Category Archives: asshattery

Conscience clauses in health care

I’ve written about my distaste for conscience clauses in healthcare before. I find it absolutely ridiculous that someone who elects to become a professional in healthcare can also refuse to provide care that they find “morally objectionable.” (Which, apparently, in some cases protects providers who refuse to perform blood transfusions or counsel about vaccines. I’m not going to get into the merits of vaccinations, but I AM going to say that they are one of the most BASIC sorts of healthcare, and if you’re a provider who doesn’t want to talk about them…what’s next? You don’t want to write prescriptions either? Become a homeopath then. There are lots of other healthcare avenues open to you – explore one.)

So I read a story like this one, and my blood pressure sky rockets. (Let’s hope conscience clauses don’t protect providers from taking blood pressure…) The anger and sadness and rage that I feel can’t even be measured, it’s THAT significant. I read the article over 2 weeks ago and have just NOW calmed down enough so I can write about it.

A woman presented to the hospital 20 weeks pregnant with significant vaginal hemorrhaging. An abortion needed to be performed TO SAVE HER LIFE. (As the article explains she was experiencing a placental abruption, which, if serious enough, will cause fetal demise, and can lead to death of the mother.) The doctor assigned to her care, “didn’t do abortions.” Nor did any of the other on-call doctors. An alleged mis-communication left her painfully bleeding to death in labor and delivery.

Fortunately someone did call a doctor who DOES perform abortions who was able to come quickly to the hospital and perform the procedure. The patient had lost so much blood by this time she required transfusions to stabilize her enough that the procedure could be performed, AND the surgeon counseled the patient’s husband that the procedure might be too late, and the patient’s life might be lost.

So here it is – a patient is dying, and a doctor is legally protected from performing life saving surgery. HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE? How, in the name of all things holy, does this make sense?

Let me be clear that I don’t think a woman should need to be dying in order for an abortion to be performed. I believe that women should have unfettered access to abortion at any time, and for any reason. But I believe FERVENTLY that conscience clauses harm patients, and this case illustrates it so very neatly.

If you are not willing to act in the best interest of your patient, (and not yourself) do something else. Become a veterinarian. Or a naturopath. Or a plumber. I don’t really care what you do – but DO NOT stand in the way of my access to health care because you believe that your so-called morals are more important than my health and well-being.



Filed under asshattery, choice, feminism, I get pissed, politics

Post-sexist society?

Trigger warning – the video contains images of violence against women.

“Do we live in a post-sexist society?” is the question answered by this aggregation.


Fuck no.


Filed under asshattery, culture, feminism, I get pissed

“Abortion is not about babies…it’s a matter of survival for women.”

Two years ago, today, I sat on the couch, stunned, as I read the news that another abortion provider had been killed.

It was a Sunday morning when Dr. George Tiller, perhaps the country’s most controversial, and steadfast, abortion provider was shot while attending church. I was reading the news online, as I did, when I saw the headline. My heart sank, and my rage rose. Tiller wasn’t the first provider to be ruthlessly murdered, and sadly, he probably won’t be the last (just last week a man in Wisconsin was arrested for plotting the first-degree murder of an abortion provider).

The elections of 2010 drove home the absolute, unqualified reminder that women’s right to safe, and accessible abortion is under assault. The Guttmacher Institute has tracked over 900 pieces of anti-choice legislation. According to the San Francisco Chronicle,  in April alone, 33 anti-choice laws were passed in 9 states. Last week the House of Representatives Committee on Rules rejected an amendment that would have reversed the ban on insurance covered for abortion for military rape survivors. (The Hyde Amendment bans federal funds from being used to pay for abortions. Since military insurance in funded by federal money…)I could go on. In fact, I could go on for HOURS. There is THAT much anti-choice activity right now.

But I digress. I started this blog to ask everyone to take a minute and reflect on George Tiller’s death. Watch this video where he talks about what it means to be a “Woman educated physician.”

He says, “Abortion is not about babies, it’s not about families….it is a matter of survival for women.” And he’s absolutely right. Abortion is about survival for women. Think about that. Survival. Not pleasure, not convenience – SURVIVAL.

Sign up for action alerts from NARAL, and Planned Parenthood. Donate time, or money, or blog space. Write a letter to the editor, and to your representative, and to your senator, or attend a rally. Do something. Anything. Get involved. Stay involved.

Women need to control their reproduction, or they’re not free.


Filed under asshattery, choice, feminism, I get pissed

The War on Women

I’ve been angry a lot lately. And angry, and angry, and more angry. Oh, hey, did I mention angry?

Each of those links leads to a news story wherein a woman’s right to safe and legal choice is being diminished. There is an ALL OUT WAR on women’s reproductive freedom in the United States right now. It is happening in more states than I am comfortable counting, and it is being waged without the slightest bit of humility, understanding, or sympathy. IT IS REAL, and I find it unconscionable.

Women NEED reproductive freedom. It’s not a luxury. It’s not an afterthought. It is an ESSENTIAL part of healthcare, AND an essential component of freedom. It is not negotiable, and there is no room for compromise.

Without reproductive freedom (the ability to access and choose safe and reliable birth-control, and abortion) women become subjugates of lawmakers. Their political autonomy ceases to exist, as they have been defined as incubators.

Stay informed. Add Rh Reality Check to your news feed. Visit Keep Your Boehner Out of My Uterus daily (@scatx does a great job of collecting and disseminating information and links). Sign up for news and alerts at the Planned Parenthood Action Center, and at NARAL. Donate money. Donate time. Attend a rally. Write to your Representative. Contact your Senator. Write a Letter to the Editor. Post some information on your Facebook page. Blog about it. Don’t remain silent. SPEAK UP. Remain in the conversation. Decisions are made by those who show up. SHOW UP. VOTE.

This onslaught of anti-choice, and anti-woman legislation will not go away on its own. There is no compassion or understanding in this movement. IT MUST BE CHALLENGED.

Today, my challenge to you, dear readers, is to click one of the links in the above paragraph. Just one. Pick the best way for you to take action, and do it. Read some of the links from the first paragraph. Educate yourself. Understand what is happening. Even if you don’t live in one of the states with the most aggressive attacks, understand that they are still important, because, as women, as defenders of women’s freedom, an attack on one woman, is an attack on us all.


Filed under asshattery, I get pissed

I stand with Planned Parenthood


I’m absolutely disgusted at the action taken by the House of Representatives on Friday to remove all Federal funding from Planned Parenthood, and to kill Title X.

Planned Parenthood offers SO MUCH health care to communities that no one else can, or does offer services to. And I don’t  know WHY we are even arguing about the benefit of family planning. What in the hell is wrong with giving people (men AND women) the tools to…wait for it….wait for it…plan parenthood?

Hillary Clinton knocks it out of the park.

Here’s a list of the Representatives who jumped the aisle to vote with the Pence Amendment, and those that jumped the aisle to vote against it. If your Representative is on this list, contact them and let them know how you feel. It doesn’t need to be complicated, or fancy. A simple, “That you for standing up for family planning, and voting against the Pence Amendment.” Or “I’m very disappointed that you chose to disregard the value of comprehensive family planning and low-cost or no-cost preventative health care, and vote with the Pence Amendment. I urge you to support all access to family planning in the future.” It’s important that those of us who are unhappy SPEAK UP.

What else can you do? Stand with Planned Parenthood. Sign up for action alerts and sign your name to every letter they ask you to send. Visit Pro-Choice America and sign up there, too.

Take a few minutes and listen to these amazing Representatives speak against the Pence Amendment.

Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI)

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA)

Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY)

I have been a Planned Parenthood patient, so I am personally invested in this. But I also believe passionately, and UNEQUIVOCALLY that women MUST be able to control their reproduction in order to be wholly autonomous beings.

I am pro-child, pro-family, pro-choice, and I stand with Planned Parenthood.


Filed under asshattery

Washington state FTW!!!

My faith has been marginally restored, ya’ll!

A few weeks ago I was pissed off because it looked like the Washington State Pharmacy Board was going to bow to anti-choice pressure and change a rule which currently bans pharmacies from refusing to dispense legally prescribed medication. Some pharmacy decided that they didn’t want to have to dispense Plan B, if they didn’t want to, so they sued the state. And the state was all set to give in because they couldn’t afford to be tied up in a lawsuit.

But the Board seems to have come to its senses, because in a 5-1 vote they decided the current rule was working just fine. According to Governor Chris Gregoire,

“The board understood that changing the current rule could force patients, especially those living in rural areas, to suffer lengthy delays to receive their medication and cause others to go without entirely.”

HUZZAH! I’m glad to see the welfare of the patient being placed above the concerns for the financial impact this could have on the state. I have every hope that this decision will not result in a drawn out legal entanglement, but I have little faith that this battle is over.




Filed under asshattery

No prescription for you!

I’m tired of this bullshit. Really. I am. RH Reality Check breaks it down better than I can, but essentially the Board of Pharmacy in the state of Washington, under pressure from a lawsuit brought by Ralph’s Thriftway Pharmacy, is set to change a rule which currently bans pharmacies from refusing to dispense legally prescribed medication, in this case the emergency contraception, Plan B. Ralph’s Thriftway Pharmacy would, apparently, prefer not to have to do so. You know, because they don’t believe in it. (Big surprise, right?)

My favorite part of the whole steaming pile?

“We can’t afford more lawsuits,” said board member Dan Connolly, who made the motion to move forward. “If we don’t change the current rule, this board is going to always be in litigation.”

So, essentially, if you can tie the state up in litigation long enough, you can basically get whatever you want.

Currently, in Washington state, if a pharmacist has a moral objection to a medication the pharmacist can ask a colleague to fill the prescription (which still pisses me off), but with the new ruling, entire pharmacies will be able to tell you to, “go somewhere else, we don’t treat your problem here.”


What happens when pharmacies decide that they don’t want to dispense HIV medication, because they suspect the patient is gay? Or they’re not going to give you your pain medicine because they don’t believe in narcotics?

It’s a slippery slope folks.



Filed under asshattery