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I wrote on Tuesday about the first attacks from the right claiming that Darcy Burner's Netroots Nation Keynote cheered abortion. Lies, pure and simple. Sadly, the attacks are growing from local writers and if you have ever met Darcy you know she is not backing down!

Let's stand up with her and tell society that there is no shame in having an abortion.

Last night I received an email from Darcy's campaign with the subject line - Shame. Fear. Courage. Inside, it said exactly what I want to hear from a Congressional Representative as it speaks to my heart that The Political is Personal.

How do we overcome fear and shame in order to change things?

Last week I spoke to a few thousand people at Netroots Nation about Going on Offense in the War on Women. I wanted to open a discussion about power - about what it would take for us to build a world where the equality of women is a reality rather than a bargaining chip. In a portion of the speech about abortion, I talked about how conservatives shame women into silence about the decisions they have made. That silence leaves a void which allows women to be dehumanized.

I asked the women in the audience who were comfortable with coming out of the closet about the fact they’ve had abortions to stand. Then I asked those who were willing to support these women and every woman like them to stand as well. Thousands of people were standing. I said, “This is how we change the stories in people’s heads.”

We are not alone. Nobody should be allowed to shame us into silence, to demand we live isolated and unable to talk about the decisions we’ve made, whether easy or hard.

We can choose to elect people who will stand for something - who will lead our fights for justice and dignity. Please join us.

Right afterwards, a right-wing blogger posted an attack, changed my words, and distorted the message of courage and community into one of coercion and shame.  

They want us to be ashamed so we will be silent.

We need dialogue, not distortions. We need to empower, not silence. We need more leaders who will stand up.

Let's go back to the attacks that Darcy currently faces. From Joel Connelly at SeattlePI:
Abortion is usually viewed as a private, at times agonizing decision for a woman and loved ones.  Not,  apparently, by congressional candidate Darcy Burner, who had a memorable -- some would say, memorably off-putting -- moment before a national progressive bloggers meeting last weekend.

"If you are a woman in this room, and statistically this is true for about one third of the women in this room, if you're a woman in this room who has had an abortion and is willing to come out about it, PLEASE STAND UP," Burner said in a voice that could open a wall safe.

A moment later, as some women in the Providence, R.I., Netroots Nation audience rose, Burner doubled down with a second message:  Give 'em a cheer.

Um, no. That's not what happened. People cheered for solidarity of reproductive choice. We stood to stand in the face of the hatred and shame that the right-wing has cast on women who have exercised their choice.


Is abortion something to be cheered? That's the question many are asking after three-time Eastside congressional candidate Darcy Burner raised plenty of eyebrows when she called on women at a conference in Rhode Island who've had an abortion to stand up and cheer.
I could continue and show you the right-wing blogs and their vicious attacks on Darcy (and the pro-choice movement at large) but why spread their hateful words.

Burner explains her motives for the speech and the request for people to stand up:

"The people who don’t want them to be able to stand up, who don’t want people to stand with them, are the people who are trying to shame them into silence and it’s long past time we stopped giving into them,” she said.
She is right. We must stop giving into the right-wing smears, attacks, and vitriol. We lose when we do not stand up and stay strong. Darcy Burner's congressional run is just one of the fronts for us to fight... a vital front and that we can all do something for. Please consider donating to her campaign and say there is no shame in having an abortion.
Goal Thermometer
Darcy Burner wants the abortion issue out of the closet once and for all. Because as she told me:

"The closet is where we keep the coat hangers. I definitely want women out of it!"

Originally posted to Aaron Krager on Thu Jun 14, 2012 at 10:29 AM PDT.

Also republished by PacNW Kossacks.

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