Sunday, July 3, 2011

The Caged Bird Sings of Freedom

What if your mom was pregnant? Your lover? Whichever person draws from your vein of empathy, go with her—

She can be six weeks, sixteen weeks, or thirty-six weeks pregnant. When you love her, it doesn’t matter.

She lives in any one of the several states where legislatures spend hours from day to day contemplating the width of the cleaning closet at the few abortion clinics that struggle to remain.

As a result, individuals, families, national family and freedom organizations, corporations, collectives, and health care providers spend hours day to day challenging these compulsive and degrading policies. Federal judges spend hours day to day evaluating the constitutionality of these compulsive and degrading policies.

Meanwhile, there are children going to school with empty bellies in her state.

Your mom is pregnant. Your lover is pregnant. You know what this does to her body. They wake her startled in the morning with twenty-five sirens. They take her toilet so she has to pee in the yard. They take her food, her car and/or bike, her phone, her clothes, and her neighbors, but not her five-dollar bill, so she tries to walk barefoot to the market to eat before she vomits. Overnight, they demolished the nearest market. She tries the coffee shop, but they’re out of everything but caffeine.

By the time you find your pregnant mom or your pregnant lover, she is collapsed and weeping in the parking lot behind the Laundromat in the line of the pipe that deposits those fresh-scent carcinogenics into the air (your mother’s/lover’s womb). She’s withering, but they've taken the doctors too.

Same stuff is happening at the state level of most states in this country right now—metaphorically speaking. But every metaphor applies when your mother or your lover is carrying life and resolving that responsibility and you love them.

The time for alarmists is now.

*Title inspired by Maya Angelou's poem

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This is not a debate forum -- there are hundreds of other sites for that. This is a safe space for abortion care providers and one that respects the full spectrum of reproductive choices; comments that are not in that spirit will either wind up in the spam filter or languish in the moderation queue.