February 5, 2016


"'Trapped' documentary rejects moral divide between religion and abortion,"Amy Littlefield, RH Reality Check: Littlefield writes about a new documentary, 'Trapped,' that explores the effects of targeted regulations of abortion providers (TRAP) on clinics, staff and patients. She notes that while reproductive-rights supporters might already be aware of how TRAP laws have whittled away abortion access in the United States, "we rarely see patients forced to navigate this landscape of gutted access, or providers who dedicate their lives to fighting back. In that sense, Dawn Porter's film, which premiered January 24 at the Sundance Film Festival, is the documentary we've been waiting for." While "viewers might expect Trapped to be a grim, national montage" on the effect of TRAP laws, the film is actually "something much more powerful: an intimate portrait of a handful of providers in Texas and Alabama who are fighting not only to keep their doors open, but to reduce the stigma against abortion propagated by the religious right," Littlefield writes. She cites the film's focus on Willie Parker, a Christian abortion provider working in the South, noting, "In large part because of Parker's role as a central character, one of the most powerful achievements of Trapped is to reclaim religion from the anti-choice right," effectively rejecting abortion-rights opponents' "moral divide" between abortion rights and religion. According to Littlefield, the film also "humanizes the numbers" behind the Supreme Court's upcoming rulingon Texas' antiabortion-rights law (HB 2). "Thanks to Porter ... [w]e see the men and women who forgo paychecks and fight, sometimes all the way to the Supreme Court, as Amy Hagstrom Miller of Whole Woman's Health has done, to keep abortion accessible," Littlefield writes. She states, "As a result, many viewers will emerge from Trapped feeling not angry, nor defeated, but profoundly grateful. Many may also be moved to action." Littlefield urges people to see the documentary, noting that the filmmakers are hoping to screen it "in as many places as possible" before the Supreme Court hears arguments over HB 2 on March 2 (Littlefield, RH Reality Check, 2/4).

What others are saying about the abortion-rights movement:

~ "Reproductive rights and Zika: Why the pro-choice movement needs to seize this opportunity," Vijoleta Gordeljevic, Huffington Post blogs.