Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Texas Lawmaker Attempts To Block Stringent Abortion Restrictions With 13-Hour Filibuster

Texas Lawmaker Attempts To Block Stringent Abortion Restrictions With 13-Hour Filibuster

State Sen. Wendy Davis (D-TX) (Credit: Texas Tribune)
Texas’ special session ends at midnight on Tuesday. And if state Sen. Wendy Davis (D) can continue speaking until that point about the dangerous effects of SB 5, an omnibus abortion bill that Texas Republicans are currently attempting to push through the extra lawmaking session, she’ll effectively block it from being able to pass. Since Republicans have strong majorities in the Texas legislature, SB 5 will certainly win final approval if it’s allowed to come to a vote on Tuesday. And Gov. Rick Perry (R) — who called the current special session largely to give lawmakers another chance to rush through abortion restrictions — has already promised to sign it. But, with the help of hundreds of activists who have flooded the state capitol to protest the proposed anti-abortion legislation, Democrats have successfully stalled SB 5. Now, Davis is their last chance to kill the bill. Under Texas’ legislative rules, Davis can delay a vote in the Senate as long as she continues talking about SB 5 without stopping to eat, drink, go to the bathroom, sit down, or even lean against a desk. SB 5 first came up for consideration around 11 am on Tuesday, so that’s when Davis had to start speaking. “I’m rising on the floor today to humbly give voice to thousands of Texans who have been ignored,” Davis said when she first begun her filibuster. “These voices have been silenced by a governor who made blind partisanship and personal political ambition the official business of our great state.” Watch it live, courtesy of the Texas Tribune:
SB 5 combines several egregious attacks on women’s reproductive freedom into one measure — all separate provisions that failed to advance during Texas’ regular session. If enacted, it would criminalize abortions after 20 weeks and impose harsh restrictions on abortion clinics that would force 90 percent of them to close their doors. Because of the size and population of Texas, women’s health advocates argue that leaving the state with just a handful of abortion providers would be tantamount to banning abortion altogether. Furthermore, the majority of Texas voters don’t support SB 5, and would prefer that their lawmakers don’t focus on abortion during the special session. Over the past several days, Texas has received an outpouring of support from women’s health advocates all across the country. Residents in other states have sent food and coffee to be delivered to the hundreds of protesters camping out in the capitol building. Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards flew into Texas on Tuesday to stand with the activists. And all eyes are on Davis while she continues her filibuster — as of press time, over 13,000 people are currently watching the Tribune’s live stream.
At 10:05 PM, Texas Republicans declared Davis’ filibuster over by finding her “out of order” for the the 3rd time. The gallery erupted in protest, chanting “Let Her Speak.” Watch:

Thursday, June 6, 2013

You’re not listening

 “A friend of mine was recently cornered in her building doorway, late at night, by a total stranger who “just wanted to take her out for a drink”. She said “No” several times, in increasing alarm, and finally he grabbed her arm and asked “Why not?”. She said, “Because you’re obviously not listening when I say no right now, so I can’t expect you to listen to anything else I say no to.”
To her total shock, he looked appalled, let go of her, apologized, and left. As far as she could tell, it had not occurred to him that cornering a stranger, grabbing her arm, and insisting she go get a drink with him might be seen as the sort of thing a rapist would do.”

from the comments @
#481: My parents acquired a friend for me (with a gross, moldy congealed side of stalking). | CaptainAwkward.com (via notemily)

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

What do rapists think about rape jokes?


“When I –- and presumably a lot of other people who think that Tosh, Morril, and the rest of the rape-jokes-are-hilarious crowd are assholes -– get upset about the jokes, it’s not that I’m offended. I’m really hard to offend. It’s that I’m mad that the person had a mic in their hand, and a whole room full of people listening to them, and they decided that the way they were going to make them laugh was to tell a joke that would made a rapist feel better about himself.

When we talk about pushing boundaries or being edgy or testing taboos or whatever -– when we bring names like George Carlin and Lenny Bruce and Richard Pryor into this discussion -– what people who argue the pro-rape-joke side miss is that, in a country in which 54 percent of rapes are never reported, telling rapists that what they did isn’t a big deal isn’t pushing any limits at all. It’s the damn status quo.

Ultimately, the question of comedians making the sort of rape jokes that comfort rapists isn’t really a matter of can they make those jokes, or even a question of should they. It’s your mic, man, you can do whatever you want to do while you’re holding it. The question is, if you’ve got that mic in your hand, why do you want to use it to make rapists feel better?”

What Do Rapists Think About Rape Jokes? | xoJane (via brute-reason)