that some pro-life Republicans in the state have come out against it, planning to join a pro-choice rally in the state capital on Monday to oppose the far-right abortion restriction. “We have stepped over the line,” Republican state Rep. Kathy Hawken (R-Fargo) said of the recent push to pass personhood. “North Dakota hasn’t even passed a primary seatbelt law, but we have the most invasive attack on women’s health anywhere.”
Personhood advocates have pushed their agenda in states throughout the country over the past several years, but their measures have so far been unable to advance. North Dakota is the first state to pass a personhood abortion ban.
If this law is passed by the voters, every woman who needs an abortion in North Dakota will have to travel outside the state to get medical care. Not just unwanted pregnancies - people with ectopic pregnancies, people whose lives are in danger if they keep the pregnancy, people whose wanted fetus has a fatal birth defect or is already dead - every single one of them will have to travel outside the state for care. Oh, and also every person seeking in vitro fertilization or trying to freeze embryos. Pregnant people who can’t afford to travel, to miss work, to get an abortion from a medical provider who might not be covered by their insurance since they’re in another state… North Dakota doesn’t give two shits about any of them.
The new law is so unbelievably restrictive that pro-life politicians in the state have vowed to rally with the pro-choicers to fight it.
(If you’re enraged, please please donate to the National Network of Abortion Funds. That’s a link to the fundraiser I’m doing for it; if you’d prefer to donate directly, here is that link.)
7:48 pm • 6 March 2013 • 318 notes
we have the constitutional right to petition the government and i don’t know about you but i sure as hell can’t think of a better more productive way to exploit my god given rights than constantly creating and promoting online petitions like ‘change the national anthem to R. Kelly’s 2003 hit “Ignition (Remix)’ or ‘build the death star’ yeah we’re definitely not actively devaluing the power to literally band together and write in to the government telling them about actual changes that need to be facilitated congratulations i’m v proud of all of you
For a quarter-century, Antonin Scalia has been the reigning bully of the Supreme Court, but finally a couple of justices are willing to face him down.
As it happens, the two manning up to take on Nino the Terrible are women: the court’s newest members, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.
The acerbic Scalia, the court’s longest-serving justice, got his latest comeuppance Wednesday morning, as he tried to make the absurd argument that Congress’s renewal of the Voting Rights Act in 2006 by votes of 98 to 0 in the Senate and 390 to 33 in the House did not mean that Congress actually supported the act. Scalia, assuming powers of clairvoyance, argued that the lawmakers were secretly afraid to vote against this “perpetuation of racial entitlement.”
Kagan wasn’t about to let him get away with that. In a breach of decorum, she interrupted his questioning of counsel to argue with him directly. “Well, that sounds like a good argument to me, Justice Scalia,” she said. “It was clear to 98 senators, including every senator from a covered state, who decided that there was a continuing need for this piece of legislation.”
… Sotomayor allowed the lawyer for the Alabama county seeking to overturn the law to get just four sentences into his argument before interrupting him. “Assuming I accept your premise — and there’s some question about that — that some portions of the South have changed, your county pretty much hasn’t,” she charged. “Why would we vote in favor of a county whose record is the epitome of what caused the passage of this law to start with?”
Moments later, Kagan pointed out that “Alabama has no black statewide elected officials” and has one of the worst records of voting rights violations.
Scalia and Justice Samuel Alito tried to assist the Alabama county’s lawyer by offering some friendly hypotheticals, but Sotomayor wasn’t interested in hearing that. “The problem with those hypotheticals is obvious,” she said, because “it’s a real record as to what Alabama has done to earn its place on the list.”
Sotomayor continued questioning as if she were the only jurist in the room. “Discrimination is discrimination,” she informed him, “and what Congress said is it continues.”
DANA MILBANK, writing in The Washington Post, “Sotomayor, Kagan Ready for Battles.”
Has someone started fuckyeahelenaandsonia.tumblr.com yet?
For future reference: Next time anyone tries to tell you that Presidential elections don’t matter/candidates are all the same.
Barack Obama put both these women on the SCOTUS, and I can barely begin to start thanking him enough for that. They aren’t as progressive as I may wish on some things, but hot damn—someone’s finally sticking it to Scalia in session.
6:24 pm • 28 February 2013 • 1,960 notes
“Oh please. Taxes are not *your* money. If people could give up the idea that it’s THEIR money being pried out of their hands, rather than just another bill, there’d be a lot less whining. You want lights, you pay the electric company. You want a place to live, you pay the bank or landlord. You want food, you pay the grocery store. You want to live in a civilized society, you pay taxes. Get. Over. It.”
— Comment of the Day: Paying For a More Civilized Society (via peekadora)
4:48 pm • 25 November 2012 • 10,429 notes
8:03 pm • 13 November 2012 • 14,609 notes
Chris Howard: America really looks like this - I was looking at the amazing 2012 election maps created by Mark Newman (Department of Physics and Center for the Study of Complex Systems, University of Michigan, http://www-personal.umich.edu/~mejn/election/2012 ), and although there is a very interesting blended voting map (Most of the country is some shade of purple, a varied blend of Democrat blue and Republican red) what I really wanted was this blended map with a population density overlay. Because what really stands out is how red the nation seems to be when you do not take the voting population into account; when you do so many of those vast red mid-west blocks fade into pale pink and lavender (very low population).
So I created a new map using Mark’s blended voting map based on the actual numbers of votes for each party overlaid with population maps from Texas Tech University and other sources.
Here’s the result—what the American political voting distribution really looks like.
Now THIS is the most accurate map that I’ve seen, and it is fascinating.
I hope Knoxville is that little blue-violet splotch.
“Women are not in the wrong when they decline to accept the rules laid down for them, since the men make these rules without consulting them.”
— Michel de Montaigne (via like-air-i-rise)
9:00 am • 6 November 2012 • 2,286 notes