January 12, 2016


"The Power of Making Abortion Personal," Emma Green, The Atlantic: As the Supreme Court prepares to hear a case challenging Texas' omnibus antiabortion-rights law (HB 2), Green discusses a "remarkable" amicus brief "representing '113 women in the legal profession who have exercised their constitutional right to an abortion.'" According to Green, the brief "represents the perspectives of people who are trained in the law, but who are also personally familiar with what it means to get an abortion," and "rejects the idea that women should feel shame about having an abortion." She adds that the brief "shortens the sense of distance between those who will decide the legal merits of the case and those whose lives will be affected -- this brief isn't well-educated experts advocating on behalf of women in need, it's well-educated women advocating on behalf of themselves." In addition, "the document also highlights the complexity of abortion as an ethical and legal issue," Green writes, explaining that while "[c]ourt cases necessarily consider questions of justice in the abstract ... deciding whether or not to terminate a pregnancy is one of the most intimate choices a woman can make" (Green, The Atlantic, 1/8).

What others are saying about the abortion-rights movement:

~ "WLP Supports New Anti-Abortion Clinic Violence & Harassment Bill," Women's Law Project blog.

~ "The Power of Making Abortion Personal, Cont'd," Bodenner, The Atlantic's "Notes."

~ "Meet One of the Litigators Who Will Be Fighting For Abortion Rights at the U.S. Supreme Court," Kristen Barton, Huffington Post blogs.


"Oregon Kicks 2016 Off by Allowing Over-the-Counter Birth Control," Lindsay Patton, Care2: "Oregon is starting 2016 off right" by becoming "the first state to implement over-the-counter/pharmacist-prescribed birth control," Patton writes. According to Patton, "a [state] law[HB 2879] that allows women to obtain birth control without a prescription ... went into effect on Jan. 1." Under the law, women "will be able to purchase birth control from a pharmacist as long as they fill out a simple health questionnaire that is put in place to make sure there are not any health concerns," Patton explains. She notes that while women younger than 18 "will still need a prescription from their doctor ... the law will have this requirement disappear after a few years." Further, she writes that women "can also purchase a year's supply of birth control at once," which insurance is required to cover. According to Patton, "[p]eople all over the United States are reacting to Oregon's news and demanding that accessible birth control be brought into their own states." She adds, "California, Colorado and Washington all have introduced similar [legislation], with California implementing the law [SB 493] in March." Patton notes that even though pharmacists still are permitted "to turn women away for religious reasons," they are required "to refer the woman somewhere else in order to obtain birth control" in such instances. She concludes by noting that while the Oregon law "is a big deal for reproductive rights, the rest of the nation still has a long way to go. There is still not enough bipartisan support to get over-the-counter birth control available all across the United States" (Patton, Care2, 1/10).