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Author Archives: Sharrow

Women’s right to abortion: compromise is the losing option

Originally posted on the irish revolution:

by Anne McShane

The government hoped that the Protection of Life during Pregnancy Act 2013, which came into operation in January, would stifle the demand for change in favour of women’s rights. But the opposite has happened. There has been a new spate of protests over the first reported case under the new legislation. ‘Miss Y’, an asylum-seeker who arrived in Ireland early in the year, sought an abortion on the grounds that she was suicidal. Despite her clear desperation she was refused the procedure and forced to continue the pregnancy. Yet another victim of the misogyny embedded deep within the theocratic Catholic state and its institutions.

The 2013 act was reluctantly introduced by the government in response to immense pressure from the population. Opinion polls have consistently shown an overwhelming majority in favour of some abortion rights. One published in the Irish Times in June 2013 showed over 80%…

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Posted by on September 20, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Are you coming to the March for Choice?

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Posted by on September 18, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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A Great Victory for Prochoice Activism

Originally posted on my belly is mine:

We did it! When My Belly is Mine was formed at the very beginning of this year, our objective was to stop the Spanish antiabortion draft bill proposed by the conservative Popular Party (also known as the People’s Party) from being presented in parliament. If enacted, this reform would have taken Spain back 30 years in terms of reproductive rights. We worked hard to raise awareness of this threat. We echoed the major demos in Spain, alongside other protesters in European capitals and in cities across the world. Indeed, we were just one of the many many voices in Spain and abroad that clamoured against the bill. The Spanish press finally reported this weekend that the proposed abortion reform has been shelved due to a lack of consensus within the party. Congratulations and thanks to every single person who took to the streets and shouted out against the bill! We…

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Posted by on September 15, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Voting Prochoice in the Roscommon-South Leitrim By Election

Originally posted on Pursued By A Bear:

On October 10th, the voters of Roscommon-South Leitrim will be voting in a by-election to select a replacement for new MEP Luke Ming Flanagan. I will be contacting all the candidates to ascertain their position on abortion, and more specifically, repealing the eighth amendment.

Why I Am Voting Pro-Choice

For me, reproductive rights are non-negotiable. Simply put, opposition to changing Ireland’s abortion laws is a dealbreaker. Any person who would oppose my right to bodily autonomy and my dignity is not someone I would want as my representative in Dáil Éireann. Luke Ming Flanagan had a fine track record on reproductive rights and other issues, and I would like to elect someone who will continue in this vein.

I will be sharing my responses from candidates here as I get them.

Fine Gael-Maura Hopkins

Fianna Fáil-Ivan Connaughton

Labour- John Kelly

Sinn Féin-Martin Kenny

Independent

Emmett Corcoran

I’ll be perfectly…

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Posted by on September 13, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Corcaigh Abú; Cork City Council passed a motion to support a referendum to Repeal the 8th amendment

Given the title of this blog, there maybe ancestors spinning in graves down in Kerry, but credit where it’s due.

Late last night during a 5 hour session, in which topics as varied as the lack of librarians to new cycle lanes were tackled after the summer recess, Cork City Council passed a motion to support a referendum to Repeal the 8th amendment to the Constitution.

 

 

The motion was narrowly passed, making Cork City Council the first brave set of counselors to make such a call. Over the last 12 months County Councils all over the country, have passed motions in support of a referendum on Marriage Equality, setting precedent for this type of motion.

The 8th Amendment Article 40.3.3 which is 31 years old restricts doctors from offering health care that women need and has seen over 160,000 women have to travel to the UK and increasingly women risking the 14 years possible jail sentence as laid down in the Protection of Life in Maternity law last year.

The 8th amendment is also responsible for the high court being able to make drastic care orders like those which were imposed on Miss Y. “This amendment is incapable of adaptation to human needs. It’s broken. It’s dead. It needs to come out.” stated Mairead Enright of Lawyers for Choice at a meeting to build a coalition to Repeal the 8th amendment last Saturday, it seem Cork City Council is in agreement with this.

We want to thank those brave, compassionate 12 Councillors who passed this motion and those who voted them into office in the last local election. It is going to take more brave and compassionate people taking action to make this referendum happen, you can take part by signing The Abortion Rights Campaign’s petition to repeal the 8th amendment, by taking the National Women’s Council of Ireland action to contact your TDs telling them you want the 8th amendment repealed and by joining us on the March for Choice on the 27th of September.

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Posted by on September 9, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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There IS a “B” in There, You Know. I’m More Than “an Ally.”

Originally posted on the inadvertent feminist:

bisexual1

This town to which I recently returned, the shithole where I spent the first twenty-five years of my life, is a hotbed of ignorance and bigotry. I know, I know, I live in the south, blahblahwhatever. Even compared to the rest of the state, this town is about as bass-ackwards as you can get. Just a few current county demographics to help you out, and some anecdotal stuff from my younger years:

  • 92.8% white
  • per capita income: $16,109
  • 8 public elementary schools, 2 public middle schools, 1 high school, yet…
  • FOUR private christian schools, all administered by baptist churches
  • Completely dry county until 1984, when wine, beer, and liquor sales were finally allowed. “Liquor by the drink,” and beer/wine served in restaurants were not voted in until 2008.
  • City water wasn’t flouridated until 2004.
  • The book, “A Separate Peace” was challenged in a school board meeting, here, in 1996. (I…

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Posted by on August 31, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

Shamrokon: what I did last weekend….

I had been feeling the guilts that I was not at the marches on Saturday http://www.abortionrightscampaign.ie/  or Sunday, http://www.marriagequality.ie/ as I was involved with running a large scifi convention.
But as problematic as Scifi/fantasy fandom can be, nothing at the convention needed smashing, which given that it was the european scifi convention it had 1,300 people from 33 countries and we had 130 program items and 113 participants, is mind boggling.

Often at these events cis white men can dominate the panels, that wasn’t the case, in fact we did have a gender disparity as we had too many women on panels. Also we had more women moderating then men, I was delighted that Cheryl Morgan who is a trans right activist as well as  is an Hugo award-winning British science fiction critic and publisher. took part on panels over the weekend and as I was moderating the Boycott panel and we talked about TERFS.

We had equal numbers of men and women displaying in the Art Show , non of the cos players were harassed, we had panels on women in 2000AD, women writers, Gender boxes in Game of thrones and real life, why women have had to use pseudonym to get published, the Hawkeye initiative, Missing Medieval Women, discussions on why fiction women write had been seen as lesser.

I let it be known that I was queer and a feminist and made sure our code of conduct included making the convention a respectful place including respecting pro nouns and the photograph policy. I had people tell me they felt safe. Our youngest and oldest panel participants were women and the youngest at 14 is the youngest ever for a Eurocon. We had 4 workshops and all of them were run by women. including Lora O’Brien. It was refreshing and awesome and all off the convention was accessible.

There were even scholar ship tickets for fans of colour and those who may not be in the financial position to afford to go http://con-or-bust.livejournal.com/. 2/5 of the guests of honor were women, Seanan McGuire andYlva Spångberg.  Seanan McGuire was wonderful to interview and referenced the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and was able to cite figures from the studies, and one of the others was Jim Fitzpatrick who  was one of the public signatories on the Anti Amendment statement opposing the pro life amendment in 1983, he is also a human rights activist.

 Shamrokon got it as right as a scifi convention can be and I am proud of what we accomplished and the people on the committee and the staff who all had social justice awareness before we started.

 
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Posted by on August 27, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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