Join Us: Trust Women Month


Join the effort of many organizations, all of which support reproductive rights and justice during the “Trust Women Month” – January 22 through February 22 in celebration of the 28th anniversary of the historic Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion on January 22 . Please wear a silver ribbon to show your support, spread the word and take action.

The Silver Ribbon Campaign proudly presents Walk For Choice SF, an event to show that we support reproductive justice, rights and health, and to kick off Trust Women Week (January 20 to 27).

The event will begin on Friday, January 20, at 6 PM in Justin Herman Plaza.

At 6:30 PM, we’ll be at 2nd & Market St. where we will be asking everyone to whip out whatever internet accessible devices you have and join the Online March For Reproductive Justice.

We encourage participants to wear reflective or glow-in-the-dark materials, or wear glow sticks for safety and so that we stand out. Also, be sure to proudly show your Silver Ribbons!

Target: Abortion Clinics

Why isn’t pro-life terrorism treated as…terrorism, asks Kaili Joy Gray in the Daily Kos under the headline “Another day, another ‘pro-life’ terrorist bombs an abortion clinic”.

“It’s almost hard to get worked up about stories like this, when they’re so damned common. Bombs thrown, buildings burned, car tires slashed, patients stalked, doctors assassinated … You can look at the statistics. You can read about the thousands of acts of violence and tens of thousands of acts of “non-violent” terrorism against health care providers and their staff and their patients and their landlords and their landlords’ children. It’s all part of the “pro-life” movement to save the fetuses. And hey, if some property, or some people, have to get hurt, well, that’s a fair price to pay.”


Sadly, those attacks are common. The National Abortion Federation has published a sobering chart about these acts of violence in the past decades and the killings of doctors who perform abortions.

Andrea Stone raises in The Huffington Post another reason for concern: Attacks against abortion clinics are not included in the Government’s main terrorism database.

“[…] missing among the [terrorism] statistics are numerous cases of anti-abortion violence in the United States, an omission that raises questions about what defines terrorism and underscores how sensitive the issue of reproductive rights remains — even when dealing with statistics. A search of “abortion” in the Worldwide Incidents Tracking System, a database created after the 9/11 terrorist attacks by the National Counterterrorism Center, brings up just two abortion-related incidents — one of them in Nepal. Though the database includes the 2009 murder of prominent abortion doctor George Tiller by an anti-abortion extremist, it is effectively whitewashed, making no reference to abortion in the entire entry. In the summary, Tiller is described merely as a “medical doctor,” even though he and his clinic had been a target of anti-abortion activists for years.”

What the Anti-Choice Movement Will Do Next

Here is a list of the “5 Dirty Tricks Right-Wing Zealots Will Likely Try Next in Their Battle to Control Women” by Amanda Marcotte (via AlterNet), and she concludes that there hasn’t been “a more sustained assault on women’s rights in recent memory as what we saw in 2011.”

“The anti-choice movement showed its true face in 2011. No longer can liberals believe that anti-choicers are just goofy but well-meaning fetus worshippers. Now it’s undeniable that they are mainly an anti-feminist movement that attacks women’s rights because they want to roll back all of the gains women have made in recent decades. Showing their true face has helped educate and mobilize people who were pro-choice but unaware of how serious the situation really is. Now that we know, perhaps 2012 can be the year we double down on fighting back.”

Tanya Somanader writes in Thinkprogress Health about  The GOP’s 10 Most Extreme Attacks On A Woman’s Right To Choose An Abortion, which include the redefinition of rape, abortion audits and forced ultrasounds to name just a few:

“2011 marked a banner year in the Republican war on woman’s health. Close to 1,000 anti-abortion bills sped through state legislatures as the GOP-led House led a “comprehensive and radical assault” on a federal level. But in surveying their arsenal this year, 10 bills stood out as particularly perturbing and far-reaching efforts to stymie women’s access to abortion services, birth control, and vital health services like breast cancer screenings.” 


Healthcare Coverage and Abortions…

In case you needed a reminder how bleak the situation regarding women’s reproductive rights across the United States really is, ACLU provides this interactive map about bans on insurance coverage of abortion in various states.

“In several states, lawmakers are singling out abortion and prohibiting insurance companies from including abortion coverage in their policies. The trend is fast-moving and startling: since 2010, 4 states passed bans on abortion coverage and another 9 banned coverage in their soon-to-be-active exchanges. While alarming, this trend represents a renewed effort to deny women insurance coverage for abortion care. “


The Republican Candidates on Abortion

The New York Times
has a break down of  the Republican Presidential Candidates’ views on abortion, which is an eye-opener.

Rick Santorum has emerged as having the most extreme views on reproductive rights:

“To put rape or incest victims through another trauma of an abortion, I think is too much to ask.”  (Aug. 11, 2011, The New York Times)

“One of the things I will talk about, that no president has talked about before, is I think the dangers of contraception in this country.”  […]  “Many of the Christian faith have said, well, that’s okay, contraception is okay. It’s not okay. It’s a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.” (Rick Santorum, quoted in Slate on Jan. 4, 2012)

More than that: Santorum is only pro choice when it comes to himself.  Case in point, Trust Women/SR’s Ellen Shaffer blogged here, in Santorum: Our Abortion Was Different:” “Rick Santorum is one dangerously confused denialist.” Jezebel’s revealing article “Rick Santorum’s Anti-Abortion Politics Would Have Killed His Own Wife” also noted:

“Mr. Ban Abortion in All Circumstances With No Exception for the Life of the Mother, believes that the actions of his own wife should be treated as criminal. Why? Because, back in 1996, his wife had a procedure that resulted in the deliberate death of her fetus, even though it was a matter of saving her own life.”

In its Jan. 8, 2012, editorial ”Republicans Versus Reproductive Rights,” The New York Times sums up the Republican presidential candidates’ views:

“The Republican field is united in its determination to overturn Roe v. Wade; to appoint Supreme Court justices supportive of that goal; and to end government payments to Planned Parenthood for family planning services, cancer screening and other vital health services provided to low-income women.”

2011: A Bad Year for Reproductive Rights

According to an article in The Economist titled “Unintended Issues,”

“Last year saw a surge in social conservatism. It has been said that social issues inspire Americans to vote against their economic interests: a factory worker elects an anti-abortion Republican; in return he gets anti-union laws. Last year the adage was reversed. In 2010 Americans voted for economic austerity; in 2011 they got abortion restrictions. For those who oppose abortion, it was the most promising year in decades.”

Sarah Kliff wrote in The Washington Post under the headline ” The year of the abortion restrictions,”

“[A] rise in the number of anti-abortion governors and legislators has an enormous impact on the abortion rights landscape, paving the way for laws that could shape access for years to come.”

Jezebel posted in its 2011 year in review a sobering account under the headline “The year in your uterus” and concluded:

“It’s been a wild year for your uterus, and 2012 promises to be even crazier. We’ve got a Presidential election to look forward to, and political candidates love to talk about their agenda for your uterus when they try to win votes. Best festoon the thing in red, white, and blue; they’ve set up camp in your uterus, and they’re not going away any time soon.”



Banners for Reproductive Justice

Thanks Feministing for the coverage of our initiative “Banners for Reproductive Justice” on Market St. For those in San Fransisco, please join us for a Walk For Choice on Jan. 22, 2012, 1-3pm to admire the banners — celebrating the 28th anniversary of the historic Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion on January 22 — before they take them down at the end of the month. Join us! And please contribute a donation to our campaign.

For more on that initiative, listen to a radio interview with Dr. Sophia Yen, MD, co-founder of the Silver Ribbon Campaign to Trust Women, with Kris Welch on Radio KPFA on Dec. 23.

And here is an article in MS Magazine on the initiative: “In 2012, Trust Women!

“The official toll from 2011′s War on Women is in. According to the Guttmacher Institute, a record-breaking 92 new state-level restrictions on abortion were passed last year, the most ever. In response, reproductive-rights groups hope to make 2012 the year that women fought back — and won.”

Critics of the banner initiative were quick to react: “[The] Life Legal Defense Foundation has demanded that the city remove the offending signage or face the possibility of legal action.”

In a statement, Dr. Yen wrote:

“When the House of Representatives votes that it is okay for doctors to allow pregnant women to die in the emergency room rather than perform an abortion, it’s time for women to wake up and fight back.  As a mother and a pediatrician who specializes in adolescent medicine, I want to insure that my patients and my own daughters continue to enjoy the right to plan their families and pursue their career goals,” she said. “For women, that means protecting and expanding reproductive rights.”

Also the Huffington Post has coverage of our initiative: “Silver Ribbon Campaign To Trust Women: Market Street Banners Advocate Reproductive Rights” and it covers the vehement opposition to the banners by pro-life groups under the headline “San Francisco Abortion Ads Draw Ire Of Pro-Life Group”:

“The campaign marks the first time in San Francisco history that the city has displayed banners advocating reproductive rights, [but the] series of pro-choice banners posted on city-operated utility poles running up and down San Francisco’s Market Street have drawn the ire of an anti-abortion group. Life Legal Defense Foundation has demanded that the city remove the offending signage or face the possibility of legal action.”