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Right wing trying to generate the challenge

Right wing trying to generate the challenge that will overturn Roe v. Wade–Militant movement needed to turn the tide

On Wednesday, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed House Bill 314, a near-total abortion ban, into law. The ban is the most restrictive anti-abortion law in the United States. It is also illegal.

Alabama’s abortion ban outlaws abortion at any stage in gestation and nearly all cases. This makes it a felony to perform an abortion at any stage in pregnancy. Doctors could be sentenced to life in prison for performing an abortion. The criminalization of the abortion procedure as a Class A felony would mean doctors could face up to 99 years in prison, which is potentially decades longer than the term many rapists serve in Alabama.

Alabama’s anti-abortion law has few exceptions besides “serious health risk to the unborn child’s mother” and “the unborn child has a lethal anomaly.” There are no exceptions for cases of rape or incest.

While the right-wing forces purport to be pro-life, nothing could be further from the truth. The real and central issues are control and oppression. Women are the targets of these particular policies, but the same forces targeting us support the incarceration of poor youth and youth of color at astronomical rates. The same forces actively support or do not ever resist the detention of young immigrant children and their separation from families.  They are not proponents of universal childcare or fully-funded public education. They care little for the fate of those who need abortions for a variety of reasons.

The state of Alabama is a prime example. The yellowhammer state ranks 49th in education. Sixteen and 17-year olds in the state are automatically charged as adults for certain crimes, like burglary. The right-to-work state has few protections for workers and only 7 percent of workers are unionized. It has the sixth highest rate of poverty in the United States, with over 250,000 children living in poverty in 2018. Over 22 percent of children live with food insecurity.

Abortion access and reproductive justice are health care measures that primarily serve the interests of poor and working people. The state government of Alabama, like the reactionary anti-abortion forces, clearly care little for the fate and well-being of poor and working class people. The abortion ban is just yet another piece of evidence to this effect.

2019 has been a year marked by an onslaught of stringent anti-abortion measures in more than a dozen states across the country. In the past few weeks, some of the strictest anti-abortion bills yet were signed into laws in several states- notably Alabama, Ohio, Georgia, and Missouri.

The barrage of anti-abortion bills in recent weeks signals an escalated reactionary attack aiming to dismantle Roe V. Wade and undermine reproductive rights altogether. The severe Alabama-styled abortion bans that make no exception for cases of rape or incest would punish rape victims or leave them without options. A recent article by Shannon Dingle for USA Today recounts her experience as a twelve-years-old who became pregnant after being raped multiple times. Dingle points out how abortion bans would have forced her to give birth to her rapist’s child.

Dingle compares her experience to a recent report of an 11-year old girl in Ohio who was allegedly impregnated after a 26-year-old raped her multiple times. Under Ohio’s new law, this young girl would be unable to receive an abortion.

In April, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine signed a ‘fetal heartbeat’ bill into law, which bans abortion once a fetal heartbeat can be detected. Like Alabama’s ban, Ohio’s law does not include exceptions for cases of rape or incest. Ohio’s anti-abortion law isn’t the first time such a bill was passed into law. This year, three other states-Mississippi, Kentucky, and most recently Georgia and Missouri-passed similar bans.

These 6 week or eight week bans have been deemed ‘heartbeat’ bills–suggesting that at 6 weeks of gestation the embryo has a beating heart. However, science says that is far from reality. At 6 weeks of gestation, the embryo begins to generate a ‘flutter’ from a clump of cells that will become the heart’s pacemaker. This flutter would not be detected if a medical professional put a stethoscope up to the belly of the pregnant woman. Calling it a heartbeat bill gives credence to the idea that a tiny clump of cells is more important than a living breathing woman who really does have a heartbeat.

Falsely labeled anti-abortion bills have also so far passed one chamber in Louisiana, South Carolina, and Tennessee. The other measures introduced to state houses in Maryland, Minnesota, New York, Texas, and West Virginia have yet to get votes.

Lawsuits have been filed or are planned to block the laws in Alabama, Georgia, and Ohio. State legislators introduced these bills knowing that they would be challenged in court. Right-wing forces have set the stage to reverse Roe v. Wade hoping the abortion bans will be heard by the right-wing Supreme Court.

Despite the fact that the Roe v. Wade decision made abortion a legal right, many women still face obstacles in obtaining abortions. The first reactionary attack on Roe v. Wade was the nefarious 1977 Hyde Amendment that denied the use of Medicaid funds for abortion.  Over the last decade in particular, states have passed hundreds and hundreds of restrictive laws and other measure that decrease access to abortion access. The limitations range from laws effectively shutting down abortion providers to counseling requirements, extended waiting periods, restricted insurance coverage and state support for fake counseling centers that deceive people.

Anti-abortion groups and reactionary forces have been backing more aggressive restrictions since President Trump’s 2016 election, but their efforts have become even more brazen in 2019. They are pushing these new restrictive bills with the 2020 presidential elections now in sight.

Women’s rights and lives are on the line. History has show that there is a force capable to pushing back the reactionary offensive. That force is not the spineless and opportunistic forces within the leadership of the Democratic Party. The militant and independent women’s movement of the 1960s won the victory of Roe v. Wade in 1973 despite an all conservative majority Supreme Court.

Today’s offensive similarly requires the organization and mobilization of a broad sector of society, in the streets and workplaces and campuses and more. It requires that we stand strong against the forces that would seek to divide us–that we understand the struggle for reproductive justice as one that must stand against racism, homophobia, transphobia, and all permutations of sexism and misogyny.  It requires that we shout boldly and from every possible corner not only our right to abortion and birth control but to reproductive justice for all.

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How Liberal Partisan Politics Strengthen the Right Wing


The desire to condemn evil and wrongdoing should not be a partisan matter, but the brutality of the present shows us how many people feel otherwise.

In the midst of each despicable advance the right wing makes at the expense of people’s lives, there is always shock and awe from the liberal class. There’s the shock that it’s actually happening, the shock that liberalism is failing to halt right-wing encroachments and the shock that oppression has happened under the direction of Democratic Party politicians as well Republican ones. This says a lot, but a very important takeaway is how liberalism coalesces the very oppressive forces many of its constituents think they are actively opposing by being liberals. The travesty that is immigration policy in the US gives us a very clear picture of contradiction.

A creation of the Bush administration, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), was one of the sweeping reforms made after the 9/11 attacks. During a time in which war fever was being heavily stoked, the Democratic Party largely went along with virtually everything the Republicans were incentivizing in the name of nationalist fervor. Under the guise of patriotism, the Democrats enabled wars, policies and attitudes that have become some of the most atrocious events seen in our lifetimes.

The responsibility of maintaining empire and continuing violence isn’t one-sided within the US’s two-party system, it’s the only side. Our votes will elect those who enforce hegemony around the globe no matter if we cast them to the right or the relative left. This is how we ended up with ICE and foreign policy that destabilizes other nations abroad, producing unlivable conditions for many people around the globe.

The migrants, immigrants and refugees who have come or have attempted to come to the US are forced to make the journey through the grate of US politics. They cross the borders of an empire that has long crossed over them. In return, they are treated as if they are criminals for simply doing their best to survive. Though the language of the two parties may differ at times, the end result is the regular extension of empire’s violence, and that has remained the same no matter who is in power.

During the Obama presidency, the Democratic Party showed unabashed support for Obama’s attachment to the policies of the Bush administration that came before him. Whether it was Wall Street bailouts, immigration policy or the “war on terror,” when there was an opportunity to end the unacceptable, it was squandered instead. The Democrats excused their strengthening of Bush-era policy by wrapping atrocity in nicer language. President Obama always made sure to emphasize his record-level deportation apparatus was focusing on “criminals,” as if criminals should have less rights by default; President Trump entered the White House echoing this idea.

When the Bush administration responded to the panic of 9/11 by using the emergency to manipulate and overreach, the Democrats helped give the state bigger weapons to carry out their agenda. The Democrats aided right-wing supporters and the Republican Party at the time, as they often still do, at many of their own constituents’ expense. While many liberal voters may have thought they were being more moral for “reaching across the aisle” to affirm at least some or part of the right’s racist, xenophobic paranoias, they were, and have been, merely assisting the destruction.

President Trump’s “zero-tolerance” stance on immigration which breaks up families is directly connected to the Republicans and Democrats who broke up families before him and enabled him with the means to do so. President Clinton’s Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 helped pave the way for ICE as we know it. Using this terrible act, Clinton went about expanding Border Patrol, criminalizing various low-level immigration violations and enlarging the deportation machine.

In 2014, former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton said that children who cross the border should be “sent back,” and stated that, “We have to send a clear message, just because your child gets across the border, that doesn’t mean the child gets to stay,” the former secretary of state said. “So, we don’t want to send a message that is contrary to our laws or will encourage more children to make that dangerous journey.” It’s worth questioning if liberal voters and Democratic Party politicians would have decried another anti-immigrant Clinton administration the way they’ve decried Trump’s.

Hypocrisy is exposed under the headlines. People react in shock to not-new abuses happening under Trump that have been occurring for the last two administrations or more. When it was announced that the Trump administration planned to house migrant children in tents, The Washington Post noted that, “The shelter site, at the Tornillo-Marcelino Serna port of entry, is about 20 miles east of El Paso along the Mexico border. It was last used in 2016 to house migrant children and families in large, dormitory-style canvas tents.”

In 2014, the Obama administration housed more than 7,000 children at bases in Oklahoma, Texas and California for months. NBC Nightly News pointed out just as much saying, “It will not be the first time the US government has erected tent cities to house immigrants. US Customs and Border Protection used tents to house an influx of immigrants in 2014 and at the end of the Obama administration.”

This regularly gets left out when prominent liberal politicians and pundits rush to condemn Trump. To maintain its cherished role as the lesser-evil party, the Democrats willfully ignore the connectivity of their own party in creating, perpetuating and inflicting the brutality they pretend to be inherently opposed to and manipulate their base.

The contradiction maybe most embarrassingly reared its head when a number of liberals — and at least one former Obama administration official — mistakenly shared photos they thought were exposing the Trump administration’s treatment of immigrant children when they were, in fact, from President Obama’s term. Surely if one’s desire to condemn wrongdoing and evil is partisan, that person doesn’t have a problem with wrongdoing or evil as much as they do with who gets to carry it out and (maybe) how it looks or sounds when they do so.

The brutal normalcy of atrocity is strengthened by a liberal class that will not admit fault and entertains the despicable in the name of tolerance. Democrats and their supporters have pushed the right so far ahead by pretending to be opposed to the violence they regularly inflict themselves. By strengthening the right to the extent they have, we are now poised to see something much worse than Trump unless we prioritize disorganizing the liberal class from party politics and reorganizing all that we can into a true opposition. It may only be a matter of time before we see a president who has fascist desires with more competency to carry them out.

If we are to move forward, abolishing and opposing tyranny where and when we rightfully should, and a radical honesty is required of us. There can be no more lies and deceptions for the sake of party politics. Telling the truth about violence is an important part of combatting it. The question should no longer be who is better equipped to carry out state violence against us, but instead, when and how will we stop all the violence against us.

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