Favor the first.

I’d like to ask you, dear reader, to do me three favors; this is the first.
Biting Beaver is a blogger whose emergency contraception, once she finally obtained it, failed. Now she’s pregant and facing the costs, financial and otherwise, of an abortion. You can read the story in her own words here (EC denial) and here (EC failure) — and that’s important. It’s important that you should be able to read that story, that someone should put a face on the abortion debate and the horrible, indefensible consequences of the laws being advocated (and put in place!) by the punish-women-for-having-sex lobby. Making it available online was a very brave thing for BB to do — and, naturally, the Moral Majority have taken it upon themselves to assault her for it. Via Lindsay, Plucky Punk is asking readers to step up:

The average cost of an abortion in the United States is 468 dollars. Somewhere, there is a woman in need of this money who doesn’t have it.
Let’s see if we can get together and raise this amount, either by giving to Biting Beaver, the National Network of Abortion Funds or to Planned Parenthood. Please leave to amount you donated or pledge to donate in the comments (or if you’ve already donated, leave that amount).

I think BB has probably, by now, been sent enough funds to cover her expenses — and while I don’t know her circumstances, she has a blog so I’m guessing she can cope with the financial burden. Moreover, she didn’t really want to ask for donations and has promised to donate any excess to the National Network of Abortion Funds. So, for myself, I’m going to keep an eye on the story and probably not send BB any money directly. What I will do is to renew my membership to the National Abortion Rights Action League and make small donations to the Northwest Women’s Law Center and Planned Parenthood, those being women’s rights organizations I trust and currently support.
What I’d like to ask my readers to do is:
1. read Biting Beaver’s story
2. choose one or more of the following:

  • donate to Planned Parenthood
  • donate to NNAF
  • donate to NWLC
  • become a NARAL member
  • choose another women’s rights organization, join or donate, and then send me the reasons for your choice (I may join you)
  • send BB some money; you’ll need PayPal, her email is BitingBeaver [at] yahoo [dot] com

3. drop in on Plucky Punk (or email her, if you prefer to donate anonymously) and let her know how much to add to her running total.

3 thoughts on “Favor the first.

  1. You’re kidding, right? The “punish women for having sex lobby”??
    Does that mean if a woman gets pregnant and despite the father’s wishes, refuses to have an abortion, expecting him to pay child support is “punishing him for having sex” also?
    Here is a novel train of thought. Pregnancy is the result of having sex. Granted, not all sex results in pregnancy, but the only cause of pregnancy that is not artificially/mechanically induced is sexual intercourse. I think it’s safe to say that pregnancy is a natural effect of sex, not a “punishment for having sex.”
    But wait. You didn’t say pregnancy was a punishment for having sex, you said denying emergency contraception and/or abortion was punishment for having sex. (Actually you said it was punishing WOMEN for having sex, although I’m sure there are quite a bit of men who are equally interested in being able to terminate the products of their one night stands. But I will get to that later.)
    Okay, here’s where you lose me. It’s 2007- everyone knows that condoms are not 100% foolproof. No birth control is (besides having your tubes tied, and for that matter, why doesn’t this woman have her tubes tied if she has 3 kids and doesn’t want any more? Obviously that’s her decision, but it seems a bit easier than sporadic abortions or high doses of hormones found in EC…just a thought). Not only that, but that goes double for anyone who is aware that EC is available over the counter – they are obviously familiar with the facts of birth control. There’s no GED-level ignorance of “oh my god you mean it’s possible for a condom to BREAK??” going on here – this is an intelligent woman.
    So this woman had sex (knowing both she and her partner were fertile and capable of causing pregnancy) and took the logical step of using protection to avoid pregnancy. And she was one of the 1% who had the contraception fail – and given the number of people who use condoms, and the regularity in which they use them, 1% represents a decent number of people. And to make matters worse, she got pregnant. In other words, the biological design of sexual intercourse was successful. And you say that those who would deny her the chance to terminate her pregnancy are “punishing” her??
    If anything, abortion is an extreme act of mercy – it’s basically telling someone “you engaged in an activity that you were aware had serious consequences, but you know what? We’re going to make those consequences go away.” And they don’t even expect you to stop having sex! A common question asked at abortion clinics is “how long will it be until I can have sex again?” – obviously it’s a good question to ask because having sex too soon would put your health at risk, but it also shows the intention of continuing the same behavior. Expecting someone to accept the consequences of their actions isn’t “punishment,” it’s justice.
    And before you start calling me a moral-majority-right-to-lifer, let me say now that while I honestly consider abortion a vile act, I am pro choice. Because I believe that mercy better suits the situation than justice. But being pro choice doesn’t mean I can’t see abortion for what it really is – a way to continue engaging in pleasurable behavior by adding a fail-safe button just in case some of the male’s orgasm happens to get inside his female partner’s body.
    I realize I just wrote a whole freaking book on one sentence that was said offhandedly in your post, but it’s the fact that terms like that are just tossed around so casually that disturbs me. So let me ask you, if a woman has the right to have sex without being “punished” for it by giving her the last resort option of ending her pregnancy, shouldn’t a man have the same right? I’m not saying he should be able to force a woman to have an abortion, but if she refuses to do so, why can’t he terminate his paternity as easily as she can terminate her maternity? Just sign a paper giving up all rights and responsibilities to the child, if she wants to abort it, it’s up to her. But if this “punish women for having sex lobby” did outlaw abortion, the result would be that women would be able to terminate their maternity as easily as men can currently terminate their paternity. Which is not at all.
    Just something to think about…I don’t think many people would be happy if a guy could pay $468 and be released of the duties of fatherhood. But that’s what you’re claiming women should have the right to do, and that anything less than that is punishing them for having sex.

  2. Where does all of this woman-hating come from?
    I was gone from the US for 14 years and when I got back 6 years ago, all I see is more violence, more homeless women, more women targeted by the govt for petty crimes, more women in jail for poverty ‘crimes’, and more verbal bashing of women by both men and women.
    I know it’s hard enough to live here – and it is: wages are low, cost of food and housing ridiculously high, no vacations or health care or child care, at least not compared to the rest of the western world that get all three by law.
    It’s hard enough to live in America without thinking about oppression. Our own oppression. But we have to do it. Do you want to pretend it isn’t happening and when you’re in trouble or sick or dying have no one to come to your aid? Do you want people to say you brought it on yourself? Do you want other women to say ‘it’s your problem, not mine?’.
    We need a movement so badly. And even more, we need each other’s backs.

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