Sunday, September 30, 2007

Blogging the Women Legislators' Lobby Conference

She has arrived

How do you ingratiate yourself with the House leadership if you're a freshman congresswoman with two weeks in your seat? If you're Laura Richardson (D-Calif.), you don't. Richardson, who won her seat representing California's diverse 37th district via special election, announced her arrival in the nation's capitol by taking her sweet time deciding how to vote on the S-CHIP legislation for children's health insurance -- not a maneuver to be undertaken by the faint of heart. (Leaders of both parties tend to expect the automatic fealty of newbies in Congress.)


Thursday, September 27, 2007

How Verizon Explains What Net Neutrality Means

If you haven’t already heard, Verizon Wireless executives first decided to reject NARAL Pro-Choice America’s request to use their mobile network for a text-messaging, and then within hours reversed themselves.

The company's reasoning for first rejecting NARAL was that they had an internal policy to block "controversial or unsavory" text messages, which its spokesman explained, laughably, that someone had just forgotten to update by the time of NARAL’s request.


Ending a Modern Form of the Poll Tax

By Kathleen Taylor

Consider two people who are convicted of felonies. Both go to prison and serve their time. But one is able to vote upon release from custody, while the other will not be able to vote for many years after release, perhaps ever.

What makes the difference — seriousness of the offense? Length of sentence? Personal history?


Monday, September 24, 2007

Saudi Women Organize For The Right To Drive

Looking overseas, feminists activists in Saudi Arabia are organizing for the right to drive. Technology, from e-mail to text messaging, now makes it possible for them to coordinate and communicate their efforts in a way it never way before.


Friday, September 21, 2007

College Kids Paying The Price For Birth Control

As a young woman in college, I have had first hand experience with the rising costs concerning birth control pills. In the past year, the specific brand of birth control pills I use have gone up almost an extra $10 a month, from $40 to $50. Without coverage, my prescription runs $600 a year. Although I’m fortunate to have an insurance company that covers a nice percentage of my costs, meaning I only pay $20 a month, not everyone is as lucky as I am.


Thursday, September 20, 2007

Aurora, IL Planned Parenthood Clinic Opening Stalled

Apparently even when offering legal, constitutionally protected services, cities like Aurora will become gun-shy when anti-choice protestors become involved. Planned Parenthood of Chicago is going to federal court to try to force the city of Aurora to allow their new clinic to open as planned on September 18.
Planned Parenthood/Chicago Area is in federal court today seeking an injunction to allow its new health center in Aurora to open as scheduled on September 18, saying the City of Aurora has no legal basis for blocking the opening and that its revocation of a temporary operating permit is motivated solely by political opposition to the constitutionally protected right to abortion services.
The issue was over Planned Parenthood’s attempts to protect its new clinic from being targeted by anti-choice activists before it even opened.


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Anita Roddick's Legacy

Anita Roddick, founder of The Body Shop, died on September 10 of a brain hemorrhage. Looking over the empire she built is pretty incredible. Even if her business has its flaws (and which ones don’t?), it’s hard to deny that for many non-activists, The Body Shop was their first introduction to environmental and third-world development issues. I like this quote from Time.
"She made shopping a political act," says her friend Josephine Fairley, co-founder of organic chocolate company Green & Black's. "She was the first person to do that. She made cosmetics fun, sexy and affordable, and there was always a message. But instead of 'Buy this mascara, it will change your life,' her message was, 'Buy this mascara, it could change someone else's life.'"

Abortion Stakes Are Personal For Reporter

By Allison Stevens

I'm a lucky woman. Today I hold in my arms my newborn son, born in good health - both his and mine. As the Washington bureau chief for a news site that covers issues important to women, I often cover the ideological warfare over reproductive rights.

A frightening moment at the beginning of my pregnancy gave me an almost visceral perspective on the most recent Supreme Court battle over abortion, one that has already inspired lawmakers in a number of states to enact or contemplate action to further limit a woman's right to make decisions about her reproductive life based on the best medical option for her particular circumstances.