Moyers on Today’s Abortion Debate

January 28, 2013 By: seeta Category: Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Intersectionality, Poverty

(h/t: Farah Diaz-Tello)

The 113th Congress Will Be The Most Diverse in History

November 14, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Intersectionality, LGBTQ, Poverty, Workers' Rights

From ThinkProgress:

Though Congress remains whiter, older, and more male than the nation as a whole, the incoming class will be the most diverse in history.

The 113th Congress will be more representative of the United States from race to religion, and from gender to sexual orientation. It will look more like America with 4 new African American representatives, 10 new Latinos, 5 new Asian Americans and 24 women in the House or Senate.* It will believe more like America with the first two Hindu congresspeople, the first Buddhist senator, and the first non-theist to openly acknowledge her belief prior to getting elected. It will love more like America, with 4 new LGBT congresspeople or senators, including the first openly bisexual congresswoman and the first openly gay congressman of color. And it will be younger, with four new congressmen born in the 1980s.

Click on image for larger view


GOP Misogyny: Republican Embrace of Rape Culture

October 26, 2012 By: nancy a heitzeg Category: 2012 Election, Civil Rights, Economic Terrorism, White Privilege

“A rape culture is a complex of beliefs that encourages male sexual aggression and supports violence against women. It is a society where violence is seen as sexy and sexuality as violent.

In a rape culture, women perceive a continuum of threatened violence that ranges from sexual remarks to sexual touching to rape itself.

A rape culture condones physical and emotional terrorism against women as the norm.”

Transforming A Rape Culture

by Emily Buchwald, Martha Roth, and Pamela Fletcher (2004)

Still undecided?

Feeling stuck in a “Binder?”

Wake Up — The GOP War on Women is real all right.

Republican Definitions of Rape:


“When life begins with that horrible situation of rape, that is something that God intended to happen.” -Richard Mourdock (R), candidate for Senate in Indiana, on October 23, 2012

“The right approach is to accept this horribly created, in the sense of rape, but nevertheless…a gift of human life, and accept what God is giving to you.” –Rick Santorum (R), Senator and Presidential candidate, on January 20, 2012

“Richard and I, along with millions of Americans…believe that life is a gift from God.” -Republican Senator John Cornyn of Texas voicing his support of Richard Mourdock’s statement about rape-induced abortions, on October 24, 2012


“If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” –Republican Congressman & Senate candidate Todd Akin of Missouri on August 20, 2012


“If it’s an honest rape, that individual should go immediately to the emergency room, I would give them a shot of estrogen.” –Republican Congressman & Presidential candidate Ron Paul of Texas on February 3, 2012


“It was an issue about a Catholic church being forced to offer those pills if the person came in in an emergency rape.” –Republican Senate candidate Linda McMahon of Connecticut (also confusing churches with hospitals) on October 15, 2012


“If you go down that road, some girls, they rape so easy.” –Republican State Representative Roger Rivard of Wisconsin, on December 21, 2011 and endorsed by VP Candidate Paul Ryan on August 9, 2012


Republican Vice-Presidential nominee Paul Ryan, Todd “legitimate rape” Akin and 214 other Republicans co-sponsored the “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act”, which would prohibit federal funding of abortions except in instances of “an act of forcible rape or, if a minor, an act of incest.” -H.R. 3, 112th Congress, January 20, 2011


“If it’s inevitable, just relax and enjoy it.” –Republican Gubernatorial candidate Clayton Williams of Texas on March 25, 1990

Republicans’ Shocking Positions on Rape and Pregnancy Aren’t Outliers — They’re Central to the GOP Agenda

See also: Pennsylvania Bill Would Reduce Welfare Benefits For Women Who Cannot Prove They Were Raped

The Atlantic: Richard Mourdock, Mitt Romney and the GOP Defense of Coerced Mating


Next Stop: The Twilight Zone, GOP Ignores 7.8% Unemployment and Net Positive Job Creation, Romney Channels Shania Twain: That Don’t Impress Me Much

October 14, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Economic Development, Intersectionality, Poverty, Workers' Rights

I love Sunday mornings and episodes of the Twilight Zone. To borrow and paraphrase New York State Supreme Court Judge Arthur Shack’s words, who wrote the following about former foreclosure mill Steven J. Baum, the GOP narrative ignores reality, as if existing in a parallel universe:

Rod Serling’s opening narration, to episodes in the 1961 – 1962 season of The Twilight Zone, could have been an introduction to the arguments presented in support of the instant motion by plaintiff’s counsel, Steven J. Baum, P.C. – ‘You are traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land of imagination. Next stop, the Twilight Zone.’

Read Judge Schack’s Twilight Zone case for yourself: HSBC Bank USA, N.A. v. Yeasmin, 2010 NY Slip Op 50927(U).

The GOP talking heads on this morning’s Sunday programming were no different. GOP Senator Rob Portman of Ohio made the following claim:

I think that what [Lyin’ Ryan] was saying was the truth: unemployment is higher today than when the president took office. Unfortunately, in the meantime, we’ve created net zero jobs, Jake.

Watch video:

From ThinkProgress:

The numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ September jobs report prove both of Portman’s claims wrong: unemployment is lower than the day President Obama took office and the economy has created net positive jobs.

Portman also misled on Obama’s record on free trade agreements, saying “it’s unbelievable that the United States has sat on the sidelines for the last four years; hasn’t negotiated a single trade-opening agreement.” The President has renegotiated and signed trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea.

Pay no attention to Obama’s record:

  • 24 months of consecutive job growth and net positive job creation, notwithstanding the GOP’s obstruction of the passage of the Jobs Bill Act.
  • The revitalization of the automotive industry and the fact that GOP puppet boy wanted to “Let Detroit go bankrupt.”
  • The passage of Obamacare which requires health insurance companies to insure individuals with pre-existing conditions (GOP puppet boy thinks if you can’t afford it, you should go to the emergency room).
  • The repeal of DADT and the DOJ position to not defend DOMA in the courts.
  • Holding Osama bin Laden to account.
  • Ending the war in Iraq.

For a more exhaustive list of Obama’s domestic and foreign policy record, check out the following sources:

In the meantime, however, Romney, who left Massachusetts worse off than prior to his governorship and who plans to reverse Roe v. Wade and gut Medicare/Social Security, scoffs at Obama’s record.

Channeling Shania Twain, he says “that don’t impress me much.”

Watch Frontline’s “The Choice 2012” Full Episode Online

October 13, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Intersectionality, Poverty, White Privilege

Mitt Romney and Barack Obama have spent hundreds of millions of dollars to tell their own stories, but in “The Choice 2012,” FRONTLINE goes far beyond the headlines on a journey deep into their worlds, among their friends and family, critics, and closest colleagues, to understand what drives these men. Based on dozens of new interviews and hundreds of hours of research, FRONTLINE’s authoritative profiles that emerge are also a portrait of America in an era of uncertainty — and a guide to the choices that lie ahead.

The film will be rebroadcast nationally on Thurs. Oct. 18 at 8 PM (EST); Fri. Oct. 26 at 9 PM (EST); Fri. Nov. 2 at 8 pm EST. Check local listings here:

Paul Ryan Endorses Wisconsin Lawmaker Who Claims ‘Some Girls Rape Easy,’ While Romney Vows to Overturn Roe v. Wade

October 11, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Intersectionality, Poverty

From TP:

A Wisconsin state lawmaker endorsed by Paul Ryan has come under criticism for suggesting that “some girls rape easy.” While discussing a case in which “a 17-year-old high school senior was charged with sexual assault for having sex with an underage girl in the school’s band room,” State Rep. Roger Rivard (R) told the Chetek Alert newspaper in December that his father taught him that some girls will portray a sexual encounter as rape if they become pregnant. He is now claiming that those remarks were taken out of context and has issued a statement condemning sexual violence:

On Wednesday, Rivard told the Journal Sentinel the article did not provide full context of his comments and that his father’s exact words had been slightly different from how they appeared in the Chetek Alert.

He told the Journal Sentinel that his father had advised him not to have premarital sex, and he took that seriously.

“He also told me one thing, ‘If you do (have premarital sex), just remember, consensual sex can turn into rape in an awful hurry,’ ” Rivard said. “Because all of a sudden a young lady gets pregnant and the parents are madder than a wet hen and she’s not going to say, ‘Oh, yeah, I was part of the program.’ All that she has to say or the parents have to say is it was rape because she’s underage. And he just said, ‘Remember, Roger, if you go down that road, some girls,’ he said, ‘they rape so easy.’

“What the whole genesis of it was, it was advice to me, telling me, ‘If you’re going to go down that road, you may have consensual sex that night and then the next morning it may be rape.’ So the way he said it was, ‘Just remember, Roger, some girls, they rape so easy. It may be rape the next morning.’

See also: Guide to VP Debate and Paul Ryan

See also: 2012 Republican Platform Advocates Abortion Ban Without Rape Exception

Meanwhile, Gov. Rick Perry reminds us what Romney’s actual agenda is:

Texas Gov. Rick Perry isn’t worried about his former primary rival’s reluctance to push legislation restricting abortion rights, saying on Wednesday that he’s confident Mitt Romney will appoint “constitutionalists” to the Supreme Court. “I think the Supreme Court is where that issue will be decided, from the standpoint of how America’s going — We’ll have a Supreme Court decision, and that’s where the focus will be,” Perry said on CBS’ “This Morning.” “He’s said very clearly that he’s going to put people who are constitutionalists on the Supreme Court.”

Indeed, Mitt Romney’s own web site explains his pro-life position:

Ninth Circuit on the Unconstitutionality of Criminalizing Women’s Self-Abortion

September 11, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Intersectionality, Poverty

From ConLaw Prof Blog:

In its opinion in McCormack v. Hiedeman today, a panel of the Ninth Circuit considered the constitutionality of Idaho’s “unlawful abortion” statutes, making it a felony for any woman to undergo an abortion in a manner not authorized by statute. McCormack had been charged with a felony by the prosecutor Mark Hiedeman based on her procurement of abortion “medications” over the internet. While a state magistrate had dismissed the charge without prejudice, the prosecutor had not determined whether or not to re-file a criminal complaint. McCormack brought an action in the federal district court challenging the constitutionality of the Idaho statutes. The district judge granted a preliminary injunction against the statutes’ enforcement.

At the heart of the constitutional inquiry was whether or not a pregnant woman could be constitutionally held criminally liable for self-abortion. The prosecutor essentially argued that criminalizing nonphysicians performing abortions is consistent with Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

The Ninth Circuit, however, agreed with the district judge that imposing criminal sanctions on a pregnant woman imposes an “undue burden” under Casey. The “undue burden” resulted because the statute required the woman to police the abortion providers’ actions or risk criminal sanctions herself.

The court also found McCormack’s economic situation and the lack of abortion providers in her area to contribute to the “undue burden.”

(h/t: Ruthann Robson)

Mitt Romney Thinks His Tax Returns Deserve More Privacy than Your Vagina

August 31, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Economic Terrorism, Imperialism, Intersectionality, LGBTQ, Poverty, White Privilege

Now that the GOP’s Racist Demagoguery Hatefest is over, let’s get back to the business of strengthening the middle class, increasing socio-economic mobility, and preserving the rights of women, people of color, the disabled, working families, and LGBTQ folk.