Monday, January 26, 2009

change. no, but really.

So Obama, who is hastily in the process of closing Guantanamo Bay, also just revoked the Global Gag Rule! I didn't even know this rule existed until I went to D.C. with WGS a while back and met with some organizations that were actually affected by it--and politicians who didn't seem to give a shit about the ridiculous rule, which says any organization receiving U.S. family-planning funds from the U.S. Agency for International Development can't offer abortions or abortion counseling.

Despite it being somewhat old news to the rest of the world with regular access to the internet in their homes, that was super exciting for me to read on Feministing. As was this statement released last Thursday:


Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release January 22, 2009

Statement of President Obama on the 36th Anniversary of Roe v. Wade

On the 36th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, we are reminded that this decision not only protects women's health and reproductive freedom, but stands for a broader principle: that government should not intrude on our most private family matters. I remain committed to protecting a woman's right to choose.

While this is a sensitive and often divisive issue, no matter what our views, we are united in our determination to prevent unintended pregnancies, reduce the need for abortion, and support women and families in the choices they make. To accomplish these goals, we must work to find common ground to expand access to affordable contraception, accurate health information, and preventative services.

On this anniversary, we must also recommit ourselves more broadly to ensuring that our daughters have the same rights and opportunities as our sons: the chance to attain a world-class education; to have fulfilling careers in any industry; to be treated fairly and paid equally for their work; and to have no limits on their dreams. That is what I want for women everywhere.

THE WHITE HOUSE, January 22, 2009.

Also, we had quite an interesting abortion dicussion/debate in what is quickly becoming the best class I have taken in college, "Grrrls Gone Wild: Third Wave Feminism." Here's an interesting ACLU video that a smart girl made reference to from last year's Roe v. Wade anniversary.

Monday, January 19, 2009

back in the game

In an effort to take at least no longer than a month between blog entries, here I am with stream of consciousness and a state of the union of sorts.

In between missing my friends who are currently scattered throughout the country and world, wishing my new apartment had central heat, and trying to spearhead a successful 2009 production of the Vagina Monologues, I've started my second to last semester to college. It's weird saying that, but at the same time it feels right. I met with Alison on Friday to talk bachelor's essay topics, and although it was intimidating of course, it felt good to finally be scratching the surface of this huge undertaking that I've been warned about since applying to the Honors College. Luckily I was reassured that no, I shouldn't have a topic, plan, or really any sort of indication of what I want to write about like I originally thought.

In other news, I am sick of being regarded as a "lady" everywhere I go.  It seems like so many people lately have awkwardly referred to Kaylee and I as "ladies"--obviously for lack of a better word to mask their discomfort in encountering a real, live same sex couple in the painfully heterosexual south. Being in New York over New Year's was really a breath of fresh air as far as not having to be reminded practically every second  spent in public of the pervasive heteronormativity of the world we inhabit. Charleston is great and all, but living here is really putting into perspective how much the geographical location of wherever I end up next really matters to me--if for no other reason than I don't want to feel weird anymore. San Francisco, anyone?

And finally, a very happy MLK and pre-Inauguration Day to all. Both very exciting, because 1) there was a parade today in our neighborhood, which is by far my favorite way to celebrate any holiday, and 2) tomorrow Barack Obama can officially save the world! Well, I mean, probably. Say hi to him for me, Leigh and Sophia!