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Reposted from Leslie Salzillo by annrose
Last week in Texas, a Republican lawmaker proposed an amendment so outrageous, that even some of his own GOP colleagues were repulsed. Andrea Grimes, with RH Reality, reports:
Rep. Matt Schaefer (R-Tyler) put forward an amendment that would make it illegal to terminate a pregnancy after 20 weeks, even if a fetus “has a severe and irreversible abnormality,” effectively forcing families with wanted, but unsustainable pregnancies to carry to term at the behest of the state and against the advice of their doctors or their own wishes.
What would cause a lawmaker to want the government to inflict more emotional pain onto an already grieving family, in addition to adding a major health risk to the mother? Does he not realize a woman can easily die of sepsis by carrying a nonviable fetus?
Schaefer said that suffering is “part of the human condition, since sin entered the world.”
Oh, for fucksake! Where do these people come from? More importantly, how do they hide their vile and odious ignorance long enough to get elected?

Democratic Representative, Jessica Farrar of Houston, is quoted as saying this is the most misogynistic piece of legislation she's seen during her 21 years in office. Matt Schaefer’s amendment actually passed, but he removed it for full committee review after Trey Martinez Fischer, the House Democrat from San Antonio filed a legislative point of order.

The late author, humorist and commentator, Molly Ivins, sums up late term abortion, perfectly, in an excellent video. Here is an excerpt.

"I almost get the impression that somebody thinks women don't have no moral sense at all. No woman who is seven months pregnant, ever waddles past an abortion clinic and says, 'Darn, I knew there was something I've been meaning to get around to.'

This is ridiculous. You have those late-term abortions, because either the mother is going to die, the child is going to die, or both are going to die."

There seems to be a nonstop effort by Republican lawmakers to control women/their bodies - often in the name of God. Thankfully, there are also nonstop efforts by a much larger voice in this country - the people who refuse to let women go back to illegal, back alley, abortion butchery. This battle will most likely not end in our lifetimes, or in our children's lifetimes. But we will stay unified, and we will never give up.

Here are some of the pro-choice organizations and social media groups to visit/support:

Planned Parenthood
Emily's List
NARAL/Pro-Choice America
NOW
4000 Years For Choice
UniteWomen.org
Abortion.com
Abigail Adams Brigade
Fight Laws Against Women
Pro-Choice Liberals
The Guttmacher Institute (an excellent source of current reproductive rights legislation.)
You can share your thoughts with this GOP extremist on his Facebook page, where he is seen buddying up with other anti-choice misogynists like former Republican Governor Rick Perry and Republican Senator Ted Cruz.

Special thanks to Anne Burks.

 

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Reposted from Daily Kos Elections by annrose
Of the 64 Democrats who voted for the Stupak amendment in 2009, half lost and many more retired.
Click to enlarge.

Last week, we noticed that of the 64 House Democrats who voted for the anti-abortion Stupak Amendment, only 12 remain. And of those 12, only three (Cuellar, Lipinski, and Peterson) voted for a similar anti-abortion measure last month (both measures effectively excluded abortion coverage from ACA insurance plans). That's a 95 percent reduction in anti-abortion votes from House Democrats in five years.

What happened? Take a look at the chart above. Fully half of the Democrats who voted for the Stupak Amendment lost a subsequent election. In the typical case, where they lost to a Republican, their conservative votes in the House were insufficent to protect them in their conservative districts. A handful lost to a Democrat, in either the primary or general election. Eighteen more Democrats retired (some to run for higher office), one resigned, and one died in office.

So the major reason why there's been such a rapid reduction in the number of anti-abortion votes from House Democrats is they've been replaced by Republicans.

But even if we just look at the twelve Democrats who were there in both 2009 and 2015, 75 percent of them changed how they voted. These nine Democrats are shown in blue above, and deserve some credit for their votes last month. All of them are from districts that President Obama won with more than 55 percent of the vote in 2012.

We found only one statement on the 2015 vote among these nine Democrats, from Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania, who was Bart Stupak's roommate in 2009 and helped facilitate a resolution to the whole Stupak Amendment mess. The statement makes clear he still opposes abortion, but believes this bill "would limit how Americans spend their OWN money and deny American women access to a full range of health care services."

And at least two of these Democrats have signalled a change in their views on abortion in general since 2009. There's the op-ed last week by Ohio's Tim Ryan, describing how his mind was changed on the topic of abortion. And there's also an article documenting a shift in rhetoric on the part of Stephen Lynch of Massachusetts.

No matter the reason, it's clear that the House Democratic caucus has changed significantly since 2009.

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Reposted from Daily Kos by annrose
A winding road through a forest of fall colors from Forestwander.com
They say the road to hell is paved in good intentions. If so, I would expect it to look somewhat like the one above, lovely, inviting, draped in the most appealing images.

I would expect the words that disguise the destination to include life, health, babies, mothers, caring, protecting, and nurturing. And sure enough, those are the words being used by the anti-abortion, forced-birth lobby in the plethora of legislation designed to force women into the service of their religious worldview.

They claim that they believe life begins at conception, their Bible tells them so, and they must fight to protect the smallest of cells in a woman's womb—even at the cost of the woman's rights over her own body. Her rights are superseded by the rights of the fetus, they say, and they can probably show us biblical verses to support their claims.

And it may be that they actually believe what they peddle, in spite of the contradiction implicit in the desire to protect every single life before birth while they let the living starve, fall ill, and die.

But I have a much harder time buying into the myth that those who bankroll the forced birther movement, those who hate the thought of all government regulation, are being motivated by a desire to protect life. Or babies.

I think their motivation is a lot closer to the one that prompted Nicolae Ceausescu to implement Decree 770 within a year of taking over the government in Romania. Decree 770 banned the once available-on-demand abortions, as well as sex education.

At least the Romanian dictator, unlike our current oligarchs, was honest. He wanted to increase the population of workers in his state. How he did it was terrifying. There is no reason to believe that the Waltons and the Kochs of our world would not be happy with a huge workforce scrambling for whatever low-wage work they deign to offer.

Regardless of intention, the destination is the same. Please join me below the fold for a tour.

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Reposted from Kansas & Missouri Kossacks by annrose
Ron Hicks (Right)
A few days ago, the Missouri Legislature did something that they have just become used to - hitting the road to a country club to conduct state business.   These official state meetings were designed to talk about state business in an environment 'more conducive' for discussion, many had maintained.

No one had quite anticipated the free wheeling discussion that would go on Tuesday night, however, as Progress Missouri managed to go to the country club - after all this was an official state meeting - and sit in, as well as live stream and record the event.

http://www.dailykos.com/...

We followed along here as legislators talked about a variety of issues with the lobbyists who attended, seemingly forgetting the fact that there event would be livestreamed, or there would be consequences of their discussion.

Progress Missouri uploaded the full, high definition video recently, and amongst the discussion Republicans took on the pending abortion legislation facing the state house, and the conclusions they reached weren't what you'd expect - especially from supposedly hardened anti-choice advocates.

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Reposted from FaithGardner by annrose
Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan is one of a handful of Democrats in the House who has voted to restrict a woman's right to choose in the past. But in an op-ed penned yesterday, he makes it official that his position on abortion has changed.
I have sat with women from Ohio and across the nation and heard them talk about their varying experiences: abusive relationships, financial hardship, health scares, rape and incest. There are endless stories about women in troubling situations — the woman who became pregnant and has a violent spouse; the woman who lost her job and is unable to afford another child; or the underage girl worried she’ll be thrown out of her house if she reveals her pregnancy. [...]

These women gave me a better understanding of how complex and difficult certain situations can become. And while there are people of good conscience on both sides of this argument, one thing has become abundantly clear to me: the heavy hand of government must not make this decision for women and families.

Ryan tributes his previous pro-life stance to his Catholic upbringing, but says that after years in office and talking—and listening—to the stories of various women, "There are too many scenarios, too many variables and too much complexity for pregnancy to be anything but a personal decision."

This is quite a transformation for the congressman.

Ryan [...] has voted for numerous abortion restrictions since he was elected to Congress in 2003, including parental notification laws; restrictions on abortion funding in health care reform; and a ban on abortions in federally funded military hospitals. In 2009, he wrote an op-ed for U.S. News and World Report underscoring the need for fellow anti-abortion lawmakers to work with abortion rights supporters on solutions to prevent unplanned pregnancies.
Some are speculating that this move prefaces a possible run for higher office.
Ohio Right to Life President Michael Gonidakis said Ryan's switch "clearly demonstrates his opportunistic and self centered approach in seeking higher office," and said he views the "flip-flop" as a sign that Ryan plans to run against pro-life Sen. Rob Portman in 2016.
Read Tim Ryan's full op-ed here.
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Reposted from Leslie Salzillo by annrose
There's a new powerhouse in town called StopPatriarchy.org. The organization takes a strong proactive approach to fight the Republican War on Women and constant assault on women's reproductive rights.

Last week, StopPatriarchy.org took to the streets in Washington DC to counter protest the Anti-Choice March for Life, held every year to to mark the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision. On this anniversary, the March for Life was halted for at least 30 minutes, as eight StopPatriarchy.org members were arrested.

As arrestees were put in the police paddy wagon, they could be heard chanting:

”Every generation - has an obligation - to women’s liberation!"
"That Congress has scheduled a vote on a federal ban on abortion at 20 weeks on this day only underscores the need to stand up and resist," said Sunsara Taylor, initiator of Stop Patriarchy. “Abortion rights are in a state of emergency, clinics are being forced to close and women are being forced once again to have children against their will. The fight over abortion has never been about babies, it has always been about controlling women. Forcing women to have children against their will is a form of enslavement and we refuse to accept this.”
Activists were wearing all white with fake blood-soaked pants, representing the women who died from dangerous “back alley” abortions before Roe v. Wade. They also carried enlarged photographs of women who died from illegal abortion before Roe.
Facts:

47,000 women around the world die every year from illegal, unsafe, abortions
5,000 women in the US are estimated to have died every year from illegal, unsafe abortions before Roe v.Wade legalized abortion
42 states prohibit abortion at some point in the pregnancy
87% of all counties in the U.S. have no abortion provider
6 states have only one surgical abortion clinic
8 abortion providers (doctors and staff) have been murdered by anti-abortion fanatics.

Other StopPatriarchy.org rallies against 'March For Lies' took place in Chicago, Atlanta, Austin, and San Francisco. In addition there were related actions in Oakland and Cleveland, all within the last week. While there have been yearly counter-protests on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, this type of direct action has not been seen in many years.

In their Call To Action, StopPatriarchy published this greatly informative YouTube video:

To learn more about StopPatriarchy's mission, history, and upcoming events, visit:

Website: StopPatriarchy.org.
Facebook: Stop Patriarchy
Twitter: #StopPatriarchy

Note: The original title of this piece stated seven StopPatriarchy.org members were arrested. New information revealed there were eight arrestees.

Press Contact: Joan at StopPatriarchy@gmail.com

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Reposted from Leslie Salzillo by annrose
With some stories, I'm not sure where to begin, because the news has me stunned and almost speechless. I want to turn away, block it out and find something happy to do, or something else to think about, or write about. But I can't. And so I begin.

Last week, a young woman in El Salvador who goes by the alias name of 'Guadalupe,' had very high hopes, and was all but assured she would receive a pardon from her 30-year sentence. She had already served seven years, starting in her teens. Her alleged crime? Fetal homicide. She miscarried, and was charged with murder.

Her pardon didn't come. Guadalupe's freedom was one vote short. Her fate was determined by a Right-Wing congressional majority of 43-42. I can't write about something like this and not feel like I've been punched in the stomach again and again. Guadalupe represents every woman. This is what happens when abortion is illegal. El Salvador is known to be one of the worst countries in the world for women's reproductive rights.

According to Tim Rogers at Fusion.net:

All forms of abortion are illegal in El Salvador. And though there was no indication that Guadalupe, a mother of one, intentionally terminated her pregnancy, the doctors snitched her out to save themselves from any criminal liability.

Guadalupe, who never saw the inside of a fifth grade classroom, was interrogated in her hospital bed without a lawyer. The Kafkaesque trial was brutal and swift. Before Guadalupe knew what was happening, she was sentenced to 30 years in jail and thrown behind bars with convicted murders.

If Guadalupe’s story sounds crazy, that’s because it is. Not only does El Salvador have one of the most draconian anti-abortion laws in the world, but authorities there apply the tyrannical law with an aggressiveness that borders on obsessive. Dozens of Salvadoran women — mostly young, and all poor — are behind bars for homicide

At least 29 women are behind bars in El Salvador for abortion/miscarriage. A group of them called, #Las17, are serving between 12-40 years with the oldest being 29, reports Rogers.

Here is a short video by the Center For Reproductive Rights created to expose El Salvador's atrocious treatment of women. Most victims of reproductive injustices are from impoverished communities. No, these are not laws for the rich.

Sadly, we can't say this would never happen to us in America, because it's happening.

Currently, at least 38 states have fetal homicide laws. The states include: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin. At least 23 states have fetal homicide laws that apply to the earliest stages of pregnancy ("any state of gestation," "conception," "fertilization" or "post-fertilization"). Read more at NCSL.
Last fall, I wrote a Daily Kos diary entailing five horrific American injustices against pregnant women, via a study reported in the New York Times. I must warn it also contains stories, like this, that may be emotionally triggering:  
DC Judge Forces Woman To Have Cesarean & She Dies - 5 Shocking Injustices Against Pregnant Women
The battle for reproductive freedom is an ongoing struggle that will most likely continue past our lifetimes. We continue this fight for our daughters, and granddaughters, because our mothers, grandmothers, and pro-choice supporters (male and female) did the same for us. There are many ways we can show our support. Here are 10 large/small pro-choice organizations/Facebook pages you can visit/join now. They offer ways to help and be helped.
Planned Parenthood
Emily's List
NARAL/Pro-Choice America
NOW
NAF/National Abortion Federation
UniteWomen.org
Abortion.com
Fight Laws Against Women
Pro-Choice Liberals
Abigail Adams Brigade
_____
The Guttmacher Institute is an excellent source of current reproductive rights legislation.
The only way I can think to end this story, is to ask folks to share it, whether it's this diary, the video, or any article(s) about the story. By getting the information out to the public, we keep Guadalupe, and others like her, from getting lost in the shuffle. Nothing will change until more of the world becomes aware. Only then can we find solutions, create positive change and prevent it from happening again.

Thanks to Collier Meyerson/Jezebel for sharing the story.

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Reposted from Meteor Blades by annrose
Reproductive Health Services in Montgomery. Performs abortions.
A women's clinic in Montgomery, Alabama, that performs abortions.

You may remember when Alabama passed this extremist law back in the spring. At the time, Alabama already required that a juvenile seeking an abortion must have permission from her parents or guardians unless there are reasons—such as sexual abuse by a parent—that such consent cannot be obtained and even asking for it can be risky for the girl involved. In such instances, in 36 states including Alabama, she can petition the court for a "bypass" hearing at which a judge rules on whether she is or is not mature enough to make her own decision in the matter.  

The new law this year adds several provisions specifically designed to make getting an abortion more difficult. It puts the minor on trial. Judges have previously been allowed to appoint a lawyer for the fetus, but that combined with the highly intrusive—some would say grueling—nature of such a procedure makes a mockery of something meant to protect minors' rights and interests. The American Civil Liberties Union has filed suit to block the state from putting minors on trial in this way. As noted here last Thursday:

But under Alabama’s new law, this bypass process is significantly more difficult for teens. In its suit, the ACLU contends that the new law “radically alters the judicial bypass process in a wholly unprecedented manner that goes well beyond any judicial bypass statute that has ever been upheld by a federal court.”

Now, the state is allowed to call teachers, parents, neighbors, boyfriends, or peers to testify against the teenage girl, even if that means disclosing her pregnancy to people in her life who didn’t previously know about it. Alabama may also hire someone to represent the fetus’ “best interests” in court. So the new law ultimately ensures that a minor who needs an abortion and isn’t comfortable telling her parents will be up against the whole legal system. She’ll be forced to defend herself against a district attorney who’s arguing she’s unfit to make this decision on her own.

Molly Redden at Mother Jones points out that a few Alabama judges have in the past appointed lawyers to represent fetuses. In fact, the first instance of this occurring was in 1987. The questioning of pregnant minors can be sickening, Redden writes:
Julianna Taylor, a Montgomery, Alabama, attorney who represented many minors pro bono, recalls that lawyers for fetuses would "give these hypotheticals: 'What if I could promise you that this child is going to have a beautiful, happy life with a loving adopted family? Would you kill a child that was already one year old?' Really? Here you are making a huge decision, a huge decision for a teenager, probably the biggest decision that they'd ever have to make, and you're going to ask them questions like that?"
Defeating these terrible laws like Alabama's—which, as with every other forced-birther law, will no doubt spread to other states—means fighting to elect more pro-choice legislators. In the war on women and girls, choosing progressive, pro-choice women will have an impact up and down the ballot.
Can you chip in $5 to elect Democratic women up and down the ballot? Please give us a hand in electing Democratic women.

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There's more to this story below the fold.
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Reposted from Leslie Salzillo by annrose
Great news for the women in Texas, as well as women around the country. This just in from the New York Times:
A federal judge in Austin, Tex., blocked a stringent new rule on Friday that would have forced more than half of the state’s remaining abortion clinics to close, the latest in a string of court decisions that have at least temporarily kept abortion clinics across the South from being shuttered.

The Texas rule, requiring all abortion clinics to meet the building, equipment and staffing standards of hospital-style surgery centers, had been set to take effect on Monday. But in his opinion, Judge Lee Yeakel of the United States District Court in Austin said the mandate placed unjustified obstacles on women’s access to abortion without providing significant medical benefits.

The rule “is unconstitutional because it imposes an undue burden on the right of women throughout Texas to seek a pre-viability abortion,” Judge Yeakel wrote.

The Austin Chronicle reports:
The Texas Hospital Association, representing more than 400 hospitals, called the restrictions unnecessary because women experiencing abortion complications can go to an emergency room and be treated, and did not need their abortion doctor to be on the hospital staff for this to happen.
Texas Women have been through this before. This case addresses the very HB2 Bill for which Wendy Davis held a 13-hour filibuster in June 2013. The bill was passed by the Texas GOP that summer, ignoring Davis's filibuster and thousands of Texas women who came out to protest. Then in September, Planned Parenthood sued the state of Texas and a part of the Texas's restrictive abortion law was struck down by Judge Yeakel. Federal Judge Yeakel's decision was then appealed and won by Texas DA Greg Abbott. The abortion restrictions were reinstated.
To simplify the sequence of events:

1. Texas GOP introduces anti-choice, anti-abortion HB2 Billin the Spring of 2013
2. Wendy Davis holds a 13-hour filabuster in June 2013
3. GOP passes HB2 Billanyway in July 2013
4. Planned Parenthood sues September 2013
5. Judge Yeakel strikes down abortion restrictions declaring them unconstitutional in September 2013
6. DU Greg Abbott appeals and wins in October 2013. Restrictions reinstated.
7. Judge Yeakel strikes down key abortion restrictions August 29, 2014 (see above)
8. Prediction: Greg Abbott appeals, but will he win?…

Many women have had to go out-of-state to seek their constitutional right to an abortion.  The misogynistic, anti-choice bills that have been passed, courtesy of the GOP Congress, over the last two years have been nonstop and horrendous. There is good that has come from all of this. The War Against Women has ‘awakened’ many, and it is predicted women will show up in record numbers for the Midterm Elections this November. Most women in the country have had it, and will not forget the lawmakers who have chipped away at women’s rights. The ‘word’ is, women will not forget – and they will not ‘go back’. Ever.

Full document: NYC

Read more about the effects of the TX abortions restrictions in Meteor Blades/Daily Kos diary.

Special thanks to Bob T.

Please Note: In my excitement to see this news, I did not do a Daily Kos search before I published it here. I thought I was the first. Come to find out later, TexasDoubleDD already posted about it! Here is the Daily Kos link. Good work, TXDoubleDD and my apologies.

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Reposted from txdoubledd by annrose

US District judge rules Texas abortion law unconstitutional.

 http://www.statesman.com/...

Abbott is now 0 and the people of Texas 2. This is his 2nd loss just this week. First, school finance and now this.

Oh and nos we know why he won't debate Wendy, he is scared of another loss.

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Reposted from Shannon Fisher by FisherShannon
Link to Broadcast.  Show will air Sunday, August 31 at 8 p.m. EDT.

Leslie Salzillo – a pro-choice activist, political commentator, visual artist and music publisher – will be the Special Guest Host of The Authentic Woman on August 31.  She regularly contributes articles to Daily Kos and Liberals Unite, though political writing was never in Salzillo’s plans.

In 1989, she built an award-winning song publishing company. When time allowed, Leslie would embark on protest trips to Washington DC with NARAL and Planned Parenthood. In 2012, after hearing Rush Limbaugh call Sandra Fluke a “slut” on air for advocating insurance-paid birth control – and after witnessing hundreds of misogynist laws being passed around the country – Leslie jumped into politics, full force.

Leslie Salzillo’s Bachelor of Science Degree, from Middle Tennessee State University, prepped her in creating petitions and Facebook activist pages that promote the rights of women, minorities, and LGBT, as well as advocate gun sense, equal pay, raising the minimum wage, and lowering student debt. She founded FB’s Pro-Choice Liberals, was a core member of StopRush, and is a participant and advocate of Moral Mondays.  Leslie now runs the largest Rush Limbaugh Boycott Page on Facebook, with approximately 90,000 followers.

Salzillo asserts, “The key to reducing misogyny is to first expose it. Social media is an amazing vehicle. Through public awareness, we can seek and find solutions.”  On August 31, Leslie Salzillo will interview fellow women’s rights activists, Kimberley A. Johnson and Madison Kimrey, to discuss the upcoming  We Are Women Rally and social media activism.  Follow Leslie on Facebook.

Kimberley A. Johnson is a feminist blogger on Liberals Unite.  She is known for her outspoken stance on the need to enshrine women’s rights into the U.S. Constitution by ratifying the ERA. Johnson entered the women’s rights movement as the spokeswoman for RTSV United in 2012, and she gave a speech at the We Are Woman March at the Capitol Building in Washington D.C.  Kimberley A. Johnson is the author of three nonfiction books: The Virgin Diaries; Ain’t No Sunshine: Men Reveal the Pain of Heartbreak; and her recent release, AMERICAN WOMAN The Poll Dance: Women and Voting.  Also an actress, Johnson portrayed a police officer on the popular daytime drama Days of Our Lives for over seven years. Follow Kimberley on Facebook and Twitter.

Madison Kimrey is a 13 year old writer, activist, and actress from NC. She founded NC Youth Rock with the goal of restoring the opportunity for 16 and 17 to pre-register to vote. Madison is also passionate about LBGT rights, women's rights, and the humane treatment of animals. She is a Davidson Young Scholar Ambassador and recipient of her local NAACP chapter's Youth Social Justice Award. You can follow her writing on her blog, Functional Human Being, and on Liberals Unite.    Follow Madison on Twitter.

The Authentic Woman is a weekly radio show on the Authors on the Air Global Radio Network that is regularly hosted by women's rights leader, Shannon Fisher.  The show offers perspectives on the female experience through the eyes of her guests. The show delves deeply into the worlds of writers, artists, celebrities, and community leaders - discovering their personal inspiration and passions.  Shannon is a writer, civic leader, and social justice advocate. Named among the “Richmonders of the Year” in 2012 by Style Weekly Magazine for her activism in women’s rights, Shannon sits on the Board of Directors for UniteWomen.org, a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit advocacy organization. Follow Shannon on Facebook and Twitter.

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Reposted from Shannon Fisher by FisherShannon Editor's Note: BIG radio show coming up on Sunday! -- FisherShannon
The Authentic Woman, a weekly radio show highlighting the wide variety of experiences women have in America, is airing a special edition on Sunday, August 24 at 8 p.m. EDT aimed solely at sharing information about all of the issues affecting women in America. The show will feature the presidents of two national women’s organizations: Terry O’Neill (National Organization for Women) and Karen Teegarden (UniteWomen.org).  The pair will highlight the economic, social, political and societal issues facing women in America today.

“Terry and Karen spend most of their waking hours dedicated to the betterment of the world for women,” said Shannon Fisher, host of The Authentic Woman. “I invited them as my expert panel on the topic of women’s rights due to the urgency with which we must address women’s issues within our national and local governments.”

Shannon Fisher, Host of The Authentic Woman
“Since 2010, there have been a number of bills supporting women that passed in the Senate but were blocked in the House, as well as some anti-women bills that passed in the House but were blocked by the Senate,” said Teegarden. “The legislative balance in Congress is very delicate; we need more candidates who support women in the House of Representatives and to make sure women-friendly legislators maintain control of the Senate. If the 2014 elections do not turn out in our favor, our fight for women’s equality will face even more virulent opposition.”

“Women continue to perceive the inequality and injustices in our society; much of which come from institutions actively working to keep women down,” said O’Neill. “This inequality and injustice are faced by people of color, the LGBTQIA communities – indeed all marginalized communities, and are felt even more strongly for those whose identities results in interlocking societal oppressions.”

Terry O'Neill, President of NOW
O’Neill continued, “There is an active cultural war with the intention of ‘putting women in their place,’ particularly demonizing single mothers. Conservative leaders are pushing the idea that all of women’s concerns would disappear if they would live in a nuclear family with traditional gender roles. Their only suggestion for access to health care, economic security and other concerns is marriage and dependency on a mate. It is crucial that we elect women-friendly candidates to halt this war.”

“There are several campaigns in this country that are organized with the intention of sending our society backwards in time into a patriarchal model that no longer fits the modern family and modern economy,” added Fisher. “Our legislatures need to pass legislation that is in keeping with society as it exists today, not as it existed in a time in history that can never be re-created. I am looking forward to this discussion with Terry O’Neill and Karen Teegarden to really reach our listeners and hopefully give them a wider perspective on many women’s issues.”

Karen Teeegarden, President of UniteWomen.org
“I am eager to talk about these issues and impart to the listeners how important the upcoming elections are at both the local and national levels. We are going to explain many topics in detail so women will understand why it is so important for them to get to the polls in November and vote!” said Teegarden. “We thought we got past this outdated ideology years ago, but it slowly crept back into the forefront of the public conversation around the country and has now reached a fever pitch,” she added. “Our young people have never experienced the cultural stereotypes from the 1950s that are being thrust upon us in legislative bodies all over the country in 2014. My hope is that they never do have to experience the lack of independence and autonomy that women experienced before the feminist revolution. We will address young people directly during the show and help them relate to the history that we are fighting to keep in the history books instead of the law books.”

“Most of the topics we will discuss in the show are not debatable in my mind, in regards to what helps women and what does not. And yet, opposition persists,” said Fisher. “I normally steer clear of political topics on The Authentic Woman, but the issues we will be discussing are so universally important to all women – regardless of race, socio-economic status, political ideology and marital status that I feel strongly compelled to have a public conversation about the State of Women’s Rights in this country right now. There seems to be a lack of compassion in society as a whole that must be addressed. Hopefully some listeners will have an ‘Ah-ha moment’ while learning about the manner in which women in all demographics are affected by legislation around the country.”

The show will air at 8 p.m. EDT on Sunday, August 24. Listen on Blog Talk Radio or link to the broadcast via the Authors on the Air, The Authentic Woman.   (UPDATE: The podcast of this powerful interview is now available using the same links.)

Pictured: Karen Teegarden, Krystal Ransome, Shannon Fisher and Terry O’Neill at the Suffrage Centennial Celebration in Washington, DC
Karen Teegarden, Krystal Ransome, Shannon Fisher and Terry O’Neill at the Suffrage Centennial Celebration in Washington, DC
About Terry O’Neill: Terry O’Neill, a feminist attorney, professor and activist for social justice, was elected president of NOW in June 2009. She is also president of the NOW Foundation and chair of the NOW Political Action Committees. O’Neill oversees NOW’s multi-issue agenda, which includes: advancing reproductive freedom, promoting diversity and ending racism, stopping violence against women, winning LGBTQIA rights, ensuring economic justice, ending sex discrimination and achieving constitutional equality for women.

O’Neill’s feminist activism began in the 1990s, fighting right-wing extremists in the Deep South, including David Duke. A former law professor, O’Neill taught at Tulane in New Orleans and at the University of California at Davis, where her courses included feminist legal theory and international women’s rights law, in addition to corporate law and legal ethics. She has testified before committees in the Maryland House of Delegates and has written federal amicus briefs on abortion rights for Louisiana NOW, Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union. O’Neill holds a bachelor’s degree in French with distinction from Northwestern University and a law degree magna cum laude from Tulane University.

About Karen Teegarden: Karen Teegarden is the President and CEO of UniteWomen.org and UniteWomen.org ACTION. After having held 55 simultaneous rallies in 45 States as Unite Against the War on Women, to shine a spotlight on the influx of anti-women legislation and rhetoric around the country, Teegarden parlayed the event network into a national women’s rights organization, UniteWomen.org. She manages UniteWomen.org’s broad range of issues which include economic equality, reproductive justice, LGBTQ rights, violence against women, Unite Against Rape, voting rights, any type of injustice that affects women and their families, the environment and achieving full equality in our Constitution.

Teegarden’s passion for politics and fighting injustice was ignited while working with Barack Obama’s Presidential campaign in 2008 and the fans are still being flamed. Prior to founding and managing UniteWomen.org, Karen was President of Karen Teegarden & Associates, a marketing sales company based in Michigan. She is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, where she earned a B.A. in music.

About Shannon Fisher: Shannon Fisher is the host of the radio talk show, The Authentic Woman – Perspectives on the Female Experience in America on the Authors on the Air radio network. She is a biographer, profiling one person or group each week on her show, and a prominent women’s rights advocate – having been named one of the “2012 Richmonders of the Year” by Style Weekly for her activism in the Virginia General Assembly. Shannon is a member of the Board of Directors of UniteWomen.org, a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit advocacy organization, and she co-founded and directed that organization’s Unite Against Rape program, which made strides in raising public awareness of the issues of rape, human trafficking and violence against women.

Fisher is a graduate of both The College of William and Mary and the Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership at The University of Virginia. She has been writing and working in the fields of public and community relations since the mid-1990s. Her articles and essays have been published in newspapers, magazines, anthologies, news sites and blogs. Shannon has worked with Universal Studios, PBS, The Theatre of Note, The Music Theatre of Southern California, and the Authors on the Air Global Radio Network.

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