3 Stories You Should Read 5/16/2019: Pro-choice Edition
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In the category of: It’s not end of game quite yet.
Alabama’s near-total abortion ban has not taken effect, and the procedure remains legal in all 50 states.
As the Alabama Senate debated a near-total abortion ban over the past week, Alabamians began calling the Alabama Women’s Center for Reproductive Alternatives, one of just three clinics in the state that offer abortions.
They wanted to know “are we still open, are we still providing care,” Dr. Yashica Robinson, an OB-GYN at the clinic, told Vox.
On Tuesday, the day the bill passed the Alabama Senate, “one young lady was telling us about a dream that she had that she was going to wake up and get here to the clinic and we were going to tell her that we couldn’t take care of her,” Robinson said.
The Alabama bill, which was signed into law on Wednesday, does not take effect for six months. Alabama Women’s Center plans to challenge it in court, and the American Civil Liberties Union of Alabama has announced a legal challenge as well. Meanwhile, the clinic is currently open and seeing patients. But the questions it’s getting aren’t unusual.
In the category of: Fever spreads
Anti-abortion lawmakers in Missouri, Louisiana and Michigan are hoping for the same success.
But Alabama, where the new law makes performing an abortion a felony except in cases where the pregnant woman’s life is at risk, is far from the only state where access to the procedure is under threat.
Several other governors have signed restrictive abortion bans this year, including some that outlaw it as early as six weeks into a pregnancy, and more state bills are hanging in the balance. Here are three pending measures that could move forward in the coming days.
In category of: Truth
After Busy Philipps opened up about her abortion on TV, a friend saw an opportunity for a bigger conversation about reproductive rights.
Just a week earlier she had opened up about her own abortion, at age 15, on her late-night show, “Busy Tonight,” in a plea to protect women’s reproductive rights. Ms. Philipps, who is known for her roles on the TV shows “Dawson’s Creek” and “Freaks and Geeks,” wrote about the abortion in her memoir, “This Will Only Hurt a Little.”
“The statistic is one in four women will have an abortion before age 45,” she said last Tuesday on the show, referring to a study that was published in the American Journal of Public Health. “That statistic sometimes surprises people, and maybe you’re sitting there thinking, ‘I don’t know a woman who would have an abortion.’ Well, you know me.”
Now, thousands of women have shared their own abortion stories online, many using the hashtag #YouKnowMe. In a phone interview, Ms. Philipps discussed her motivations for speaking out, the response to her story and what comes next.
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