I recently started telling people about a fundraiser here and at Motley Moose.
The diaries I posted are Women in Congo Succeeding Together and Women in Congo Paying It Forward Need Your Help. Together, they give a fair overview of the project.
In circulating news about the Kickstarter, I've gotten some emails about how I could be hurting ACT for Congo by posting about them on "pro-abortion" websites. "Evangelical groups might refuse to donate money to them."
It's true that I know the people involved with the fundraiser, but they didn't tell me to blog about it. The project was so exciting that I wanted to help them extend the its exposure. They are still building their website and social media capabilities, and I wanted to tell people about a Kickstarter that's about to expire.
Most of this gnashing, I think, is directed at title of my "most recommended diary."
This cannot be about abortion.
Abortion is illegal in all contexts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. None of this funding will support abortion. When I spoke of "planned approaches to reproduction" I was talking about basic things -- like, "You really do have the legal right to say no to a man." Abortion isn't nearly part of the equation in this work.
About my most recommended diary, which appears in my profile: Forced birthers wanted my baby. If you don't read the article, it looks like a pro-abortion diary. It isn't, though. It's a diary about my personal experience when I got pregnant as a young person. I chose against having an abortion, and I still got brutally stalked and harassed by a group of anti-abortion activists.
Pro-choice does not mean pro-abortion. It means that bio-ethics are complex. My personal choice is to do the least possible harm. Denying reproductive care to women causes harm. In this world of technology today, there isn't a pat answer to any of it. But again, this diary isn't about abortion.
This cannot be about identity politics.
We have a tradition in the US where social conservatives and progressives work together to create change in the Democratic Republic of Congo. For years, Democratic Congressman Jim McDermott and Republican Governor Sam Brownback (formerly Senator Sam Brownback) worked together to address the sale and laundering of conflict minerals from the Democratic Republic of Congo. They weren't "reaching across the aisle" to do this work, nor were they reaching behind or across. They are on the same side of the aisle!
It's true that Jim McDermott is a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and Governor Sam Brownback is committed to socially conservative agendas -- but they didn't have to work out their political differences. They didn't have differences about whether or not to help people in the DRC. And they accomplished something. They passed provisions to require manufacturing companies to be accountable for using conflict minerals from the Democratic Republic of the Congo in their products. This was passed as part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act.
They are still working on the same side of the aisle today. I am on that side of the aisle, too.
If this irritation is about me, that's okay.
It cannot be about ACT for Congo or HOLD-DRC, though. These people are doing great things in the world -- and their work has nothing at all to do with abortion.
Thanks, and peace to all.
In case you are curious about the fundraiser:
We have 52 hours to go, and need $759 to meet the minimum goal for the Kickstarter. If the project does not meet the minimum goal, it loses all of the pledge money, and three weeks of fundraising is wasted.
The graduates of Succeeding Together want to extend their leadership by spreading their message that real change is possible in Congo.As of this writing, we've collected $1241 of $2000 minimum overheard costs needed to start the project.
They want to make a music video with famous Congolese musicians Innoss'B and Maisha Soul. If this video gets made, the message will ring across Democratic Republic of the Congo. The musicians have volunteered their time and studio for writing, recording, and filming the video with the women at Succeeding Together. They only need money for gas to run a generator to provide electricity to their studio for the time they need to work.
Activist Kyondra Kennard posted a Kickstarter to raise funds for this video. It will expire on March 13.
If you could donate $5 or $10 to this Kickstarter project, together we can help them help others. If you can't -- could you please spread the word?